This Week in EVE: April 17-24, 2015

Welcome back to another edition of This Week in EVE! This week we’re tackling CCP’s plans for the new SKIN system, the continued fallout of BRAVE, and then topping things off with a hearty dose of Imperium propaganda, and, of course, Kill of the Week.

 

Developer Blogs

Time to Show Some SKIN!

As part of the upcoming April 28th Mosaic update, CCP has detailed an extensive overhaul to their ship skin program. For those who like to look as classy as they feel, this new update introduces a massive overhaul to the way ship skins are handled and implemented in game while also introducing a whopping 102 new skins that will be available as of the update.

The update to the SKIN system seeks to dramatically streamline the process and depart from the old Ship Paint Pilot Program.

“With Ship Paint Pilot Program, you would manufacture a custom ship by combining a blueprint of a paint pattern and a packaged version of the base ship. This meant that the paint pattern’s fate was locked to the fate of the ship,” CCP Terminus said in the developer blog. “In contrast, the new SKIN system acts much closer to the way skillbooks work in EVE. Each SKIN variant comes as a SKIN item (a licensed pattern), which you can activate for your character or sell on the market. This character then has access to the SKIN for any ships that it applies to, meaning once you lose a skinned ship, you can simply hop in to another and reapply the SKIN pattern.”

The old system definitely felt like it was hacked into existing mechanics within EVE instead of something that was built to service the system itself. SKINs will definitely make the process easier and more intuitive.

The new SKIN system will also introduce limited editio skins that can be found in-game as opposed to the permanent skins purchased via the New Eden Store (for real money).

EVE Online - SKIN preview

CCP Terminus explains that the idea to implement time-sensitive skins was twofold: “The reasoning for having time-limited SKINs comes down to a few factors. First, we want the SKINs you find in-game to retain their ISK value by preventing market saturation over time. By having them time-limited, we create a continuing demand for the SKIN, which keeps the loot valuable. Time-limited SKINs also allow for a number of promotional opportunities like SKIN giveaways, and possible try-before-you-buy options in the future.”

Furthermore, players have a greater degree of control over when they want to implement a skin, the biggest change being able to activate skins on a ship you are currently piloting in space. The old system required players to combine a blueprint of the skin with a packaged copy of that ship, but the new system allows players to change skins on the fly.

CCP Terminus goes on to detail other, smaller methods of functionality the new SKIN system will introduce, which you can read about in the official developer blog.

 

New Assembly Effect for Anchorable Structures, Aurum Price Changes, and EVE Updates Website.

Several other developer blogs were released this week which detail several smaller changes to the game.

The first is an overhaul of the assembly effect when setting up anchorable structures like a player owned starbase.

“When you anchor a structure in EVE, the lore explanation is that you first deploy a nanocontainer with massive material tanks that contain all the materials used to build the structure. Then, through the magical science of nanites, it gets built. For the new visuals, we’ve redesigned the nanocontainer to fit its function,” CCP Nobody said in the developer blog.

A new video shows the new effect in action, albeit time-lapsed to speed up the process.

The second small change announced this week is a slight overhaul of the various packages of Aurum, EVE Online’s currency, that can be purchased via real money and allows players to buy various cosmetic items including the soon to be implemented SKINS.

“Firstly, we’ll be adjusting the value of both the $5 and $10 dollar Aurum packs to provide more Aurum per dollar, while the $20 package will provide slightly less aurum than before. The $5 pack will give AUR 900, while the $10 pack will give AUR 1,800, plus an AUR 150 bonus, for a total of AUR 1,950,” CCP Falcon detailed in his developer blog.

The new Aurum packages can be seen in this picture:

EVE Online - Aurum Prices

Finally, the last announcement made this week details many of the changes and additions being made in the next update, Mosaic, which will be released April 28th.

The list is extensive, but the biggest feature is easily the new SKIN system. Other, smaller changes include implementing the new Opportunities System, which aims to help newer players jump into the various avenues of play by better detailing the various careers a pilot can take in EVE, we’ll have more on this system next week as it goes live. Also included in Mosiac will be balance changes to Tactical Destroyers, new Pirate Faction missions for Cruisers, the new 3D star map will be out of beta, new user interface for corporation role management, and lots more.

