Is it possible to announce that you're done with expansions while simultaneously announcing 10 new expansions? Is that allowed? I'm asking for a friend. That friend is CCP, and-- oh they just went ahead and did it anyway. So right then: EVE Online will no longer be expanded in the traditional fashion - the one handed down to us by our forefathers, and to them by Vikings or aliens or something - but will instead receive ten annual updates. The first is called Kronos, and it's launching this June.
Here's the skinny on the upcoming totally-not-an-expansion, which will still be quite large on account of it originally being intended as a traditional expansion:
"Vast industrial operations are behind the famous player wars that rage across EVE’s sprawling universe, while smaller individual efforts generate wealth, meaning and power at a personal level. Kronos will create dynamic shifts in the industrial landscape by adding cost-scale differences, specialized workers and teams, changes to reprocessing, and more. Players’ activity will begin to affect the industrial palette of solar systems, allowing for more meaningful decisions and giving them more reasons to interact with each other in cooperative or adversarial ways. New players will be able to get into Industry more quickly as manufacturing opens up and the user interface is reworked."
"Kronos will also offer other features in CCP’s ongoing commitment to improve EVE Online year after year. New Mordu’s Legion ships (frigate, cruiser, and battleship) are coming alongside a new mining frigate, the Prospect. Rebalancing efforts will change heat, transport ships, freighters, pirate faction ships, and drones. A new in-game store will prepare for even more customization options in the future, and other changes from sound customization to solar flares and warp effects will complete the release."
So basically, industry's getting a total overhaul. You thought you knew industry? WELL INDUSTRY AGAIN.
CCP has already named and dated the next nine updates as well. Here's what to expect, assuming delays don't put the whole schedule through some crazy blender tornado.
- Kronos - 3rd June
- Crius - 19th August
- Hyperion - 23rd September
- Oceanus - 4th November
- Phoebe - 9th December
- Rhea - 20th January 2015
- Tethys - 7th February
- Theia - 17th March
- Themis - 4th April
So that's the next year of EVE covered, if only in the vaguest fashion possible. This new schedule makes sense, though. Rolling out heaps of new systems all at once is asking for needless trouble with little benefit beyond promotional hoopla. Can't fault CCP for wanting to do things at a more measured pace. Granted, it already rolled out smaller updates between expansions, but not with this sort of roadmap.
What do you think, EVE faithful? Is this arrangement better for your endless, frighteningly political universe overall?