Last time I popped back into EVE Online's space I foolishly decided my beloved Ferox, an absolute unit of a battlecruiser, wasn't gonna cut it any more. Sorry, old girl, but you're covered in space-dirt. Leaving it behind in Teonusude, I flew off to pick up a sleek new Garmur. With smooth black curves and talon-like prongs, it's the sports car of interstellar travel. As is so often the case in EVE, I immediately regretted the decision. What the hell am I supposed to put on this thing - and how am I supposed to afford it?
That first question, at least, should soon become a little easier to answer. CCP Games have streamlined access to the wider EVE community's knowledge base, letting you access fan-made ship fits from inside the game itself with new Community Fittings.
I'd never call myself a veteran, and my days of sitting in Comms waiting to ambush battleships in the rough parts of Molden Heath are long behind me, but I still pop into EVE every so often to see what's up (even more so since they introduced subscription-free Alpha Clones). But getting back into the fray can be an absolute nightmare. How am I supposed to work out what brand, tier and power level of micro-warp drive I'm meant to fit onto my battered old Ferox? What's the cheapest power supply I can get away with on this sleek new frigate?
Previously, you'd have to navigate a mess of fan forums and conflicting opinions. For ever ship fitting that looked solid, there'd be twenty armchair mechanics telling the poster their build was sub-optimal. But with Community Fittings, CCP have cut through the chaff and implemented community-built fits straight into EVE Online proper. No fuss, no faff. Just pick one from the list and head out to market.
Community Fittings can be accessed by opening a ship's current fitting menu and hitting the spanner button to show all saved fittings. The third tab along is where you'll find the community's saved fits. Right now it looks like there's only a couple of builds for one ship per-empire (Caldari, Minmatar, Amarr, Gallente, and one for the miner-maker ORE). That's bound to bulk out as time goes on, but you've got some pretty solid little exploration fits to sift through right there.
CCP are screening submissions before putting them live, mind, making sure nobody ends up inadvertently plugging six fireworks launchers into a nullsec build. The included FAQ quietly recommends that snickering jokesters who want to mail in "troll fits" find more productive uses of their time - crochet, perhaps?
They'll also keep revising the lineup as balance changes and patches continue, ensuring that every suggested build is fit for purpose. CCP have enlisted volunteers to review all builds, and would calmly like to remind all pilots that their word is final. Arguments over which-fit-is-best in the submissions thread will be frowned upon.
Got a killer fit for a Ferox? Know how to build a perfect Naga? Head on over to the Community Fittings forums to submit your ship for scrutiny.