What's in a name?
I'm CCP Gnauton, one of EVE's Senior Writers. I'm currently spearheading an initiative to rename those of EVE's modules and implants whose names have been deemed too confusing by a fearless cross-departmental cadre of game designers, UI designers & content developers. A first iteration of this project already went through (as I'm sure all you missile users out there are aware of), but went lamentably uncommunicated by us. That's mostly my fault, and by overloading you with information on the whats and wherefores of this next iteration, I hope to somewhat make up for my error.
So, first a few words on why we're doing this. It's no secret that EVE's complexity holds great appeal to the dedicated gamer (or indeed anyone who appreciates a living breathing interactive system, even if they don't participate in every aspect of it), but it's nonetheless true that there are certain things that add to this complexity in a meaningful way and other things that simply befuddle and obfuscate for no real reason. Needlessly complex item names, we've come to firmly believe, are among the latter. There simply is not much inherent game value in having to do a Show Info every time you can't remember whether the Voltaic Nanite hardener is better than the Radioisotope one, or whether the Hardwiring - Inherent Implants 'Lancer' G1.5-Alpha goes into slot 6 or slot 7, and what kind of bonus it gives again, and how much of that bonus you get.
That said, in light of some passionate feedback we received in the wake of the first iteration, we've decided that we need to be more conscious of retaining the flavor of the old names while adding functionality. You will therefore find that many of these modules have retained parts of their earlier names while still conforming to the new naming standards.
So without further ado, here's what we've changed this time around. These changes are already in on Singularity, and will hit TQ in March.
A note to begin with: we've come up with a standardized global scheme for Meta Level 1-4 modules, so by looking at the name you should be able to tell at a glance where the item falls in the Meta pecking order. It goes like this:
Meta Level 1: Upgraded
Meta Level 2: Limited
Meta Level 3: Experimental
Meta Level 4: Prototype
This will, in due time, be applied to every Meta level 1-4 module in the game, and except where otherwise noted, has been applied to all module groups mentioned in the list below.
All Skill Hardwiring implants in the game have had their names changed to conform to this format:
As an example, the Hardwiring - Inherent Implants 'Lancer' G0.5-Betaimplant, which fits in implant slot 7 and gives a 2% bonus to the Controlled Bursts skill, has now become the Inherent Implants 'Lancer' Controlled Bursts CB-702 implant. Hardwiring - Eifyr and Co. 'Rogue' HY-2.5, which goes in implant slot 6 and gives an 18% bonus to Warp Speed, is now Eifyr and Co. 'Rogue' Warp Drive Speed WS-618.
Armor Coating/Armor Hardener/Armor Plating Energized/Shield Resistance Amplifier/Shield Hardener
Every module that boosts either armor or shield resistance has gone under the knife. In addition to adapting them to the global Meta 1-4 scheme, we've replaced the words "Reflective," "Reactive" and "Magnetic" with the modules' relevant damage types (EM, Explosive and Kinetic, respectively).
Assault Launcher/Heavy Assault Launcher/Standard Missile Launcher/Siege Launcher
This is perhaps the most extensive and potentially controversial change we've made in this iteration, because it goes beyond individual modules and all the way into module (and market) groups.
Please make sure you disseminate this information among your corporation and alliance mates as widely as possible.
We have changed the missile launcher names as follows:
Heavy Assault Missile Launchers have become Assault Missile Launchers
Assault Missile Launchers have become Light Missile Arrays
Standard Missile Launchers have become Light Missile Launchers
Siege Launchers have become Torpedo Launchers
The general idea here was to change the name of each launcher into something more generally descriptive of its function and the type of ammo it is able to fit, and more specifically to erase the counterintuitive assault launcher/heavy assault launcher dichotomy that's caused its fair share of confusion in the past.
All scripts in the game have had the word "script" added to their names, so a simple market search for "script" will now bring up all scripts available in the game, irrespective of market group.
For a comprehensive list of every item name change made so far, please point your browsers to this EVElopedia page. This central name change portal will be updated as and when more module names get changed, and we will split it up and make it prettier in future iterations. Note that in places where the New Name column is blank, the module's name has not been changed.
That's it for now. Comments and constructive feedback are of course most appreciated, and I'll close this by reiterating what I've said before in the comment threads: our goal here is not removing EVE's flavor, it's improving EVE's usability. We have a deep and abiding love for our property's depth and flair, and we don't intend to harm it in the slightest. We just want to make things a little more accessible.
Until next time,
Catch CCP Gnauton at the Storyline Roundtable at Fanfest 2012! More information on Fanfest topics, tickets and travel can be found here.