Discovery will be releasing at the end of the month, and for those who regularly tune into our Twitch streams, you’ll already have a good bunch of information about it. But for those who missed it, we wanted to give you a run down of what exactly Discovery is, and answer some questions we saw in the Twitch chat last night.
Please note, all the information within this post is subject to change, the scenario is still in development and may change further before release.
What Is Discovery?
Discovery is a new Conquest scenario due to be released on May 30th 2018. This new scenario will be significantly switching up the mechanics of the regular Conquest into a far more strategical, and action packed mode. The scenario is based around a Zarek mining facility attached to a deep space ice field. Buried within the ice, the miners found a vast structure which predates mankind; this became known as the artefact. The other corporations began to take an interest however, and hired ICSR teams to seize control of the mining site…
One of the biggest differences with Discovery is the Victory conditions. No longer will the home bases be captured to win the game, in Discovery, you’ll have to destroy the enemy home base in order to win. The home base has been taken from Last Stand and will therefore have turrets to destroy and a core at the center, the team who successfully destroys the enemy core will win the game. This means players have much more of a reason to push into the enemy base as soon as possible, it also brings back the strategy of back capping which regular Conquest is currently lacking.
The Gamma sector is a large ice cave with a giant structure inside it. Teams will jump in and capture the sector in order to fire out a shockwave towards the enemy base, and gain buffs to their ship. The shockwave will deal damage to the enemy home base’s Core and Turrets, but you’ll still want to get in there and attack yourself to ensure the victory. With such a large structure in the middle of the sector, it provides a variety of different strategic options for combat, and far more places to hide or sneak up on your enemies.
The lanes within Discovery will see some significant changes, the biggest of which is arguably the placement of the mines which will no longer be a straight diagonal line, instead we’ve moved the mines in each sector to form a V shape. This adjustment in itself provides more strategic options from the get go, with some ships opting to go for the middle mine on the far side of the map and others opting to take the fight to the enemies first mine – where you decide to jump in will play a part in how the lane fights pan out. To add to this, the lanes are slightly bigger than they are in the regular Conquest map, however we do not have exact numbers to give on this just yet. One of the sectors has large structures within it which will provide decent cover options for all players, these even break line of sight from the middle mine. The other sector is more open, but still has a range of icesteroids to hide behind if you need to.
For the first two weeks of release, Discovery will be the only playable mode in PvP and PvE (excluding Last Stand). Once the two weeks has ended we will introduce regular Conquest back into the mix as a sort of “Playlist” which the matchmaker will select from when finding players. This means when entering matchmaking for PvP or PvE, you may be put in the Discovery scenario or the regular Conquest. The plan going forward is to release more scenarios like this which will be added into the “Playlist”, so there is far more variety in the PvP and PvE game modes.
Twitch Q&A Highlights
Q: Can I heal the base?
A: No, we feel this would make the match last too long.
Q: Will Daily/Weekly Missions still count towards this mode?
A: Yes, if there are any which would not work within the mode, they will be changed.
Q: Do we really have the players to make two PvP modes work?
A: Discovery will be rolled out as the only playable PvP mode for the first two weeks of it’s release. We will then add Conquest in to the mix to form a sort of “Playlist” which will be randomly selected when the matchmaker finds 10 players. So this will not be a new queue.
Q: Do ships do a flat damage to the core?
A: Balance of the core vs ships has not been finalised yet, more details to come soon.
Q: Will the new sectors have varying lengths?
A: Not right now, it’s a possibility in the future but there’s no current plans.
Q: What was the average game length during tests?
A: Roughly 20-25 minutes.
Q: How covered is the core?
A: At the moment it’s exactly the same layout as in Last Stand.
Q: Will Frontline be included in the rotating scenarios / playlist?
A: No, Frontline is not in a state to be played in PvP.
Q: Is the scenario going to be ranked?
A: No, this will not be a ranked mode.
Q: Is access to the enemy base still from FOB/Gamma?
A: FOBs will still give access to the enemy base, and at the moment Gamma 3 is the same. However, we are exploring ways in which to switch up the gamma 3 mechanic so this particular scenario is not a “G3 to win” type of deal.
Q: Will particle storms come back in this mode?
A: No, they need a little more work first.
Q: When’s the new scenario out again?
A: 30th May 2018 is the current date.
Q: Will discovery be a 3 or 5 player mode?
A: It will be 5vs5, like conquest.
Q: Are there Mining Frigates in the new scenario?
A: Yes, they’ll act as they do in Conquest.