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Friday, October 30, 2009

And I finaly get Metallurgy V

Last night I logged on and found my char not training anything - I had lost track of the fact I needed to put something after that 12 day skill. Ah well these thing happen when you get to the long ones. Watched pot and all that.

The skill that had just finished up was Metallurgy V. Now you may wonder why it took me over 2 and a half years to get that one. Jack of all trades. This one unlocks quite a bit on the indy front, first and foremost that scrapmetal processing skill (which I immediately jammed in the queue) which will allow me to setup module buy orders with great confidence that I'll be able to melt the resulting modules into more valuable minerals (why else do it?).

The other thing it unlocks is a whole bunch of material research on such BPOs as oh say T2 components and what not. That eeeeebil protoype cloaking device that has been staring me in the face and laughing at my puny research skills. I will be able to get it to 20/20 now.

Not to mention get the specific T2 component BPOs to perfect for the components that the cloak uses.

Now it's time once again to get back to combat skills. I really need to finish getting some T2 drone skills up to IV, and get the missile section of the skill tree up to snuff. I'd like my stealth bombers to actually be able to launch bombs and all that.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Reverse Engineering

Well I'm finally at the end of my reverse engineering stint. Now I just need to get two more Melted Nanoribbons and my Loki will ride again. This time I think I'll have separate fits for when I go for solo plexing vs team plexing. Hopefully this will free up some time to nail some sleeper sites over the weekend. So far for my loki production I have "coverage" for 3 of the 5 subsystem types. I even got lucky and got a 2nd BPC of the Loki shield subsystem (usefull). The next week should see me concentrate on running sites/mining and recruiting.

I've put a stop date for existing research at the POS so once the last thing finishes up it'll be time to pack up the POS and get hunting for a new wormhole.

Monday, October 26, 2009


(yes it's a word, go look it up...)

I got thinking. Very dangerous I know. We're currently going through a slow period for both blogging and EVE content in the media. A bit annoying if you like reading about EVE but the truth is we're in the pre-patch doldrums pretty hardcore at the moment. Even if, as a pilot/corp/alliance planing on continuing with wormhole space regardless of what happens in 0.0 space come December first, there is not much directly that will affect me and mine one can't help but be affected by the hopes and expectations of the rest of EVE.

Lets see what we know, bit ticket items first:
  • Sov changes
  • Super cap changes
Then there's some minor but interesting things:
  • Planets look revamp
  • Stars
  • Faction and Pirate ship re-balance
  • Fleet finder
  • New mail client
  • Moondoggie (in game browser based on chromium)
  • Projectiles adjustments
Lets go over the two major itmes, using our crystal ball and see where we're headed. I'll save the rest for future blogs.

Sov changes

This is the big one everyone is holding their breath over. What we know for sure so far is that they are doing away with POS being the space holding mechanism. What we know about the new mechanism is that there are going to be 3 major features to system sovereignty. There are claim markers - these can be anchored anywhere. I figure right in front of an offensive death star will be the common spot. Why offensive you ask? Simple because you want to shoot the people coming to kill your claim marker. Even if you're offline your POS won't be (it will work better with POS gunners obviously). This in itself will just about guarantee that dreads and carriers will be involved in any serious attempt to take system sovereignty away from someone else. Sure you can disrupt their claim and slam their system down to it's base values but actively removing them will involve cap fleets. Plan accordingly.

The second major feature will be the system hub. Still no clue where this will be located and defenses it will have etc... But the idea is by working on this item you can improve what spawns in your system and therefore what you can extract from it. This will also include things that will enable you to anchor modules like cyno jammers at POSs in the system. So the system hub will be something of high importance for any system which is intended to be exploited. Of course we still don't know the level of concentration that will be possible and the costs yet. We'll have to see how this develops.

The third major feature will be claim disruptor modules. Apparently these need to be anchored at all gates in a system in order to make a flag vulnerable to being attacked. We'll have to see how these work in conjunction with the flags to control sovereignty in a system. The initial thought is that it will make defense of hub systems easier than dead-end ones. We'll have to see how it all works out.

