Promised at Fanfest back in early May and occasionally hinted at over the summer, the beginning of the Faction Warfare updates have finally landed in New Eden.
Faction Warfare, within the scope of EVE Online, is probably most akin to realm v realm in other MMOs. But, with one server, you can’t fight other realms, as there are none. Instead players align with one of the four major NPC empires (Amarr, Caldari, Gallente, or Minmatar), which battle over four regions of low security space, the Amarr facing the Minmata and the Caldari facing the Gallente.
That sounds exciting, but as a feature of the game it has often been neglected, been the subject of exploits, and felt the pain of collateral damage as features roll out for other aspects of the game. So it was kind of a big deal to have CCP say they were going to focus on Faction Warfare at Fanfest. Even groups with their own lists of long standing issues felt it was long past time for FW to get some attention.
So today’s patch notes include a big update about Faction Warfare. There was a news item posted about the militaries of the empires going on alert with an accompanying dev blog, while in The Agency there is now a headline about the new Faction Campiagns.
There are two campaigns available, one for the Amarr/Minmatar side of the house and one for the Caldari/Gallente conflict.
For the Gallente/Caldari conflict the copy says:
The Gallente Federation and Caldari State have placed utmost importance on controlling the Athounon system, and are attempting to build stargates leading back to Amygnon and Samanuni respectively, Capsuleers can assist either faction by occupying Athounon through factional warfare, and mining unique ore in the Serthoulde constellation.
And for the Amarr/Minmatar war the copy says:
The Amarr Empire and the Minmatar Republic are both attempting to develop new technology derived from Triglavian Stellar Transmuters. To advance this research they are fighting over control of prototype Stellar Transmuters that the Amarr has constructed within the warzone, as well as data collected from remote observation facilities spread throughout the local constellations.
Helping with the efforts of the empires will reward players with Loyalty Tokens… not to be confused with Loyalty Points, the usual currency of FW… where they can be used to purchase early access to the new faction hulls that are coming to the game.
The new hulls are:
- Navy Issue Battlecruisers
- Cyclone Fleet Issue
- Ferox Navy Issue
- Myrmidon Navy Issue
- Prophecy Navy Issue
- Navy Issue Frigates
- Probe Fleet Issue
- Heron Navy Issue
- Imicus Navy Issue
- Magnate Navy Issue
Attributes of the new hulls are available in the patch notes linked below, but my guess is that these must be good hulls because people have been complaining about them on r/eve since they showed up on the test server.
One thing that is not clear to me with the update is who is able to participate. One of the pitfalls of FW has long been the need to join a corporation that has pledged itself to one of the factions in order to participate fully. So it wasn’t something you could do casually on your main, like Abyssals, because it required your organization to commit. If they didn’t, it might be something you did on an alt.
It was at least implied back at Fanfest that CCP planned to break down that barrier to FW, but the patch notes, while one might infer something like this, does not call it out explicitly. So, as usual, your mileage may vary.