Structure improvements coming in the August update
New dev blog is here and it covers the structure changes and improvements that will be arriving in the upcoming August 15th release. Some of these changes have been discussed previously and others will have their details revealed here for the first time.
Previously on “Structure Dev Blogs”
Earlier this year CCP released a dev blog describing the three-pronged approach to continued Upwell structure development:
- Bug fixes, performance improvements, UI polish to make existing Structure features more reliable and easier to use
- Adding new universal features to all Upwell Structures, such as the addition of automatic capacitor/shield recharge functions and customizable public structure descriptions earlier this summer
- Preparing the next batch of structures and service modules: Refinery structures with moon mining and reaction services
All three of these tracks are still advancing and all three will be represented in the August release.
As CCP Seagull announced in one of the recent Development Update videos, CCP is in the process of refocusing more of their ongoing structure update resources to the topic of structure defenses and siege mechanics. This design area has been one of the major topics they’ve been hearing about from the community over the past few months, and the August release includes some of the early fruits of increased focus in this area.
The changes coming in August include:
- Balance updates for structure weapons
- Improved UI feedback for structure deployment
- Improved usability for fueling structures
- The addition of the corporation insurance feature to Upwell structures
- The phase-out of legacy starbase industry bonuses
- The introduction of the new moon scanning UI in preparation for Refineries
Balance Updates for Structure Weapons
This August, CCP will be deploying a set of iterations to structure weapons with a special focus on the Standup Guided Void Bombs. These bombs have been a major topic of discussion in the community and the devs agree with the majority of players that they need to be toned down. Void bombs being the most powerful part of structure defenses has the significant downside of reducing the fleet composition choices available to attackers.
The goals for these weapon tweaks are:
- Reduce the pressure to limit fleet composition choices when attacking Citadels (caused by the extremely powerful void bombs)
- Make the counterplay for structure guided bombs more clear and accessible
- Compensate for the nerfing of void bombs with small buffs to damage bombs and single-target anti-subcap damage so that structure defenses remain viable
The changes being proposed here reduce the area of effect and energy neutralizer amount per second of Guided Void Bombs while also reducing their rate of fire and movement speed to make counterplay more accessible.
- Structure Guided Bombs
- Reduce the rate of fire of the Structure Guided Bomb Launcher from 20 seconds to 40 seconds
- Reduce the area of effect of Guided Void Bombs from 40km to 20km
- Reduce the area of effect of AS and AM Guided Bombs from 40km to 30km
- Reduce the neut amount per second of the Guided Void Bomb by 25%
- Increase the DPS of the AS and AM Guided Bombs by 25%
- Reduce the velocity of the Guided Void Bomb by 20% (increasing flight time to keep the range the same)
- Structure Anti-Subcap Missiles
- Increase the damage of the ASML-SD missile by 33%
- Increase the damage of the ASML-MD and ASML-LD missiles by 20%
These changes are available for testing on Singularity test server now and players are encouraged to give them a try.
Improved UI Feedback for Structure Deployment
EVE Online’s August release will also include the next improvement to the UI for structure deployment. Earlier this year the devs were made aware that more and more players were encountering issues with determining the direction of the undock points on structures when choosing their location and orientation during deployment. They included the idea of adding undock direction indicators in the Upwell structure feedback survey and it received quite a bit of support from the participants in the survey.
So, starting this month the hologram projection of each structure that is used for choosing orientation and location during deployment will include some of the traffic path lights that connect to the undock points of the structure. These clearly show which side of the structure players will undock from so that players can avoid mistakes during deployment.
Improved Usability for Fueling Structures
The job of keeping your structure fueled can be a challenging one that is made more complicated by the fact that allowing a player to fuel a structure currently requires a huge amount of trust in that individual. In the August release, the fueling ability is being expanded in a secure way by allowing anyone with the "Assume Structure Control" access control list to place (but not remove) fuel in the structure fuel bay without requiring any corporate roles.
Corporation Insurance in Upwell Structures
Corporation insurance is a feature that allows a corporation to insure a ship before distributing it to one of their members, which then sends the insurance payout to the corporation if the ship is destroyed.
This is a longstanding feature of the insurance system in normal stations and outposts, but it wasn’t initially possible to add it to Upwell structures due to some technical differences between corporation hangar systems in different structure types. Recent improvements that were made behind the scenes have had the additional benefit of allowing CCP to add corp insurance to Upwell structures in August. This is another step towards full feature parity between stations/outposts and Upwell structures and will be especially useful to large corporations.
Phasing out of Legacy Starbase Industry Bonuses
As a quick reminder, there are also a few other previously announced changes coming in the August release that bring us closer to the release of Refineries and complete replacement of Starbases with Upwell structures.
This means that starting in the August release, Starbase Reprocessing Arrays will only provide a 50% refining yield, Starbase Assembly Arrays will not provide any material or time bonuses to manufacturing jobs, and Starbase Labs will not provide any time bonuses to research, copy, or invention jobs.
These structures will continue to work for the near future, but without their previous advantages over stations.
Any jobs started in one of these structures before August 15th will complete with the bonuses intact.
These structures have been impossible to build since May, and their usage is now very low since more convenient and powerful alternatives exist. This step will continue the progress towards replacing the legacy starbases with easier to use Upwell structures.
New Moon Survey Probing UI
A set of improvements for the moon survey probing system will also be deployed this August. All the details of these changes can be found in this dev blog, and are another step preparing New Eden for the arrival of the new Upwell Refinery structures later this year.
In addition to the previously announced changes, CCP also announced that the August release will include a buff to the Tech Two version of the Survey Probe launcher, giving it a flat 10% bonus to the speed of moon probing.