CCP held its annual EVE Fanfest in Reykjavik, Iceland today, and during the opening keynote, EVE Online designer Kristoffer “Soundwave” Touborg chatted about improvements coming to the game’s new player experience and also touched on issues concerning current players.
It’s the little things that count
“We’re simplifying a lot of things, starting with the default overview,” said Touborg. “You can still tailor them, but it’s better for the new player, rather than just saying: ‘Welcome to EVE, here’s a Rubik’s Cube. Now go fuck yourself’.
“It’s basically all the small stuff. Not necessarily the new NPCs and flash content, more the clicky stuff that pisses you off.”
For this summer’s expansion, it was noted that loot logging will be enabled by default, mission agent divisions are being tweaked (so no more courier work unless you like it), and agent quality is being removed to “prevent players from simply gravitating to the system that contains the best agents, spreading the population more evenly throughout New Eden and easing the load on the server,” said Eurogamer who was on-hand for the keynote.
A makeover is being given to the in-game scanner with probes now having a longer range, but with a shorter cycle; wormhole explorers can change sub-systems; a new font will replace the old one; a graphical overhaul is being made to how the UI represents targeted ships; and a new server technology is being implemented to help combat lag.
Humanoid Avatars in the Incarna expansion
EVE Online will soon allow players to “walk a humanoid avatar through the game’s space stations,” and Captain’s Quarters will be released in the summer expansion.
“What we’re trying to do with the Captain’s Quarters feature is change the experience of EVE – magnifying it and making it a grander experience,” said CCP’s Teemu Vilen. It’s all about the character coming to life and taking your first steps out of the pod.
“When you’re out in a ship, you’re not just an abstraction, you’re not something floating in your ship.”
At first, players will be limited to solo hangar areas or retire to their chambers which will offer everything from tutorial videos, ship kills, market tickers, recruitment tools, and changes in sovereignty. This will allow new players to use the Captain’s Quarters to be introduces to the game in a much easier manner, that the current introduction to the game and Aura will also be includes in the new tutorial.
The NeoCom system will still be around and will allow for instant undocking from anywhere in your quarters.
The first part Incarna’s summer expansion will be single-player, but multiplayer will be added “as the team grows and builds on the technology and implementation.”
Changes to the contraband system
CCP also revealed that changes are coming to the game’s contraband system, with “highly desirable” items being added which will please capsuleers. Scanning smugglers will be in player hands, and once marked, they become “fair game to every player.”
Negative effects from boosters will be reduced, weapon turrets are getting a makeover that features multiple components and unique animations, and the game is getting re-designed nebulae and star-fields.
You should also watch the video posted below at CCP’s request – it shows the firm’s future vision of EVE.