IamA CCP Rise, Game Designer for EVE Online AMA!
Alright, calling it quits guys - two hours of not looking away from my screen, need to do some backflips or something
Thanks everyone, was a lot of fun. Very sorry if I didn't get to your questions (there are hundreds) - maybe we can do another one some time. Also, come see me at fanfest!
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My Proof: https://twitter.com/EveOnline/status/405340795567218689 https://twitter.com/CCP_Rise
No regrets (other than swearing on (fake)TV which makes me feel a bit awkward)
I was rather surprised that CCP Rise wasn't flying solo. the next video should have him blowing a bunch of victims by himself.
edit: will not fix typo. Going down with the ship o7
If they had told me it would be in a gang before filming I would have said no. Hard to tell who you're flying with in front of a greenscreen in a back room at the office =/
Can I have the blue flashy light on my Comet back?
Probably not, but I'll promise to bother every art person I see this week on your behalf.
If you send me 100mil ISK, I will double it.
If you send me 500mil ISK, I will triple it.
If you send me 2bil ISK, I will quadruple it.
Are you interested?
Once during an alliance tournament, Fozzie told the stream that if they sent my character ISK I would double it. People did it. I did not double it.
I still feel bad.
Would you rather fight 1 leviathan sized rifter or 100 rifter sized leviathans?
A leviathan sized rifter sounds adorable and I think I might go make one on an internal server and kill it for fun.
Walking in Stations!
Eve has one of the best character creation systems in gaming, but we never use them for any form of interaction, what are the plans for avatars?
Basically, Incarna taught us two things as far as I can tell. 1. EVE is a game about spaceships and there's an enormous amount of work to do on the in-space gameplay before players (or developers) are ready to sacrifice it for a totally new type of gameplay, and 2. Working on Avatar gameplay is very costly in terms of resources and time.
As a result, for the time being we are extremely focused on the in-space gameplay. We have years worth of work we can do in space but who knows, maybe someday we will get a chance to go back to it.
are there any plans to rewrite the legacy code that keeps the game confined to 32 bit single core hardware?
I just yelled at one of the engineers on my team. He says currently the game can use 64 bits, but only single cores.
There's discussion about threading some things but so far it hasn't turned into a tangible project. Maybe some day!
Any particular plans to make the game feel even more atmospheric and immersive?
I actually just got our of a meeting where we were talking about this very thing!
There's a lot of stuff we're hoping to do over the next few releases which should contribute to a more immersive universe but I can't tell you about them! =)
What are your impressions about the the third party developer community (e.g. killboards, skill monitors) and how we utilize/abuse the tools you give us?
edit: a word
I love the community and I think a lot of what the community builds is amazing and says a ton about the game itself, so in that way it's great.
Sometimes though I do think it represents failure of the client to deliver information in a useful way (map vs dotlan for instance). Hopefully over time we continue to improve the tools in the client but also continue to support the amazing stuff the community does as well.
i'd be more interested on how many tools of the 3rdparty community CCP is using during their development (if any)
Me and Fozzie are definitely pyfa/eft addicts and we prefer those tools to anything internal because of our backgrounds.
Logi pilot here. Any chance we could see Hull Repair Drones in the future to save us a little headache on POS reps and roams?
I'll mention it to our little balance group, seems good to me (before thinking about it much at all)
cough logi on kms cough
Definitely something we want. I believe CCP Masterplan wants to make this happen eventually but I'm not sure if there's a timeline.
I don't really have anything to ask, I just want to say that I think you are doing a great job and the level of interaction between CCP and the players is excellent.
This isn't really a part of your job, but could you give some insight as to why the API is such a low priority for CCP?
It's used by tons of players, brings CCP basically free PR and allows us players to create things around EVE. The API is basically all positive, why are you guys giving it so little love?
And do you have any updates on the whole CREST situation re legal difficulties? Will we see it before the next decade of EVE has passed?
PS: Please fix the Rifter, it's not great now :-(
You're right that it's not exactly my job, and commenting on CREST especially would be difficult for me. What I can say from working on features for Rubicon is that often during development we have to do a lot of scoping back from our original plans. It's easy to imagine really fantastic features but we start turning things into practical plans and sometimes struggle to ship on time, things like the API can get cut or delayed. We care about it a lot but when it comes to a decision like "we can ship the ISIS with no API or we can ship nothing until summer" you can imagine how it sometimes doesn't get the support it should.
Do you think that set release cycles (two expansions/yr) hinders larger projects/fixes from being considered due to the time it might take?
And yes, I'm looking at you, POS code.
