Smokey & The Bandit

East bound and down, loaded up and truckin',
we're gonna do what they say can't be done.
We've got a long way to go and a short time to get there.
I'm east bound, just watch ol' "Bandit" run.

- Eastbound and Down, Jerry Reed

We have actually crossed a rubicon now. And there is no turning back. This rubicon crossing was subtle, and you may have missed it up in your wagon, but my feet got wet.

It might be a little "r" rubicon, but no less significant in my opinion. Rubicon 1.3 has given us the perfect Tristan and the perfect vanity ship - the Police Pursuit Comet. These two ships are significant for what they potentially herald as a new era for ships in Eve. An understanding from CCP regarding their greatest asset, a respect for the history of Eve, and a respect for what the players really want. All wrapped up in a patch release.

Let's take a closer look shall we?

The Perfect Tristan

The often maligned and much loved Macross Tristan has been updated into a perfect example of how to treat an existing ship in Eve. Kudos to the Art Department and all those involved in the re-design, you guys (and gals!) got it perfect this time. The ship retains all the elements that made it a Tristan in the first place, while becoming sleeker, thicker, weightier, and more modern all at the same time. The warp activation "wings" are an inspired touch. And while they serve no practical purpose, they might herald a new era in CCP's openness to things that serve no practical purpose.

I warped my Tristan about 40 times just to watch the damn things fold down over and over again.

The Tristan isn't the first ship to get updated over the years. But it happens to be the best example of a smaller ship make-over so far. A ship class in desperate need of love all the way around - Frigates are the backbone of daily life in New Eden and it is encouraging to see them being given the love they desperately need.

Grade: A- (Only because the lower legs only seem to wobble, even with all the new workings under there.)

The Police Comet

I counted thirty-seven different Police Comets out in space yesterday, so I'm calling the concept officially a success already. The Police Comet is important because it represents a new trial in ship skins that may someday result in a level of player customization. We all know this. Just like we all know, deep down, that such a program will be a HUGE success when it finally comes around to be reality.

But the Police Comet is more important to me because of what it means beyond that. We've been asking for a return of the original Comet for years and somewhere deep within the Asgardian Fortress of CCP, someone listened. And now, the Police Comet is not only back - but it is better than ever. It has essentially become a brand new ship!

I honestly didn't expect it to be called the Police Comet and was pleasantly surprised to discover that it was. This is a big deal. And I hope it proves the general concept of addition without much effort. We can take more of this CCP. We really can. We love spaceships, that's why we play a spaceship game. So more please.

Grade: A+

If Stay Frosty had to pay a monthly fee to someone in order for all our corporate ships to feature an awesome skull and crossbones logo - we would. Or the Stay Frosty logo. Or all our Frigates to be ice blue. Maybe.

The sky is the limit when it comes to ship customization. And while the process to get there needs to be regulated and take its time - we still need to get there. It creates no changes to the actual game-play (at least mechanically) and that needs to be true forever. But it does create a huge level of excitement, interest, player involvement and interesting meta exploration.

Something Eve can certainly use more of.