Potential surprises in the 2012 winter expansion?

So far we haven’t really really got much of an idea of what will be coming in with the next expansion, but there are a good few clues as to what we might be getting.

Firstly we already know about the re-vamped Frigates & Destroyers from the Dev Posts on the forums.

I also predict that we might finally see the Micro Warp Drive first mentioned way back in March. These never made it into the Inferno patch due to balancing and (if I remember correctly) Lag issues. I believe that it is at least CCPs intent to release this mod at some stage, as they have created a Wiki article about its in game Lore.

In a Recent interview with EDGE Torfi Frans Ólafsson talked a little bit about the next patch confirming that it would continue the trend of “War”. However it looks like rather than the current concentration on Faction Warfare & Highsec War Decs we might see some more general improvements. Ólafsson also hints:

“This winter we’re going to focus on death and explosions of players and so on”

This ever optimistic blogger remember the Art panel from the last Fanfest (look around the 8m 30s mark), and hope this might be the big surprise this year! As for the Death enhancements, who knows what that could mean, but I would argue that Death is the biggest USP eve currently has, as far as I know, no other Modern MMO has dealt with death in such a manner, so changes could be amazing, or terrible*.

Finally as a “Stab in the dark” guess at a new feature for this winter, I’m predicting more “Visual” modules. CCP has seen how well received the Turret and Bay models have been and on release, promised more models for items such as Vampires being rendered on our ships, I’d expect this would be a very popular move by CCP, and bonus points could even be scored if they chose to begin creating physical models for non-highslot mods. Imagen what a Shield Booster might look like?** Or if a Targeting computer adds a physical tracking node to the skin of your ship?

With just over 3 months until the release for our winter patch I expect that we will soon begin to see the torrent of Dev Blogs stirring up our excitement for winter.

Fly Expectant!

Hark¬

*CCP implement’s “Pod Running”: if you are killed your clone is activated at your nearest medical station and you have 30 minuets to Fly to your ruined ship where you can repair it and board it for no extra cost. Alternately you can pay a small fee at the Medical station where they create a clone of your ship for free (and a half hour -50% to shields, armour and Hull de-buff)…

**I picture a series of “Projectors” from which are the centre point for an effect similar to the current “Boost” effect

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