Tag Archives: EVE Updates

EVE Online is Back with Native MacOS Support

Back in the day CCP used to support a native MacOS client.  It was finicky… I once ran it on the wrong MacOS version and got some very odd results… but it mostly worked.  Then Apple swapped over to Intel processors and it became possible for CCP to just use WINE emulation to run the Windows client on Macs.  There was some extra work to do to support that, including contributing code to the WINE project, but it was a lot less effort than maintaining two clients.

And then recently Apple left Intel for their own new M1 processors which led to EVE Online MacOS players potentially being unsupported if they purchased the new machines.

This swap by Apple also prompted Intel to launch a petulant “Apple Sux!” ad campaign because I guess they think Apple will never ever buy another chip from them again or something.  But that is another story.

So CCP was left with a choice.  Given that they are still optimistically talking about growth and working on the new player experience, they opted not to ditch almost 10% of the PC market, which meant going back to native MacOS support.

While 10% might sound like a small loss, CCP knows how many MacOS users they have, so it might be worth it to them.  Also, the 10% number vastly understates the number of systems that might actually be able to run EVE Online.  There are a lot of base model Windows boxes sitting in enterprises and on desks all over the world that aren’t even in the running.  When I go to visit the sprawling medical center where my doctor resides, I walk by dozens of PCs… one at every reception desk, one at every nurse’s desk… they all little desks now because the need to access their PCs… one in every exam room, two in my doc’s office, and more in spots I whose function I could not identify.  And not even one of them is likely ever to load up any video game more complicated that Solitaire… and only that if the IT department hasn’t purged it.

Anyway, the path back to a native client culminated with yesterday update and the new EVE Online X Apple era, whatever that means.

Times Apple? Ten Apple? Kiss Apple? I don’t know

Post update there is a transition from the old WINE version to the new native version which is covered in detail in the patch notes.

To celebrate the update and transition back to native support, CCP has some login rewards for us that run for five days.

Included in the rewards are the usual skill points and SKINs, but there are special Quafe Zero Green Apple flavor SKINs.  While they aren’t the classic old blue Quafe SKINs, they are still good.

And the is also some Quafe Zero Green Apple flavor boosters to go with the event as well.  Per the packaging:

Capsuleers can now enjoy Quafe Zero Green Apple, the new flavor of New Eden’s favorite performance drink with the potency of a booster!
A taste explosion that will help avoid ship explosions, the Green Apple edition of Quafe Zero provides the benefits of increased agility and power with Zero drawbacks!

Benefits:
+5% Agility, +5% Capacitor Recharge Rate. Duration: 1 hour.

Quafe Zero Green Apple is fortified with a proprietary mix of performance enhancers, oxidizers, and natural fruit juices designed to push your abilities to the limit.

The secret is in our patented fulleroferrocene nanite delivery system, which attaches our exclusive pro-capsuleer formula directly to the neurons you want, not the ones you don’t. The result is an immediate and direct boost to your performance, with Zero drawbacks!

For maximum experience overload Quafe Zero Green Apple has been further enhanced with proprietary Quafe nanoparticles responsive to popular brands of subcranial nanocontroller personal enhancements, such as the LD-X100 range from Lai Dai!

So make sure to login and collect your SKINs, skill points, and boosters.

Yesterday’s patch also made some changes to the Dynamic Bounty System thresholds, whatever that means, and continued the iterating on the new skill window and skill plan functionality.  They have already fixed the most egregious issues, like the huge amount of empty space, but there is still tuning to do.

And a new skill was added, Rogue Drone Specialization, which is required for using the new modified rogue drones.

Not present in the update was the capital PvE ratting mechanics, previously announced as Summon the Swarm, which are still brewing on the test server.  That still needs some work.

Related:

EVE Online Gets Another New Player Experience and Skill Training Updates as a New Quadrant Arrives

The summer vacations are over and CCP is back with a new Quadrant.  The Foundation Quadrant is over and the Gateway Quadrant has arrived.

Didn’t we all get stuck out here after that gateway closed?

And with that CCP is focused again on its favorite obsession of the last few years, the new player experience.  This time the NPE has been rebuilt around a new NPC faction, the Association for Interdisciplinary Research which will introduce new players to EVE Online.   The highlights from the dev blog are:

  • More immersive experiences and faster iteration
  • More dynamic visuals
  • Gradual UI reveal
  • Improved UI highlighting
  • An integrated intro video
  • Beautiful visuals

To the cynic in me that works out to “pretty,” “pretty,” “working with the UI we already have,” “working with the UI we already have,” “pretty,” and “pretty.”

I mean, there is room in there for real improvements, and maybe it is a better NPE, but CCP has chosen to emphasize the superficial and that the UI is too much for new players in its own description.  What is that supposed to tell me?