I think that can be a risk, but it's one we are extremely aware of and CCP Seagull is helping to plan for multi-release projects when they have a lot of value.
Why do you think that EVE is the only really successful current Sandbox MMORPG?
It seems like everyone has been trying to copy WoW since it was released. The word MMORPG seems to mean theme park, WoW-style MMORPG nowadays unless you explicitly specify that you are talking about some other kind of MMORPG.
If you were to design a new MMORPG from scratch today, what would it be like?
What mechanic/system/simulation/concept do you think would be cool that havn't been explored by MMORPGSs so far?
Jeez, big questions.
I don't think EVE is totally alone in this space, but I do feel like MMO's have to move more towards content that players create. As gamers get better and better at consuming content that developers design it just becomes more and more difficult to make a themepark with any replayability.
What is the worst thing about becomming a game designer for a game you played a lot? The best?
Cheesy answers incoming I guess - There's a few worst things. Getting cut off from my community in the game is really brutal. I want to make videos and play with my friends and talk with randoms in local and I can't do most of those things. There is also some burnout from working on the game which might make me play less, but I think that's mostly offset by just being excited to play with new stuff I was part of making.
Best things: Being part of making my favorite game is unreal. I still can't get over how amazing that is. It's also very cool to see how things actually work behind the scenes. I had always been curious how development decisions were made and it's been really great to see it first hand and see how smart the people here are (even though we do dumb things sometimes) and how much they care about the game.
When you say "getting cut off from my community", is that their decision or the company's? Just wondering whether or not it's against protocol to play with regular people or whether you've been ostracized.
CCP employees aren't allowed to disclose their identities if they're playing in-game. CCP Rise was formerly known as Kil2, so he can't play as Kil2 anymore, but as CCP Rise (officially). I'm pretty sure there's a way for CCP employees to play the game as regular people, but those accounts are watched by the CCP Internal Affairs team to make sure nothing sneaky is going on.
As to why this is the case, a former dev, CCP T20, spawned Tech 2 blueprint originals for his alliance. T2 BPOs allow players to create T2 items for cheaper than the alternative process everyone else has to do (called invention, now the only way to create T2 items aside from existing T2 BPOs).
This is fairly accurate.
I can play on player characters that have my skillpoints and assets but have different names and I can't let people know that I'm a developer.
It's a tricky situation where there's a lot of value in playing as a normal player and being embedded in the game, but also a lot of risk in players knowing where devs actually are and what they're doing.
tl;dr We know the sov system and super caps need work, but I can't say exactly when either will go to TQ.
I really feel weird about the starting point that 'X system is broken, when will it get fixed'. A lot of these systems are really large and complex, and they are getting used by tons and tons of people. If it was literally broken there wouldn't be much risk in just ripping it out and starting over, but because so much of the game happens around systems like Sov, we have to be very delicate with changes.
That said, there are a lot of pieces we aren't happy with, and hopefully we see steady improvement over the next several releases as we continue doing balance work (eventually caps/super caps) and as we keep working on the big core game systems like sov.
Have you played Homeworld? Do you like it?
Also, can I have a year of free subscription?
Somehow I actually have not played Homeworld, though I know almost everyone else here has.
Maybe I should do that.
Also: How do you like this short video? (0:16)
That video is pretty amazing.
Hi CCP Rise, greetings from GSF.
My question is, will we ever see the comeback of an official EVE Linux client? I hate windows. Thanks!
Seems unlikely, but I am not qualified to answer so don't listen to me.
Hey CCP Rise thanks for doing an AMA. My question is what are your thoughts on Carriers, Dreads, Super Carriers and Titans, their relation between each other and their balance in the current null sec meta?
I doubt I can give a very satisfying answer to this. I'm definitely more of a sub-cap expert to begin with, and this is a very complicated problem.
Super-cap balance especially is tied heavily to sov which another giant and difficult problem so it's hard to single a piece out and say what should be done about it.
We intend to work on it, that I can say for sure. We are closing in on finishing our first pass at subcaps and we will definitely take on caps afterwards.
If you could make only one change to the game, what would it be and why?
I would do a comprehensive ECM rework. I think electronic warfare has a lot of potential but right now it's often one of the most punishing mechanics.
Can you elaborate on why you think they are punishing and what exactly is so bad about them?
As others are starting to say, I think it's a combination of things. Chance based mechanism that leads to an extremely binary effect where success means very little interaction/gameplay for the victim and failure means very little interaction/gameplay for the user.
I like mechanics where you can make decisions (even after the fitting screen) that influence the outcome.
What are the plans for more T2 and T3 cruiser and Black Ops rebalancing?
