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31Mar/12Off

More details about Inferno and The Future of EVE

This is the Inferno "Current status" post.

For Inferno 1.2 information please go to this post: Inferno keeps on burning: Inferno 1.2 (updated)

It will be updated every time new information becomes available.

Feel free to check other posts about EVE Online: Inferno


This post is quite long, so here's a short summary of what's ahead:

  • Escalation to Inferno
  • Ship balancing - frigates
  • War mechanic changes
  • New modules
  • New Inventory UI
  • Graphical changes: new models for bombers and V3 skins for Amarr ships
  • EVE - Dust link
  • The future of EVE

The summer expansion will be rolled out in two steps. First step is dubbed 'Escalation' and it has already been deployed on 24th of April.

Escalation to Inferno

Escalation is going to be a precursor patch for Inferno, and it will only contain a handful of new features:

The devs did not reveal any specific details about what will be changed in the forementioned areas, but knowing CCP we will have an opportunity to learn more from dev-blogs, which are sure to come soon.

Ship balancing

CCP Ytterbium has been working hard on ship rebalancing and more details about the changes to Frigates, that will hit in Inferno are available in this forum post: Combat frigate changes for Inferno.

  • Tech I frigates will now be split into four roles: Combat, Attack, Bombardment and Support
  • This means mining frigates will have to go (Industry tutorial missions will need to be modified, too)
  • Rookie frigates will be made better and more flexible, but less powerful than other Tech I frigates.
  • As for effectiveness, tech 1 frigates should be worse than faction and Tech 2, but more flexible and easier to fit

TORMENTOR:

  • New bonuses: 10% to small energy turret range and 10% bonus to small energy capacitor use per level
  • Slot layout: 3 H, 3 M, 4 L, 3 turrets, no launchers
  • Fittings: 60 PWG, 140 CPU
  • Defense (shields / armor / hull) : 350 / 450 / 400
  • Capacitor (amount / recharge rate / cap per second): 280 / 180 s / 1.55
  • Mobility (max velocity / agility / mass / align time): 320 / 3.05 / 1180000 / 3.37 s
  • Drones (bandwidth / bay): 0 / 0
  • Targeting (max targeting range / Scan Resolution / Max Locked targets): 40km / 620 / 4
  • Sensor strength: 9 Radar
  • Signature radius: 35

PUNISHER:

  • New bonuses: 5% bonus to Small Energy Turret damage and 5% bonus to armor resistances per skill level
  • Slot layout: 4 H, 2 M, 4 L, 3 turrets, no launchers
  • Fittings: 55 PWG, 124 CPU
  • Defense (shields / armor / hull) : 350 / 500 / 450
  • Capacitor (amount / recharge rate / cap per second): 300 / 180 s / 1.66
  • Mobility (max velocity / agility / mass / align time): 330 / 3.35 / 1047000 / 3.28 s
  • Drones (bandwidth / bay): 0 / 0
  • Targeting (max targeting range / Scan Resolution / Max Locked targets): 25km / 640 / 4
  • Sensor strength: 9 Radar
  • Signature radius: 37

MERLIN:

  • New bonuses: 5% bonus to Small Hybrid Turret damage and 10% to small hybrid turret range per level
  • Slot layout: 3 H, 4 M, 3 L, 3 turrets, no launchers
  • Fittings: 40 PWG, 180 CPU
  • Defense (shields / armor / hull) : 500 / 350 / 350
  • Capacitor (amount / recharge rate / cap per second): 260 / 180 s / 1.44
  • Mobility (max velocity / agility / mass / align time): 310 / 3.7 / 997000 / 3.45 s
  • Drones (bandwidth / bay): 0 / 0
  • Targeting (max targeting range / Scan Resolution / Max Locked targets): 50km / 580 / 5
  • Sensor strength: 11 Gravimetric
  • Signature radius: 39

INCURSUS:

  • New bonuses: 5% bonus to Small Hybrid Turret damage and 10% bonus to armor repairer effectiveness per level
  • Slot layout: 3 H, 3 M, 4 L, 3 turrets, no launchers
  • Fittings: 45 PWG, 135 CPU
  • Defense (shields / armor / hull) : 400 / 450 / 500
  • Capacitor (amount / recharge rate / cap per second): 280 / 180 s / 1.55
  • Mobility (max velocity / agility / mass / align time): 340 / 3.15 / 1028000 / 3.0 s
  • Drones (bandwidth / bay): 5 / 5
  • Targeting (max targeting range / Scan Resolution / Max Locked targets): 30km / 600 / 4
  • Sensor strength: 9 Magnetometric
  • Signature radius: 42