The new NPE is also said to be story driven, but so was the NPE two iterations ago, which was going to be a big new thing until they quietly ditched it, because everything PvE had to go into The Agency…. and probably also because once you got done with the story the actual game is nothing like that, bait and switch not being a great idea for player retention.  I hope CCP learned something since last time and aren’t just jumping back on the same idea they previously axed.

Though the NPE has been through the wringer more than a few times, CCP has been especially adamant about new player retention being an issue since EVE North back in 2019 when they gave us this chart.

How many new players log back in as time passes

As I noted at the time, that seems pretty dismal without any context.  But the one publicly available study on the topic I found seemed to indicate that those retention numbers are pretty close to the industry average for MMORPGs with a free to play option.  Given EVE Online’s legendary difficulty, obtuse UI, and open world PvP, that CCP does so well is probably an achievement.

So while I get that CCP likes to keep reminding us that new players are the lifeblood of the game… and I hope this next revision of the NPE helps on that front… farming the installed player base, the lapsed veterans and such, is how games like EverQuest and World of Warcraft have revitalized their bottom lines.  Here is hoping that another investment in another new NPE pays off.

The NPE is also emphasized in the trailer for the new quadrant.

I feel like I saw that launch sequence in the EVE Valkyrie opening… but I guess all tube launches feel kind of the same.  I’ll have to find some time to give it a try.

So that is the first thing on the list.

Next on the update front is skill training with the introduction of skill plans and a revamp of the training system UI.  This feels like a feature that benefits both new and old players alike.  Players will be able to create plans for specific goals, with milestones to mark improvements for specific configurations, and even certified skill plans aimed at new players to help them decide what to train.

There is also a revamp of the skill training UI.  Being an old fart that has finally gotten used to the current setup, I immediately wondered how badly could they screw it up? This morning already saw calls for the old UI on r/eve, but they hate everything there.  But here is the new UI on day one.

The New Skill Window – The red arrow thing is not part of the UI

For openers, skills now have their own window, no doubt because the game UI doesn’t have enough independent windows floating around, and it defaults to the new training plan UI, which I won’t even delve into right now, but it feels too big and not all that helpful.

For those of us who just want to see our current skills and queue together, the second tab has that, with all the skill groups now in alphabetical order finally.  I know, there is outrage that Spaceship Command isn’t in the upper left, but whatever, and my brain wants to read left to right along rows first, then down columns, and the sorting is by columns, but I’ll get used to all of that.

The window seems bigger than it needs to be.  It defaults to full screen, which is obnoxiously large on my 34″ monitor, but even when I make it a window it remains too wide for my taste largely due to the black dead zone between skills and queue (marked with the red arrow in the screen show above) that cannot be sized down by itself. (The gap between skill names and their states seems pretty wide as well.)

Anyway, there is always EVE Mon still if I need a more compact view.  Oh, and your character sheet is different now, lacking all those skills… and I hope you remembered to put pants on your avatar.

A fuller body view now

All of this comes with a couple of big changes to skills queues:

  • The current limit of 50 skill entries in the queue will be increased to 150 for both Alpha and Omega clones.
  • The current restriction of the Alpha clone training queue allowing only the skills that would start training within the next 24h will also be removed.

As somebody who came from the “one skill at a time and make sure you start a long skill the night before the next patch update” era, these seem huge.  150 skills in the queue will let you build up a might skill plan… I’ve bumped into the 50 skill limit a few times since it became a thing… and the removal of the 24 hour queue limit will be huge for new players.

And old players.  I can even now see people rolling up a new alpha, sending it the ISK for skills, setting up the desired queue, then letting it run for however long it takes until that suicide gank character or whatever is on the shelf and ready to use.  There is no improvement that EVE players will fail to exploit.

There are a few other items with today’s update.  A new skill points for sale pack is in the store.  EVE Online will be available in the Epic Store come September 23rd.  And, in a nod to the promise to relax the economic starvation plan (now planned for November), there was this tidbit slipped in at the bottom of the announcement:

More ice has been brought back into New Eden with its availability having doubled, and the availability of Mercoxit has also increased.

I wonder if the ice availability got boosted due to the jump drive fuel crisis that hit the game when World War Bee ended and PAPI had to move home?  Anyway, there is alleged to be more ice now.

So that is the what has come with the launch of the new quadrant.  Here are the related dev posts for today’s update:

CCP Releases the ESS Reserve Bank Keys and Hands Out ISK in EVE Online

As expected, CCP’s final update for July, named The Grand Heist, went live today.  It brought with it the long awaited ESS reserve bank keys, allowing players access to ~20 trillion ISK that has been piling up and inaccessible since the introduction of the mandatory ESS structures last November.

The Grand yet Slow Heist

In a surprising move, CCP also decided to straight up hand players ISK.  But I’ll get to that in a bit, first the reserve bank thing.

