I am experiencing something rather unsettling, a net drain on my EVE wallet. For me, this is unusual, I spent the last four years in a (very) well run wormhole alliance and making ISK was a matter of organizing / finding a fleet to blow up sleepers or to farm PI / gasses, hacking sites etc. One can argue with CCP all one wants, the changes they implemented over the last year were a net bonus for us wormhole dwellers.
Now I left my hole and while my main character is in Noir Academy and hence flies only cheap stuff, its a lot of cheap stuff that I would like to have around me. Details are of course Op/sec but suffice to say that interceptors and bombers are on that list plus a number of other ships that need to be procured. There is a Ship Replacement Program – and I should figure out how to use it – but currently, each little interceptor, each new bomber or frigate is slowly draining me.
Oh, you say, you have alts! Make ISK with them! Easy, eh? Just run missions. Well, my main alt has zero standings with any NPC corp, I have never once run a mission with him. He would have to start at LvL 1 and while this is cute – I ran 2 lvl 1 combat missions and quite literally 1-shot each evil mob – its incredibly time consuming. The thought of grinding myself up to lvl 4 missions is not pleasant. If I want to play EVE, I want to play it on my main, shoot others with my mercenary friends. Alts are for off-time, off-fleet work and it should be easy.
How about industry? I actually have 2 toons that are technically quite good at industry but I have no idea where to start. I use them for mining in their tiny high sec pocket during my conference calls – I can manage mining while working on a different PC. Mining is actually enjoyable when the threat of getting ganked is (nearly) gone but of course nothing in EVE is ever safe (nor should it) and therefore, I use 2 dirt cheap Covetors to harvest my rocks. What I will do with the ore once I am done, I have not decided yet. Likely refine and export to a High Sec station for manufacturing, I don’t think I want to go through the hassle of building a POS (which I bought!) and do it all where I live. Wormholes have made import / export fairly straight forward but of course its a game of patience, there are days, weeks where no suitable route emerges.
For other sources of income, I am always surprised by folks who have “incursion alts”. Firstly, I functional incursion pilot better be decently skilled or he won’t survive the WoW mentality of “gear score”. The fits that are generally quoted for incursions are incredibly expensive and “blingy”, for DPS its a Vindicator, Nightmare or similar boat. Not only can my alt fly none of them (I don’t think he ever sat in a Battleship), I am really not in the mood to drop 1.x bn ISK on a ship to run incursions. I am sure there are cheaper ways of doing it but I am also not too keen of tying myself to others too much – if I want to fly with a fleet. … (see above).
So, that leaves exploration and as it happens, I have a fairly decently skilled scout somewhere at an undisclosed location. I had him with me in my wormhole excursions and the amount of ISK that one can make from analysis data and relic sites is pretty good, actually. Yesterday, I ran about 5 in a row and made ~ 50 mil, not earth shattering but its good enough to pay for the odd Covops that falls prey to a gate camp. It will not pay for a “ratting Machariel” or other expensive toys, or even T3s.
And the last, sad thing is PI. Yes, I run PI in high sec, my wormhole friends laugh even at the thought of it. The return on investment is truly pitiful. The planets contain a fraction of of primary material what they contain in nullsec and its even less the way I do it, set the extractors to 7 days and forget about them. Add to that that the POCO owners may decide on a minutes notice that they don’t want me to use their infrastructure and PI is getting less and less appealing. I honestly don’t know if I continue it, sure its free money (after the installations are all paid for) but the time spent on it is neither very enjoyable (PI management is a clickfest that gives me carpal tunnel just by thinking about it) nor is it profitable.
But hey, currently, its all good. My burn rate is high but once I worked out the ship replacement system, my ISK drain should be plugged. And I have a very decent buffer to burn through!
“My” kill of the week.