Supercap Changes

The Titans are loosing their existing "kill all the small fry" weapons and getting a "Exterminate that one ship NOW" button. Motherships are becoming Supercarriers and gaining fighterbombers - an anti-capital ship type of fighter drone. Look, we've already established that claim markers will probably be established at deathstar POSes (I'm pretty sure they would be less well defended at other locations). A bunch of POS gunners at such a POS would probably make mincemeat of any sub-capital fleet that attacked, so any serious attempt to dislodge a sov-holder will involve dreads. Which means that counter dread defensive fleets will be called for. This is where we'll see supercaps involved. I suspect that we'll see supercaps involved whenever a cap vs cap fight develops.

The impact of it all

This is the big question. Have a conversation with any high sec resident with 0.0 aspirations and they are pinning their hopes on this expansion providing them with the opportunity to head to 0.0. The fact is that most current large alliances may have industrial stumps but the truth is that they are 90% PvP due to the need to blob in 0.0 warfare.

The theory here is that sovereignty will equate to income for the alliances. The current reality is that moon mining equates to income for alliances.

I fail to see how this will translate unless they make moon mining part of that sovereingty. The truth is even with the changes to the relative value of moon minerals, moon mining will still account for 90% of a 0.0 alliances income. Throughout all these changes I have failed to spot any part where there are any changes to moon mining and it's mechanics per see. The truth is that moon goo in the aggregate will be just as valuable as before. The value will be better distributed amongst the moon minerals but the value itself does not look like it will change significantly. This means that an alliance will still control as much territory as it can in order to provide lines of communication between it's critical moons. Basic sovereignty does not look like it will be too expensive. So I think we'll see plenty of large alliances do the land grab thing again. The smaller entities will simply get squashed by roaming steamrollers keeping the space lanes clean between the moon systems of major entities. They won't care about developing those areas but they will care about what they will see as encroachment on their moon mineral webs.

The supercap and POS invulnerability changes should make things interesting however. All supercap yards will be permanently vulnerable. Roaming battleship gangs no longer face instant decimation at the hands of a Titan. I think we're going to see more roaming gangs. I also suspect that due to this we're going to see a resurgence of Minmatar ships on the PvP front as 0.0 becomes a game of raid and counter raid.

This is where the people wanting in on 0.0 action are going to be running into brick walls. They are going to go in thinking "I'll just go grab this quiet system over there and no one will notice". The big alliances are then going to go: "sure but pay us this much per month or we come visiting". At which point - probably a month or two down the road, we will see a new exodus back to high sec. It should however provide for a chaotic action-filled month or two mind you.

Who knows, I may be wrong but I suspect that we won't see much population difference at the end of a couple of months. We'll have to see. In the meanwhile I'll be in wormhole space.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

New rig

Well, not much to report except the following advice:

When you decide to upgrade your rig to a 64bit OS (oh like say ... Windows 7 now that it's out), do yourself a favor and remember to export the overview and ship browser info BEFORE you remove the hard drives from the old computer....

That is all.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Nothing exciting

Sloooooow week. Most of the stuff I've been doing has been research/manufacturing related. Got to kill a few sleepers last night. But we're in the pre-update doldrums. The pew pew guys only really show up on the weekends. I had some RL stuff happening which cut my gaming down a bit. Nothing earth shattering this week on the test server. So not a lot to report.

On the flip side starting this weekend I'll be starting the recruiting drive for a few more mid-range/senior pilots for heading down to deep wormhole space. Next week should see plenty of action as I once again try to increase my iskies bunkers. Probably mostly thru mining. That seems to be the most consistent form of income for me.

I'm finding that disassociating myself from the high sec markets is having an interesting effect. I used to have a semi-passive income from manufacturing T1 modules for the high sec market. Semi passive in that the manufacturing and selling part are hands off while stuff builds/is on sale. The not so passive part was the manufacturing of modules/ammo/hulls as things sold out.

