CCP Changes to Nullification and Warp Core Stabilizers hit the Test Server

CCP has finally announced their plans for interdiction nullification and warp core stabilizers.  Long under discussion, the proposed changes, slated to be launched with the Great Escape update, are now available on Singularity, the EVE Online test server.

In Testing

PvP focused players have long complained about missing kills due to various defensive mechanics.  Previously CCP nerfed ECM into uselessness for individual pilots.  Now the nerfbat is being brought to interdiction and warp core stabilizers.

With the upcoming change, interdiction nullification, which gives certain hulls immunity from warp disruption bubbles, will be removed as a default attribute from fleet interceptors, luxury yachts, and strategic cruiser propulsion subsystems.  Instead, nullification will be available via a new low high slot module. [Changed to high slot with May 17 update.]  On the upside, the new module will be available for more hulls, with the list currently being:

  • Interceptors
  • Blockade Runners
  • Covert Ops
  • Deep Space Transports
  • Luxury Yachts
  • Strategic Cruisers
  • Tech I and Faction Frigates
  • Stealth Bombers
  • T1 Industrials [added 5/14]

Stealth bombers (which were added to the list after it was posted initially) strike me as a ship class not really needing another buff, especially when the primary defense against them is dictor bubbles, but I suspect that this is the “more ships dying is better” thread that tends to influence CCP.  We’ll see if they make it to the final patch. [Edit: Stealth bombers removed with May 14 update linked at the bottom of the post.]

Meanwhile, frigates in general (also added later) are really opening up a door.  I can imagine anybody flying a battleship with implants will now have a getaway frigate in their escape bay.  But with bombers nullfied and hull prices now sky high, it is possible nobody will be flying battleships anyway. [T1 frigates removed with the May 17 update, linked in the addendum at the bottom of the post.]

On the downside, the new module is active and has a short cycle, staying active for 10 to 15 seconds depending which version you choose (Tech I, compact, restrained, or Tech II) with a 150 second reactivation timer.  In addition, the new modules will come with 50% targeting range and scan resolution penalties when fitted.

Hulls that previously had nullification by default will receive a role bonus that reduces the targeting range penalty by 50% 80% and boosts the activation cycle by 100% 80%.

Finally, shuttles will get nullification interdiction, something that has long been asked for.  If they could also get an align time under two seconds they might even get used.  The current 2.2 second align makes them quite catchable.

Then there are war core stabilizers which, like the new interdiction nullification modules, will need to be activated to provide their bonus, running with a 20 second activation cycle and a 150 second cool down.  As with the other modules the penalties, 50% reduction to targeting range, scan resolution, and drone bandwidth, will be in effect when the Tech I module is fitted, with reductions in those penalties with higher meta modules.

Both of the module sets will also be limited to one per ship, so you won’t be able to pile on multiples for extended effects.  But the warp core stabilizers, at least on the test server, all have a strength of 3 when activated, which is enough to get you away from any solo frigate tackler most days. [Changed to 2 with May 14 update.]

Warp core stabs go to 3 now

CCP has added that they are looking to add the ability to activate these modules when a ship is still under its “gate cloak” so that there isn’t the awkward time delay that could get you caught simply because the attacker lives in London and you live further afield, proximity to the game’s data center being a long proven game advantage.

As I complained a couple years back, the discussion about these mechanics still come with the assumption that warp distruptors, war scramblers, and warp interdiction bubbles are fine as absolute mechanics, it is only when defenses become absolute… or in the case of ECM, simply too effective…  that people complain.  That continues.

Anyway, I suspect these changes will go through as announced with only minor tweaks.  The warp core stabilizer change likely won’t have an impact on me personally, as I cannot remember the last time I fit one on anything besides an industrial.  Having nullification interdiction on a blockade runner could be handy however, though I have gotten by with the MWD cloaking trick for ages now.  Scouting and moving without nullification though… or with a long wait on an activation timer when you have to move through bubbles on both sides of every gate… is going to become tiresome quickly.  But the game changes and we either adapt or move on.

Addendum May 14:  Changes have already been made based on feedback and testing.

  • Entering warp no longer deactivates the Interdiction Nullifier modules
  • Removed Stealth Bomber group from being able to fit the new Interdiction Nullifier modules.
  • Added Tech I Industrial groups to be able to fit the new Interdiction Nullifier modules.
  • Adjusted the bonus on Interceptors, Yachts, and T3 Cruisers to 80% penalty for reduced target range and reactivation delay.
  • Added the new attribute for allowing WCS and Nullifier modules to be activated while under the effect of a stargate cloak.
  • Updated the bonus texts for the Victorieux Luxury Yacht, Malediction, Imp, Whiptail, and T3 subsystems.
  • Fixed an error with a ghost attribute on the Restrained Interdiction Nullifier.
  • Updated the attribute text for the Drone Bandwidth penalty to show the percent reduction.
  • Correct the expected reprocessing materials from Interdiction Nullifier modules

In addition, unmentioned in the thread (that I saw), the warp core strength for the warp core stabilizers was changed from 3 to 2, so now a frigate with a point and a scram can still tackle you.  So that screen shot above is already out of date, though that is to be expected.

Addendum May 17:  Some more changes have come in.

  • Interdiction Nullifier modules are now a High-Slot module.
  • Tech I Frigates have been removed from the list of ships that can fit nullifiers.
  • Fixed an issue with ECM burst jams not correctly disabling nullification when using the modules.

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