Crius


Principles of industry in EVE Online – A dev blog synopsis

eve-industry-features
First off before getting into reviewing the latest dev blog from CCP Greyscale a quick apology for being AWOL over the last couple of weeks with no new posts about the upcoming Crius release. I’ve been dragged away from EVE with some RL freelance web design work but fortunately whilst I was gone very little actually changed.

No new features have been announced and the only real changes have been tweaks to current work especially those made by CCP Greyscale to blueprint stats. The rebalancing of blueprints to have longer invention times and shorter manufacturing times wasn’t well received for T2 module manufacturers who were concerned that this gave T2 BPO owners too large of an advantage. In reality the vast majority of T2 BPO owners are losing out as manufacturing costs will be closer between T2 BPOs and invention; it’s simply module and ammo BPO owners that may get a small boost out of the change.

On to the dev blog, the latest dev blog isn’t a feature discussion but more of an overview of the design philosophy at CCP and how they are looking to change industry. Originally CCP set out with two goals for the industry changes they were making:

  1. To make industry easy to understand – Right now loads of things are hidden away just one example of this is the chance that your invention job will be successful. CCP want to remedy this and give players all of the information they need to make informed decisions from within the client. This doesn’t mean that third party tools and websites are being pushed out the door as there will still be loads of room for optimisation in industry especially now that installation costs are going to vary wildly depending upon which system you install the job from.
  2.  Industry should be interesting and skilful – Right now it’s a case of if you have the skills then you’re as good as you can get at industry other than a little bit of research to select the right things to build even then the skill is minimal as tools like EVE ISKperhour do most of the work for you. CCP want to change this and make industry more dynamic and skilful the first step in this is encouraging you to assess how and where you build especially if you’re building on a large scale.

Whilst Crius is only the first of the changes coming to industry it will be the biggest and definitely sets the tune for future industry work to come. We should also be seeing follow up work with large changes to both invention and reverse engineering mechanics. The whole idea of these changes is not only to give us more options and control but also to make industry a more engaging activity. Personally I haven’t moved from my industry hub in over 3 years so I feel it’s definitely about time I was encouraged to do so and I’m really looking forward to seeing how the community responds to the changes that are coming and the general shift in direction for EVE Online industry in the future.

Moon mining changes in Crius

EVE online Crius banner

As part of the POS module overhaul coming in Crius CCP Greyscale is taking a look at security status restrictions of specific modules to make it easier to understand if you should be able to anchor a specific module in your current system.

One surprising side effect of this is that moon mining will now be allowed in 0.4 security space this has been confirmed by CCP Greyscale:
CCP Greyscale moon mining in 0.4 space

The impact of this change will likely be rather minimal as based on the security status data I have to hand this is only 255 additional solar systems. This is a small increase when you consider there are 3920 systems where moon mining is currently possible and is a relatively minor 6.5% increase in potential supply. There is then the matter of luck as there is no guarantee that 0.4 systems will contain as many high end materials as the current systems.

Overall I expect the impact of this change to be less significant than the Thukker component assembly array which can be used to gain a 10% material saving on T2 capital components. With jump freighters requiring quite a lot of materials a reduction of 10% in material costs could have a noticeable impact on moon goo markets.

Potentially the best thing about this change is the conflict which it is bound to drive come release day, which is always great news for anyone interested in either PvP or manufacturing. With conflict comes explosions and the necessity of ship replacements something that no manufacturer will ever grumble about.

Starbase changes for Crius – A dev blog synopsis  

POS changes EVE Crius

Yesterday a new dev blog was posted about all of the Starbase changes coming in Crius. Whilst a lot of this information was already available there was additional information such as the fitting requirements of the new Starbase structures and even some really exciting news which I’ll save for later.

First up is the reprocessing array and intensive reprocessing array the details of which are below:

reprocessing array EVE Crius

intensive reprocessing array EVE Crius

To clarify some of the common questions these arrays still take into account player skills, reprocess instantaneously and allow different ores and ices all to be reprocessed at the same time to save you time. Once your ores are in the array it’s as simple as right click reprocess and you have your minerals! The only limitation is that the intensive reprocessing array is limited to low security space.

right click reprocess UI

Next up are compression arrays which are a replacement for item compression now that reprocessing T1 items is being made highly inefficient. Compression no longer requires blueprints and players will be refunded for them, additionally the whole process is being made more friendly and now only requires 100 units of the base ore to compress.

