Today marks the second day of EVE Online’s 20th anniversary celebration in Reykjavik and CCP did not hold back on the details for upcoming projects, expansions and new mechanics coming to EVE Online. Everything they talked about was still in development or coming soon so the content may be subject to change. Regardless, there’s plenty to be excited for in the coming months for EVE Online.
Let’s start with the most recent addition to New Eden- Zarzakh. The system of Zarzakh lies at the end of the 4 stargates capsuleers found in Alsavoinon, G-0Q86, H-PA29, and Turnur. During the beginning of the presentation, the gates to Zarzakh all activated, letting hundreds of capsuleers surrounding the structures finally make the journey into Zarzakh.
At first glance, we could see that people in the system were not showing up in the local member list until they spoke in the channel, meaning local in Zarzakh is delayed. Unconfirmed reports from players attempting to jump capital ships into the system stated they were not able to do so, in spite of a confirmation window for the jump fee previously appearing for any ship. Also reported from players who have had the opportunity to visit Zarzakh is that you can enter and exit through any gate into or out of the system, meaning player concerns about massively increased projection for groups closeby were founded in reality.
Within the system of Zarzakh is a massive station called Fulcrum. This looks to be the base of operations for capsuleers to complete tasks for the Deathless and earn standings. Currently, only capsuleers with a standing of 10.0 with the Deathless faction can enter the station (meaning no one can dock in the station yet, including the cameraman). Also visible in the skybox is the black hole orbiting Zarzakh’s blue sun, Point of No Return.
Around the station and the in-gates to Zarzakh is a “safezone.”. The safezone protects capsuleers from a seemingly systemwide effect called a “Gravity Zone”. The gravity zone causes hull damage based on percentage rather than a flat amount, meaning that ships traversing Zarzakh cannot outtank the damage. It was believed that Zarzakh would have sites to complete within the system but, with the addition of taking hull damage everywhere but gates and the station, this would be a difficult task.
What we know is within Zarzakh are fully constructed Jove Observatories, seemingly appropriated by the Deathless from the Jove who abandoned them. This does answer one question that I had about the Deathless: they are not Jovian. Another answered question about the Deathless is their goals. At the Jove Observatory, capsuleers can see an under construction shipcaster. These shipcasters will be linked to frontline systems within Faction Warfare and the Deathless will give us missions to complete requiring their use. These missions are meant to “disrupt empire activities” so I would assume that you could not be enlisted in faction warfare and complete these missions at the same time.
In general, Zarzahk looks to be a mission hub and fast travel like Thera and Turnur before it. Concerns of projection are still present but may be address prior to Zarzakh’s full release in November.
Speaking of November, we also got a fresh look at the newest expansion for EVE Online, set to release on 14 November, Havoc. The thumbnail for the trailer features the Deathless in all his totally-not-Jovian glory, red-eyes glowing menacingly over the title. As the name and the presentation so far suggest, this expansion is about wreaking havoc, creating chaos and, ultimately, putting the pressure on the empires who have had it far too easy for far too long.
Through what are called as Pirate Insurgencies, Havoc invites you to align with the Angel Cartel or Guristas to work alongside the Deathless in his mission of chaos. The shipcasters from Zarzakh will take us to faction warfare space, presumably the Frontlines (the most contested part of the battle zones) to complete our missions. Not only will we likely kill NPCs in faction warfare space but there may even be missions to kill other capsuleers who get in the way.
Capsuleers will use new pirate stations in the warzones to act as forward operating bases and earn their respective LP (loyalty points) from completing mission objectives. This LP can likely be spent on ships for the respective factions, such as the Mamba and Mekubal, but also new battlecruisers coming with the expansion, the Alligator and the Khizriel.
No real details were given about these ships other than that they are battlecruisers and belong to the factions. Early reports and possibilities indicate that these ships may be very strong when factoring in ship and role bonuses. Oh, also an Angel Titan is being constructed at the Fulcrum.
Leaving Zarzakh and the Deathless behind, we got some announced changes to corporation projects. Corporation Projects were introduced with the Viridian expansion and gave corporations a way to give their members missions to complete. The listed changes include automated payout functionality (making way for automated ship replacement programs), something capsuleers have been asking for since its inception.
Rounding out the expansion conversation was a relatively small note. CCP has finally figured out how to add logistics pilots to killmails, meaning your logibros are about to get a whole lot happier and finally be represented on the only gauge for player skill and activity, zKillboard.
We were also treated with a presentation on the now-named first-person shooter project from CCP, EVE Vanguard. This presentation was probably one of the coolest ones of the entire day and detailed the way this new first-person shooter interacts with the EVE Online universe. Similarly to Dust 514, EVE Vanguard appears to be a “looter shooter”, tasking players with missions on planets but not discriminating on which capsuleers get the missions and when, meaning multiple groups of players can be found on the same planet, completing the same missions. The story of Vanguard starts at the Deathless who, in his pursuit of havoc, has created a new generation of warclones and is sending capsuleers out into the wild to collect, explore and kill.
