by Jeff "Ethec" Woleslagle
Tech Designer Kristinn "Tuxford" Sigurbergsson
November 3, 2007 - Kristinn "Tuxford" Sigurbergsson is the man responsible for turning up the Heat in EVE Online, and he and CCP working to improve this underused game mechanic. Heat, a system designed to allow more advanced players to essentially overclock modules for greater performance at the risk of heat damage, has gotten mixed reviews from EVE players. At present, players can only repair heat damage by docking at a station – impractical especially for players camping gates deep in null sec. But with the stipulation that nothing’s been decided on yet, Tuxford presented a series of changes are coming that may make Heat a more attractive option for all players.
First up, two new ways to deal with the negative effects of heat: heat attenuation and heat sinks. Heat attenuation takes the physical location of the slot into account when assessing heat damage; modules closer to the overclocked module will take more heat than modules farther away.
Heat sinks, on the other hand, are just disabled or empty module slots which absorb heat. The effect of heat sinks will be cumulative and independent of any single rack and Tuxford hinted that the calculation will be a simple ratio of enabled to disabled / empty modules.
Another major change is the addition of a skill to repair heat damage while in space (but out of combat). This skill will require a quantity of vendor-supplied Nanite Repair Paste, and, unless you have a high level of this specific repair skill, will probably be more expensive than repairing heat damage in a station. Two caveats: players won’t be able to repair active modules, and modules which have sustained more or equal damage to their total hitpoints cannot be repaired in space.
With these changes and greater awareness of the Heat systems tactical potential, this mechanic might go from it’s current status as an act of pure desperation to a calculated measure used to, say, extend the range of an electronic warfare to get inside the standoff range of your target that’s wise to your role. Time will tell, however, if the Heat system really proves worthwhile in light of its relative complexity and potential damage tradeoff.
Now for the best part: want to see the entire session? Ten Ton Hammer is your source for full-length video from EVE FanFest 2007, and we’ve got the entire Heat system session on video right here. Enjoy!