CCP Falcon also used this opportunity to tout the benefits of their new update schedule, which will be extensively documented through their brand new EVE Updates website. The website will act as a dynamic timeline, documenting all of the upcoming changes scheduled for release, while also providing users access to documentation on previous changes.

“Changes like the length of the trial, two factor authentication, or new ship skins or clothing, or even balance changes or activation of bigger features such as new exploration sites, are now possible for us to release to you as a player at pretty much any time, not just on these deployment dates,” CCP Falcon said. “To reflect this new reality, we needed a new way to communicate what’s upcoming in EVE.”

 

News from New Eden

HERO Coalition relocates to Fountain with the Imperium’s Blessing

Last week, I detailed the dramatic coup and subsequent counter-coup that rocked BRAVE to its core. Since then, Lychton Kondur has been reinstated as leader of BRAVE and has temporarily stepped aside, electing June Ting as interim CEO, so that he can pick up the pieces of the failed coup and set the alliance affairs in order. As the last of BRAVE’s timers begin to expire in Catch, the future remained uncertain to the alliance, key player in the HERO coalition, until it was leaked that the coalition will be moving into the newly vacated Fountain.

In an address to the leak on Reddit June Ting said: “That leaked fast. Yes, we’re moving into Fountain. Had the choice of spending weeks grinding the region and bridging in ihubs/upgrades or a peaceful transfer, and picked the one that was least likely to burn out the people that already worked hard to get your stuff out of Catch. More details tomorrow, see you @1900”

This announcement follows in the wake of several announcements that the Clusterfuck Coalition (controversially renamed The Imperium) would be abandoning the region following the news that previous tenants, Fatal Ascension, would be dissolving, and Executive Outcomes and Get Off My Lawn would be relocating north.

The move is seen as a strategic one for The Imperium and a necessary one for HERO, as the Imperium seeks to create a buffer between themselves and enemies in southern nullsec, and HERO seeks to reorganize following the disaster in Catch.

Part of the relocation will also see both coalitions temporarily set each other as blue, meaning both will favor the other as temporary allies, though it was announced that this change in standing will only be temporary so HERO can focus on moving into their new home.

 

Alliance Updates Abound

In the calm before the storm of sweeping changes to how sovereignty works in nullsec, many alliances seem to be taking the time to reassess their vision and plans for the future. Several alliances sent out updates this week that detailed new initiatives and reaffirmed current missions.

With Executive Outcomes and Get Off My Lawn announcing a relocation effort to Branch and Fatal Ascension closing shop, many others took the time to announce updates to their doctrine.

Gentleman’s Club and The Initiative Alliance have both had their updates posted via theMittani.com, which you can read in their fullest.

And of course, what week wouldn’t be complete without a cryptic but likely innocuous message from The Imperium!

Kill of the Week

Ragnarok Down in Everyshore

Last week the Kill of the Week was awarded to a Titan, and this week I have no choice but to do the same. Right now, with alliances moving and the politics of nullsec changing, it seems like the forest is fertile hunting ground. This particular kill was also chosen not only because it represents a massive amount of ISK lost (which happens with 100 billion ISK Titans) but also because of the video that accompanies the kill. While the video itself doesn’t demonstrate anything particularly amazing, it gets credits for being something that is accessible to players who might not understand the minutia of the engagement.

Mr Bobr, the pilot of the Ragnarok that was destroyed, should also get some love for being such a good sport about the loss. If you pay attention in the video, you’ll notice he congratulates the aggressors on a good trap and even pleads for them to not attack the neutral ships who arrive on scene in attempt to place a few shots on the Ragnarok in hopes of appearing on the kill report.

EVE News 24 had the scoop on this kill, and was able to get comments from both the attackers and the victim, which sheds some light on how the trap was set.

That wraps it up! Thanks for reading this edition of This Week in EVE, and, as always, be sure to leave a comment and let us know how we’re doing. Next week will be an exciting time as the release of Mosaic begins and we get a chance to test out some of the new features CCP has been hard at work on. Stay tuned!

 

 

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