This is something that’s been on my mind for a while: Increase the tick rate from 1Hz to 2Hz to make the game feel more responsive and alive.
I’ll admit CCP did a great job of hiding the tick rate in the client simulation for the most part. However, the tick rate is still plainly visible when activating/deactivating modules, launching/commanding drones, aligning to points in space and beginning navigational maneuvers. The 1Hz tick rate makes these actions feel sluggish and unresponsive. Frequently I think the game didn’t respond to my commands only for them to play back later. This makes my actions as a player feel disconnected from what actually happens. It is as if I’m barking commands to a bridge crew instead of corporeally being my ship.
The feeling of being the ship on-screen I think is a huge part of what makes EVE, and many RPGs for that matter, so enthralling and addictive, so the game should be doing anything it can to keep that disguise up. I believe doubling the tick rate from 1Hz to 2Hz would be a great way to do that.
I think servers should have a “fast” or “low-latency” mode when CPU resources allow (i.e. no TiDi) that allow them to choose a 2Hz tickrate over a 1Hz rate. A 2Hz tick rate would, on average, reduce the amount of wait time for seeing an action play out on-screen by 250ms, and reduce the worst case by 499ms.
Won’t this make TiDi twice as bad?
Since I’m proposing a dynamic tickrate, during TiDi, the previous 1Hz tick rate would be used as the target, and then TiDi would be applied to that.
Won’t this be expensive for CCP?
Possibly not since the tickrate would be dynamic. If it’s possible to have a different tick-rate per grid, then small grids could have the fast tick rates while large grids (like jita undocks, stargates and massive battles) could have the slower “normal” tickrates.
What about insta-align/insta-lock balance?
It’s likely true that the insta-align/insta-lock balance would be disrupted by the tick rate change (for those who don’t know: an interceptor with an align time of less than 2 ticks/seconds will always beat instalockers). I’d expect CCP to have to make changes if they intend to keep this balance identical.