The reserve bank keys are now available in low sec sites that need to be scanned down.  The keys are available in four “flavors” with two variations.  The flavor is which quadrant of space they are useful in, the break down being:

  • SW: Feythabolis, Impass, Delve, Period Basis, Querious, Catch, Esoteria, Paragon Soul, Providence, and Stain
  • SE: Geminate, Curse, Detorid, Great Wildlands, Immensea, Insmother, Omist, Scalding Pass, Tenerifis, and Wicked Creek
  • NE: Cobalt Edge, Etherium Reach, The Kalevala Expanse, Malpais, Oasa, Outer Passage, Perrigen Falls, The Spire, Vale of the Silent, and Cache
  • NW: Branch, Deklein, Pure Blind, Tenal, Tribute, Venal, Cloud Ring, Fade, Fountain, Outer Ring, and Syndicate

The variations are the durations,15 and 45 minutes, which is how long the key in question allows you to siphon encrypted bonds from the reserve bank.  As with the main bank, the payout is in bonds that need to be turned into an NPC in order to convert them to ISK.  So the robber can get robbed trying to cash in.

So you don’t get all the reserve bank, but a steady payout for every minute that you and your crew sit in the ESS, up to the duration of your key.  The payout apparently ramps up over time, with a potential peak payout of 150 million ISK per minute.  That is some decent ISK, though it is still going to be a while before the current 20 trillion ISK is drained.

As I noted previously, some alliances have already nationalized some of their reserve banks, declaring that their output will go into the general funds to support the organization and its programs, like SRP.  Those not nationalized will likely still be harvested by the local residents.

In addition, the ESS structures and UI got a complete overhaul.  The small percentage of capsuleers than actually end up in an ESS will no doubt appreciate the new visuals.

Further details about the ESS update are linked at the end of the post.

But that is not all the update brings.  CCP seems to be all about the ISK at the moment, which seems a bit odd after the panic of the starvation economy and trying to make us all poor over the last year or so.  In order to celebrate the Grand Heist CCP is handing out ISK as login rewards for Omega clones.

Grand Heist Login Rewards

That is hard to see unless you enlarge it, but if an Omega account logs in for six days they will get rewards of 10, 15, 25, 40, 60, and finally 85 million ISK.  Not bonds or other items of value, but straight up in-game currency totaling up to 235 million ISK.

Handing out in-game currency as a daily login reward is pretty common with free to play mobile games, but I cannot recall an MMORPG giving out cash like this.  And this isn’t even an trivial amount.  For a lot of players, myself included, 235 million ISK is a useful sum.  I won’t be resubscribing any accounts to collect it, but I will certainly be sure to log in my subscribed accounts to gather this ISK largess.

But wait, that’s not all!

CCP is also trying to stimulate the economy by declaring something of a tax holiday, reducing sales tax and broker’s fees by 50% for the next three months.  So selling will net you more profit on the market between now and the end of October.

Both the ISK handout and the tax holiday are unprecedented in the history of the game.  CCP not too long ago went through a phase of raising taxes, again due to concerns about too much ISK coming into the economy.  Now they’re giving away ISK and reducing taxes.  It is almost as though they are reacting to something.  Can we be bribed to log in with ISK?

Anyway, I’ll be interested to see if there is a blip in the July or August MERs that line up to these two things.

The update is live in the game now.  Information is available at the following locations:

Addendum:

I now have a screen shot (thanks to Reddit) to prove the keys exits.

The info for a 45 minute SW key

Go forth and heist I guess.

The Hunter’s Boon Update Lands for EVE Online

Last week CCP put the proposed Hunter’s Boon update changes on the test server and today those changes went live for EVE Online.

The July Update

The update represents a variety of changes, but I think the biggest deal in the whole package has to be the removal of skill point loss when you your Tech III strategic cruiser gets blown up.

That was the original cost/benefit proposition for those hulls, introduced back with the Apocrypha expansion in March 2009, that they would be powerful and adaptable, but would also come with a risk of loss.

My first Tengu from back in 2010

Over the last dozen years the fortunes of strategic cruisers have gone up and down with buffs and nerfs and balance passes, most recently being one of the ship classes hit with the removal of interdiction nullification.  Once ubiquitous and powerful, they have been eclipsed by the Heavy Assault Cruiser meta of late.

So, in order to make them more viable, CCP has removed the big penalty.  No longer will you randomly lose a level from one of the skills related to the T3 hull you are flying.  Kind of a big deal.

What else do we get with the update?  CCP introduced the mobile covert cyno beacon.

We got the mobile cyno beacon back in March and it was apparently such a success that we now get the covert cyno version of it.

Covert style now

Blueprints for it have been seeded into the game so industry people can start researching them and begin production.

CCP also introduce blueprints for a new drug, the Strong Veilguard Booster, which increases capsuleer cloak stabilization… that timer that marks how long you can stay cloaked before a Mobile Observatory… something introduced just last month… can decloak you.  That raises the duration to a possible 45 minutes of stabilization.

