Archive for January, 2012

Module Madness

Posted in EVE Online on January 28, 2012 by cailais

Buried away on the Features and Ideas sub forum CCPs developer SoniClover has asked what type of new modules we would like to see introduced into EVE.  A multitudonous host of suggestions have followed but for todays blog post Id like to put my own subtle spin on how to approach this subject…

As a ground rule we probably want new modules to add fun to EVE, something new which, whilst not upsetting the natural order of things too dramatically, gives players new and old pause for thought in how they set up and utilise their ships.  Rather then give specific examples of some ‘technetium ion lance cannon’ and a bunch of stats I would suggest some broad themes.  Why “theme” new modules?

I say theme’s because if you have a group of modules based around a core idea of form and function  it streamlines the design process.  New card sets for traditional games such as Magic the Gathering do this well – new mechanics which serve a purpose and guide the next iteration.  Onwards then to those theme’d modules:

1. Cerebus – two heads are better than one.  This class of module is a ‘heads / tails’ concept: the module can exist in one of 2 states. Usually these states are diameticraly opposed for example a module that in state 1 is a weapon system, in state 2 is a defensive module. In either state the module is typically sub par compared to a vanilla module, trading performance for flexibility.

2. Flawed Masterpiece.  This class of module takes a vanillla module and markedly increases a specific attribute but with a significant disadvantage (a rapid rof hybrid turret, which is prone to extreme overheating for example). Here the trade off is between one extreme of performance against a major flaw.

3. The Sacrifical Lamb.  This class of module is a ‘one shot’ wonder which, rather like a lizard detaching its tail, gets you out of a particular problem.  An example might be a turret that you can ‘jettison’ to expunge all heat attributed so far.

4. Oddball. This class of module defies existing norms by matching the function of an existing module but in an unexpected fashion.  An example of this type of ‘oddball’ design would be a low slot turret, or a high slot armour plate.

5. World Shaper. This class of module quite litterally allows players to act in ways that aren’t currently possible, changing how a ship flies and fights.  An example might be a module that generates wormwholes in close proximity to the activating ship.

Once we have these broad themes creating hybrids of them (and thus spawning new ideas) is relatively straight forward.  To give an idea of what I mean by this would be a Sacrifical Lamb/Cerebus/World Shaper combo: In state 1 our module is a vanilla turret, in state 2 it becomes a 1 shot wormhole generator.

Whilst there are some valid concerns that new modules could, if not designed carefully, make existing modules redundant or ignore the plight of existing modules that are rarely used (hi there FoF missiles) expanding the selection of modules to me seems a worthwhile aspiration and Im looking forward to seeing what CCP are able to develop.

C.