I’ll start with Oceanus. It was deployed last week, on Tuesday. On Wednesday, CCP announced changes to movement using jump technology. This has caused some people to comment, on my blog, that they felt Oceanus was pushed under the rug or that the jump change was announced to cover up the negative feedback for Oceanus. Considering the comment thread from an idle, silly blog post I wrote that developed about the topic, I decided to to explain why that is not so.
The Devs are several groups and not one singular force.
The six week release cycle simply means that every six weeks a release window opens up and people who have completed their projects to a state where they are ready to go to Tranquility, release them. If a project is not ready, it is not released.
There is more than one team. The teams who released items of Oceanus own those items. They will do the follow up work, the bug fixes and catches, and they will be responsible for changes, fixes, and feedback. The team working on jump technology for the next release, Phoebe, is a different group and if they have anything released in Oceanus they will actively work on both projects.
Now, teams do multitask and developers do have individual projects. This can be seen the best by CCP Rise and CCP Fozzie who do ship rebalancing but also belong to different teams and work on those team projects as well. Depending on what aspect of the game they are touching, the various tasks need a variable number of people to work on it.
Module Tiericide - This is the first round and the response has been ‘meh’. The removal of items is not sitting well with people. The change in items is not sitting well with people and some missile users are unhappy. The first change was Tuesday so I hope that you are giving the feedback needed about this. Fits or Builds (depending on the game) are not my focus areas so I will often not have a very strong opinion. Example: I know that people are unhappy with missile launchers because they have told me that they are. I do not use missile launchers. And that’s okay, I’m more than happy to point towards the well reasoned and written feedback that has been given.
Flavor and choice are buzz words for the module changes. CCP is streamlining and updating them modules for more focused and clear uses. The players are saying that instead of creating choice they are creating a small number of ‘right’ pathways and cutting off all other routes. This is an area that needs more clarity. Would usage stats, help?
I am hearing that the simplification of the names is coming through as bland. This is an area where clinging to non-creative terms as not being ‘science fiction’ or serious enough diminishes things. I think a reasonable and unique naming structure can still be built with repetition used to teach familiarity versus an exact definition. None of this is set in stone and they have been discussing the player feedback.
Steve, Mike, and I have been working on the language channels. I don’t have anything to share about it as of yet. It is not forgotten and we have some goals and hopes that we are working on.
If you have not played with notifications and wish to, give it a try.
And NPCs where not actually remote repairing themselves for a while. They were faking it. That was fixed when the new Burner missions were added.
The Movement Changes
On Wednesday, CCP Greyscale released the planned changes to instantaneous movement in Eve. This covers the use of jump drive mechanics for combat, logistic, and personnel movement. These changes are planned for the November 4th release. The dev blog was a small, necular device with feedback a post count hitting 100 pages in under 12 hours. The thread statistics are fascinating.
I did know of the general plan for the jump drive changes. I knew of jump fatigue and the plans to severely limit combat jump ability. BlackOps and logistics were to get a slightly softer visit with the nerf bat. Seeing the actual numbers and realizing what they mean has sent me reeling. It is quite the large and shocking change.
I agree that jump technology needed a visit with the nerf bat. I however feel that logistics need more range than they are left with as a result of the proposed changes. As people are looking at the map and the regions there are many areas of space that need the jump mechanics to allow for more range. Or space itself needs to be looked at seriously. Of course, some molding of the two also works.The random nature of Eve’s structure is nice but when a mechanic is being reduced for a reason then nature may need to have a bit of terraforming done to it. Bottlenecks, nearly stationless regions (Hello there Great Wildlands) and chunks of NPC nullsec choked off by Sov Null are problem points that need to be addressed. BlackOps need more flexibility than the current proposed fatigue acquisition will leave them.
I’m am not happy with a month for the fatigue cap. I think it should be less than a solid calendar month. The same goes for the maximum of three days locked out of jumping. I believe there should be penalties and I believe that things need to slow down. I’ve not argued for more range for combat capable ships. However, I dislike mechanics which convince a player not to log into the game. For an example, jump fatigue will cap at a month. I feel that top end is longer than it needs to be. Two weeks would still be a long time to not be able to access a movement activity.
I have been going to people and asking them how they feel about the changes. I’ve been reading responses. I have a very split response so far. The severity of the nerf to capitals is too much for some. It is just fine for others. For low sec, there is speculation as to regional and local control as well as the acknowledgement that scattered assets will become potentially unmaintainable. The biggest concerns are for logistics and black ops. There is a line between effort and fuck this. I’d like it not to tip towards the fuck this side of the scale as people deal with the changes this brings to their game.
Some things have been addressed. The jump fatigue cap was not in place originally. There has been a proposal for those who wish their new players to death clone. This has also caused the concern that this may be used as a new griefing method to lure and lock people into null sec. Some say just use the gates, run the gauntlet, and learn that way. Everyone does not learn the same way.
I have seen the proposed battle Rorquel. While undocking Buttered Scone for honorable capital warfare has some fascination as does Rorquals as the new hotness, this is something that needs to be looked at and considered.
Low Sec Doomsdays were a complete surprise for me. I also quickly realized that I needed input about them because I have no experience with them. I’ve been running around and again, that has so far been a very divided topic in terms of good and bad. I’d like more feedback on this.
We started submitting the minutes to CCP on Saturday. I’m fairly confident we’ve finished everything. Oct 6 is our deadline. I wound up picking up a session that could not be done by its owner. I managed to do that one on Friday. That brings my total up to nine and I am quite tired of minutes right now. I find that I go for a hybrid of transcription and technical minutes in my style. I feel that this is a good reflection of where members where and what arguments they had and how they had said arguments. It creates more text but I’d like to bring as much of that time at the conference table to the readers of the minutes. It may not be correct in the technical sense but it is what I would like to see when I am reading them.
Eve Vegas is in two weeks. I’ll be there, puttering around if anyone wants to say hi or have chats. I do worry that I will not be able to write up the unrecorded sessions as I have done the last two years. I still plan to attempt to do this.
My IRL and Eve schedules over September to October have caused me to have problems doing my monthly talk. I decided to put the minutes first as well. I will resume the monthly open talks; this is not some type of end. My work schedule only gives me every other weekend off and when one includes travelling and a splash of real life, that is the area that has suffered.
I’d also like to thank everyone for the e-mails and eve-mails and conversations. I’d also like to thank those who have responded to my inquiries in e-mails and eve-mails and forums and private chats. If you want to talk to me please do. My blog, the game, comms, chats, whatever. I’m happy to listen but I do ask questions.