The mega-frontier just got a lot more micro. EVE Online is set to include a new hacking mini-game in its upcoming Odyssey expansion, explained in a recent dev blog (opens in new tab) . Developer CCP calls the feature a part of a larger move to expand and deepen the explorer role for pilots in the June 4 addition to the MMO/space-jockey simulator.
The basic mini-game appears to include permanent death, turn-based combat, and multiple subsystems to crack open, all played out through a top-down, roguelike interface. Combat is based around the exploration of node networks that must be navigated until the relevant system cores are discovered and destroyed. A successful system hack will release the cargo into space for collection.
It looks like there will be a variety of hacking targets, but at least one aspect of the feature will apply the mini-game to the excavation of archaeological sites. The older networks should offer up a different set of audio and visual cues for the hacker to interact with.
The dev blog update describes the new hacking mechanic as part of a push to tie hackers more closely to the EVE Online economy and the wider, in-game universe. As an MMO, CCP's EVE Online already offers its pilots a staggering, and sometimes intimidating, range of choices. The new hacking component looks like a restrained, compact, and accessible addition to the EVE experience.
Even as EVE's massive, player-generated story moves beyond the borders of the game itself, the new expansion has pointed towards changes to Starbases , the user interface, and the pilots' on-board scanning systems.