The new compression array works instantly with no cool down and as with the reprocessing array multiple types of ore can be compressed at the same time. An image of the new compression array is below:

compression array stats

compression array fitting EVE Crius

Next up are a bunch of changes we already knew about including the removal of slots, the removal of remote BPO/BPC usage, the POS structure cost scaling which I wrote about yesterday. There is alos a brief mention of the restrictions on Starbase anchoring being removed so that players can anchor regardless of faction standing or system security status as well as a mention of the new 7 day timer for new corporations before you can anchor a POS.

We then move onto a repetition of the array and laboratory changes which can be found in my Crius patch notes. In the middle of this was a great little gem that I hadn’t heard about before a change to the way in which material discounts work the change is that the discount now applies to the whole job. This means that if something requires 10.5 Tritanium to build then building one would use 11 Trit whilst two would now cost 21 rather than the 22 it would currently. One exception here is singular items and hulls for example building 10 T2 cruisers at ME 10% will still require 10 T1 cruisers not 9. This gives a small advantage to mass production but won’t make any massive change to production costs. Rounding of materials in EVE works by always rounding up to the next significant digit regardless of the decimal value so keep this in mind too.

Right at the bottom of the blog there is also a brief mention of skill changes which mean that you only require anchoring 4 for POS gunning rather than 5 cutting down POS gunning to a week long train. There’s also a quick informational change that simply states Starbase assembly line settings have been taken away and won’t return in Crius so you can’t tax your corp mates for POS usage. An exciting little change is that both supply chain management and Starbase defence management are no longer required to manufacture in the same system and they simply provide a 5 jump remote installation distance up to level 5 which is 25 jumps. This now crosses regions too making it really easy to run POS out of different systems or even nip your PvP alt back close enough to home to install jobs.

The next new addition is actually quite exciting the introduction of a Thukker Component Assembly Array which provides an material reduction bonus of 10% and time reduction bonus of 25% for the construction of capital and advanced capital (jump freighter) components.

Thukker component assembly array EVE Crius

As you can see the array is limited to above 0.1 and below 0.4 security status meaning it’s a low sec only module. With the 10% bonus to manufacturing materials and 25% bonus to manufacturing time we should expect to see a lot of capital production moving its way to low sec. If you consider that for a jump freighter manufacturing the T2 components alone will see a saving in the region of 400mil then it’s inevitable that almost all jump freighter production will end up in low sec sooner or later. This profit will come at the risk of having your POS explode but inevitably it will be those that take the risks that will profit the most.

Starbase structures impact on build cost in Crius

eve-pos

Come Crius the concept of industry slots is being removed, to ensure that all industry isn’t completed in the same few systems cost will scale depending upon activity. This means the systems with the most manufacturing activity will cost more to manufacture goods than systems which are rarely if ever used.

With this change player owned stations were also impacted with Starbase structures primarily being purchased in bulk to gain the required number of slots. To ensure that Starbase structures still have similar usage and consumption CCP have opted for Starbase structures to stack and reduce the standard work team (job installation) costs.

This means that an additional saving in the region of 1mil per unit could be made per battleship produced on top of the pure 2% ME cost savings. This means that POS based production is not only faster but also cheaper and quite rightly so now that you need to have your BPO or BPC in the POS itself during production.

If you’re wondering how the bonuses work here is the information as provided by CCP Greyscale:

Structure Type Percentage Bonus Per Structure Current Max Bonus
Advanced Small Ship Assembly, Small Ship Assembly 1% 27%
Capital Ship Assembly 5% 15%
Drug Lab, Ammunition Assembly, Drone Assembly, Component Assembly, Equipment Assembly, Rapid Equipment Assembly 0.50% 25%
Laboratory 1.50% 22.50%
Large Ship Assembly, Advanced Large Ship Assembly, X-Large Ship Assembly 3% 21%
Medium Ship Assembly, Advanced Medium Ship Assembly, Subsystem Assembly 2% 26%

 

The maximum bonus is based on the maximum number of the structure that can be anchored at the POS currently if only that module is fitted. The bonus is a straight linear bonus currently and there hasn’t been much in the way of balancing, what’s interesting is how this will effect both POS fittings and general POS module consumption. An example of this is that 50 component assembly arrays will be required for the full bonus, currently that would provide enough slots for 50 characters and even seeing 10 arrays is a rare sight.