RIFTER:

  • Unchanged bonuses
  • Unchanged Slot layout: 4 H, 3 M, 3 L, 3 turrets, 2 launchers
  • Unchanged fittings: 37 PWG, 125 CPU
  • Defense (shields / armor / hull) : 450 / 400 / 400
  • Capacitor (amount / recharge rate / cap per second): 240 / 180 s / 1.33
  • Mobility (max velocity / agility / mass / align time): 355 / 3.19 / 1067000 / 3.19 s
  • Drones (bandwidth / bay): 0 / 0
  • Targeting (max targeting range / Scan Resolution / Max Locked targets): 22.5km / 660 / 4
  • Sensor strength: 8 Ladar
  • Signature radius: 35

As for the already famous Battlecruiser and Destroyers rebalancing mentioned in this dev-blog: "Rebalancing eve, one ship at a time". The plan for new skill trees including racial Destroyers and Battlecruisers has been postponed.

Sources: CCP has postponed the skill tree changes plan, at least temporarily.

Q&A regarding ship balancing and skill tree are available in this post by CCP Ytterbium:

EVE Online: Inferno

The Inferno itself will ignite a month later, on 22nd of May, just a week after Diablo III release. Coincidence? 😉

We already know what to expect, as most of the features have been discussed in detail on Fanfest:

War mechanic changes

War mechanic changes will surely bring a lot more conflict to high sec and include the following:

  • War dec cost formula changed: the cost is modified by amount of people in target corp
  • Corp cannot join an alliance until war is finished - no more alliance hopping
  • CEO/Director can war dec without voting.
  • Wars will no longer be automatically retracted. A surrender option has been improved and can now involve a transfer of ISK. It is also a kind of peace treaty, because it will not be possible to war dec again for a specific period of time.
  • Wars have a weekly cycle, at which time the aggressor can choose to prolong (at ISK cost) for another week or end the war. As long as there is ISK in agressor's coffer, the war can last forever.
  • Killmails received love - they look more like killboards now. Wars also received a War Report window which tracks kills and statistics (ships lost by type, ISK lost, etc.)
  • If you leave your corporation while it is engaged in a non-mutual war, then you will not be able to rejoin the corporation until that war ends, or until 7 days pass, whichever comes first.
  • Neutral RR will now give a suspect flag - check this blog post for details on how new PVP flags work.

More details about war mechanic have already been provided in a recent dev-blog.

Revamped Faction Warfare:

  • LP for kills
  • Bunkers are now infrastructure hubs
  • LP for all FW actions (capturing complexes, capturing infrastructures hubs, etc)
  • New FW front page
  • Consequences for capturing systems/regions (benefits for you, grief for your enemy)
  • Capturing FW system affect SOV ownership
  • FW LP stores will now sell Datacores
  • Datacores from R&D agents will have a new flat price of 100 RP plus 10k ISK
    more info is available here: http://community.eveonline.com/devblog.asp?a=blog&nbid=28659

New Modules

  • Drone Damage module (Extrinsic Damage Amplifier): +9% (t1) or +12% (t2) to your drone friends dmg output
  • CPU Rigs (Small/Medium/Large Processor Overclocking Unit)
  • Fueled Shield booster (Small/Medium/Large Ancillary Shield Booster), using Cap Boosters as charges, and when the charges run out, the new booster switches to draining the capacitor instead.
  • Light and Medium Web drones - small, fast, but with huge sig radius and very low HP.
  • Adaptive Armor Hardener - it shifts its resistance according to incoming damage. You can only fit 1 such mod. Overheating will reduce the adaptation cycle.
  • MagSheath Target Breaker - it has a chance to break all target locks on your ship based on how many other ships are targeting it. The more incoming locks, the better the chance of activation.

CCP has explained what they intended the modules to be: like cards in Magic The Gathering - changing every expansion. For many reasons this was not the best approach and CCP gave up on the idea. Our devs want to freshen our experience, so they will be bringing some new modules that allow new tactics in combat. One of the ideas is Tactical Warp Drive also known as Micro Jump Drive - a module that instantly catapults your ship 110 km forward. Normal warp jammers and bubbles will stop it, of course. In addition to that, a new warp bubble would be introduced, 48km in diameter, which would only disrupt the Tactical Warp. Unfortunately this mod will not make it to the initial version of Inferno, so we will probably see it in a subsequent release.