Several CCP developers joined together as a squad and dropped onto a planet featuring ruins and destruction everywhere. They were tasked to collect some sort of crystal but, before doing so, had some run-ins with the locals; NPCs. In addition to fighting players, the battlefields will also have NPCs that must be contended with. Much like a ship’s shield, armor, and hull, enemies (and presumably) players will have specific resistances to different damage types. This means that players will have to load the correct ammo to do maximum damage and ammo can be crafted from the remains and salvage of dead players and NPCs.
In December, CCP is inviting us to participate in an event they call “First Strike”. This sounds like an early access playtest but also promises quicker access to development updates as they continue to work on the game that is very much in a pre-alpha state.
Project Discovery is switching gears from research on COVID-19 to cancer research after years of data has been submitted, changing the way scientists and researchers approached the deadly pandemic that hit out world 3 years ago. Hopefully a similar result happens with the search for a cure for cancer. PLEX for Good is changing from a sometimes thing to an all of the time thing with donations accepted continuously and the money being funneled to a cause chosen in partnership with the EVE Online community.
CCP had some other announcements about upcoming projects they are working on too. Project Awakening is still happening, boasting its $40 million in external funding and continuously assuring that this project will not interact with EVE Online. That assurance indicates that this is absolutely a Web3/NFT project. EVE Echoes is getting a new expansion and the addition of some fancy new advanced ships and fun. There’s a new 4X strategy game coming out for your mobile device later this year called Galaxy Conquest. It looks like it sounds and will be available on Apple and iOS later this year with a PC client coming soon.
So that pretty much wraps up the EVE Online keynote for this year in terms of what’s coming to a universe near you. There were some things not covered in this article, like CCP’s presentation on the history of EVE Online and what we’ve done. While the graphs were interesting, this article was focused more on upcoming features.
What did you think of the EVE Online Keynote? Let us know in the comments.
- Delayed local
- Capitals cannot jump the gates
- Protected from Zarzakh gravity hazard (safezone)
- Security status -1.0
- “Elements of this system straddle the line between low-security and null-security space.”
- Guristas and Angel Cartel NPCs act as peacekeepers, reacting to hostile activity against other players.
- Fulcrum station- abandoned by the Jove, now controlled by Deathless
- Docking requires +10 standings with Deathless at the moment. Dev quote: “I expect that will change in the future.”
- Protected from gravity hazard around gates and stations with a safezone/boundary area.
- Gravity Hazard causes hull damage, a percentage of the ships hull, ignoring high EHP ships and killing all indeterminately.
- At a fully-constructed Jove Observatory is the construction of a Deathless Shipcaster.
- The safezones are around fully operational Jovian structures.
- Releases on 14th of November
- “Invites you to align with pirate factions, Angel Cartel or Guristas. They are aligned with the Deathless circle. The Deathless is the harbinger of Havoc.”
- Ship cast from Zarzakh into “the frontlines”
- Our task to to cause chaos on the frontlines and disrupt empire effort. (Low-security?)
- The Deathless are NOT Jovian
- Pirate Insurgencies, capsuleers aligned with pirate factions can complete objectives and get pirate loyalty point, increasing “corruption” in the system, undermining the empire’s efforts somehow
- New pirate stations in the warzones to use as a base
- Early access to Zarzakh to “capsuleers who come to the aid” of the Deathless
- More new ships, Alligator and Khizriel, battlecruisers, stats TBD
- Angel Titan
- Major updates coming to corporation projects, with automated payout functionality- including automatic SRP
- Logi on killmails? They never said it. But they meant it. Right?
NEW FPS: EVE VANGUARD
- Last year’s FPS announcement is meant to continue the “boots-on-the-ground vision”
- “A modular first-person experience for and within EVE Online.”
- Sandbox mechanics, content, and connections
- New generations of Deathless warclones, called the Vanguard
- More creating chaos and distrust in the establishment
- New area in the EVE Online universe will interact with EVE Vanguard
- Powered by Unreal Engine 5
- We also saw some pre-alpha gameplay footage of the upcoming, still in development game.
- From the gameplay, it looks like this game may be similar to other extraction shooters like “Escape from Tarkov” where you and other players are competing to complete the same objectives.
- The enemies in the game have resistances to different types of damage, meaning we would need to have different ammo types available that can be crafted from loot and salvage from slain enemies.
- In December, EVE Vanguard will be available to try in an event called “First Strike”. People who take part will be able to see development as it happens. It seems to be similar to Early Access.
- Developers stress that this game is a part of EVE Online and EVE Online is a part of it.
- Project Awakening (Web3/NFT project?), $40 million in external funding, isolated from EVE Online and Tranquility.
- EVE Echoes has a new expansion, bringing more advanced ships and fun.
- Galaxy Conquest is a new 4X mobile game in the EVE universe that launches on Apple & iOS later this year with a PC client slated for SoonTM.
- Project Discovery will be changing to help with cancer research
- PLEX for Good will be a continuously running event, donations will be accepted any time and the community will help decide what causes the money goes to.
- TAMBER SKINS!