The upcoming Phase 3 release of Fractured Space adds significant improvements to the way the game is played. In this On Deck we’ll reveal the new features and upgrades you should expect in Phase 3 ahead of more in depth information that will be released in the next few weeks.
Crew members will now gain experience as you do. If you have a non-legendary crew member you can train them to become legendary by using them in battle. Each crew member will level up 3 times, each time swapping out one of their existing implant slots for a chroma slot capable of taking any kind of implant. When you’ve levelled a crew member 3 times they will become fully legendary.
The amount of experience crew members earn will be based on the game style you are playing; PVP matches gaining more than co-op. Solo games will not gain any XP for crew. It is expected that when playing in PVP you will reach the first crew level after around 20 matches, the second after 50 matches the third after 100. There is no restriction on how many crew members you can be levelling at once – if you have 5 crew in training they’ll all gain the full XP amount from your matches, so they will all hit that first level up after around 20 games.
If you gain a duplicate of a crew member you have in training it will convert to DNA as usual. If you gain a Legendary variant your crew member will immediately become Legendary, and you will gain a DNA bonus when you complete their training.
Implants Directly Purchasable
As mentioned with their introduction players will now be able to buy specific Implants directly. Three Implants will be purchasable with DNA each week at a cost of 1,200 DNA each. Duplicate Implants gained through Drop Pods will now burn for the 600 DNA instead of the current 150.
Which Implants will be available each week will be decided based on a combination of the most used and most desirable and the community will heavily influence which three implants become available each week.
All Ships Playable In Solo Mode
In order to allow players to get a better idea of the ship they’d like to acquire next, in addition to the Firing Range you will be available to use any ship, loadout and skin within solo play. There is no limit to the number of times you can use each ship or skin, but please be aware that ultimate skins do not give their credit bonus, and there is no reward for playing solo once you have passed rank 15. Similarly, crew members gain no experience from solo matches completed.
Mines in both Frontline and Conquest modes will now have a fleet of mining ships providing the resources that level up teams during the game.
Mines themselves provide 2 resources per second which will be counted towards the next level up for the team, however they will also spawn mining ships that, upon completing their run to a nearby asteroid will add an additional 60 resources to the team. If you intercept and destroy an enemy mining ship, those 60 resources are transferred to your team instead of theirs regardless of who owns the mine. If a mining ship returns to the mine after it has been captured by the opposing team, no resources are delivered so it is worth “clearing up” every enemy miner after a mine capture.
The effect that this will have on levelling up is that there will be an initial delay in levels being earned during the game, but if left without interference, the rate at which resources is earned will be exactly the same as it is now. Mining Ships are highly likely to receive further changes in the future, not least of all in tracking how many have been destroyed and by whom, but based on initial gameplay testing they’re a new dimension to mine capturing that broadens effective capture strategies in the game.
The UI, HUD and front end of Fractured Space are in the process of being rebuilt for better information delivery and improved navigation flow through the game. While that work is ongoing we are introducing several new HUD updates to bring in often-requested features to help captains.
One of the most requested HUD features, you will now be able to see at a glance exactly which face of your ship has taken armor damage, offering a warning when armor is broken.
Directional Hit Indicator
When you are taking incoming fire the screen will now highlight the edge (or more commonly edges) from which that fire is coming allowing you to react accordingly.
Ship Detection Indicators
Friendly ships and your current target now receive indicators at the screen edge giving you an immediate read on where they are. We recognise that this may be a hindrance to blink-players, so please consider this feature a work in progress that is due for balancing.
You need no longer rely on in game chat to get a feel for when your team has jumped to Gamma. In the run up to Gamma station becoming available, indicators will now give you a clear picture of how many ships from each team are present in the sector – apart from any enemy ships that are currently cloaked. After Gamma has been captured the indicators will tell you how many ships still have the Gamma buff active.
AI Captain Improvement
Anyone who plays in co-op mode on a regular basis will tell you that AI Captains, while they can be pretty brutal, aren’t exactly clever. In the first of many upgrades to the AI Captains they have received a brand new training package to enable them to be more ruthless with their use of abilities, positioning and team play. They won’t be a match for the very best players in the game yet, but they’re getting smarter. AI Captain levels (I-X) are being adjusted to reflect how smartly your should expect them to play.
No More Drafting Disconnections
The bane of the game for the past month, we are introducing a new system to deal with players disconnecting (intentionally, or due to a technical problem) during the drafting phase of the game. Currently, a disconnection at this point will collapse the game for all players, adding them back into the matchmaking queue. After the release of Phase 3 a disconnection will not stop the game. Instead, an AI Captain will take the place of the dropped player. If the player selected a ship before disconnecting the AI Captain will use the selected ship, if no ship was selected the AI Captain will take a Pioneer since it is arguably one of the best all-round ships in the game.
The disconnected player will be unable to join any other games until the one they abandoned is complete.
Initially intended for players new to the game the Base Commander replaces all crew audio in the game with slightly more helpful advice. Rather than hearing “Thousands of people died due to your incompetence…” which, according to our research players find to be somewhat offputting, people will instead get some guidance from the Base Commander giving better insight as to what just went wrong.
As this system evolves players will have the option to enable the Base Commander for specific crew positions only no matter what level they are, and future Base Commanders with different voices will be made available.
Missions and Medals are getting plenty of attention over the next few updates, the first of which will give an additional reward to players who complete Medal objectives. Taking the form of drop pods and credits initially, these rewards should add a little more value to those who complete Medals. Expect much more to come from this area of the game in the next couple of updates.
Daily Rewards Upgraded
“Yay, another bronze pod” said everybody, ever.
We’re upgrading the daily reward system to be just a little more exciting. There will now be 30 different rewards of increasing value that you can claim when you log in. Once you gain the 30th, the reward queue will reset and you can progress through it again. You do not need to log in daily to receive these rewards, the game will remember where you are up to and have the next reward waiting for you no matter how frequently you play.
Major Changes To Game Modes
Both Frontline and Conquest are getting a major change in Phase 3 that will improve players’ ability to get into action quickly. We’ll reveal these changes in much more depth next week as they are the headline feature for this phase.
Phase 3 is due for release in February and while the above list is looking very likely to reach the game there may be changes before the update is released. The full feature list will be published in the newsletter in the week of release, and full update notes will be available on the day of release.