The Phoebe expansion just went live on Tuesday and CCP is still closing loopholes in the system… I think they fixed the bit where you could erase jump fatigue via clone jumping, and the doomsday timer on titans being reset via gate jumps is probably gone now too… but they still found the time to run another episode of the o7 The EVE Online Show on Twitch where they dropped another bombshell on New Eden.
For those unfamiliar with chat in EVE Online, oh-seven is a little guy saluting. Sometimes he is just waving, done as oh-forward slash. Or it might be a she. It is hard to tell with a little circle.
o7 - saluting o/ - waving o7m8 - being annoying
Not that this has anything to do with the news, but sometimes it is nice to re-state things as not everybody who reads this plays EVE.
Anyway, yesterday on the show, CCP announced that with the Rhea expansion there would be a major change to clones. Clones would no longer have various grades based on the amount of your skill points, so there will be no need to upgrade your clone after you get podded, which means that there will be no more loss of skill points.
I am not sure that was as bit of an announcement as the unshackling of the training queue that came with Phoebe, but it got a lot of cheers.
This is one of those day one game mechanics that has just become one of those things we do because it is one of those things we do. Losing skills because you forgot to upgrade your clone is a heartbreaker, as it hits your highest cost skills. Ask Dabigredboat how many times he has lost Fleet Command V, a skill which could take you 60 days to train up.
And the ongoing rising price of clones is just an annoying tax on skill points. CCP realized this a while back and actually reduced the cost of clone upgrades, so I went from a 40 million ISK tax on being podded to just 30 million. But now they have decided to jump in with both feet and just remove the whole game mechanic.
There will be some complaints about this change. As I have always said, no matter what feature we are talking about or how bad it is, it is somebody’s favorite feature. I think CSM member Sion Kumitomo has a reasonable discussion up about the change over at TMC. I think it is a good thing, as I always feel odd losing a clone that costs more than the ship I am flying, implants aside. And, since there will be no change to implants, there will still be the joy of podding somebody with a full slave set.
CCP has posted the show up on YouTube and you can find that announcement at the thirteen minute mark.
Then there was the announcement that there would be some new space in Rhea. A collection of new systems will be coming to wormhole space with unique features. Covered on the show was a new wormhole system that will have a name, Thera. It will have NPC stations in it with the idea that people will live there and use the static wormholes to known space to find adventure. It will also have Sleeper sites, no local, and be null sec rated just like the rest of wormhole space today. It will not allow capital ships of POSes however. CCP Fozzie called it the fifth type of space, alongside high sec, low sec, null, and wormhole.
This strikes me as CCP rolling the dice by mixing up some of the current mechanics to see what players will make of it. Which isn’t a bad thing. Golden Age or not, it will be interesting to see how this turns out.
On the YouTube video, the discussion of this starts at the 27 minute mark.
And then, on top of that, there is a new Dev Blog up about revamping the UI.
Certainly the EVE Online UI has many problems. It is one of those things that you simply have to adjust to over time, because trying to find a method in the madness is a fools errand.
But now they are talking about changing it up, which scares me a bit. In part, that is because after 8 years, I am somewhat used to the idiosyncrasies of the UI. But the other aspect is that, in life, I have found that people often confuse “new” or “different” with “better.” I don’t want something that is just bad in different ways. You might as well stick with the devil you know then. But CCP is asking for feedback, so there is time to see and comment on their plan.
All of which, plus the Tech III destroyers announced at EVE Vegas, is starting to make the Rhea release in December look like a big deal.
At this point I am less worried about jump fatigue… I haven’t accrued any yet, despite traveling across New Eden post-Phoebe… and more worried about feature fatigue with changes like this coming at us about every six weeks. Can CCP keep it up? Can we keep up?