In this post, I will breakdown what our plans are for July, when the current Assault Season ends. Specifically, I will seek to: explain how we are lowering build times, surface the major complaints we’ve received with the current system, explain how we can bring more variety and excitement to Raids, and explain how we plan for the value of your hulls to persist for longer than it does now.
The current system season model has a number of key defining characteristics. These are:
3 month duration
2 hulls, intended to be of equivalent power
Raid targets that are entirely one silo (Skirmish, Assault, Siege)
While this system brings some predictability, it’s fundamentally flawed in that it necessarily creates a number of undesirable outcomes:
We want ‘completing a full fleet’ to be your season’s goal. However, to make that goal persist for 3 months, build times need to be relatively high. This creates a huge friction point at the first event in the season, where “catching up” is out of reach for most players. This is not an optimal gameplay experience
While we endeavor for both hulls to be even in terms of power and utility, a 100% balanced experience hasn’t always been the case. As a result, often one hull is unintentionally more useful than the other. This, too, is not an optimal gameplay experience
The targets from top to bottom each raid are extremely similar, designed for the same hulls. Over months, this gets boring
After 3 months conclude, the utility of your hulls falls off a cliff when the Raid silo changes. They become less useful than hulls released a year ago which match the new Raid silo.
The relationship between 1 hull and 2 hulls is awkward and unsatisfying. Should you get both? Is it worthwhile? Is it required? None of these questions are enjoyable, and none of the answers are fun.
So how do we fix this? Through a number of initiatives:
No more PvE seasons. Silos are staggered, with multiple silos available at any given time;
Significantly lower build times on PvE hulls, while increasing the lifespan of a fleet from its current 3+ months of value;
Changing the model from 2 equal hulls per silo released, to 1 superior hull and 1 specialized hull per silo.
If the top targets persist for a shorter period of time, build times can also be lowered significantly. The goal, however, is for the hulls to still have significant value beyond 3+ months - we believe this is possible. How big a difference in build times are we talking? We’re still doing the math and reductions will vary based on the hull itself. However, the current range we’re discussing is as “low” as a 15% reduction for certain hulls, and as high as a 50% reduction for others.
Uneven Hull Power
By presenting players with two hulls to choose from, you have to pick blindy, not knowing which one will be better. To solve for this, we will present a Primary, and a Supplementary hull in each season. The primary hull will be more powerful and have more use. The Supplementary hull is much more specialized, but has much shorter build times. This way, your investment in hulls is always worthwhile.
Rather than making all targets in a raid be for a specific silo and rotating them in all at once, we’ll rotate new silo targets in gradually. This allows diverse experiences and challenges in each raid, rather than the same experience repeated 100 times.
Getting Left Behind
In practice, when the season changes over, the S Targets (100+) become the new silo, but the A Targets (80s) will become the previous silo. This means if you miss an event, you’re not left behind, and the value of your hulls persist for much longer.
How does this look for the near term?
The implementation would look like this:
The targets will be Assault
the season will end and we’ll have a hull store as usual. In this event, you will be able to get one new Skirmish hull with build times significantly lower than they have been before
the top targets will be Skirmish, but Assault targets would remain prominently in the raid
A supplementary hull will be released. This would be significantly cheaper than the hull released in June, and would serve a specialized purpose
Like the previous month, the top targets will be Skirmish, but Assault targets will remain prominently in the raid
A Siege hull will be released
The top targets will be Siege, but Skirmish targets would remain prominently in the raid
A supplementary hull would be released. This would be significantly cheaper than the hulls released in June and August, and would serve a specialized purpose
I’d love to hear your feedback. Do you feel this idea would address the concerns you and your friends have about the current season model? What are the advantages this proposal brings? The disadvantages?