By the way, I have the "Salvage Drones" skill trained on Tranquility for some time now (see screenie below). CCP has seeded it by mistake at some point in the past, but it was a rather useless skill. CCP is going to fix that by introducing the Salvage Drones to the game:

 

Unfortunately, they do not work automatically as you might have thought: you need to manually send each drone after a specific wreck. It is still a way to free high slots on dedicated drone boats. Dear CCP, will Noctis get a drone bay now?  Salvage drones will not make it to the intitial Inferno release as well. We can expect Salvage Drones in a subsequent release.

New features don't end on the first slide though.

I have covered the list of features in my first post about Inferno here. Also, some more details about Crime and Punishment system (which is missing on the slide above) have been covered here. I have also written about the information about missile launchers in this post.

New Inventory UI

  • Managing corporation items in a station
  • All item management from POS structures done in space on grid
  • All Inventory management in space (wrecks, opening other ship locations, etc)
  • All Inventory management in stations (items, ships)
  • This change does NOT affect the ASSETS window itself

Inventory is loading... Ships tree in new Inventory Items tree in new Inventory

Graphical changes: V3 and ship re-modeling

CCP did not disappoint my predictions about V3 skins for sub-capital Ammar hulls, so EVE ships are becoming even more pretty! Unfortunately devs did not say much about V3 skins for Minmatar ships. I hope that we are still going to see them in Inferno, but it remains unconfirmed so far. In the official patch notes for Inferno devs have confirmed that Minmatar V3 process is near its end, and we will see new skins in the near future, but not in the initial release of Inferno.

v3 skin for Abaddon   v3 skin for Damnation v3 skin for Navy Slicer v3 skin for Navy Slicer - 2 v3 skin for Cruor

Graphic changes won't end here, because many ships will receive re-designs similar to that of the Maller and rookie ships.

Stealth bombers will receive a facelift to accomodate oversized Torpedo Launchers and one Bomb Launcher hardpoint (compare the new Tristan and Nemesis models below)

New Tristan Model New Nemesis Model

Another V3-ed ship mentioned in the official patch notes for Inferno was the Echelon, which in its current state has some broken decals on its hull.

EDIT: More details is now available in this post about ships makeover in Inferno.

As for the improved effects, CCP has also mentioned visible shield hits and visible hull damage, not to mention revamped multi-stage explosions.

EVE - DUST link

BASED ON THE DEV-BLOGS AND OFFICIAL SOURCES, EVE-DUST LINK REMAINS UNCONFIRMED.

One of the most important features is the EVE - DUST 514 link, which has been unveiled at the Fanfest. Of course planetary bombardment is not the only place where these two games will overlap:

Devs have mentioned a shared chat and eve-mail system and also hinted a possibility that EVE and DUST players will be able to craft items for each other.

A DUST 514 companion app called the 'DUST 514: Neocom' was also mentioned in the keynote, initally for the PS Vita (limited gameplay included):

As for the beta of DUST 514 we have been shown the following schedule:

Now for the future of EVE

Crucible and Inferno concentrate on one of the three pillars of a persistant game world: Destruction. That's the favourite one for the most of EVE Online players. But for a game to be successfull, it has to include two more foundations: Harvesting and Crafting.

The future of EVE will concentrate on these two parts of the game. Concepts include:

  • Ring mining: possible moon minerals mineable from planetary rings, CCP mentioned task for a group of people, most likely profitable but also dangerous.
  • Implant Manufacturing and Derelict Stations Exploration: a Star Trek like avatar gameplay, will be a source of materials for advanced implants and might include PVP features.
  • More POS structures, meaningful upgrades etc. Possibility to create own research an manufacturing station for solo players and small groups of players.
  • CCP will be giving more control to players - possibly station ownership in high and low sec. This trend could be seen for a while, as New Eden population have been growing steadily over the years: less and less materials are being sold by NPCs, shuttles are not seeded by the NPCs anymore, most of the trade goods are now part of Planetary Interaction and are no longer sold by the NPCs, and players can now own Customs offices above planets.

Pics or it didn't happen? Sure, why not:

The original keynote

The original keynote is over two hours long and is available on YouTube:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9Ozvef7CvQ]

All the keynotes from Fanfest 2012 have been already uploaded by the CCP, so even more details about Inferno will be coming soon!

 

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