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A Look at the History of Expansions - Part Seven

A Look at the History of Expansions - The Series

Previous Entry: Cold War

There is an interesting blur effect across the Exodus and Cold War expansions that extends into Red Moon Rising. CCP has many plans and goals and they are often not able to meet them int he development cycle. They simply move these down, but that led to cries of missing features from Exodus even after Cold War was launched. They will have to juggle both the past, the present, and the future.


Eve is now two years old and CCP is juggling bugs, new content, and hardware. Eve is striding along picking up a steady growth of population. Cold War is the expansion that was really a content patch, but it brought Freighters and Dreadnoughts. A note I did not make previously is one from Cold War's own expansion page.
Freighters will handle the massive logistics, Dreadnoughts born to conquer and Outposts to fully claim and exploit the riches of your sovereignty.
Cold War was the birth of power projection. Moros. Naglfar. Revelation. Phoenix. These were the first ships born to leap across star systems and abandon stargates. But, they did not change just travel. They changed player interaction forever. One might say that they caused the birth of alts for to jump, a cynosural field was needed and that means not one, but two people must be involved.

But it is early in the birth of capital ships and the issues of power projection are still off into the future. Remember, this is a time before jump freighters. This was when carriers and dreadnoughts could be built in high security space. People were doing convoys of freighters through low sec and out to null. It was the period were true space-lane piracy was born. The amount of materials that the new null security space conquerable Outposts would need would be enormous. As would the materials needed to fuel the fleets to defend and attack them. Cold War laid the foundation for what would come in Red Moon Rising.

For Red Moon Rising will be the birth of the capital fleet of Eve online. It will bring to us the Archon, the Chimera, the Thanatos, and the Niddhogger. It will bring the creation of the Nyx, the Aion, the Hel, and the Wyvern. And it shall bring the Erebus, the Avatar, the Ragnarok, and the Leviathan. For now super carriers and Titans will enter the game and they shall set the stage for a future few might expect.

Let us walk through history.


It is September, 2005. CCP has been quiet on the Dev Blog front with the bulk of the chatting coming from EON and the ISDs. Eve now has 70,000 subscribed users. Damage Control Units, a holy item of PvP, were once useless. HED-GP is still a major point of battles but the change to access in Sov has diluted the gigantic fleet battles Eve was having. There is also plans to create a comic about Eve.

But Eve is again suffering from lag, node deaths, and unplayability. Players are stuck places unable to move as the hardware struggles to keep up. CCP is porting Eve over to 64 bits and upgrading everything but the strain is there. Between fleet battles and general usage Eve is attempting to solve problems other games have never had to deal with.

At the end of September, 2005, manufacturing and industry were recoded and overhauled. The goal was for a more flexible system that used less processing power. The eventual, flexibility of options might allow stations to give bonuses based off of what was being built there. An example used is that building Caldari hulls in a Caldari station might have an improvement. This is the foundation for our current industry and we know that these hoped for features do not exist currently in the game. Still, staring down into a 2014 Industry focused expansion this particular dev blog may be interesting.

One decision CCP made was that active hardeners for both shield and armor would have an inactive state. I mention this because it is something CCP decided to turn around and remove in 2013. Live events are struggling. The dev fleets that everyone loved are becoming more and more rare. Fanfest is also scheduled for this late in the year unlike its current, early (cold as hell) spring time frame.

Red Moon Rising is announced at Fanfest 2005.


The dev blog about Red Moon Rising has an interesting contradiction.
What we'll see in Red Moon Rising is mainly optimizations, fixes and improvements but there are a couple of features in there and a lot of content. 
Which will it be? For content we are getting spaceships. A lot of spaceships. The T2 line is being fleshed out with recons, interdictors, and command ships. T2 barges, better research facilities and they are looking to improve combat.
Combat Revisited is a big and ongoing project, now focusing on prolonging combat by adding new defensive skills and improvements on a lot of defensive modules. We made some modules useful, like the damage controls and are looking at a number of other modules, making them a more viable choice in combat. 
CCP wants to make fighting better. They have decided to improve defensive abilities and add in more EWar for these exact reasons.
Prolonging combat should not only make it more fun but also enable us to take new paths in future expansions to deepen combat, like allowing players to overload modules at the risk of them getting damaged or destroyed and even allowing targeting of certain ship sub-systems - something which the current combat times does not offer you. 
Targeted modules are an often mentioned dream. It never happened. However, it looks as if Red Moon Rising will introduce overheating. Also, they are creating the first China server for Eve that will be mirrored due to China's law.