We should expect a few modules to be a lot more heavily used after the change especially advanced assembly arrays which are losing their material penalties and component assembly arrays which will be essential in keeping T2 and capital component build costs down. We’ll know the true extent of the changes once the work team (installation) costs and usage levels on SiSi is made to mirror TQ as right now the numbers appear to be a random seed.

One other point of note is that currently you can still online and offline modules once jobs are installed, other than the one your job is installed in, which allows you to have loads of POS modules and keep your costs down by having one POS do multiple jobs whilst still having the job installation savings. CCP Greyscale confirmed that this isn’t currently considered game breaking so it looks like it could be a feature here to stay which means that some POS could be literally crammed full of stuff like a giant space piñata.

With a bit of luck the players themselves will moderate this behaviour by taking down expensive POS’s to unanchor and sell the modules. Otherwise expect to see every POS overflowing with modules and the prices of everything from PI goods to POS modules start to shoot up before the Crius release.

Crius patch notes updated

Today has been a day spent updating outdated information. The biggest of the changes I’ve made was a complete overhaul of the Crius patch notes.

The most obvious change is that each section of content is now tabbed, so thing should be easier to navigate. This means if you’re interested in just the blueprint changes relating to invention or the POS changes relating to assembly arrays it should be much easier to find. If anyone has any ideas how to make things better and easier to use just let me know.

I’ve also updated as much information as possible and had a good day of forum digging to ensure that everything was correct. If there is anything which is outdated just let me know and I’ll update it.

Finally I’ll also be adding to the patch notes as new information is released so be sure to check back on a regular basis I’ll see if there is any better way of versioning the patch notes so that when you check back it’s easy to spot what’s new.

Crius testing and hidden gems

crius release eve online

The first Crius build is now available on Singularity and with it come some hidden gems and changes we were not yet aware of. Hidden away amongst all of the other changes in the Test Server Feedback section of the forums is the following list of new changes:

  • Exemption from fleet warp – You can now choose to be exempt from fleet warps this could be helpful if you’re a scout on field or if you don’t want a spy to fleet warp your shiny super capital to its doom. There’s a symbol in the fleet window to show those exempt from fleet warp.
  • Modules can be fit without skills – You’ll now be able to fit ships without the skills but the modules will remain inactive. This is really handy for bulk fitting doctrine fits ready to go on contract to alliance, the only thing left for the player to do is online modules and off you go.
  • 7 day POS anchoring for corp – Now that you don’t need standings to anchor POS a new 7 day timer is being introduce to avoid closing corp and creating a new one this prevents players from simply unanchoring POS and creating a new corporation.
  • Single run copies for invention – Invention only requires single run copies to produce the maximum size output it also only removes one run from the BPC if using multiple run BPCs. This will potentially receive further balancing relating to decryptors as is aimed at copy time being half of build time which doesn’t add up when multiple runs are output due to decryptors giving players an abundance of science slot time.
  • POS module stacking bonus – There is a bonus for multiple Starbase structures of the same type this is currently a linear bonus, we’ll likely see this receive balancing changes during play testing. As clarified by Fuzzysteve of CSM 9  the bonus is to the build cost rather than any sort of additional material benefit.

Whilst there are likely a lot more little things to come this is a great start. I’m especially interested to see how the stacking bonus add up, also the fact that only a single run BPC is required for invention is a further nerf to T2 BPOs as single run BPC is much cheaper than max run BPC to produce. Crius is set to be a great change for industry and once SiSi slot installation costs reflect what TQ will look like we’ll be able to better test the new installation costs which will determine a lot of the future direction of highsec industry.

Don’t panic! T2 material increase balancing hasn’t finished yet

moon mining t2 material prices

Thanks to CCP Greyscale for responding to my post of the forums regarding the 50% increase in T2 materials which by my math appeared to be a third larger than is actually required.  This would slowly over time have resulted in rising T2 material prices, as Mynnna also rightfully said we shouldn’t worry about this too much as any change will be slow due to both the length of the T2 production chain and alchemy which acts as a pressure value to slow down inflation of the rarest of materials.

