One of the great tragedies of EVE Online is that a huge segment of the player base clings to high-security space, where PvP takes the form of war targets that are generally easy to avoid, or suicide ganks. Both of these have their time and place, and are thrill in and of themselves, but they aren't the free and open PvP that takes place in null-security space, or the intricate brouhahas that flare up in low-security space.
The purpose of this article is to suggest specific reasons to venture out of high security space. Some players won't do this no matter what the carrot is, because they don't want to play a high-risk lifestyle. That's absolutely fine, so long as you're having fun. But I recommend at least giving the dangerous lifestyle the old college try.
I don't mean this to be a jeremiad or insulting to anybody's play-style, and I hope you won't interpret it that way. I just want to tempt you into trying something new. And if you're already out here, maybe you will still find this article useful to convince a gun-shy friend to leave the nest.
To Be Part Of The Space Opera
Most of the really interesting things happen within the so-called "end-game" of null-security space, or within the factional warfare taking place in low-security space. Conflict is the dynamo that makes the wheels of EVE Online's industry turn. It's also the really interesting stuff that we thrive on. By comparison, high-security space's tepidity offers a good place to learn the basics of the game, periodic high-profile scams or suicide ganks, and perhaps an occasional roleplaying event. Most of what happens there isn't going to interest other denizens of high-sec, let alone make international news.
But plenty of stuff that happens out in null-sec is big news. Whether it's a major scam or territorial reversal that makes the New York Times, or something that gets voted to the front page of a new media web site by interested viewers, the conflicts that occur in null-security space are interesting.
If you want to be part of a fleet battle involving hundreds of people at once, you need to leave high-sec. If you want to plant your flag on the map, take sovereignty, and build a station, you need to leave high security space. If you want to start a corporation that garners a reputation and is famous throughout EVE, you probably will have better luck outside high-security space.
To Make Crazy Amounts Of Money
There's lots of ISK to be made in high-sec, for sure. Most players eventually make a decent amount running missions, especially if they have datacores coming in on the side. And others (like me) make impressive sums of ISK through market manipulation and speculation. And of course, there's always mining.
All that is writ large in low-sec and null-sec. Mining the ores found in null-sec, at least, is more lucrative. The markets in null-sec are often desperate, writhing things that need as many sources of goods pouring into them are possible. This makes market manipulation possible with far less sums of money, than playing around with the Jita or Rens markets. It also means that producers can make 100% profits instead of 5% profits, even on simple tech one modules.
Not to mention mining and reacting moon minerals, which aren't possible in high-security space. They're where the real money is at, for a lot of players. The investment is quite reasonable, especially if you start small or pony up a timecard, and ere long you're rolling in moon goo that sells for enough to pay for two subscriptions. That doesn't happen for most players in high-security space, without serious expenditures of effort.
To Find PvP
I know that most players who don't want to leave high-security space probably aren't thrilled at the thought of fighting other players. If relatively unstructured PvP was especially appealing to these people, they would already have made the leap. Still, it's appealing to think that together with some friends and a bit of luck, even very new players can get kills and actually win. Everybody likes winning. It's just a matter of organizing your posse, situating yourselves at a good spot, and then not having unlucky timing.
The PvP that happens in low-sec and null-sec is dynamic, wild, unpredictable. It involves more ships, including capital ships, titans, and supercarriers. It also involves more tactical options, including actual POS warfare, cynosural fields, and in null-sec, warp disruption fields. In contrast, PvP in high security is often much harder to find, because finding war targets can be so difficult, and suicide ganking isn't especially interactive. Of course, factional warfare spills over into high-security space and has a good "bump into enemies" ratio, but the real action happens in low-sec.
Give It A Shot
So if you want people to fight and aren't afraid of getting your fingers burned, get out into low-sec and give it a try. Figure out a way for living outside of high-sec to be profitable for you and your friends, and get out there and make it happen. I wish you the very best luck!