Thursday, 13 December 2012

Day 181 : Don't You (Forget About Me)

It's been a while since I posted. This is partly thanks to the launch of Retribution, partly due to the real life chaotic business of December, and partly due the milestones I was yakking on about in the last post. I've decided to catch up by dumping a summary of the last twenty days in case anyone thought I'd vanished.

I nearly made a Blog Banter 41 post. Owing to the direction my thoughts took about representing aspects of capsuleer pod clones I ended up with the Quantum Leap theme music stuck in my head. I had to try all kinds of things to get it out of there and I couldn't even go near the blog without reinforcing it. It was the worst case  of tune-stuck-in-the-head that I have ever had. Even now I can hear it echoing in the far reaches of my brain, trying to inspire wacky EVE based spin offs of said TV show. In the end BB41 was superceeded by the BB42 premise (I will also attempt and fail to answer this) and I crept back. I ended up getting rid of Quantum Leap by replacing it with Don't You (Forget About Me) by Simple Minds thanks to it appearing in two films I watched in the same week. That's playing right now. Don't ask. I'm left with a lingering habit of trying to convert any movie or TV show I watch into an EVE based equivalent. I saw Seven Psycho's at the weekend. That worked quite well.

Anyway, back to EVE and all that stuff I've been doing when not suffering the whims of nerd mind.

The Milestones

1. Invention

I managed to get an Invention run to succeed for T2 Hobgoblins on the third or fourth attempt. Typically the next three also succeeded. Invention is like buses. At least I've done that now and can just stockpile them until I decide to use them which won't happen until I've put more work into reading about T2 materials and Planetary Interaction production chains. I've put one of the BPCs into an auction contract which will fail and will be cycled until I find the price that they do move at.

Along the way I learned that Invention appears complex but in fact isn't once you bite the bullet and have a go. Some tips for fellow Noobs:

Datacores are generally cheap. I've a zero cost source of one type from a Research agent but the others are so cheap that if you are poor then a trip round the local system belts in hi sec will get you enough to  buy what you want. I was expecting datacore prices to be more extreme and I guess the cost mounts when inventing larger items like ships.

Meta level 0 items, normal versions, have no effect on Invention chance. I didn't notice this at first and its a boon not because you don't have the cost of the item but because there IS A FUCKING SHIT CACHING THING GOING ON WHEN FINDING THE BASE ITEM WHEN BUILDING AT A POS. Sorry. Had to get that out of my system. After dropping the base item in place (either at the POS or a corp hangar) the Invention dialog window still couldn't find it. This generated some classic internet nerd rage. I even threw something across the room and turned the TV on simply to have some faces to swear at.

2. Dough

I made my billion. Within a few hours a quarter of it had gone, then some more, then 100 mill pushed into my  next level of Industry experiments. It turns out that in EVE, as in RL, money is a lot easier to spend than it is to accrue. I was left with a huge gap in my finances and not even one new ship to show for it. I was rescued by in game events. I'll come to that in a bit.

3. POS

I managed to set up a research POS. It happened a day later than I eventually expected because I'd missed a single role checkbox in the Corp Management interface. I had to kick everyone from the corp to give the corp enough standings after the daily reboot to allow me to anchor the POS in the first place. You can only kick people twenty four hours after their roles have been removed. Thus missing one checkbox lost me twenty four hours when I realised I couldn't kick one of our members.

Before I forget : Thanks to Jax, AJ, and Dave for putting up with the kick/invite thing while I sorted this out.

Currently the POS only has a single lab anchored to it and doesn't really make financial sense in terms of running costs. The costs don't matter, it is nice to have completed the milestone and worked through the process of anchoring and fueling it. Let's face it, it is also a great feeling to have my own bubble space tower in a game. The best thing about it is escaping the infernal queues for high sec NPC research slots. I've managed to use it to kick off a couple of industrial experiments.

During the process of anchoring the POS I ran across a couple of damaged POS gun modules hanging in space damaged with no parent POS in sight. When I had time I went back and AFK repaired them, the first with a battleship and the second with a Retribution boosted Exequoror and drones. It took a while but I was watching TV for the most part. The worst bit was where I trusted the rollover figures which claimed 100% structure when in fact there was a tiny sliver of red on the target readout. I had to return with hull repairers before I could unanchor the things. The best bit? The look of my cruiser and five repair drones washing the broken gun with their armour repping aurora borealis.


I had a lot of plans for Retribution, mainly involving drone ships. I was going to experiment with the Tristan as a 5 drone frigate. I was going to try a comedy Tristan fit that involved dropping a sentry drone, orbiting it and repairing it. I was going to try out the new drone based destroyer the Algos. Greed got in the way.