How is your job so far at CCP?
What has been your favorite part of the job?
Thanks for all your hard work, you guys are doing great!
Hey, thanks for the encouragement!
Favorite part of the job is hard, I like so many things here. Getting to make balance changes and then go use them feels pretty amazing so it's definitely near the top of the list.
Job is amazing, not only do I get to work on EVE but CCP is also just an incredibly cool company. I get to live in Iceland, work with smart people who love games, get health care, etc etc It's all pretty good.
I can't say THE plans for black ops and t3 cruiser balance other than to say we are planning to rebalance them. We have the beginnings of plans for both but I don't want to be too specific. I can say that we aren't going to destroy T3 with nerfs, but we hope to make more subs viable overall.
How is your Icelandic coming along?
eg er ad laera islensku alltla daga
Do you have a schedule for the rebalances of capitals. Because if I followed correctly, these are the next right?
We don't have a schedule pinned down. We have a few more tech 2 classes, pirate ships and tech 3s that will likely come first.
Of course we are often discussing cap changes or other projects that may be a ways, but for now we don't expect to dive into caps in the near near future.
Is... um... CCP Mintchip still there? I never read anything about her anymore.
Is CCP Seagull driving a tight ship? Are you satisfied with her vision for EVE post Rubicon [and I'm not fishing for details on future expansions]?
Are you based in Iceland? How do you like living there?
Other factions have more than one type of Frigate and Cruiser. Will there be new hulls to beef up the SOE faction, now that they're actually using their own space frames?
How do you like the new white carrier model by the way?
What's the best aspect of working for CCP?
What would you like to see improve?
Have you had barbecue on the balcony yet?
Lot of stuff here!
I have had a barbecue on the balcony, more than one even.
Most of my thinking about improvement is still around self-improvement for the time being since I'm still fairly new.
Talked about what I like about working here in some other questions.
Other main factions have more than one, but pirate factions all have just one so I think it's likely that SOE will follow that pattern.
Yes, based in Iceland. I actually really love it here. I'm from Portland in the US and in a lot of ways they are similar (intellectual young liberal hippies who want to eat good food and ride bikes), and it's such a beautiful country on top of that. Also they wear dope sweaters all the time.
Seagull is awesome. I think she's an insanely smart producer and we are in good hands.
Would you say this moment in the latest In Development video was the high point of your career? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Usv2EjUU3fA#t=90
Nah, I think this was the high point http://www.schildwall.info/fun/ccp_douchebag.png
EVE sounds like it would be the perfect game for me, but the problem is that I don't really like playing with other people. I just want to do my own thing. Is there anything I could do in EVE without getting completely wrecked by giant corporations?
Yep. EVE will always have some element of danger and vulnerability, but a huge number of our players play alone or in small groups. I'm one of them =)
Are you guys gonna be adding a SOE battleship? Are you gonna mess with the other pirate/navy battleships at some point?
SOE BS: Secret ... can't ... give ... secrets.... Navy BS: We just did a pass on them (I believe in the Odyssey .1 release) Pirate BS: Yes - All the pirate faction ships are due for an update and I'm hoping we can start working on them extremely soon.
How jealous are you that CCP Fozzie is on a plane heading to Eve Down Under and the Australian summer right now and you're in Iceland where there's probably a blizzard or something or maybe some kind of ice kraken destroying the harbor?
Just a little. I don't like heat though so the blizzard is just fine with me.
Any small inconsequential but new tidbit you can toss us about World of Darkness?
I heard from CCP Scarpia that it's good.
Do you have a favorite loss mail and what's the story around it?
That's tough. I did a 2 hour roam on a live stream in a Talos, which I eventually lost, and that might be my favorite EVE roam so maybe that counts.
I also have some mails for expensive losses that serve as nice reminders that expensive ships are garbage, which makes me happy somehow.
What is your craziest CCP story since you started working there?
CCP Nullarbor fell directly onto his face and broke his teeth and was bleeding from his eye and I had to care for him for a whole night like a little puppy.
Life changing for us both.
- Are you happy with the current state of Drones in general and in Large Fights 1k+ people?
- I dont know if you can answer this but how much of a lag factor are Drones really in those large fleet fights with several thousand drones on field from 1 to 10?
- Tough question, I wouldn't say 'happy', but I also don't really think drones are the thing to focus on. The assist mechanic is something we talk about quite a lot and it's a wide-reaching discussion that includes other examples of one player directing the actions of many (fleet warp for instance). Not sure exactly how that will pan out yet. On top of that there's the actual drone balance and the interface associated with it, both of which we hope to work on before too long.