There was some concern that with all material requirements going up by 50% we’d see rising prices increase across the board, with a lot of the midrange moon materials such as Cobalt and Platinum seeing dramatic prices increases. The only prices that wouldn’t really be affected are low end materials however these could be increasing in price too due to the jump fuel consumption and POS industry changes. If overall POS usage and jump fuel usage increases then we’ll see ice prices and POS fuel costs increase. This often determines the low end material prices which are harvested almost as a necessity at close to a loss.

This is what CCP Greyscale said in response to my post:

…yeah, good point, the math is “mis-based”. I will fix this next week, at the same time as I fix the bit where I accidentally made everything T2 require 2x T1 items instead of 1x :)

If we’re lucky these changes should be expected on Monday ready for the first release of Crius onto Singularity Tuesday giving us better opportunity to test what the changes actually mean.

Whilst the price of each moon material is a somewhat arbitrary figure with prices changing to reflect the new material costs they still matter, as we’ll see a couple of things if the prices change dramatically come Crius:

  1. Players will be able to move less volume – higher prices means more ISK tied up in production and lower volumes shifted. This favours the more experience and richer player whilst making it hard for younger players to make as much profit. Some will say that you’ll still see the same percentage margin so it will make no difference but in my experience that hasn’t been the case, as a case study for this I reflected on my production costs for exhumers back during their first balancing changes and compared the profit margins on each one to my last set of numbers on exhumers a month ago.
  2. Players will go building crazy before Crius – if there’s a deadline on increasing building costs you can guarantee that players will increase production before Crius to take advantage of this. Whilst this is great news in the short term long term it means things could get a bit tough until we burn through the stock created from over production before Crius.

Overall whatever the change I’ll be happy as there will be opportunities for profit regardless of the level of balancing that CCP go to. Whether that will be from markets opening up that previously were dominated by T2 BPO owners or profit before Crius due to rising material costs makes no difference ever industry player with their wits about them will find a way to make better profits.

Another update to the blueprint and invention changes

blueprint-banner
CCP Greyscale is back again with another update to the blueprint changes which really goes into a lot of depth about the changes to come, if you’re interested in downloading the draft 4 data click here. As you can see below Greyscale mentions that these changes will hit SiSi on Tuesday ready for some hands on play testing.

greyscale blueprint changes v4

The first thing he mentions will likely be a big disappointment to many players there were initially plans to be able to increase the base output runs from 1 for ships and 10 for modules without decryptors in some sort of batch job system. This will no longer be happening in Crius but it’s great to hear that the whole invention mechanic is going to be revisited as it’s definitely an unenjoyable click fest at the moment.

Next the biggest thing on the list T2 material usage is being kicked up 50% to account for the change in default ME from -4 to ME 0%. The old ME -4 was 50% off perfect build materials whilst the new ME 0% is 9.1% off perfection. It seems like the 50% increase in materials was quite lazy as to account for the base change in invention you would increase material requirements by 37.5% [1.50 / 1.091 = 1.3748].

The actual final adjustment that should be made is even more complex still as it’s a balance of the decryptors used in invention and a comparison of their material waste before and after the patch. Even then you can’t account for the changes in behaviour with usage of the decryptors so it’s pretty clear that the moon goo market will be up in the air for a while. Personally I’d expect to see moon material prices increase as a result of this change due to increasing material consumption which isn’t optimal as moon mining is a completely passive income source.

The next couple of points relate to ranks which will now be floats rather than integers and have been given a bit of a mix up for specialist modules such as warfare links this is just to try and make the landscape a bit more bumpy so that every module isn’t the same. What surprises me is that CCP Greyscale didn’t choose to stick with integer ranks by multiplying ranks by 10 and dividing research times by 10, there would be a bit of rounding but its pretty minor when you consider the effect on even a current rank 1,000 BPO would be under 3 hours additional research time to get to ME 1% or TE 2%.

