Updated Tue, Apr 10, 2012 by Space Junkie
This is the second half of our interview with Jon Lander, the Senior Producer for EVE Online. In this part of te interview, we discuss null-sec, the drone regions, ship balancing, CCP's alt characters, and the new modules slated for release in the Inferno expansion.
For the first half of this interview, go here.
Are there any big changes to null sec in Inferno?
We're doing a number of things. We're looking at rogue drones. The drone regions drop alloys instead of bounties, and those alloys are being farmed. They're completely screwing up the market. Mining is not particularly interesting industry right now, and it's not very profitable. You can just shoot drones and get huge amounts of high-ends, which is skewing things. We're looking at mixing that up, and I think that will have a really interesting dynamic on the profitability of low- and null-sec mining. I think many more people will see mining as a profitable industry to get involved in. But it's also going to have an interesting effect on the drone regions. I don't know whether a lot of people will still be happy to be out there, whether people will want to go there, or whether they will want to leave. It's going to be interesting to see that dynamic.
Are we talking bounties instead of alloys?
It's one of the things we're thinking about. All of a sudden, we'll lose this massive influx of minerals. Does that mean it no longer is a really nice place for super cap construction - who knows? It's one of those things where you can't keep all of the people happy, all of the time, but doing something around this is a really needed change, because there is more to the game than just PvP.
There's more to EVE Online than PvP?
People keep telling me that, anyway. I'm a big PvPer, I know there are all types of career paths that just aren't really viable right now. But we're hoping that this will mix it up. And yeah, we're always sort of looking at the end point and the balance of the situation. I hate balance in the game. It's bad for the game, because you get bored. I think it's good to keep things out of balance, because it promotes conflict. It promotes people saying "That's better than this. Let's go take that."
I was talking to CCP Soundwave the other day. We were having a beer and saying that we need to find ways to promote hate in this game. Everybody's trying to chum it up. Because it was great - Goons versus BoB. Bad things happened to kick off that rivalry, which were pretty unpleasant, but it led to this in-game absolute hatred. When you saw Mercenary Coalition going against Goons and kicking them out of Syndicate and various other places, and those guys were just going at it on CAOD. It was great, great entertainment. Loads of conflict going on - not because they necessarily wanted the ground, but just because they wanted to annihilate each other.
When Darius Johnson and Suas were at fanfest, they bumped into Seleene, who used to be head of Mercenary Coalition. They had their two groups around them, and it looked bad. Then, before you know it, they were buying each other beer and spent the entire time chilling out, having a really good time. We need to promote hate in-game and love out of game.
So we're looking at things that we ought to do for null sec, but we also know that there's more to EVE than that. If you look at what we have really achieved over the last three or four years, in terms of what we're putting out there, a lot of it has obviously been war and combat related. It keeps the perpetual machine going - harvest, build, destroy - but we need to spend a little bit of time looking at these other areas as well.