- I wish I could answer but I really don't know much about lag/server load/code related stuff. I do know that we have team Gridlock dedicated to working on it and they are much smarter than me so we're in good hands.
What's your advice to someone trying to do solo pvp and losing EVERY time? I feel like the fights are over too fast in frigs a lot of the time, and that makes it harder to learn your ships intricacies.
Personally, I think frigs are one of the hardest ways to learn.
If you can I would try to sort out enough ISK to move up to cruisers. Right now, find a cruiser that can kill interceptors and you should be able to find some success because those little buggers are everywhere.
What's it like working for an Icelandic company? How much of office-goings-on is in English versus language(s) lacking vowels? What most surprised you about working there?
I was warned that it would be tough to integrate with Icelanders because of the language barrier so I've been surprised to find that they are incredibly welcoming. I'm trying to learn Icelandic but they are great about speaking English and just being inclusive generally so it's been a relatively easy transition.
Icelandic is really really difficult though, not sure if I'll ever figure it out.
What is next for Eve? You are setting world records, you are expanding what an MMO can be. What do you think would engage the player base for longer?
I think Seagull's vision for EVE sets the stage pretty well. We really want to just focus on what makes EVE great and continue to expand on it. More player control in a sci-fi world that gets cooler and cooler over time.
We have a lot of ideas about what can make the game more engaging on a feature by feature level and hopefully you just see that in action every release.
What future advances can we expect to actually happen? Not some fanfest maybes.
Also will that new crucifier model make an appearance? - http://i.imgur.com/hrEOoAw.jpg
I'm sure that model (or some version of it) will make it in before long. There are other ship model reworks in the pipe as well and they are all so fantastic. Whenever us designers get lost and wind up in the art department we start freaking out and demanding everything go to TQ immediately until they usher us out.
I have never played EVE, yet have heard a little bit about it. If you could give me a quick rundown as to why I should play it, that would be awesome.
EVE is an incredible sci-fi sandbox. It has thousands of players in the same world and they can do whatever they want. It has an incredibly rich player history made of conflicts and riots and cooperation. It has very deep game systems that take a long time to master but you can be involved in most of them from very early on.
It's a game about people and freedom and competition.
I like it a lot.
Now that your 'behind the veil' of the developers, what was the most surprising aspect of helping add to the game? Is it easier or harder than you thought?
I think the biggest behind the veil effect for me has been trying to wrap my head around how many different types of players we have in EVE and how difficult it can be to prioritize work relative to those types.
As a player it's very easy to see the game through your perspective and come up with a list of improvements that make a lot of sense, but when you have to weigh the benefit for a lot of different play styles that are each extremely complex it definitely can be humbling.
In a way I've loved this though, it's just made the game seem even more awesome to me to learn how deep it goes in so many different areas.
CCP Rise is a bro! Much love for the talks we had at fanfest, reminiscing about solo roaming low/nullsec in Shinies. Can't wait for the Pirate BS rebalance, and getting the chance to test out the changes.
So, how did you 'survive' the change from EVE player to EVE Game Dev working for CCP? Is your ingame EVE experience different now compared to your pre-dev play-time?
As a person I survived quite well.
As an EVE player I'm still finding my way. It's definitely difficult to redefine the way I relate to the game and the game community. It's weird actually, the game has felt a lot more lonely because of being cut off from formal social groups (like the BSB chat channel), but I can't enter those groups based on my former character, so I'm now looking at how to get involved socially in other ways.
This has been pretty eye-opening. Makes the universe seem much bigger in a way and it's actually pretty exciting to think about applying to corps or alliances and participating as a more anonymous entity. We'll see how it turns out. In the mean time I'm just killing interceptors all day and no one even knows about it!
What Marauder is your favorite and how do you fly it (brawler, sniper etc.)
I haven't flown one yet because I'm super cheap and scared to lose money. I actually almost bought a Golem to try RHML the other day but then I saw 1.3b and decided to wait =P
how do you feel about the goon menace, rise?
I like the goon menace.
Are you still trying to bring solo back?
I'm trying to bring it back as a player, but I think it's a pretty bad goal as a dev. Soloing in EVE is special because it's an open world where you aren't handed an even fight if you want one so soloing becomes a very serious challenge.
I think as long as the game is relatively balanced and full of smart players, solo will always be possible and will be extremely rewarding.
How would you recommend a new player get started in EVE as it is very overwhelming when you first decide to play.
Talk to people. Help channels, local chat, join a corp, whatever it takes to find some people. They will help you learn the game but they will also make all the gameplay more interesting as well.
