Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Eve Online Adds a DPS Cap Mechanic

Several years ago, I proposed a DPS Cap mechanic, in order to reduce the amount of optimization in DPS gameplay.

Surprisingly, Eve Online is going to implement a similar idea in their new Citadels expansion. The cap is on the target citadel, as there is a maximum amount of DPS that can be applied by attackers during a battle. Extra damage past the cap is just absorbed and disappears.

The intention here is to avoid requiring larger and larger fleets, and to stop an arms race between fleet size and citadel hitpoints. Instead, any fleet above a specific size will be "good enough" to take a citadel. Additionally, the DPS cap guarantees a minimum time that the citadel will be alive in a fight.

There are some other interesting wrinkles. For example, the citadel cannot be repaired or "healed" by friendly ships. I think it will start repairing itself after some time passes, though.

The DPS Cap mechanic is different than the one I proposed. It's on the defender, as a defensive mechanism. So from the attacker's perspective, it's a limit on the fleet, not on individual ships.

Still, I think this is an untouched area, and we will see more experimentation. I think this is especially true for world PvP games where there can be a large disparity between the two sides.


  1. That is indeed a very interesting idea.

    Makes me think of how this would work if transferred to something like worldbosses in pve mmorpgs. Zergs would still be an option to make it easier, as it will leave room for people to die while the group still stays at max dps, but it allows smaller groups to be almost as competitive if the average dps is higher per player. It is still a slightly weird mechanic from an immersion point of view, but i think i prefer it to having the boss scale with amount of people nearby. That has never made much sense (apart from maybe singular occasions where he "drains power" or some such).
    It also means that you will never be HURT by having more people along, no matter how bad someone is at dpsing or staying alive it will never be the case that the boss was scaled beyond his contribution.

    Interested in hearing how exactly it will be implemented. Not playing Eve, so dont know whether it will be easy to track if you are keeping up with the "maxmum dps".

    1. That's an excellent idea. This would be a perfect as a world boss mechanic. It would make easier to bring people along, without trivializing the fight or causing it to scale excessively.

    2. Or, RNG forbid, we apply this to some open world dungeons.