Here is your first glimpse at some of the new content coming to DUST 514 in Uprising 1.7! In anticipation of the forthcoming update on 10 December, we’ve pulled together another big stats dump from the vehicle update. However, we’re not here to talk solely about numbers today, and you can check the out the sheets throughout the dev blog at your own leisure. We’ll aim to do a quick run through of changes that aren’t evident when looking at the stats, and some of the additions we made based on your feedback.
Death from above!
After we last announced the changes being made, some players were disappointed that some of the existing vehicle roles weren’t making it in to the first update. Assault Dropship pilots, in particular, shouted very loudly about it! So, we decided to use some of the extra time we had after the originally scheduled 1.5 vehicle rebalance to add the Assault Dropship role into the update. We’ve altered the unlock structure so you can get access to both Gallente and Caldari dropships sooner, with race-specific skills used to increase the effectiveness of your chosen race’s dropship (these will also eventually unlock race-specific assault dropship variations).
You’ll find the new skills in the sheet above; they provide bonuses to turret rate-of-fire and max ammo with the base skill giving a little damage buff as well. We’re looking forward to seeing how these perform. Death from above
That's My Ride!
Another issue raised by the community was the inability to lock vehicles, and as a result, having the vehicle you’ve just deployed stolen or a passenger slot intended for a squad mate taken up by a random blueberry. We’ve not been able to add a fully featured locking system in the time available but we did want to improve matters – so, we’ve added lock timers to newly deployed vehicles. As it stands today, no-one other than the vehicle owner can get into a vehicle for 5 seconds after delivery and no-one other than the vehicle owner and his squad can get into a vehicle for 15 seconds after delivery.
You’ll probably notice that the turrets have had more attention with changes such as increased splash damage for missiles, increased direct-hit damage for blasters, improved ranges, and various rate-of-fire tweaks. What you can’t see here are the various bits and bobs that have been re-tuned to aid aiming. Mounted turrets have always been somewhat tricky to aim and we have now extended some of the aim assist mechanics -- such as friction -- to the turrets to help make them more accurate.
To coincide with the finite turret ammo, we’ve have also added the ability to manually reload turrets in much the same way you reload light weapons. And when you run out of ammo you can head to your nearest supply depot to resupply. Small railgun turrets are now significantly more useful against vehicles than before, making them ideal support turrets in vehicle vs. vehicle combat.
Next on the list are view distances, and the issues vehicles have been having with them. We have identified the cause of what we believe to be the major problem in this area and have made improvements to it. There will still be some lag time between when you should see an enemy and when you do, as once he is in range it will take a moment to render him, by which point you will have traveled closer to him. However, overall you should find this improved so check it out and let us know.
Tearing up the road
Finally, one of the larger updates we’ve made is to the ground vehicle physics. The racial profile we’re using is that Gallente ground vehicles have slower acceleration and higher straight-line speed, while Caldari vehicles are quicker off the mark with slower top speed. This aligns more closely with their roles as shield-tanking skirmishers and armor-tanked bruisers. The LAVs have undergone some small tweaks giving them overall smoother power delivery, but it is the HAVs that have had the most significant update. Armor plates’ effect on acceleration should now be more evident as well.
We felt that the HAV’s were simply not yet enjoyable enough to drive. They often felt heavy and unresponsive and this produced more frustration than it did convey a sense of weight and power. Aside from the pure fun aspect, their low speed and sluggish handling also made it hard for pilots to react to the changing pace of battle. This meant they were not fulfilling their most basic functionality. Namely, to help break through entrenched enemy positions by destroying installation turrets, scatter ground forces and support infantry assaults by forcing the enemy to react and bring in AV weaponry of their own. Overall, HAVs are now a little more nimble, can get to critical battlefield locations quicker, don’t take damage from every little bump, and, hopefully, more fun to drive.
Right, that’s it from me for now. But before I sign off I hope you’re all as excited for 1.7 as we are. I’ve been informed that there are some more shiny new toys coming your way in this patch, so keep an eye out for Dev Blogs by CCP Remnant and CCP Supalette.
Enjoy the numbers!
UPDATE: We've addressed your concerns in regards to the vehicle respec plan scheduled to go live together with Uprising 1.7 right here in this thread.