The role bonus for fleet interceptors (Ares, Crow, Malediction, Stiletto) has been changed to include a reduction in scan resolution penalty while using Interdiction Nullifiers, the role bonus is now:

  • 80% reduction in Interdiction Nullifier reactivation delay, max lock range penalty, and scan resolution penalty.

The nerf bat came out for Marauders, which saw a hit to the benefits of their bastion mode.  The Bastion Module effects were adjusted as follows:

  • Target painter resistance has been reduced from -95% to -50%.
  • Sensor dampener resistance has been reduced from -95% to -50%.
  • Weapon disruption resistance has been reduced from -99% to -50%.
  • Bonus to sensor strength has been reduced from 1,000% to 100%.
  • Removed the ECM Immunity.

Hostile ewar will now be much more effective against those hulls when their Bastion Module is running.

There were also buffs to the CONCORD Pacifier and Enforcer hulls in a bid to make them less niche and more generally viable.

Finally, CCP also has a graphics update, the Bring Out EVE’s Colors plan mentioned previously.  Today’s update includes.

  • The Bring Out EVE’s Colors update is live and introduces a range of huge visual improvements, ensuring that New Eden continues to set a standard as a visually stunning universe. The update includes:
    • PBR shader adjustments, including changes to roughness calculation and visibility factor.
    • Modified lighting with brightened reflection map generation and asset backlighting.
    • Postprocess color improvements – tonemapping adjustments to brighten colors, extend the color range, smooth out gradients, and emphasize highlights
    • Numerous tweaks to assets, environments, and effects to maintain their appearance with the new tech.
  • Characters in windows are now rendered with 4x supersampling when Antialiasing is set to “High.” (DX11 only)
  • Characters in windows now require substantially less video memory to render. (DX11 only)

There were also some smaller defect fixes, which you can find in the patch notes.

The update has been deployed and is now live.

Related:

Black Ops Battleship Changes Land with the Enter the Portal Update

CCP announced back on June 11th their intention to make some changes to black ops battleships, including giving them a new way to jump themselves and their companions as a single group to a covert cyno.

That was seen as an interesting change which got a lot of feedback and today CCP launched the changes under the banner Enter the Portal.

Black ops and other changes

The big change for black ops battleships is the new “conduit jump” option which jumps the anchor ship, the black ops battleship, and up to 30 companion ships in one jump operation.

The details for conduit jumps:

  • Conduit Jumps provide a new group jump to a destination from the Anchor Ship (the Black Ops battleship) plus all nearby eligible fleet members in a single, instantaneous event.
  • Eligible ships are any that are capable of travelling through a covert jump portal. Black Ops Battleship, Blockade Runners, Covert Ops Frigates, Force Recon Ships, Stealth Bombers, and Strategic Cruisers (with the covert subsystem)
  • Up to 30 eligible passenger ships may be included in the conduit jump, at a cost of 1000 isotopes per light year.
  • Travel via Conduit Jumps has similar requirements to normal portal travel (cannot be cloaked, warp-disrupted, or in a state of transition such as exploding etc.). Additionally, further restrictions apply for conduit jumps for passengers:
    • Passenger Ship must be in same fleet as Anchor Ship.
    • Passenger Ship must be within 10 km of Anchor Ship.
  • If the Anchor Ship fails any of the required checks, the Group Jump cannot be activated at all. If a Passenger Ship fails any of the required checks, the Group Jump will proceed, but that individual Passenger Ship will be left behind.

In addition, black ops battleships all received the following updates:

  • Increased the cargo capacity by 100m3. [More fuel!]
  • Increased maximum target range by 30%.
  • New Role Bonus: 50% reduction in Covert Cynosural Generator duration
  • New Role Bonus: 650% bonus to ships maximum velocity when using a Cloaking Device (this was previously a Black Ops ship bonus and has been moved into a role bonus).
  • Increased role bonus to 75% for reduction to effective distance traveled for jump fatigue.

And the individual black ops battleship hulls got the following changes:

Redeemer

  • Increased the Capacitor Capacity from 5312 to 5912 GJ
  • Updated Amarr Battleship bonuses (per skill level):
    • Increased the bonus to Large Energy Turret rate of fire from 5% to 10%.
  • Updated Black Ops bonuses (per skill level):
    • Changed the 125% bonus to ship max velocity when using Cloaking Devices to 10% bonus to Energy Nosferatu and Energy Neutralizer drain amount.

Sin

  • Increased the Ship Inertia modifier by 25%.
  • Updated Gallente Battleship bonuses (per skill level):
    • Increased the bonus to Large Hybrid Turret damage from 5% to 10%.
  • Updated Black Ops bonuses (per skill level):
    • Changed the 5% bonus to Ship Inertia modifier to 10% bonus to logistics drone transfer amount.
    • Changed the 125% bonus to ship max velocity when using Cloaking Devices to 7.5% bonus to drone tracking and optimal range per level.