And capital ships. Let's talk about capital ships.

X-Large modules are being introduced for carriers as well as fighters. They are not going to add salvage drones at this time. It will only take them another seven years to add them. Instead, we have tractor beams including capital class ones. Titans will be able to fit X-Large turrets and they will also have a massive super weapon.

But don't worry:
Both Carriers and Titans are Tech 1 ships, so they will be available to everyone from day one. We might do something else with Titans but I think the sheer mineral logistics and costs associated with it should in itself keep them few and rare. 
And they want to create combat booster, a better contract system, and faction warfare. Oh, a contract system where:
One of the biggest changes to EVE in Kali will be the Contracts system, which not only enables complex contracts between parties which do not have established lines of trust - such as BYOM manufacturing contracts - but also enable organizations with established trust, like corporations or alliances to create "mission" like contracts, milestones and allow them to track achievement and empower players which are even more trusted without having to give full access to corp hangars. 
But that is the future and now it is October 2005 and the Dev blogs coming fast. Red Moon Rising is two months away. They are adding logistic and ewar drones to the drone line up. Also! Sentries. Can you smell the drone assist nerf of the future? But, before that, we also get drone skills. Drone Navigation, Drone Durability, Repair Drone Operation, Electronic Warfare Drone Interfacing and Sentry Drones Interfacing are added. This is also the great drone number nerf but not yet the dread drone nerf. The Moros is losing its 5 drone per level dreadnought bonus! But, drones were as resource intensive now as they were then.

Something else happens that is not in the dev blogs. Eve makes the news for, well, being a game where terrible things happen. The Guiding Hand Social Club has a job to do and makes a heist that makes ripples through the online MMO community. These ripples do not surface in more mainstream media for a few years yet. But they are coming.

But, let's move on. It is November and Red Moon Rising is around the corner. The tower system is going to be altered somewhat and towers are going to be allowed in higher security space. Currently, they stop a .3 Now they will be able to be anchored in up to .7 space. Part of this was done to increase the ability to produce T2 compoentns for the new T2 ships being released.

Let's stop for a sip of drama. CCP has changed some corporation names and caused drama. It may sound a tad bit familiar...

CCP is introducing stacking penalties for modules.

But really, the big juicy new is about the new capital ships. Remember when part of getting a super carrier was making jump clones? Because super carriers were originally known as Motherships and had clone facilities. It was decided that Motherships and Titans would not be able to dock.
The reason for the special manufacturing need of the Motherships and Titans is related to the fact that these ships can not dock at stations. They are doomed to fly in space for eternity or until they get blown up. After all they are stations in their own right and trying to squeeze something into itself could lead to something very obscure.
And Red Moon Rising is here. The trailer is named Eve Online: No Other Destiny and well, it is worth the watch. The original cyno and jump bridge effects will give you chills.


This is a good bit for one post. I think I shall step away with the trailer at the end. Next post we will look into Eve Online: Red Moon Rising's launch.

Resources:

Eve Online - Cold War
Eve Online - Red Moon Rising
Eve Online 2005 Dev Blogs
Eve Pics - Red Moon Rising
Eve Online: No Other Destiny (YouTube)

Comments

  1. Shocking how much content was actually added back then in an expansion !

    ReplyDelete
  2. This quote is certainly still true (from the dev blog for Red Moon):

    Redundancy's First Law of Game Features: 'When mentioning a feature or change to the playerbase after release, people will generally assume the interpretation they find most controversial.'

    ReplyDelete
  3. I am loving these. Please keep it up!

    ReplyDelete
  4. You definitely come with exceptional articles and reviews.

    ReplyDelete

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