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Eve Online developers detail in-game safety protocols coming in Retribution expansion

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

Eve Online's upcoming Retribution expansion includes new elements designed to make the experience safer and less intimidating, features that studio CCP Games detailed in a developer blog posted today.

First on the list is an option to "log off safely." This will allow players who aren't "doing anything dangerous" to log out with a timer that counts down to the moment their ship actually leaves the game world. The timer also allows for aborting the logoff process in case a threat appears during it. "This should ensure that you'll never (again) die because you logged out a minute too soon," said CCP.

The other part of the changes is a safety system — as in, the locking safety on a gun that prevents it from being fired. CCP felt that it has been too easy for players to accidentally get themselves in trouble with CONCORD, the in-game police force, by committing acts they didn't realize would draw the attention of the authorities.

With the new system in place, you'll be in control of — and thus, responsible for — any illegal behavior of yours. There will be two levels of criminality: "suspect" and "criminal." If the safety system is "enabled," the game won't let you do anything illegal. If it's "partially disabled," you can commit acts that would raise a "suspect" flag. And if it's "disabled" altogether, then you can do anything, even acts that would get you flagged as a "criminal."

When CCP presented Retribution to Polygon in late September, the studio said that it wanted to make the game less confusing and less obtuse, while shifting control and responsibility to players. These safety overhauls are a major component of that redesign.

Eve Online: Retribution is set for release on Dec. 4.

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