Panther

  • Increased the ship Max Velocity by 25%.
  • Updated Minmatar Battleship bonuses (per skill level):
    • Incrased the bonus to Large Projectile Turret damage from 5% to 10%.
  • Updated Black Ops bonuses (per skill level):
    • Changed the 5% bonus to ship max velocity to 7.5% bonus to Large Projectile Turret tracking speed.
    • Changed the 125% bonus to ship max velocity when using Cloaking Devices to 7.5% bonus to Large Projectile Turret falloff range.

Widow

  • Updated Caldari Battleship bonuses (per skill level):
    • Increased the bonus to Rapid Heavy Missile, Cruise Missile and Torpedo Launcher rate of fire from 5% to 7.5%.
  • Updated Black Ops bonuses (per skill level):
    • Increased the bonus to ECM Target Jammer strength from 30% to 40%.
    • Changed the 125% bonus to ship max velocity when using Cloaking Device to 4% bonus to shield resistances.

Marshal

  • Updated Gallente Battleship bonuses (per skill level):
    • Increased the bonus to Large Hybrid Turret damage from 5% to 10%.
  • Updated Minmatar Battleship bonuses (per skill level):
    • Increased the bonus to Large Projectile Turret rate of fire from 5% to 10% .
  • Updated Caldari Battleship bonuses (per skill level):
    • Increased the bonus to Heavy Missile, Cruise Missile and Torpedo Launcher rate of fire from 5% to 7.5%.
  • Updated Amarr Battleship bonuses (per skill level):
    • Increased the bonus to Large Energy Turret damage from 5% to 10%.

Black ops battleships are pretty commonly used out in null sec, so it will be interesting to see how these changes, and especially the ability to jump a group of 30 and the battleship as well, will change up tactics.

In addition, covert ops frigates also received an update pass:

Helios

  • Added 1 High Slot (current total: 3)
  • Updated Gallente Frigate bonuses (per skill level):
    • Changed the 5% bonus to Small Hybrid Turret damage to -15% capacitor need to initiate warp per level.
    • Changed the 10% bonus to Scout Drone thermal damage to 5% bonus to cloaked velocity per level

Anathema

  • Added 1 Low Slot (current total: 3)
  • Updated Amarr Frigate bonuses (per skill level):
    • Changed the 5% bonus to Rocket damage to -15% capacitor need to initiate warp per level
    • Changed the 5% reduction in capacitor recharge time to 5% bonus to scan deviation per level

Buzzard

  • Added 1 Low Slot (current total: 3)
  • Updated Caldari Frigate bonuses (per skill level):
    • Changed the 5% bonus to kinetic Light Missile and Rocket damage to -15% capacitor need to initiate warp per level
    • Changed the 5% bonus to Light Missile and Rocket Launcher rate of fire to 5% bonus to scan deviation per level

Cheetah

  • Added 1 Low Slot (current total: 4)
  • Updated Minmatar Frigate bonuses (per skill level):
    • Changed the 5% bonus to Small Projectile Turret damage to -15% capacitor need to initiate warp per level
    • Changed the 10% bonus to Small Projectile Turret optimal range to 5% bonus to cloaked velocity per level

And EDENCOM ships got a bit of love.  Their Voltron Projectors will now chain damage to 10 targets, up from the previous 5.  We will see if that makes them viable for more than just meme fleets.

Of course, with a big update like this, CCP would like to sell you something.  So they have a new black ops pack in the online store.  For $230 you get:

  • 180 Days of Omega Time
  • 2,860 PLEX
  • 500,000 Skill Points
  • 6 Months of Multiple Character Training
  • Expert Cerebral Accelerator
  • Panther Fireblade Guerilla SKIN
  • Widow Fireblade Guerilla SKIN
  • Redeemer Fireblade Guerilla SKIN
  • Sin Fireblade Guerilla SKIN
  • Marshal Fireblade Guerilla SKIN
  • Men’s and Women’s Blood Raider ‘Outlaw’ Clothing

That seems a bit pricey to me, but there is a lot of stuff there, so I am sure somebody will bite.

The update has been deployed, details are available  at the links below.

The EVE Online June Update to End Cloaky Camping and Open a Low Sec Gate to Stain

CCP announced last month that they were taking aim at the menace of cloaky camping, and their solution to the issue went in with today’s patch update.

No longer in testing, but they didn’t put up a new graphic

As previously mentioned, CCP’s plan to address cloaky camping is to introduce a deployable called a Mobile Observatory which sends out a system-wide ping every 10 minutes that has a chance to decloak any cloaked ships in the system.

The blueprints for Mobile Observatories were seeded into the market today and the associated changes are now live.

