Oz_Eve and @CCP_Rattati had an amazing interview the other day discussing lots of important topics about EVE. I wanted to focus mainly on some of the concerns about newbros/retention and give some ideas & feedback. Also want to touch on Expert Systems on how they are on SiSi currently and how they can be improved.
To start, this is all my opinion and personally I do think CCP is treating the symptoms and not the disease that is plaguing newbro retention. That is a much deeper topic that likely warrants its own post but want to focus on we can help newbros feel like that can catch up & how Expert Systems could be tuned.
It feels anti-climatic to join a game and not fly the ships you want, also sucks when you & your friend have to wait a week before you can play together. (rough quotes from Rattati)
- Let newbros retroactively add referral codes for the 1m skill point boost within the first month. I can’t tell you how many times newbros make an account and miss out on the 1m skill points for free which is nearly 8 weeks of training for an alpha. They have to create a new account and use a referral link which is just too much hassle for them. That same friend that says “well…level up those skills and we can play in week” could say “hey you use a referral link? no worries, just log into your eve account, use my code for 1m free SP and we can play right now.” It seems like an easy solution to me but it could one of those things that could lead to more tickets than they want to handle or requires turning the game code inside-out, who knows I’m not a software engineer.
Eve is unique in the way you can’t just grind an activity for Skill Points. (another rough quote)
- Again, my solution could be one those coding impossibilities but having a system where you can get SP from the activity tracker for newbros. The more you mine/hit certain milestones in the Resource Harvesting tree, you can get SP specifically for mining skills or just get flat SP. This is a good way for newbros to get SP actively (mining) but also passively (skilling towards Amarr Cruisers I) The update to the Activity Tracker is awesome and easy to follow along. In some ways, I think the Activity Tracker could be expanded upon as a tool for the NPE, as roadmap to help newbros navigate what to do after the career agents and chase some carrots.
Finally onto Expert Systems (ES), this post is already pretty long so I’ll try to bullet point a lot of this.
Amarr, Minmatar, Caldari & Gallente HS Exploration ES
- Should just be combined into one, especially since the skills between them are 99% the same.
- Someone is likely going to buy the wrong one for the wrong empire and get confused.
- Could give them frigates III for all empires so they can play around with the different empire exploration ships as well.
Mining Barge ES
- Missing light drones, hull upgrades and mechanics (important for any barge, especially procurer with a DCU)
- Remove Advanced Drone Avionics (not only does it require Drones V and this ES only gives Drones III but its honestly not ‘needed’ for mining imo)
- Increase Mining Upgrades to IV and Drones III to Drones V, let the newbros make full use of the drone bay and enjoy the 5 orbiting dots
Core Ship Operations ES
I know the Magic 14 is a community made and agreed upon sacred text, but the other 2 ESs already have 12 of the 14 magic skills built in. Some have III instead of IV for certain skills but at least the other ES let you fly ships and give specific skills too in addition to 12 of the 14 magic skills. I think adding skills like Acceleration Control, Afterburner, High Speed Maneuvering, Weapon Upgrades, and Thermodynamics. These might not be skills that ‘every’ ship uses but 95% of all ships use a prop mod, have weapons or benefit from overheating.
Adding an ES that give up to Cruisers III and weapons for their respective empire would be good too. It might sound like a lot but the Mining Barge ES has 29 skills (as it is now) when the ‘Amarr Combat Ship ES’ would only need 30ish with the Core Ship Operations ES included. Not only that, but allowing newbros to be able to switch between the empires (with a 24 hour cooldown) so they can experience all of the frigates, destroyers and cruisers within a week if they feel like it.
I did make a video reacting on these parts of the interview on my Youtube channel (EVEnton). It would be awesome if we could keep it civil and solutions oriented. Would love to hear some discussion on this topic or feedback on my ideas or ways we can make this game better for newbros.