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EVE Online community donates 3.7 million PLEX to family of fallen developer

Last fall, one of EVE Online’s senior software engieers passed away at the age of 35, leaving a hole in the team’s heart. While the studio created a special ship SKIN to memorialize CCP Blaze, there was more that the company and community felt that could be done.

Funds were raised to support his fiancée and one-year-old daughter which resulted in an “astonishing, unparalleled” success. The community donated over 3.7 million PLEX — 620 years of game time — to the family, making it the second-largest fundraiser ever to happen in CCP’s history.

“It’s honestly not possible for us to find words that would accurately convey the gratitude we feel to our pilots,” CCP said. “Once again, the EVE community has shown that despite differences in game, our pilots are a formidable, and indestructible force for good.”

Source: EVE Online

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The Daily Grind: Is ‘naming-and-shaming’ MMO cheaters a good idea?

Last week on Reddit, an EVE Online player begged CCP to organize a wall of shame for botters – essentially an online list of those caught cheating, with character names and corps to boot. This, he argued, would not only prove to the community that cheaters were being banned but allow players to “self-police” those corps “actively harbouring bots.”

You’re probably making a face right now imagining just what EVE players might do with such a list, but then again, we’re talking about botters here. I’m more curious whether you folks actually believe those are effective or a good idea in general. Several EVE players said it’d never happen because of European laws, but in fact we’ve written articles about multiple MMO studios naming-and-shaming cheaters: Guild Wars 2, Riders of Icarus, H1Z1, Tree of Savior, and Mechwarrior Online, just to name the first five I found by searching the last three years of our own site.

Is “naming-and-shaming” MMO cheaters with a “wall of shame” a good idea, or should studios that famously ban the wrong people maybe stay away from painting targets on customers’ backs?

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EVE Online’s upwell structures get a wellness upgrade

Some of EVE Online’s player-built space platforms — known as upwell structures — are getting a massive upgrade in the game’s upcoming February update. This Upwell Structures 2.0 is a “significant” package of improvements that should be on the test servers soon.

So what do these changes and improvements contain? CCP outlined four pillars of the new upwell structure design: different power modes, a vulnerability and reinforcement system, a major structure combat overhaul, and moon mining in wormhole space and some highsec systems. There are also numerous smaller tweaks in the works for these platforms, like properly displaying damage messages, a short “fitting invulnerable” state during deployment, and riskier asset safety settings.

And because this is EVE Online, you shouldn’t be surprised that there’s a flowchart associated with these structures and their new status states. We’ve got it for you below, and we guarantee it will be the most exciting flow chart you read all day.

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CCP addresses EVE Online botter problem, saying it’s at the ‘top of the list’

Last week, we reported on a situation brewing on the EVE Online subreddit, where player after player spoke out about the game’s botting problem, exacerbated by a recent post about a specific botter corp leaving expensive capital ships where other players could easily take them out.

Seeking a statement on the botting situation, we reached out to CCP, whose CCP Falcon posted a response to our article on Reddit.

“[Botting is] to the detriment of the game and it needs to be stamped out,” he says. “It’s garbage behavior, it’s against the rules, and it’s something that has a magnified effect in EVE because of the single shard nature of the game, the economy, and the fact that everything on the market is player built or sourced.” Specifically, he dismissed the idea that CCP generates revenue from botters. That said, he also believes CCP has more work to do on the problem.

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EVE Online players beg CCP to address botters after gamer takes down eight botter ships

Is there a quota for how many sci-fi spaceship MMOs with playerbases angry over exploits we can cover in a week? Because if so, Elite Dangerous already met it. If not, EVE Online requests a moment of your time.

The EVE subreddit is smoldering with post after post on what players characterize as a serious botting problem, exacerbated by a recent post in which a player claims that in a brief span of time, his group was able to easily take out eight Nyx capital ships allegedly belonging to a single corporation well-known among gamers for botting.

One redditor summed up the community dismay that cheaters and cheater money rules the game, quoting another’s estimate that bots pull in a tremendous amount of ISK (in-game currency) monthly and lamenting the perception that CCP lets the botting go on (or even encourages it).

“I feel completely worthless as a customer,” Loroseco writes. “I feel like my effort over the years has been for absolutely nothing. I feel that I’ve been cheated out of making a fortune because I felt compelled to obey the ToS that I agreed to when I started playing.”

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The Daily Grind: What MMO will be the next to change up its business model dramatically?

You may not like it, but the vast majority of MMORPGs are free-to-play or buy-to-play as of 2018. EVE Online went free-to-play at the end of 2016, you’ll recall, and some of the last classic holdouts – Ultima Online and Dark Age of Camelot – will make the same move this year. That doesn’t leave many games to go free-to-play or alter their business models in a big way. World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XIV with their subscription-only models lead the way (and have been lauded accordingly).

Do you think any of the remaining sub-only MMORPGs – that are actually launched and live, that is – will yet go free-to-play? What MMO will be the next to change up its business model dramatically?

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Pokemon Go will end support for pre-iOS 11 Apple devices by March

Mobile users are probably used to the eventual demise of their phones and the nonfunctionality of apps they bought long ago, no matter which manufacturer or operating system is behind their daily driver. Obsolesence is a way of life. But that reality won’t be of any comfort to Pokemon Go players on older iPhones, who’ve been told this week that their time has come.

“In an upcoming update to Pokémon GO, we will end support for Apple devices not capable of upgrading to iOS 11, such as iPhone 5 and iPhone 5c models,” Niantic announced. “This change is a result of improvements to Pokémon GO that push the application beyond the capabilities of the operating systems on such devices.”

So in a nutshell, come the end of February, you’re going to need a newer phone than one from 2012/2013 to play POGO, else everything you’ve paid for in the game will begin collecting dust and you will be playing other games. It’s not currently clear which other devices are destined for the chopping block in the near future, but it does appear that Niantic’s plan is to drop you rather than create a low-load version of the app to keep dedicated customers on older devices, just as it was Niantic’s plan to block all rooted/jailbroken devices rather than sort out actual cheaters.

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EVE Online improves forward operating bases with today’s patch

The pirate factions of EVE Online have always been a threat. We’re not talking about player pirates, mind you; we’re talking about the NPC pirates that have their forward operating bases scattered throughout space. Fortunately for players, these bases have become both more numerous and easier to discover with the launch of the January patch today, meaning that it’s easier to see the bases and take them on as you go about your business in the game.

You are, of course, at risk of being attacked by player pirates while you’re fighting NPC pirates. It’s that sort of game.

The patch also improves the mechanics of the game’s ammo reloading systems and offers a better UI element for the Agency, both of which should make the game a little easier to just play. Combine that with a number of visual improvements to existing structures, and players will have plenty to enjoy throughout space as they hunt for more pirate bases. Or try to avoid all sorts of pirates, that’s also possible.

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EVE Evolved: EVE Online’s case for asymmetric and asynchronous gameplay

If there’s one thing that EVE Online does better than any other MMO on the market today, it’s persistent gameplay on massive scales. The now-famous Bloodbath of B-R5RB in 2014 involved 7,548 players over the course of almost 24 hours, and the Siege of M-OEE8 at the end of 2016 peaked at 5,300 separate players all piled into the same star system at the same time. Hundreds of thousands of players live and fight in the same single-shard universe, and EVE‘s largest corporations have more members than the total population on some other MMOs’ shards.

But what about the smaller end of the scale? MMOs aren’t just populated by monolithic organisations bent on galactic domination, and a growing proportion of today’s gamers play online games solo or in smaller groups. Features such as Upwell structures and the new PvE gameplay have clearly been designed with a wide range of gameplay scales in mind, but EVE has never really got past the problem that bigger groups are almost always better. Could the solution to this problem be found in small-scale asymmetric and asynchronous warfare opportunities?

In this edition of EVE Evolved, I look at why EVE‘s massive scale makes it so compelling, the problem that massive scale introduces, and the case for more asymmetric and asynchronous warfare.

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The Game Archaeologist: Neocron

It’s the distant future. The high-tech battle armor you wear sharply contrasts with the ruins of civilization that you traverse. You spot an enemy and raise your pulse rifle, firing off shots as you strafe to cover. Technology hasn’t solved the issue of war; it’s just raised the body count.

PlanetSide 2? Nope — this is Neocron, the quite-forgettable MMOFPS from the way-back era. I like to call it “that game with the most regrettable cover art in the history of video games,” but that isn’t quite as snappy.

Going into this article, I have to admit that I previously knew absolutely nothing about Neocron other than the fact that it was a sci-fi MMO that vaguely reminded me of Anarchy Online. Oh, also the fact that nobody I know or perhaps ever will know played it. Was it just a myth? A practical joke to make us believe in an MMO phantom? Only sifting through layers of dust and grime would produce results, so I rolled up my sleeves and started digging.

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EVE Online sunsets legacy APIs, delivers December economic report, and talks next week’s patch

May 8th, 2018. This date is important for players and community developers who are using older versions of EVE Online’s API, as those legacy systems will be discontinued in favor of focusing on the newer ESI API instead. This means that any third-party software that relies on legacy systems will need to migrate to the new system or risk obsolescence.

“The ESI API is built to modern industry standards and provides superior documentation compared to both its predecessors,” the team wrote. “Early on, we acknowledged that transitioning to ESI would require extra effort from the third-party community, but we were and still are certain that it would be a strategic mistake to split the API teams focus by maintaining two legacy systems. By focusing on ESI, we can maintain our current development momentum long term, and keep bringing third party developers the new features they need to make the best applications they can.”

CCP also backed up its info truck and dumped all of December’s economic data all over the community. If this is pertinent to your profit-making and future plans, then you can dive into all of the charts and data to see if there’s an advantage to be grasped.

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Massively OP’s 2017 awards debrief and annual recap

As we did in 20142015, and 2016, today I’m going to recap our annual awards and other meta articles from the end of 2017. We gave out 19 formal awards this past year, all in addition to dozens of other recaps, roundups, listicles, predictions, bloopers, oddities, polls, provocations, and retrospectives. It was by far our biggest content dump to date, even bigger than last year!

Following our deep-dive into our awards and the attached reader polls, I’ll be recapping all of the end-year articles in one convenient place in case you missed something over the holidays – enjoy!

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