The Mobile Observatory

As you can see from the above, the structure only lasts for an hour and 40 minutes, so you get only 9 pings out of it once deployed.

As a counter, any ship that does cloak is given 15 minutes of protection from being decloaked.  CCP has set that timer the same everywhere, but has indicated that it may, in the future, give different modules of hulls a bonus to that time.

This change has not made those for or against cloaky camping happy.  Those looking to eliminate the practice bring up the expense and the vulnerability of the deployable, which can be blown up with just a few salvos from a stealth bomber.  Those who favor the practice fear that these modules will be spammed everywhere and multiple times per system so that being decloaked after 15 minutes is almost guaranteed.  I suppose we will see who is right.

Also in today’s update are four new empire gates, including the long asked for low sec gate to the Stain region.  The new gate locations are:

  • Hykkota (The Forge) ↔ Ahbazon (Genesis)
  • Irgrus (Metropolis) ↔ Pakhshi (Genesis)
  • Kenninck (Placid) ↔ Eggheron (Solitude)
  • Saminer (Tash-Murkon) ↔ F7-ICZ (Stain)

I expect that the Stain Russians are both very happy and are already camping that gate.

A monument has been placed in each of the systems where these new gates are locate that list out the names of the top players and corporations that participated in the event around the gate construction.

It also means the end of StainGuy, who long advocated for this low sec gate to Stain and swore he’d biomass his character if CCP ever actually put in it the game.  He is going to mothball the character instead to keep anybody else from grabbing the name… but not before a final farewell.

Those are the two big items with today’s update, but there are a number of smaller items, including the ability to filter the fleet composition window.  But for me, the other big fix was the change to the UI Only Mode indicator.

UI Only Mode, or Super Potato Mode, introduced last October just in time for some epic Keepstar fights in Delve, allows users to turn off the graphics rendering with the command Control-Shift-F9.  The main downside was the large opaque reminder that players were in UI Only Mode that hung right in the middle of the screen in the way of just about anything you wanted to look at. (e.g. scrolling messages, brackets on grid)

It would just sit there

With today’s update that message now fades away after 30 seconds, leaving you to peacefully watch overview brackets in peace without a big sign in the middle of the screen.

The T5ZI gate in 1DQ and the bubbles around it

In a way having the UI off and just brackets on is like having an air traffic controller view of an area.  I sat for a while and watched ships move around the gate and Keepstar grid in 1DQ.  It was relaxing in its own way.

Delta Squad’s symbol above the main Keepstar

Anyway, the patch has been deployed and is live, so the changes are in place and we have to live with them.

Full details are available in the patch notes.

CCP Rushes Warp Core Stabilizer and Interdiction Nullification Changes into EVE Online

Just last Thursday, six days, or four business days ago, CCP announced a plan to make changes warp core stabilizers and interdiction nullification.  While the former saw only a few changes, the latter went through a cycle of alterations that moved it from a low slot to a high slot and updated the ships that would be allowed to use the new module.

CCP apparently felt they had enough feedback and launched all the changes on the live server this morning.

That’s the name they chose for this

Launched under the title “The Great Escape,” a banner worthy of the Ministry of Truth, I can only imagine they mean that ironically as both changes are targeted at keeping players from being able to escape destruction.  It will be great if you actually escape I guess, but CCP ideally wants less or that and more ships exploding.

Warp Core Stabilizers

The warp core stabilizer summary remains simple.  From the announcement post, here is what the tech I module is now:

  • Warp Core Stabilizer I
    • Activation cost: 80 Gj
    • Active Duration: 10 seconds
    • Reactivation Delay: 150 seconds
    • Maximum number able to be fitted: 1
    • Warp Scramble Strength: -2
    • Targeting range reduction: -40%
    • Scan resolution reduction: -40%
    • Drone Bandwidth Penalty: -50%

You now can have 10 seconds of 2 warp core strength with a 150 second cool down, and only one can be fitted per ship.  The other flavors of the module alter the activation duration, which can be as long as 18 seconds with a faction version. The scan resolution and targeting range penalties, which are applied when the module is fit, as with the old passive version, are reduced with the higher meta modules, but the drone bandwidth penalty remains the same.

Warp Nullification Module

Interdiction nullification, after having gone through multiple gyrations, has now landed on the following plan:

  • Interceptors, yachts, and nullification subsystems now have passive nullification removed.
  • Interceptors, yachts, and nullification subsystems have received a new role bonus: 80% reduced target range penalty and reactivation delay for interdiction nullification modules.
  • Interceptors, yachts, and nullification subsystems have now received a new role bonus: 100% increased duration for interdiction nullification modules.
  • Passive nullification has been added to all shuttles.
  • New blueprints, seeding, and manufacturing data have been added for the new modules.