The only other really interesting point in my opinion is that T2 BPO copy times have provisionally been reduced to 0.8 of build time this is due to be balanced out by stopping specific skills from providing bonuses when copying T2 BPOs but it seems like an over complicated way of doing things if things are all tied up in the base stats and effected the same way by skills it makes things much easier for your average player to compare without having to know random facts like the Science skill 5% per level copy bonus only counts for T1.

Things are starting to come together nicely for the BPO changes but I’m sure a lot more will come out during play testing. I really do hope that someone takes the time to do the math to see what percentage material costs should actually increase by 50% is a very lazy solution. The main objective should be to maintain the status quo for moon mining without increasing or decreasing its value come Crius. If this is going to happen someone really needs to look carefully at the changes being made to determine the actual impact on material consumption.

Why Crius will reduce the value of decryptors  

t2-invention

With the Crius release just over 6 weeks away we’re starting to get a feel for the impact it will have on the EVE Online markets. One of the biggest changes announced was that invention would only produce positive ME and TE BPOs. This effectively reduces the base gap between invention and T2 BPOs from almost 50% to 10%.

Compare this to the best case for invention scenario which is a +3 ME decryptor which puts ME at -1 previous or 3% ME under the new system, a -1 ME BPC is effectively 20% waste currently. Then for arguments sake we’ll presume that the T2 BPO is almost perfectly researched with zero waste under both the old and new systems so ME 10%.

This means that we’ll be looking at 7% gap between build cost for invention and T2 BPOs, slightly more once you add on invention costs. When you compare this to where we’re currently at with a 20% gap at best case this makes things extremely interesting and it may open up markets that are dominated by BPO owners such as Commandships to invention. The difference will be even more apparent for module invention which on the whole is done at -4ME currently so a 50% waste when compared to the almost 0% waste of T2 BPOs. What this ultimately means is invention gets a massive boost in its effectiveness.

At the same time however we’ll now see decryptors go from improving material requirements for invention from 30% to 3% an extremely large drop. What this will mean is that decryptor traditionally used for Blackops, Marauders and Jump Freighters should begin to fall in price as players no longer need to use them to make a profit. In fact you could easily interchange a Incognito Process for Incognito Accelerant whilst building an Anshar choosing to lose roughly 50mil in profit in exchange for a 10% reduction in build time, this roughly balances out as both Accelerants and Process decryptors being as profitable as each other on an ISK per hour basis.

Ultimately decryptor usage price will drop to reflect the reduction in savings from their usage, so we should expect  to see the prices drop on all ME gaining decryptors which includes Optimized Augmentation, Symmetry, Process, Accelerant, Parity and Optimized Attainment decryptors.

We’re also likely to start to see decryptors such Incognito Augmentation starting to come into play more often with a 2% addition to material costs being covered for by the reduction in invention costs. Take for example Anshar production if each Obelisk BPC costs 20mil after the patch for example then a batch of 10 costs 200mil, with the standard incognito process you will average about 4 successful invention jobs for about 2bil profit. Meanwhile if you do the same with the Incognito Augmentation you’ll get 2 10 run BPCs so 20 ships each at 400mil profit per unit (based on 1% ME being roughly 50mil material costs) so 8bil potential profit from a single batch of invention.

Currently I believe that the most important factors post release will be the run modifier (balanced against the chance modifier) and the final TE which will have a large swing over profit per hour.

Overall there will be a lot of movement in the prices as players begin to adapt I’ve already started to speculate and purchase the decryptors which have a chance of becoming more valuable after the patch and with the decryptors as low as 250k there really is very little risk of getting in getting it wrong. Next week the first of the Crius builds will be hitting Singularity for us to test and it won’t take long for players to start to figure out which decryptors are going to win and lose from these changes and the market will adapt even before release as players learn more of the changes to come in Crius.

Further updates from Greyscale on BPO changes

blueprint-banner

With Kronos being released tomorrow it’s worth taking the time to look further ahead to Crius and the changes to BPOs that are still to come. As Kronos is the last release with the old industry mechanics it’s vital that industry players start to gain an understanding of the coming changes to avoid losses come Crius release day.

