The deep, player-driven experience of EVE Online is now wide open to anyone willing to take up the challenge of exploring with, warring against, and scheming amidst hundreds of thousands of other players in the massive space sandbox that is the EVE universe. Headlining the EVE Online: Ascension expansion is the Clone States feature, which has done away with free trial accounts and allows any past, present, or future players to play for free, forever. Whichever player corporations, alliances, and coalitions best recruit and nurture the promising influx of new players could easily upend the landscape of the entire universe.
Characters now exist in one of two clone states. Omega clones will act similar to current active EVEcharacters, granted unlimited access to skill progression and rapid skill training. Alpha clones will become the new base state for all characters and available to any character at any time for free, able to train and use a specific set of skills to fly some of the most often-used ships into battle – Tech 1 frigates, destroyers, and cruisers. Access to trading, industry, and exploration skills will allow Alpha pilots to explore the vast, mysterious universe, harvest its raw materials, fulfill their shrewd economic dreams, and construct the war machines that make EVE battles famous.
Simultaneously, the introduction to EVE Online’s deep gameplay experience has been completely revamped with Inception, a revised new player experience with fully voice-acted mentors, well-designed UI help, and a grand, unfolding storyline with gorgeous new environments that culminates in a massive space battle. Executive Producer Andie Nordgren spoke about the game, saying:
“EVE Online is a very special game. Our single shard server means that every player truly affects every other, whether through economics, resource gathering, direct combat or social interaction. This in turn means that our universe is more interesting, more exciting and more dangerous with each additional citizen.”
Other big additions include:
- Making battles more dynamic and boosting ships more involved in fleets with the replacement of warfare links with Command Bursts
- Challenging opportunities for players to disrupt the operations of NPC mining fleets in asteroid belts throughout the cluster
- Deeper experimentation and optimization of ships and modules with a new Fitting Simulator
- New ships: the versatile Society of Conscious Thought Sunesis destroyer and the nimble Porpoise industrial command ship from ORE
- Exciting changes for the Rorqual industrial capital ship that include giant mining drones and the P.A.N.I.C. module which provides temporary invulnerability to mining fleets. Dozens of other ship, skill, module, drone, and balance changes for the mining profession complement the overhaul
- A simpler, more manageable command over character development with a new character sheet
- A balance pass on the deadly Tactical Destroyers with input from players and the Council of Stellar Management
- The ability to warp the fabric of reality across a large area with Effect Generators for Titans
Ascension also includes the release of more sandbox gameplay features including the addition of Engineering Complexes, a new class of player-built structures allowing comprehensive research and manufacturing support and furthering the progress of Citadel structures introduced in April 2016.