Of note there is that blueprints have only just been seeded with this patch, not in advance as CCP has done in the past, so right now the only ships with interdiction nullification are shuttles.  For days, if not weeks, production will have to ramp up to catch up with the change, during which bubbles in null sec are essentially unavoidable. A few are on the market already, but only enough to accommodate experimentation.  Blueprints still need to be optimized and there is research needed for the tech II versions.

And even when the market settles, expect to see a lot more of those on gates during your travels.  And on both sides of gates where possible, since the cool down will force you to motor out slowly as you wait for the activation timer to run down.

Those details are a bit short of the full picture, so you have to go to the patch notes to get a few more details… though not that many.  CCP’s lack of transparency in documenting the changes here seems like another indication of the almost indecent haste they have shown in getting these changes in.

The new module will be usable by the following ship types:

  • Interceptors
  • Blockade Runners
  • Deep Space Transports
  • Tech I Industrials
  • Covert Ops Frigates
  • Victorieux Luxury Yacht
  • Strategic Cruisers

In addition, the following applies:

  • All interdiction nullifiers are High-Slot modules and only one nullifier can be fit per ship.
  • When fitted these modules will reduce targeting range and ship scan resolution by 50%.
  • Module types:
    • Interdiction Nullifier I
    • Compact Interdiction Nullifier
    • Restrained Interdiction Nullifier
    • Interdiction Nullifier II

The high meta version give you a longer duration of nullification, with 10 seconds on the tech I and 15 seconds on the tech II.  But the reactivation delay remains 150 seconds on all of them.

So it goes.  As with most rushed things, expect issues.  The in-game information is incorrect in some places, with the Restrained version of the unit still listing stealth bombers as part of the supported ship list.

Welcome to a new age in null sec.

Related:

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.

The Latest EVE Online Update Kicks Off the Industrial Chaos Era

Today’s patch will see the second set of major changes go live which will update blueprints, reactions, and components that are required for ship manufacturing.

CCP Patch Notes for April  27, 2021

There was a quick reminder from CCP Paradox for those paying attention yesterday that Phase 2 of the planned significant industrial changes were set to hit New Eden with today’s patch as planned.   The announcement of these changes and the initial patch sparked a rise in production around week 40 of the war, and was reflected in the MER charts.  Look at that red line climb.

Production vs Destruction vs Mined – March 2021

I will be interested to see if the warning was enough to spark a last moment spike in production.  Numbers in 1DQ1-A seemed on par with the early announcement rush.

Down from 3344 when I last looked

Likewise Jita numbers seemed about the same.

Today though, and tomorrow, and next week… that might be a bit different.  We shall see.

The blueprint changes add new components to the build requirements for battleship and all capital hulls.

For example, the doughty Megathron, a workhorse battleship used by many, has three new components added that come from the new reactions CCP brought in with the previous patch.

The new Megathron BPO

If you have been on the ball and grabbed the blueprints when they first hit, researched them, were able to get enough Mykoserocin gas and other supplies, and get them into production, you might have some around to start building battleship and larger hulls.  Or you could just try to make bank by selling the new items.  Supply is extremely tight at the moment so prices for those items are… volatile to say the least.

Auto-Integrity Preservation Seal supply in Jita

If you need 200 Auto-Integrity Preservation Seals to build a Megathron and you are expecting buy them off the market… well, that alone looks to add about 1.3 billion ISK to the price of materials.  And if you want to build an Archon carrier… I’m sorry, there are not enough on the market because you need 1,600 of those seals to build one.  The cost of an Archon today is close to what an Aeon super carrier was yesterday.  And a titan?   CCP’s plan seems to be that once things settle down those hulls ought to run about 200 billion ISK if leaks are correct.  But they are pretty much unbuildable today due to supply.  An Avatar needs 5,000 of those seals now, which seems likely to represent a significant percentage of what is available on the market.

Now, that is a temporary situation.  At some point harvesting and production will catch up and supply will drive the prices down.  But for a while battleship and capital production is simply going to be dead.  There isn’t enough supply and, at those prices, you would be a fool to build rather than just sell while they are high to reap the ISK of those in need.

But if you don’t fly battleships or capitals, if you stick with battlecruisers and below… well, everything is still more expensive than it used to be with the mineral drought still in full effect… but the build prices are not completely crazy.  A Ferox, for example, is still made of just T1 minerals, the same as it was yesterday.

