Friday, November 26, 2010

A Look at Eve's Incursion 1.0 Patch Notes

CCP followed up yesterday's announcement of the elimination of learning skills with the release of the patch notes for Incursion 1.0.  Below are the items of the patch that most interest me.

The new ORE Industrial skill book, required to pilot the Noctis [the new salvaging ship], can now be purchased from school stations everywhere. - This is a big change, since the original Noctis dev blog indicated that the ORE Industrial skill book would only be available in ORE stations in Outer Ring.

Fighter Bombers used by Super Carriers have been changed: they do much less damage to sub-capital class ships now and will also contribute much less lag to future fleet fights. They were previously making the servers cry. - Server tears, worst tears.

Need for speed
  • In order to facilitate fleet fights, network timeout values have been increased substantially from eight minutes. This will allow users to successfully jump and/or log into extremely loaded solar systems where the client will need to wait a very long time to complete. The players will also receive more informative messages under these extreme circumstances.
  • Repeating modules will no longer get into a “stuck” state, where they cannot be switched off.
  • Improvements to module activation and reload responsiveness have been made.
  • Decisions about who should receive damage notifications were optimized.
  • Jumping through a stargate will now create less server load.
  • Compile-time constant handling was improved to give better runtime performance: As a result of replacing certain data look-ups with fixed constants, both client and server should be able to run slightly faster.
  • Fixed an issue in which a client receiving out of order packets would fail to load grid when jumping into a system.
  • A large amount of damage and effects states were being recalculated for every observer during fleet warps and mass jumps. This process is now much more efficient.
Okay, I'm a tech geek who just finished similar testing and tweaking at work.  I just find what CCP is doing fascinating.

The Ships section of the market has been reorganized and is now primarily sorted by hull class. In addition, all faction and special release ships have been added to the market so you can now trade them there in addition to contracts. - Less scamming, but more importantly, more convenience. I'm sure someone is going to complain that this dumbs the game down.  Actually, it just means that scammers have to be smarter.

Graphics
  • The EVE client is now resizable in Windowed mode, allowing the players to stretch their client over several monitors. Now EVE Online is much more beautiful in ultra-widescreen resolutions.
  • There is a new version of Windowed Mode called Fixed Window. It is similar to the regular Windowed Mode but lacks any title bars, frames or borders.
  • A new option, “Horizontal offset” has been added to the settings menu. It allows the player to have all menus on one monitor and focus on his ship in another monitor.
  • EVE now supports anti-aliasing. The beauty of virtual space has never been more… beautiful.
I can't wait to try this out with my laptop hooked up to my big screen TV.  One of the problems I had was that I couldn't resize the window in Windowed Mode and when I used Full Screen the window appeared on my laptop, not my TV.

A “Volume” column has been added to the hangar view by default; “Category”, “Meta Level” and “Tech Level” have been added as optional columns. Individual columns now can be toggled on and off through the right click menu. - I have wanted a Meta Level column for some time now.  And a tech level column is nice also.

Probes can now be added to the overview. - Knowledgeable players knew how to do this already.  Now everyone can see them, providing players take the time how to use their overviews.

You can now rename ships in your hangar without making them active. - A nice quality of life change.

I looked through the forums and didn't see any complaints about these patch notes, since all the complaints are still focused on the removal of the learning skills.  The official response thread on the Eve Online forums is here

The last impression I have is that those who prey on the less skilled, whether it be in PvP or scams, will need to evolve and become more skilled, smarter and faster or they will become the prey.

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