On the day of launch the server was up faster than expected. I patched and logged in from work during lunch, grabbed copies of various new blueprints and put them straight into manufacture. When I returned home I flew the result to Dodixie and dropped them into the market at something over 2000% profit. They sold like hot cakes. I was selling the new Corax destroyer for 28 million. I was selling the Salvage drone for 1.7 million PER DRONE (somewhere in the region of 30 times its production cost). As supply increased and demand was sated the price began to fall but I'm still making a profix on the odd Corax hull nine days after launch.

Around this time my next industrial experiment reached the point where it I'd finished gathering materials from buy orders. I gathered up the purchased materials and put them into build. I ended up with 100 Small Ancillary Current Routers. Given the rush to fit all the rebalanced ships I couldn't have picked a better time. At one point they were selling for 2.5 million in Dodixie. Small rigs. I kid you not.

I've been branching out and researching more markets as I go along. Industry is going to be my mains background source of cash while PI and mining remain on the alt. Hopefully I'll be able to bring them together to push some form of T2 production, even if only for my own supply.

I feel oddly guilty about all this industry experimentation but it is all designed to get me into combat ships more often in the New Year. I have done some flying. Well I've done some exploding anyway. I went grave robbing in Old Man Star after missing the CCP fleet. I think I came away after two ship losses with about 14 million in profit. I didn't kill anything of note, just one guy in a noob ship whose character name annoyed me into activating the guns.

Money, money, money. I'm fISKated. At one point I found myself hanging outside a trade hub scooping up  the drones after fights and running away. I reckon there are millions to be made there on a busy night. I'll be trying it again. Given the tactics look out for a ship called Kingfisher or, more likely, Magpie.

Abandoning the lust for cash I tried out the Algos. I scanned down an easy  Serpentis site and warped in with my alt who could mine the area out. I found the site already active. Oddly though the pilots involved were just mining out the first room and had ignored the second. I sent my alt back and went to test out the drones in PVE. I'd heard some bad things about the AI upgrade. Sure enough the drones took a lot of aggro and I had to return one of them which was taking a pounding but I managed to clear the area. I then cleaned up by dropping a full group of salvage drones and cleaned out the place in record time. As a bonus a rare Serpentis ship spawned (not that I noticed at the time, I was managing drone combat) and dropped a Low Grade Snake Beta implant. I managed to sell the implant for 33 million. More dosh. Speaking of salvage drones, take one with you instead of one of your combat drones when hisec mining, you won't regret it.

Why am I going on and on about cash? It kept me busy, my own greed for pixel pennies seems to entertain me, and even more amusingly I was doing nothing you couldn't have done with a character that was a month or two old. No extreme combat, I've only got Production Efficiency IV, and you can start making a profit out of building rigs with some very basic trade skills and no material research at all if you pick the right ones.

Now that all that cash grinding is done, it is time to start fitting some ships and getting into some scraps. Retribution has raised the number of active pilots online (100+ in Algogille is no longer unusual for example) and caused them to fight more. The new Crimewatch is excellent. The new graphics are excellent. The camera control is excellent (and takes the hassle out of dscan, OMG the dscan ease). T1 ships are excellent. It's basically all good. Over the next couple of weeks I should build up an array of frigates, destroyers and cruisers to be very, very bad at PVP in, hopefully including a couple of the odd ideas I had before the expansion came out.

EVE Track of the Day

None. Don't talk to me about tunes stuck in my head all day. Ok?


  1. If you intend on running that high sec pos longer I highly recommend to move to a faction version. It is not fun to kick all character again later. Our first POS was a large Amarr tower and we thought it was too expensive to go with a faction one... but that tower stood there for about 3 to 4 years. At least now there stands a nice fuel consume reduced tower.

    The T2 production is a little bit complicated since you need a lot of stuff. Next to the T2 components there are also some PI parts to throw in.

    I don't think you will get much money for your T2 BPC of that hobgoblin. They are just too easy to produce and it isn't worth setting up the production chain for one of those.

    And yes, DC numbers ramp up a bit with ships. Cruisers take 8, BCs 16, BS 32 and Freighters (getting JFs) needs 64 of both types. And the success rates go down to somewhere around 25%.

  2. I think the description you are looking for is "ear worm." Sorry that particular ear worm bored into your head. I know it was pure torture. FYI, I always find a few repeats of the song Popcorn ( deals effectively with most ear worms. Be cautious though, if overplayed it too can become an unwanted parasite.

    1. Earworm eh? Sounds apt. Reminds me of that thing Khan put in Checkovs ear.

      As for the replacement song. I do try that trick. My usual one is Jeff Waynes War of the Worlds. It got subverted by odd film soundtrack synergy.

      Arghhh I can feel it creeping back!

  3. Dangit, leave it to a noob to remind a year old vet that meta 0 items are not required, nor help, invention chances. I've been making T1 mods for months and forgot about that. Well, thats changes my budget a bit.....

    1. A fresh set of eyes! I was lucky as the T2 blueprint required the meta 0 version as part of the manufacture process so the stock I built up didn't really go to waste. Not sure yet if this is a common thing.