Art by Major Sniper.
On July 16, a day after the closure of the final beta test, the developers of Eve Echoes hosted an AMA focused on the topic of corporations and alliances. Acknowledgement is given to YouMel Gaming, who did an excellent job of covering the vast majority of questions discussed in the AMA and eliminating the overlaps. The first half mainly deals with corporation specific questions while the second will focus on alliances. To give the Eve Echoes developers feedback or suggestions, you can join the official Discord here.
First up was confirmation that war declarations are coming to Eve Echoes, as well as more options for customized flags and logos, including the ability to upload your own. The devs confirmed that corporation name length will be increased to 24 characters from 14. Corporations will be able to form alliances at the launch of the game, and the up-front cost of starting a corporation has been adjusted to 220 million ISK, whereas a mortgage—the ability for an Omega clone to create a corporation with three months to pay off the balance, and all corporate tax going towards that loan—will be 3m ISK. While corporation wallets are negative, all corporate ISK will go towards paying off that loan, and benefits like being able to rent a corporate office are disabled. To get a better idea of how to create or join a corporation in Echoes, this video gives an excellent demonstration. Corporation contracts have been confirmed as well, though the implementation of corporation-to-corporation contracts is still to be decided.
In the second part of the AMA, concerns were brought up about the limit of ten corporations per alliance. The developers assured players that they plan to expand the alliance size, but did not give a specific number. Another point touched on was alliance chat, since at this point in Echoes, only corporation chat is available when it comes to groups. Currently, the servers cannot handle 2000 people in chat, but the devs want to make this possible in the future. The next several questions were about whether alliances will have shared wallets, hangers, and if ISK can be transferred between corporations. The answer to all three was no, but it was confirmed though that ISK can be distributed to members in a corporation for ore buyback programs and such.
Alliance executors will need to pay two million ISK per corporation each week, or the alliance disbands. To help the executor corporation pay the fee, other member corporations can send their ISK directly to the CEO of the executor corporation. Corporations themselves will not have an upkeep fee, just office rental fees to be determined by how many corporations rent an office in the station. The cost of constructing corporation stations is still to be decided. While it is currently not possible to change a corporation’s name after its creation, this will be possible in the future. The developers have already confirmed that sov and colonization of 0.0 will not be available at launch.
For those seeking to make industry corporations, the devs confirmed they there will be corporation skills relating to this activity, along with resource bonuses on their stations and other corp-related functions to be added in the future. Details on Echoes sov were revealed for the first time, with confirmation the system in Echoes will be based around corporation structures. It was confirmed that capitals will eventually be implemented, but it remains to be seen how similar they will be to Eve Online.
Regarding corporation structures themselves, the devs acknowledged that they have a lot of work cut out for them for this project, and will need more discussion among themselves and the community. Currently, there is one structure players can build: the Capsuleer Outpost, a structure unique to Echoes, which can be bought by a single player and is only deployable in low and null sec. It is designed to be a home base for explorers and their friends, and can also be equipped with modules. During the final beta, at least one person was able to set up one which they recorded here.
Structure fuel costs were quite intimidating in the beta, which the developers assured would be toned down at launch. The developers also hinted that structures will help with planetary interaction, but this would be revealed at a later date. It was also confirmed that attacking/reinforcing a structure would work much the same as it does in EVE Online.
Fleet size in the beta was notably small, with only 10 people per fleet. The devs stated that a “joint fleet” will be available at launch that allows up to 50 people. Lastly, with high security space being a no-PVP zone unlike Eve Online, there have been concerns that corporations will chose to hold all their assets in high security or use it as a staging ground to launch attacks at their enemies in low or null sec with impunity. War declarations in high sec are being discussed as a possible solution, and PVP players may be disappointed to learn that killboards and an API will not be implemented at launch and are not a top priority.