A Look Ahead to 2014

Several of my usual "predictors" for the coming year are not available to me this time around. The CSM has been especially quiet about their goings-on and the summit minutes have yet to be released. The CSM always helps to keep a finger on what is going on in CCP and where we might be headed.

I've also been rather busy building an awesome Corporation over the past eight months, so my own Eve time has been taken up rather significantly focusing on that aspect of the game. So I enter 2014 a tad cut-off from the usual, usual. This doesn't mean I am totally adrift however, I'm still active on Twitter, still read the same amount of Blogs, and even sometimes wander over to the forums, or Reddit, etc. And I still maintain my own contacts throughout the Eve community.

Eve faces several challenges moving forward. Anyone who looks at a sov map of Null Sec can tell you that we are entering some new territory when it comes to the "big game" in Eve. As a dedicated low sec adventurer these days, my personal interest in the politics of Null has wained over the years. But I worry for Eve. A static, unified, and boring Null Sec isn't good for anyone. Especially Eve.

I get a lot of mileage here on the blog making fun of Faction Warfare and WCS and... well, everything else. In my humble opinion there is no doubt that the basic FW mechanic is in need of serious ( and yet minor ) overhauling. FW has brought life to Low Sec and in that way it has succeeded beyond belief, turning a back-water pirate vs pirate land into a multi-faceted extremely active arena. Given the current status of Null, there can be no doubt that Low Sec is the only choice when it comes to PvP in Eve these days, and we have FW, in large part, to thank for that.

It is still broken. And whatever remedy CCP eventually settles on needs to address both sides of the coin. Personally I'd rather it stay the way it is than see it ruined, so we must tread lightly in recommending any possible remedies. I think some slight tweaks to the basic mechanic would be enough to re-balance things. And banning WCS.

Unlike previous years Eve doesn't face any obviously glaring places in which significant work needs to be done. This is a good sign. It means that Eve is ripe for NEW content. We've been hinted at heavily that this new content may come in the form of brand new space, player-created gates, and other player-centric opportunities. On the surface this sounds rather promising. The danger, as always, is in delivering new opportunities while not ignoring old ones. And then integrating new content properly into the existing plan.

I'd like to see more new ships, the recent introduction of new SOE ships needs to continue into other ignored factions. I'd like to see modular Frigates introduced, perhaps not a direct T3 descendant, but a modular based system to build your own 'custom' frigates. I think this idea is rather exciting. And is yet another way to give more options to the player base.

We need Command Ship models that are not simply re-skins of existing hulls. We need more control of our own space in Low Sec, without "sov" per se, but there should be a mechanical benefit to controlling certain areas of space.

Whatever comes in 2014 I must say that I trust CCP more now than at any other time since I stared playing Eve. The dust of Incarna is well behind us now and the last two years have seen significant improvement in virtually every aspect of Eve.

Eve is insanely better now.

And if I have any wish for 2014 that I'd hang my hat on, it would be simply that it continue to kick serious ass.

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