The Federation Grand Prix Event is here and set to overheat some prop mods throughout March. For the next 12 days capsuleers will have the opportunity to race across New Eden and claim a number of prizes. Aimed at encouraging Alpha accounts to use the newly release Expert Systems, this event will give them a taste with the Interceptor “Grand Prix” System free on the first day of the event.
This event isn’t only aimed at boosting the popularity of a new update. It promotes other updates and an exciting Time Trials Contest occurring simultaneously. Capsuleers will be able to complete an “extra lap” and have their times recorded. The prizes for the Time Trials are substantial: The first-place finisher will reward receive 12 months of omega on their account and one of the newly released Thanatos Police SKINs.
On your marks
So what does the race entail? No need to describe it when we can race it! We grabbed an interceptor and headed straight for the starting line in the system of Luminaire. The event details for the Southern Route tell racers to prepare for at least 101 jumps through all types of space (which should be interesting) as pilots travel quickly between some of the new landmarks that have been recently added.
The first waypoint was the new Project Discovery Phase Two monument in Pakhshi. Three jumps – easy. It was not a bad first stop; the structure – representing our search for real outer-planets – is a beautiful and a well-justified addition to EVE lore. There we joined many capsuleers who had already dusted off their racing suits; then it was back out on the course.
The next stop on our trip lay two jumps away in Manarq. That leg of the race won’t be too difficult for most pilots. Then, we moved on to the next phase: a simple waypoint in Imya. Time to get those engines working! Earning one point per stop, capsuleers will need to collect points from 72 different locations to collect all of the rewards. No doubt, some smart capsuleer has already thought of a shortcut. With Imya done, we were off to Central Point and a trip through lowsec.
This event, besides being a great introduction to EVE for new Alphas, can also lead to Omega capsuleers collecting 15 new SKINs and a number of Grand Prix boosters. The Grand Prix Warp booster, with a bonus of 10% to warp speed, will be the difference between victory and defeat in the time trials. Another booster, with a 10% bonus to velocity, will undoubtedly be consumed by a few speed-orientated fleet doctrines! Additionally, a free 35,000 SP is always welcome.
The update also sees new Abyssal Proving Grounds with the Grand Prix theme. Pilots can now fight 1v1 interceptors with 100% ship velocity bonus, which sounds hilariously fun. New Police SKINs for the Thanatos, VNI and Dominix are also featured.
The Grand Prix looks to be one of CCP’s more interesting events – as well as a great way to encourage capsuleers to get out into space and see the sights.
As my Stiletto finally leaves lowsec for the sixth checkpoint, there are already hundreds of pilots out there flying a wide variety of ships. The Grand Prix would be a great permanent addition to the New Player Experience, so we’re off to see who finishes first on the podium.