May my remaining two readers forgive the break in communication, I actually took a few days off to travel, take photos and ponder. Its been an interesting summer so far, full of real-life changes and adjustments and it looks like to shape up as a year that I won’t forget soon.
In EVE, when I go exploring, most of my time is spent on scanning empty space. Its now a little routine but I do query why I bother, other than the occasional T1 exploration frigate I virtually never see anyone I can tackle. By evolution, the remaining wormholers in EVE have become smarter (shedding the dumb ones into nullsec, I presume) and ratters either crush their connection for safety or rat in doctrines that my 2-character team can not attack. And thus grow my plans to do something different in EVE. Maybe PvE? I know curiously little about PvE in WH space.
We live in a C4 and I have 2 characters. Both of them fly pretty much the same ships and I tried to work out what it would take to run our own sites. Each combat anomaly generates about ISK 100mil but I would have to put two well-fitted Rattlesnakes (at least ISK 700mil each) on grid to be able to finish them. C4 sites are also notorious slow to run, so I likely will be able to only finish 3 sites/night. Given that the number of sites are limited in the home hole, I may only do this twice / month. In other words, for the ISK 1.5bn of ships, I would generate 600 mil / month revenue. And its not risk-free, of course. Other than getting dropped on, I could be stupid and lose a ship to rats or some an EVE bug.
The same calculation could be made for our neighbor C3. The sites are less valuable (45mil) but run much faster and don’t scram. However, scanning down a C3 and making sure its secure (no “safe” place in EVE) takes a lot longer. And the chance of getting dropped on is much higher, of course, so I really would not feel comfortable putting a lot of ISK into two ships and hoping that nobody sees me. Not sure if two Gilas can do them or two Domixes but I would hope I could build a ship for <400 mil each putting the total ISK on grid to be 800mil or so. I may still run three sites / night (due to the additional time required for scanning and rolling a good hole), netting me 3×45 = 135mil / night or 270 mil / month.
Compare that to PI where I can pull out 300 mil / month or so easy with two characters. Of course, I would have to log in each week to reset the extractors etc but I would not have to scan, scout or worry about incoming connections. Its basically 30min / week semi-attentive and risking a 2mil ISK Epithal. The remaining EVE time, I can spend on Reddit in perfect safety, chest-beating and badposting.
No wonder that the majority of WH players either run PvP only and plex their ships, log in an army of farming alts (am I the only one with only two accounts? Everyone else seems to have 5+) or just do PI.
In the end, I may just abandon that plan to run PvE by myself and find something else to do outside WH space. I recently ran a few L4 missions and while it is mildly entertaining, the dumb penalties for not taking suicide missions to Lowsec or crushing my standing with the other factions means I can maybe get 3 missions in / night before I have to start rejecting them. I tend to run those in a Dominix with a second ship of some sort just to make it faster. To add spice, I have tried to run these L4 missions in unusual ships (Jackdaw) which really adds a lot of complexity and interest. But even with that its too repetitive for long term activity.
So, lots of things to work out and explore during the summer. Or I could be outside and do something useful!
Edit: Since I am bad and know nothing about PvE revenue, I am relying on my spacenerd friends in Z3R0 Return Mining. Thank you @Evenstar for reminding me to add this disclaimer. I can show you how to use the scanning interface in case you want to help scanning some day 😉