To this end CCP Greyscale has been extremely active on the forums discussing with players proposed changes to BPOs and invention. To briefly touch on the changes to invention the idea is that come Crius invention will be much more competitive with T2 BPOs and will result in only positive ME and TE blueprint copies. Additionally the maximum output runs of the BPCs is currently being investigated to try and make bulk manufacturing here a bit easier and invention mass manufacturing competitive with T2 blueprint original manufacturing.

Straight away we can pull out one big obvious improvement which is to copy time, which will now be 80% of build time. Once you start to take skills into effect manufacturing time is reduced 20% whilst copying time is reduced 25% which gives copying about a 25% time advantage. This is before labs and manufacturing arrays are taken into account too and with labs reducing copy time by 40% and advanced ship assembly arrays reducing time by 25%. This leaves copy time at 36% of base and manufacturing time at 60% of base giving a 40% difference between final copying and manufacturing times a massive bonus when it comes to copying to build. I’m going to investigate this when Crius hits Singularity as it seems too good to be true, but if it is the case then my capital production will be moving to copy to build.

There are also large changes to invention time which will be equal to half the build time for the output (the full 10 module runs for T2 mods or 1 ship run for T2 ships) plus half the build time for the T1 base hull or module. From this the copy time for a single run blueprint copy of the base hull or module will be subtracted. The value will then be adjusted in the region of 10% either direction to make the numbers a bit more fuzzy so that some construction is more build time intensive whilst others are more research time intensive. All of this is calculated before skills, POS modules and implants too to give a base starting point for invention times.

Overall this shows that science will be more time intensive than manufacturing, the reason for this is that during invention most players will not be using single run BPCs they will in fact be using max run BPCs and in the case of ship invention they will also be using decryptors. This means you’ll likely have the time to run some T1 build jobs and plenty of spare time to build your POS fuel, still to keep your construction running full time you may be better off buying copies from other players and using your science slots for invention allowing you to run T2 construction full time.

The rank selection of BPOs has also been clarified with CCP Greyscale providing the following details:
– Mods are 3/6/9 for S/M/L, 6 for all “unsized” mods, 40 for capital mods, and 10x larger for T2
– Ships are 20-60 for subcaps (stepped through frigate/destroyer/cruiser etc in 10s), 200-600 for caps, and then again multiplied by 10 for T2
– Charges are 1/2/3/4 by size, * 10 for T2
– Drones are 1/2/3/40, * 10 for T2
– Starbase structures are somewhat arbitrary, turrets are 20/30/40, other structures are 40/60/80, and towers are 100/200/300
– Rigs are 5/10/15/20, * 10 for T2
– Components, RDbs etc need revision
– Misc stuff is misc – deployables are in the 5-15 range, outpost stuff is all approximately capital sized, various other things such as T3 gubbins are in the 2-3 range

The ranks are multiplied by the following level seconds requirements below to give research times for ME and TE.

Level Seconds Approx Total
1 105 1m 45s
2 250 4m
3 595 10m
4 1414 24m
5 3360 56m
6 8000 2h
7 19000 5h
8 45255 12h
9 107700 1d
10 256000 3d

This will mean that maxing out ME at TE for capital BPOs will take in the region of 5 years, which seems reasonably balanced overall the changes look great and nothing seems too far out of place with CCP Greyscale proactively responding to feedback and tweaking his numbers to specific use cases as required.

One thing that isn’t changing is component build time, what hasn’t been mentioned yet is the effect on copy times for components as this could massively change the balance of capital production. If copy times are massively below build times a lot of players will start copy to build programs allowing the currently BPOs to have higher outputs which will ultimately mean increased output and reduced profit per unit for capital manufacturers.

Overall we can’t really draw any solid conclusions from the changes as things are still changing so frequently but if there is one thing that we can be confident with it’s that copy to build will be a frequent occurrence and that things are being skewed more in the direction of science than manufacturing as the bottleneck for T2 production so as is already the case you may be better off outsourcing blueprint copying for large scale T2 production.

What will be nice come Crius is that things will be a lot easier to understand with a bit more flat landscape we’ll see modules of similar sizes and classes with similar requirements making things easier for new players to understand however there will still be fluctuation and nuances in the system allowing for more experience players to optimise the process and make the best ISK per hour. As CCP Greyscale updates his changes and we get closer to Crius I’ll provide further updates.