CCP Loyalty Rewards AnnouncedAshterothi
The paint is barely dry on CCP announcement on their transition to free play, and they are already showing off their marketing prowess. An email offer, and later a full webpage, has been sent out with a loyalty reward for players who stick with EVE until November. While some may see this as an act of desperation, it actually is a bit of clever strategy, that costs effectively nothing.
Before we dissect the offer itself, it is important to understand the rewards.
Players who qualify will receive the following free items:
- A Gnosis Battlecruiser
- An Apotheosis Shuttle
- A new SKIN for the Gnosis
- A special edition armor suit and google set
Additionally there is one item that doesn’t lend itself as a reward, but rather is a tease
- Rumors from the shipyards indicate a new ship is about to be unveiled
So let’s break down each of these in turn:
Gnosis Battlecruiser: This is actually a huge deal, and a very telling choice. The Gnosis was introduced for EVE’s tenth birthday, and so it is a pretty meaningful ship for the history of EVE. Some was given out to everyone, and extra blueprint copies were given to folks who purchased the EVE Collector’s Edition (still worth it if you are a big EVE fan BTW).
These giveaway items generally can break the game in subtle ways, and the Gnosis in particular was a special edition ship meant to be used. The high distribution count on them ensured their value would stay reasonable for some time, but given they cost basically nothing to build (1 trit), they were always a profitable gift. Additionally, the ship itself is infinitely versatile. It is bonused for every weapon type as well as scanning. Finally, it requires no skills to fly beyond Spaceship Command I, meaning it is the only battlecruiser alpha-clones will be able to fly.
an incredibly important ship in the foreseeable future
All of this makes this ship an incredibly important ship in the foreseeable future, and we are likely to see more giveaways of it as it becomes a ship that is important to the game, but not distributed in the traditional way. I personally expect to see Gnosis battlecruisers as a reward for loyalty in the post “free play” world.
Apotheosis Shuttle: This shuttle was given away for EVE’s 5th birthday, and actually is the ship that thematically decided the Gnosis battlecruisers’ appearance. The shuttle itself is barely noteworthy, aside from its rareness, and thus is often not worth its 14 million or so pricetag. Releasing it again allows CCP to reinforce the Gnosis give-away, as well as really drive home that this is a milestone in EVE’s history.
However, there is another interesting component that makes these two ships interesting: The Society of Conscious Thought. This group in particular are very important to the past years events with the ongoing story of the Caroline Star Event. Additionally, the SoCT are known for their knowledge of the infomorph, and most recently gave us skill extractor technology. This seems to suggest that the new breakthroughs leading to Alpha clone technology will likely come from them. Also, as revealed in Inheritance, the SoCT now has a seat on CONCORDs inner counsel, becoming the first pro-Empyrean member.
Either way, I know one guy who is very pleased by this giveaway.
New SKIN for the Gnosis: This only helps reinforce the signal the CCP wants these things to be flown, and they are particularly interesting for those who do plan to transition to Alphas in November. This could also very well be the only time these are given away, allowing them to gain value over time.
A special edition armor suit and goggle set: This is the kind of thing they do for most giveaways, and there are plenty of good options for suits to choose from. This is likely the only time that these items will be released, and the nice thing about cosmetic items is you don’t ever have to risk them.
Rumors from the shipyards indicate a new ship is about to be unveiled: At first blush some people assumed this may just be part of the announcement of the Porpoise. However, CCP does have a tradition of giving away special ships for special events. With the SoCT theme we could see a third instalment to their fleet. A SoCT destroyer has shown up in the files, and is the most likely candidate to be this item. Given what we know about the SoCT it will offer a very flexible low combat exploration platform, designed to do anything in high sec very well (just as the Stratios is balanced towards low sec combat sites.)
Note: The website does not put this in the bulleted list, so it could very well be the Porpoise, or given its wording, something else entirely. The original email had it as part of the list, but this may have been a typo. CCP Pointybits has confirmed that this model is what we think it is.
It is also worth mentioning that it is almost Christmas, and so in likelihood we will see additional giveaways for that season.
All told, CCP has managed to maximize the value of the choices they have made for this giveaway. The strong SoCT theme fits both the lore, and the mechanics of the event we are celebrating, and costs CCP effectively nothing. While the value of the items will be no where near the two PLEX it takes to obtain them, it gives a reason for anyone who is on the fense to stay on for the remaining two months.
This is the way to use your dynamic universe in a way to get your players behind you as you make a huge transition. It may be a very simple offer, but it shows they at least understand what it takes for us to “get there”.