Also I would say just don't be afraid to try something that seems interesting. Go to 0.0. Find a wormhole. Shoot miners. Whatever, there's a lot less consequences early on for trying things out even though often people are scared to branch out when they are new.
I know its currently "working as expected" but is having drug timers tick in realtime regardless of tidi intended game design, or a technical issue?
I actually don't know the answer to this one. I believe it's more of a technical issue but I'm not sure if there are any plans to change it.
ccp rise, when are you deleting falcons?
Why delete them when I could just give them all smart bomb bonuses or something?! But really, I'm hoping we can do some work on ECM and ewar generally in the semi-short term so that we don't want to delete them anymore.
What are the plans (if any) for walking in stations? Or exploring in first person in station ruins? I once saw a CCP prototype-video with it.
For now we are very focused on in-space gameplay, which is what EVE has always been about. I can't say if that will change someday but we know we have plenty of work to do in space so if anything it would probably be quite awhile off.
Hey Rise, loving Rubicon so far! Two questions:
1) What has your experience been with the CSM? Specifically:
1.1) Have you found their input and feedback to be useful?
1.2) Can you give an example of the kind of contact and communication you have with the CSM?
2) Are you going to come to next year's Evesterdam in Amsterdam? :D
1) I love the CSM. This is the only CSM I've interacted with, so I'm sure the experience may vary, but it has seriously been invaluable. In my 8 months or so here I've seen them prevent or predict several whoopsies by us and they've helped guide design on almost every major feature. 1.2) We have a chat channel with the CSM and many devs which is busy around the clock. We constantly go to the them for feedback on design work, they constantly come to us with concerns or developments from the ground in EVE. We also have a private forum for longer discussions on feature work or long-term projects like the crowd-sourcing the CSM recently did.
They work really hard and I love them. Even progod
2) Make community department send me!
If you wanted to hint at where to look for how colonization/expansion/new space is going to work for the future, besides Villard Wheel/shattered villard wheel stocking and collecting covert research tools, what would you suggest speculating on?
I wouldn't be able to hint towards anything specific in game. It seems we are going to be unraveling this over some time to come so just keep eyes on CCP events both in game and out of game. Fanfest, for instance, would probably be a good thing to watch or attend.
Otherwise, the pieces will fall into place release by release and you will just have to wait and see what happens I guess.
Are there any interesting aspects of the game where the metrics contradict what the players say they want?
What should the players know about CCP and Eve when they make complaints or wishlists?
There's a lot of times the metrics contradict feedback, but it's hard to tell when. Just because people are using something a lot for instance, doesn't mean they like using it or like playing against it. Trying to figure out how to balance feedback against metrics is something I'm constantly thinking about.
I guess they should know that we listen and care a lot about feedback, all of it (unless its super mean). They should know if we don't do what they want it's for a specific reason, not just because we are ignorant or lazy or didn't care what they said.
Hello! I'm an aspiring game developer. I would take a game dev. course in college next year. I'm quite nervous of the road that I will take. Any advice?
I wish I had more. I feel like I had an extremely lucky set of circumstances that led me here and it seems like a lot of my coworkers have equally bizarre paths.
I would try to get involved in the industry to start getting some kind of experience as soon as you can. A lot of our devs started as GMs or community volunteers and just worked their way up.
Server stability re: blobbing seems to be an issue of late. Anything you guys plan to do to stop entire systems from going offline when too many ships are around?
Yep. We've had some node crashes lately due to specific circumstances that we hope to address and people are currently working on.
And of course we are always trying to improve performance overall. Team Gridlock is dedicated to performance and I hear there's some cool stuff in the pipe. We've made huge leaps over the years but hopefully we can continue to improve it so that eventually we are complaining about node crashes with only 10k people in local.
Does EVE's spaghetti code ever get in the way of your balancing objectives?
For example, all this talk about an ECM rework has a lot of players dreaming up huge new systems, but in the past CSM reps like Jester have always cautioned that a rework has to be possible within CCP's existing code base.
Also, do you get to keep your outfit from Rubicon's in development video? How else would people know what happens when they take your space money?
Insider secret: all of us were wearing the same space outfit. Not sure who it should belong to...probably me. I'll investigate.
Yes, the code can get in the way at times. Usually balance is pretty free from the biggest legacy systems, sometimes it's not though. For example, we would like to change the way links work. Making them an AE effect on grid for instance rather than system-wide, but we are blocked by technical barriers for the time being.
Good news is we have spaghetti unravel specialists on the case!
hi Rise, what's your opinion on clowns?
Not a fan.
Do you regret blowing me up in the last In Development video or was I just another victim to you?
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