Road to Fanfest – Ever Closer!
Fanfest 2022 is quickly approaching and it’s hard to believe that in just over 7 weeks’ time, we will finally be welcoming you to the ultimate Party at the Top of the World in Reykjavík. We can’t tell you how much we at CCP are looking forward to meeting you again in person to share the exciting plans for EVE Online. As we all continue to get into the spirit of Fanfest, there’s still much to look forward to on the road to getting there. So far, the Road to Fanfest has been filled with a slew of updates including significant changes to compression, a new mysterious mining adventure added to the NPE, sizeable graphical updates, sweeping boosts to every resistance module in the game, balance changes to CRAB, and player owned customs offices (POCOs), as well as extensive updates to battleships, all of which you can read about in the Road to Fanfest blog from last week.
There’s still a little time to go until Fanfest 2022 is here, and there’s much more to come between now and then. Several updates are making their first appearance on the Singularity test server today that we’ll be covering in this blog, starting with some improvements to structures.
STANDUP AND DELIVER
Upwell structures have taken New Eden by storm since their introduction, be it in Highsec or wormhole space, providing the core of EVE’s industry, fierce strategic significance, and everything in-between. There have been many changes to these structures since their launch in 2016, but they are once again the focus of an ongoing initiative to create more exciting gameplay around attacking and defending them.
This next update, now available to test on Singularity, targets the balancing of fighting in and around these structures. This first set of changes involves updates to four key modules.
Changes are being introduced to the Standup Point Defense Battery that require it to use ammunition loaded into the module, as well as giving it a longer reload time. This will create downtime for the Point Defense Battery so that there are windows for counterplay where small ships can drop into a fight and warp off before it’s reloaded and ready to fire again.
The Standup Guided Bomb Launcher attributes are being adjusted so that it holds fewer bombs and takes longer to reload the launcher when all bombs are spent. This will create windows where bomb use is more tactical and not the primary defensive weapon a structure has in its arsenal.
The damage of Standup Anti-Capital Missiles has been reduced so that Capsuleers will be more willing to field capitals during a siege. Attackers will be less at risk of paying more for dropping a few dreads than the structure they're attacking costs - at least without defenders putting their own ships on grid.
While their anti-capital use has been adjusted, the missile speed of Standup Missiles has been increased so that they remain able to catch and damage subcapital ships.
Standup Arcing Vorton Projectors will be receiving an update, removing their ability to target subcapital ships. This means that they can’t be used purely to headshot enemy fleet commanders as well as further reinforcing their purpose as anti-capital defense.
Updates such as these are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Upwell structures, and we've had some fantastic and lengthy discussions about them with both the CSM and the community regarding their reinforcement phases. Upwell structures should maintain their value while being well-balanced in terms of investment cost for their owners and the effort required to destroy them. We’re hard at work in this area and look forward to sharing the details with you as we get closer to Fanfest!
As you may have seen last week, a new Rorqual module has made it to testing on Singularity, providing it with a new and powerful maneuverability & logistics tool. Mining operations across Nullsec and Lowsec will transform as Rorquals will now be able to conduit jump 30 mining ships next to them, allowing for better logistics for large-scale mining operations. Combined with unparalleled boosts and compression, along with the already powerful PANIC modules – and the fact that it will be able to jump to industrial cynos - the Rorqual cements itself as the most powerful mining support ship New Eden has ever seen.
FROM STRENGTH TO STRENGTH
The changes to resistance modules and battleships have been rippling throughout New Eden, and there are some more small updates. The Bolstered Bulkheads resistance buff has put a spotlight on Tech III cruisers, but it is apparent that the once-strong and popular Proteus is underperforming compared to other ships in the line. This is in part due to low fitting room and low speed. Its potential is being further unlocked through an easing up of its fitting space to allow the Proteus to more comfortably fit a 1600mm plate alongside a full rack of neutron blasters without necessitating spending a valuable low slot or rig on a fitting module. The plate mass change will also give it a slight speed boost to make it a bit more mobile while armor plates are fit, making it just slightly easier to get into a position to use those blasters effectively.
Historically in EVE, organized groups of stealth bombers have always contributed interesting counterplay to battleships - all while showing off the very high skill cap that a well-orchestrated bombing run requires. So, as groups are building their battleship reserves, an issue fix here increases the strength of stealth bombers as they receive a cooldown reduction for bomb launchers, meaning that they will be able to come back for a second bombing run more rapidly. With the Bomb Deployment skill trained to level 5, a Tech II bomber can launch a bomb every 67 seconds instead of 120. A Tech I bomb launcher will have a reactivation delay of 80 seconds, down from 144. Small adjustments will continue to be made as the meta unfolds to ensure that one playstyle doesn’t become too dominant, and players can continue to enjoy more options and diversity
TEST DRIVE – FEATURE PREVIEW SYSTEM
As a part of the ongoing efforts to lay the foundations for EVE Online’s third decade, we're happy to introduce the new Feature Preview system which allows you to opt-in and engage with complex features still undergoing active development, test driving them directly in the EVE client.
Feedback will be more fully incorporated into the prototypical process by allowing you access to these features early while they are being developed. Your invaluable feedback on past features has already improved and shaped them into better additions to EVE, and this new way of testing will allow for more exposed development, enabling earlier chances for players to express important feedback while also allowing development teams to gather information on how you play EVE and what will best aid you in that pursuit.
The debut preview feature will be a UI unification project, aimed at improving consistency, creating a better onboarding experience for new players, and reducing cognitive load for all players. This update brings adjustments to the window style, margin, and spacing, as well as a unification of the UI color schemes used for feedback purposes - blue for call-to-action buttons, orange for warning interactions, and so forth. The features offered in the preview system are temporary and can easily be turned on or off. It is important to note that the features will not be in their final form.
You can read more about this feature in a detailed dev blog and share feedback on the official discussion thread.
BLUEPRINT CHANGES COMING SOON!
The previously mentioned blueprint changes to faction ships, dreadnoughts, and capital ships are taking shape after careful review of the impact that the update to compression has made to the market this March, and we will be sharing the details of these updates mid-April, just before Fanfest.
We are so excited to share our plans with you and once they’re finally live, seeing how these updates impact the battle landscape of New Eden as this will inevitably lead to more of these ships wreaking havoc on the battlefield!
FANFEST ON THE HORIZON
EVE Fanfest 2022 is just around the corner, and with sales of tickets continuing unabated, it’s gearing up to be the best one yet! Get yourself in the zone for amazing developer and player presentations, unforgettable events, and sharing your collective passion for New Eden in person with your fellow Capsuleers. There’s even more on the horizon as the party draws closer, with many exciting plans in the works to be revealed at Fanfest and also beyond. Stay tuned over the coming weeks as we reveal more of what you can expect by keeping your eye on EVE Online’s social channels and the EVE Fanfest website for more details.
The excitement within CCP is palpable, and we cannot wait to see you all again - in person - in May! Until then, we look forward to keeping you posted about this and even more updates on our road to Fanfest.