There has much ink spilled about CCP announcing at PAX East that the summer's release will be named Odyseey and is coming out June 4th with these features:
Welcome to EVE Online: OdysseyBased on rumours, presentations, and interviews we know/suspect that the new "War Machines" are going to be faction battle cruisers from the empires' respective navies (more incentive to be in Faction War?), the changes to POSes will probably all be in the user interface and a couple new modules like a pilot hanger, the rebalance of "areas of space" will involve moo goo and possibly asteroid ores, new/more live events... and then we have the section called "Discovery Scanner".2
EVE Online's nineteenth free expansion, Odyssey, offers new tools for exploring the stars, challenges you to breach the unknown for adventure and rewards, and to face what lies on the other side. A re-imagined scanning system, intuitive navigation and new exploration modules will aid you as you search the heavens for your next conquest. Some will encounter sites never discovered before, and others will be confronted with intriguing tests of skill and resolve. Ample rewards await those that return from their journeys with ships intact.
THE WAR MACHINES
Forged by the lessons learned from countless combat pilots, the four factions will issue forth with the latest tools of war and re-designs of old favorites - ships as awe-inspiring as they are deadly.
Using this new system, more pilots will reveal the hidden secrets of the EVE Universe. Beautiful new visuals, customizable controls and new functionality have been added to encourage the adventurer in everyone. There is now more among the stars, enticing even the most experienced veterans to explore.
THE STORYLINE CONTINUED
The shared EVE Universe storyline continues to evolve following the Battle for Caldari Prime, with participatory events spawning unique player stories in two games at once.
A NEW "SPACESCAPE"
A rebalance of major areas of space from highsec to nullsec include changes in exploration sites, industrial resources, some types of NPC loot and more…
THE LITTLE THINGS
Continued development towards raising accessibility without removing functionality will bring dozens of changes to player-owned starbases, game UI and beyond.
A "new system"... does this mean replacing the probing system? That would be unfortunate as I really like the balance the probing system gives between requiring player skill and being deterministic. Its one part of the UI I on't think needs replacing. Or is it a new system entirely, something to replace or augment the On Board scanner... perhaps finally moving all asteroid belts to sites requiring a little probing down? As for the bit about "more among the stars" I assume that only means more sites, hopefully with more variety and interesting NPC AI.
Back to the other things.
If the rumours hold out to be true about the navy faction battle cruisers as the new ships, I sincerely hope they are tied to the exploration theme and have bonuses for scan probes like the Gnosis battlecruiser boasted on SISI a while back. We don't really need more beefier battlecruisers, but exploration battlecruisers... yes please. The Pirate faction newbie ships could be interesting but only if they are combat equivalent to Tech 1 frigs.
Overall this announcement hasn't made me jumpup and down with joy, but I'm holding judgement until we get more details about what these new ships and probing functionality are.
And yes, the expansion name is AWESOME.