Facing the Future

A recent DevBlog from CCP talked about upcoming changes to the cosmetics of Eve Online. And I mean that in the fullness of the word. I’m talkin’ make-up here. As in eye-shadow and blush. However, there are also cool MANLY things like piercings, and scars, and FACE TATTOOS. Nothing says hard-core like a face tattoo. Not just some namby-pamby tear drop in the corner of your eye. No, what we have here are full-on,  Minmattar, war-paint, scare-the-fuck-out-of-the-other-guy, style of tattoos.

The service will work like any other station service, and will take you to the character creator interface straight away. You can change all sorts of other things beyond tattoos and makeup. Clothes, hair, backgrounds, poses, lighting, and all the other superficial aspects of your appearance. No gender, racial, or physical structure changes though. Only in the universe of EVE you can clone yourself to your heart’s content, but plastic surgery is forbidden! (whether that’s a technical hurdle or a design choice, I don’t know – but I guess the latter).

One of the best parts about all of this is CCP’s usual trend of not doing what other’s in the genre believe to be the “way”. This service will be totally and utterly free. Not one isk will be put towards your new look. In other games, cosmetics will frequently cost you, at-best, in-game currency. At worst, a service like this would require participation in a game-sponsored RMT to get a “token” to change your race or visit a barber – monetizing fluff. CCP seems to have taken a look at that “inevitable future” of MMOs and said, “Fuck that, let’s do it a different way.”.

The more time I spend playing this product, and partaking of this service, the more and more impressed I become by it. I think it was Gordon who once said (paraphrased) that, after having experience their patch cycles, it’s kind of hard not to come back to see what’s new. This based on the sheer simplicity and smoothness of updates (LINK – you can thank my OCD for not wanting to leave that statement unverified).

What do you think of CCP’s choice to offer this stuff, and heck, all their expansions, for free? Are they missing a great opportunity to increase revenue or using the subscription model for what it was meant for?

Birthday’s are like game development

My wife’s birthday is coming up. As I’m sure many other husbands have gone through, my wife is one of those that says, “Don’t get me anything, there’s nothing I really want.”. So, we as husbands, are then left walking the delicate wire of interpreting the actual meaning behind the cryptic words delivered by our estrogen-fueled counterparts. Sadly, all of our decoder rings are wasted on Ovaltine commercials, so women of the world should really know by now that we need them to speak to us truthfully. However, this tight-walk roping of decrypting intent of message from actual delivered message is something that players and developers do in games all the time.

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You want answers, you got answers

In case you missed it, there’s a Q&A thread going on at the official forums, where Andy is answering as much as he can about the new RvR Packs that are coming out. You post a question and Andy will answer it if able. There’s a lot he still can’t discuss, but some new info is coming out. I’m going to take the Herculean effort of posting all answered questions here, in one consolidated place. Keep in mind, there are (as of right now, this moment) eight (8) pages of this thread, sooooo… yeah. This’ll be fun!

Edit: Updated with Andy’s late-night answers. Gets some sleep man!

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WAR: 1.3.4 Preview

You can read it here.

The most tangible news in the mix is concerning the weapons. Not purchased via medallions/crests, but with a new system through scenarios. SQUEEEE!!! My favorite part of the game currently, and the thing I take part the most in. We have no real ideas what the system will be, or how it will behave, but it’s coming. So, while this post doesn’t contain a whole lot of information, it has some, and that’s good.

I’d love to see Mythic get back to communicating with the player base like they were in the Fall of 2008. There doesn’t need to be a lot of quality content in the updates, just a line here or there to say they are aware, they are working, and they care. The player base is the mob, and the mob is fickle. Placate them, entertain them, and they will be yours.

Shut up, I can use lines from Gladiator if I want to!

Also, this whole thread goes on for a ways, and Andy seemed to be fairly active in it. My favorite back and forth was this tidbit.

  • Shuguard: does this mean thunder valley is scrapped? hurray
  • Andy: Maayyyyybe