CCP’s Eve: Valkyrie Alpha test phase officially began on January 18 and had been running 24/7 since it launched. Last night that ended when the company shut the servers down for an hour while it installed a new build of the game.
CCP announced that the newly installed build of Eve: Valkyrie is the response to the feedback the company has received so far about the game. CCP said it “implemented a number of changes to progression, ships, game balance and matchmaking” into the current release.
In my hands-on report of the Eve: Valkyrie alpha, I noted that it takes a lot of effort to accumulate the credits needed to unlock the various ships that are available to choose from. It appears I wasn’t the only one to point this out. CCP said it “reduced the amount of time it takes to unlock the Spectre, Banshee, Rhino & Guardian.” The cost of items and the amount of XP needed to level up has also been reduced.
CCP said it noticed the comments in its forums regarding the missiles in the game. In response to popular concerns, the company opted to make it easier for skilled pilots to avoid being hit. The turn radius, max speed, and acceleration rate of the missiles has been reduced. To balance the less accurate shots, reload speed has been increased slightly.
Changes have been made to the ships in the game as well. CCP said the Dominator is now more viable for damaging armor, rather than shields, though the company said it “is still viable against shields.” CCP made the same change to the Accord, in addition to a bug fix that addresses a projectile collision issue. The Assuage's EMS got an upgrade, too; it now needs fewer hits to disable an enemy ship. CCP has also reduced the power of the Aegis flak cannon. It does less overall damage now, and the explosion radius has been reduced.
Each individual ship received some tweaks, but the ship categories have also been adjusted somewhat. The Heavy class ships have received a decrease to their armor and shield levels. CCP said it added a minor damage buff to all Heavy class ships to compensate the lowered defenses.
Support class ships have also been tweaked. In the prior build, if an enemy was targeted by the support class buff beam, it took severe damage. In the latest build, enemies will still take damage, but not at the same rate as they did before. The buff beam that heals friendly armor has received a minor reduction. CCP said it also fixed an issue regarding heat loss per second with the Phaser weapon.
CCP said that it has “implemented a skill-based team balancing” mechanism into the game, though it gave no details about this system, only stating that more information is forthcoming.
As part of today’s maintenance, the servers have been reset. All player stats have been wiped, and everyone starts from the bottom again. For those that joined the Alpha late, this is the perfect chance to get in while the playing field is even.