After surviving some of the worst birth pangs ever suffered by an MMO game since the infamous Star Wars Galaxies NGE debacle (and we all know how well that went), EVE Online's Incarna will now be put to rest. And it will go down as the worst expansion in the game's 8 year history. When a game expansion incites masses to riot, unsubscribe and even quit entirely, something's way wrong. But all this can be left behind now, and we the playerbase can only hope that CCP learned from its numerous mistakes and make good on its promises to make things alright once more.
As I'm writing this in 24 hours people will be making preparations for the massive update that if all goes according to plan will be a major boost for the game. Capital ships will work quite differently (though I believe that still a lot of work needs to be done; supercaps have no business whatsoever in Low-sec for instance), a new class of ships will be born, loads of T2 modules will be appearing, and hopefully hybrid guns will finally work as intended, much to the joy of Gallente and Caldari pilots, and some perfectly skilled Taranis pilots :)
Here's a short list of the things that I'm looking forward to the most:
The new battlecruisers: when I started playing EVE I had asked my friend Letrange what would be a ship that would fit my style of piloting, which is fly fast, hit hard, and GTFO with none the wiser; tank is superfluous. His immediate answer was Vagabond without hesitation, but now I should have a new and cheaper option in the form of the Tornado. It's faster than the Hurricane and the big guns hurt; just make sure you don't let an interceptor, assault frig, or even a lowly Rifter get too close. I have yet to try the Talos, Naga and Oracle; Cozmik just got the ability to fit large T2 blasters, but no T2 railguns yet. And my large lazorz are only trained to a token level III so no T2 guns for a few weeks for the Oracle... just in time for Christmas I'd say. But I really liked what I saw with the Tornado; an AC/nano fit is doable, and the gank fit will simply be hilarious!
The new font and scalable UI: gone will be the days of squarish letters and numbers that look the same. How many people have called me "Cozmik RS" instead of "Cozmik R-FIVE", and how many Null-sec systems have been misread. And of course, the option of scalability will make happy eye balls the world over because the tiny font was tiny.
The new POS mechanics: yes you read right, I, Cozmik R5, am happy about the changes coming to Player-Owned Structures. Please don't choke on your coffee! The simplification of the POS mechanics means one thing: a lazy schmuck like me can now operate and refuel a POS without having to calculate tons of different components in precise quantities to make sure everything works for a precise amount of time. Just fill up the thing will fuel pellets and strontium calthrates and all is cool in the universe! Now why would I be so happy about this? First my noob corpmate is more interested in the industrial side of EVE and at some point we will have to set up a tower somewhere. Second, should I go back to W-space I will be able to help whichever corp I'm with better with POS operations. Hell I may even train up POS guns!
Player-owned customs offices: please don't choke on your coffee some more, I'm not about to start doing some PI. Much too lazy for this (yes, even if it's dead easy and maintenance free). Come on... the things are GANKABLE! I haven't see the HP stats on the offices but I can easily imagine myself and a bunch of friends looking fro trouble out in Low-sec and reinforcing offices for this simple reason: because we can!
That's pretty much it for the Crucible expansion as we should see it tomorrow, but there are still a few things that I hope will be on the drawing board for the summer 2012 expansion:
- The fourth bonus on the Assault Ships: overdue much?
- The fifth subsystems for Strategic Cruisers: they said there would be five... we're still waiting.
- T3 frigates: one of the most requested ship, and yet it remains ignored.
- The bounty system: one of the careers I initially thought I'd be able to pursue, bounty hunting as a viable money-making activity cannot work in the current iteration.
- The Global Criminal Countdown: bring this down to 5 minutes. Non negociable.
- Other stuff I can't think about right now: because I'm sure there is!
I know that there is a good chance that "walking in stations" stuff will have to be expanded upon after so much "flying in space" stuff (God I hate segregating EVE like this) but if CCP learned only one thing, and I sincerely hope that they truly learned their lesson, it's that what happens in space cannot be neglected. Ever. To do so is to neglect the reason why a vast majority of the players are playing the game. I'd say maybe bring down the prices in the NeX store to a sane level (to Hell with your 1000$ jeans Arnar!) and add lots, and I mean LOTS of stuff to buy, for those interested in such stuff. And when you actually expand on Incarna, make sure the players get to go places and interact. This has to be done correctly and not rushed the way Incarna was. And obviously not at the cost of further infuriating the player base. CCP survived the 2011 Summer of Rage, but it might not survive more failure of this magnitude.
In the meantime, all that's left to do now is wait for Crucible to be deployed, and hope that fun returns to New Eden. Incarna is over. Good riddance!