TL:DR is that we are making Omnidirectional Tracking Links work like Tracking Computers. They will become active modules that can be scripted and overheated, and their bonuses will be as strong as equivalent Tracking Computers.

The fact that this decreases the overall power of Omnis (especially for gaining optimal range) is intended.

Sentry drones are obviously one of the more discussed weapon systems in the EVE community right now. This is not the only change we will ever make to drone mechanics, but it is a change we believe will improve the game balance.

Sentries are a weapon system with strong upsides and strong downsides, which is one of the best things about them from a design perspective. We do not want to homogenize them with other weapon systems. The downsides of Sentries, foremost of which are immobility and destructibility, require the weapon system to have strong upsides as compensation. However we believe that the best primary method to balance the upsides of Sentry Drones is through the drones themselves, rather than by giving them access to a weapon upgrade that is so clearly superior to competing modules.

The results of this change for Omni balance are that pilots will now need to choose between having excellent range bonuses and excellent tracking bonuses. Like Tracking Computers Omnis will now provide stronger bonuses to tracking than to range.
Omnis will now provide a bonus to falloff instead of just optimal range, for the first time increasing the utility of sentry falloff in people’s value judgements.

The Omnis will keep their same fitting requirements (a bit higher than TCs), will have a 10s duration, and will enjoy significantly lower cap use compared to Tracking Computers. They will use exactly the same scripts as Tracking Computers and Remote Tracking Computers.

We believe that with these changes Sentry Drones will still be very viable and popular weapon systems, and that the results will be a better set of choices for players to make when fitting and flying.
As I said above, these are not the only changes that we will ever make to Sentry Drones, so to assume that this means we won’t be willing to touch them again sometime in the future would be a mistake.

These changes will be live on SISI very soon for your testing, and we as always thank you in advance for your constructive and useful feedback.

[ Original Dev Post ]

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