Other changes that came with today’s industry update:

  • Adjusted all T2 ships to no longer return basic minerals as materials when reprocessed.
  • Reworked EDENCOM ships blueprints to more closely aligned to their Triglavian counterparts paradigm
  • Adjusted Standup T2 fighters to require T1 standup fighters in build requirements.
  • Doubled the effective bonuses on Mykocerosin Boosters
    • Synth Blue Pill – Increased Shield Boost Bonus from 3% to 6%
    • Synth Crash – Decreased Explosion Radius Bonus from -3% to -6%
    • Synth Drop – Increased Tracking Speed Bonus from 3% to 6%
    • Synth Exile – Increased Armor Repair Bonus from 3% to 6%
    • Synth Frentix – Increased Optimal Range Modifier from 3% to 6%
    • Synth Mindflood – Increased Capacitor Modifier from 3% to 6%
    • Synth Sooth Sayer – Increased Falloff Bonus from 3% to 6%
    • Synth X-Instinct – Reduced Signature Radius Modifier from -2.25% to 4.5%

The EDENCOM ship change is no doubt part of the ongoing attempt to dig those ships and their weapons out of the hole CCP put them in.  The ships are not great, but the big problem for quite a stretch was the price of the ammo, which was too expensive to make them anything more than a meme fleet option.

The improvement in boosters is probably there because, as Mykocerosin is suddenly in demand for other things, the price of them has doubled.

Anyway, the patch notes, such as they are, are available.  The update has been deployed.  If you’re reading this now, it is too late to get a battleship into build with T1 materials.  They new reality is upon us.

Related:

The April Update Begins Seeding New Industry Materials in EVE Online

As expected, today saw the first update patch for April which included the initial round of materials in support of the controversial industry changes CCP has planned.

A Raitaru Engineering Complex

The changes have begun with the seeding of blueprints and reactions on the NPC market, under the following categories:

  • Construction Components Blueprints
  • Capital Construction Blueprints
  • Advanced Capital Construction Blueprints
  • Molecular-Forged Reaction Formulas
  • Composite Reaction Formulas

The lists for each type under those categories is in the patch notes. (Some of them did not get seeded correctly, but an update will fix that soon according to the known issues thread.)  The following NPC corporations will be selling the blueprints and formulae, though each will only have a subset of the total.

  • Amarr Navy
  • Caldari Navy
  • Federation Navy
  • Republic Fleet
  • Ytiri
  • Propel Dynamics
  • Eifyr and Co
  • Freedom Extension
  • Zoar and Sons
  • Ducia Foundry
  • Impetus
  • Chemal Tech
  • Modru’s Legion
  • Outer Ring Excavations
  • Intaki Bank

In addition, the following items, also part of the new industry plan, are now available from exploration sites:

  • Counter-Subversion Sensor Array
  • Nanoscale Filter Plate
  • Electro-Neural Signaller
  • Enhanced Electro-Neural Signaller
  • Nano Regulation Gate
  • Meta-Molecular Combiner
  • Isotropic Deposition Guide
  • LM-Composite Molecular Condenser
  • AG-Composite Molecular Condenser
  • CV-Composite Molecular Condenser
  • AV-Composite Molecular Condenser

And Mykoserocin gas sites can now be found in low security solar systems and additional null security locations.

Industrialists will no doubt be working to research blueprints and build up supplies in anticipation of next step in the changes.

On the ISK sinks and faucets front CCP is tinkering with the Dynamic Bounty and Encounter Surveillance System settings once more.

  • The autopay timer for the Main Bank increased from 2h to 2h:45m
  • The intrusion time to the Main bank decreased from 6m 30s to 6m
  • Equilibrium value increased from 135% to 150%
  • The Maximum Output of the Dynamic Bounty System increased from 180% to 200%
  • Adjusted Dynamic Bounty System threshold margins

After successfully curtailing bounties as the primary source of ISK into the economy, CCP continues to play with the values to try and make the ESS a conflict point.

CCP has also included a series of updates to landmarks in New Eden.  They include:

  • The rare Children of Light phenomena in the Iyen-Oursta system has received a dramatic visual upgrade.
  • New landmark locations can be found within the following systems:
    • New Eden
    • Gererique
    • D-B7YK
    • 6QBH-S
    • Old Man Star
    • Atioth
    • Mozzidit
  • The names of the top 10 fastest Capsuleers for each of the three routes in this year’s Federation Grand Prix have been added to the description of the monument structure within the Federation Grand Prix Starting Line landmark site in Luminaire. Congratulations to the racers!
  • A new hidden landmark location has been added to the game. The location of this landmark has previously been established in a piece of official EVE Online content, but has not been visible within the game until now.

In addition there were the usual host of small additions and fixes, a few of which jumped out when I scanned the list:

  • Added the ability to Unlock all targets via Target List Anchor or shortcut (not bound by default).
  • Added the option to ‘Include Jump Bridges in Route’ when using Autopilot, this can be toggled On/Off in the Autopilot options.
  • Fixed a capitalization error on an ad in the Jita 4-4 station.
  • Added a feature that shows the structure type in search results.
  • Implemented survey integration with the character selection screen. Keep your eyes open for an exciting and rewarding survey opportunity launching soon!

Just waiting on that exciting and rewarding survey opportunity!

In addition CCP has announced a play test for the new native Mac client starting on Thursday.

Anyway, the patch has been deployed and the usual links are available: