EVE Online "Inferno" Expansion Details Announced


Posted March 26, 2012 - By Sophie Prell

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EVE Online loves its expansions, doesn't it? With Incarna, they introduced the character creator system so ripe for monocle controversy, and with Crucible, they won back just about every concerned player by focusing more on combat and those beautiful, beautiful spaceships. Well now, Inferno is on its way, and if you wanted to know just what was coming from this next expansion, read on!

First of all, Inferno will continue CCP Games' focus on the ships and combat of EVE Online. No monocles to see here, folks. At the CCP keynote at Fanfest 2012, CEO of CCP Games, Hilmar Veigar repeatedly apologized for the company's failure to include the player base in its decisions, which led to 2011's troublesome year. Part of the re-focusing efforts of this year included hiring of Jon Lander, new Senior Producer of EVE Online.

In his presentation, Lander outlined several key points to the coming expansion:

  • Inferno will address the game's old code and client issues. As a nine-year old game, EVE has a lot of leftovers that don't need to be there anymore. The team at CCP will be systematically cleaning out these remains as well as optimizing what stays so that crashes happen less frequently, and certain portions of the game can be handled by another server, improving overall performance.
  • There will be a new war declaration system and improvements to the user interface. EVE is notoriously difficult to get into and decipher, so the team wants to streamline the player's experience. For example, one plan for Inferno is to have players possess a single, unified inventory. These improvements also means things like a new client launcher, which will allow CCP to send out single fixes instead of huge patches. This also ties into cutting down the unnecessary code as mentioned above.
  • Ships will look better than ever thanks to DirectX 11 and its capabilities, specifically that of tessellation. Tessellation, for those who don't like big words like me, basically means that the graphics engine can produce real geometry using basic mesh textures. So if I were to paint the vents on my ship as though they were 20 feet deep, even though they are in reality flat and only made to look like they are three-dimensional, tessellation will take that vent and actually make it render as 20 feet deep.
  • All-new missiles and effects will be brought into EVE soon, bringing Caldari up to speed against the other three races in-game. CCP introduced this gameplay element with an awesome trailer that has death metal blaring in the background, which I'm pretty sure includes the lyric, “MISSILE!!” at one point. And those missiles do real damage, by the way. CCP also teased video of a ship not simply blowing up, but dissolving into fire, breaking in half, and splintering off into space. Explosions, man. They're pretty.
  • As is typical of EVE expansions, you'll see ever more ships. And if you feel like your avatar could use some new tats to show off in that sweet new ride, good news there too: Avatars will be able to have sleeve tattoos too. It may be space and you may be the CEO of a mega corporation, but who says businesses discriminate against the inked in the future?

Beyond Inferno, CCP is exploring even more cool stuff for players. You'll see the connection between EVE and DUST 514 deepen, see more and more assets run by players instead of NPCs, be able to perform ring mining, and there was even talk of making avatar gameplay more “meaningful” by having you step off into abandoned space stations to explore and recover artifacts.

EVE Online: Launchers and Missle Effects Trailer »

In other words, it looks like EVE is expanding to cover new territory that entices new players (hey, I would explore creepy, derelict rigs as an avatar) while focusing squarely on improving what's already there and tweaking core gameplay. In-game escalation to Inferno starts April 24, 2012 while the full release is May 22, 2012.

EVE Online "Inferno" Expansion Details Announced


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