I'm going to quote the mining barge bits and provide commentary inline [like this] because it's late and I'm too excited to do anything else.
Our goal is simple: each and every single mining barge (and their tech 2 variant) should have an appealing role, and not just be a stepping stone on the way to something better. [Amen!] Players should'nt [sic] only aim for the Hulk without considering anything else when doing some hard rock and roll mining. That means playing with the following variables:Excellent stuff; can't wait!
- Mining output: first and most visible balancing factor, plan is to increase all barge mining output to be within an acceptable margin of the Hulk, not miles behind as it is currently. [Nearly the same reward for the same amount of work. I like it!]
- Autonomy: mining barges should have proper cargo holds so they not always have to rely on jet cans [Yes! Goodbye can flippers.] (without turning them into industrials however). [agreed] That means giving them large, specialized ore bays where all the ore will automatically go into when mining. [Like an Orca? Took them long enough.]
As a result we thus get:
- Resilience: another point is to give some of them proper EHP not to be one-shot by anything that even remotely sneezes on them. [Make those Hulkageddoners work for it! Hard work for everyone!]
- New ORE frig: we want this ship to replace current mining frigates as low barrier of entry vessel, but also fulfill high-end gameplay expectations by providing a very mobile platform for mining in hostile space. Lowest mining output, decent ore bay, little to no resilience. [Interesting. I'll have to see it in use. Could be a lot of fun to fly.]
- Procurer/Skiff: primarily made for self-defense. Better mining rate than the ORE frig, good ore bay, but capable of having battleship-like EHP. [Battleship EHP for the win.]
- Retriever/Mackinaw: made for self-reliance. Has the largest ore bay, similear to the size of a jet can, second best mining output but less EHP than the procurer mining barge.
- Covetor/hulk: ore bay is identical to its current cargo hold, little to average EHP, but best mining output. Basically made for group operations when players have industrials and protection to back them up. [I like the way they are restructuring from skill acquisition to increasing industrialist roles. This is key! Large box stores need a fleet of large capacity trucks for their business to work. My company does not. We need smaller vehicles capable of multi-stop local delivery. They all take approximately the same skill to drive. Having mining barges built for role and not pilot skill is a huge step forward. Way to go CCP Ytterbium and the rest of the dev team!]