I've shutdown the store (just have the remaining stocks up on sale until they sell out). So there's much less call for my presence in high sec. I've been spending much of my time in wormhole space. I've been finding it... Relaxing...

The plan at this point is to poke my nose out in high sec and acquire some reverse engineering supplies to make sure I have BPC coverage for all the types of Loki subsystems. I'm getting close. I currently have 3/4 defensive, 2/4 electronic, 4/4 engineering, 3/4 offensive and 3/4 propulsion. Yes I've been making full use of my Experimental Laboratory (insert mad scientist laugh here).

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Loki up, Loki down

Ok, I'm starting to feel like Shrike (he of "lost 4 Avatars" fame). Finding the correct limits for the Loki is proving to be a "hit and miss" proposition. Good thing I can build these suckers for much cheaper than the market sells them.

I have once again lost a Loki. Once again to sleepers. Once again to pilot error. Note to self: When in a black hole system, your ability to allign quickly is seriously impacted. Once they are thru your shields 4 sleeper BS tend to rip through your armor in split seconds. Also learning to coordinate with a new set of pilots is always a bit tricky. Still I waited too long to start the warp out so my fault.

Basically I've started running class 4 sites with my new corp mates. Since none of us have worked together before there's always squadron fit issues and ship issues to iron out and work on until we get a good squadron together and things go without error.

The good thing is we went back and finished off the site without further incident (well ok my BW will need a bit of armor repair - but compared to the Loki that's peanuts). The good thing in all this is that the 3rd Loki was already built. I also have 3 of the subsytems for it. I still need to reverse engineer the defensive and electronic subsystem of the correct type to be able to build them myself. But having finally updated my spreadsheet of DOOM(tm), I finally have the costing on this stuff transferred over to a proper isk basis. It even includes pro-rated fuel costs for POS operations. Some interesting facts:

- At current Jita prices (at least over the weekend) all polymer reactions were actually profitable. Some barely, some were seriously profitable. YMMV, depending on the day of the week of course. Subject to change over time etc etc etc...

- The balance between the Wrecked and the Malfunctioning subsystem relics is actually quite good. Basing on a 33% chance for Wrecked and 66% for Malfunctioning, the prorated run cost of subsystems are surprisingly balanced (sometimes the wrecked is cheaper, sometimes the malfunctioning is cheaper).

- The above does not apply to hulls however. The per-run cost of using Malfunctioning Hull Sections is SUBSTANTIALLY cheaper based on this weekend's materials prices.

Anyways I really need to kill a lot of sleepers now. Fly it like it's already dead.

Friday, October 16, 2009

An Indy night

When we last left off, I had finally gotten enough materials to react some Carbon86. Overnight that indeed got done. I found myself, when I got on with enough materials to go forward with my plans to manufacture a Loki and some subsystems.

Now in preparation for wormhole living I've got kits of BPCs of the T3 components needed for each type of subsystem or a hull. When fresh a 20 x T3 Offensive kit will have enough runs to manufacture the components for 20 T3 Offensive Subsystems for example.

I decided to manufacture one of each of the few subsystems I had bpcs for and 2 hulls. The longest part of preparing for the hull manufacture were the 15 or so R.A.M.-Starship Tech tools i would need for each hull. The end result of all of this is that all 5 subsystems I manufactured are ready, the first hull will be ready Saturday afternoon. I had forgotten that hulls were 1day 11h manufacturing time. But I now have two hulls cooking away and should be back up to snuff and ready to go for sleepers and PvP in my Lokies. Much killing of Sleepers will be necessary though as the melted nanoribbons are now a wee bit scarcer in my inventory.

There was also a bit of pew pew operations. One of my CEOs got a wee bit over confident in his hauling skills and managed to get snagged by some pirates in low sec. Some lack of tackle skill on my part resulted in the Harbinger and the Broadsword getting away once the reaction posse got to the scene. Ah well practice practice practice.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

mmmm, cooking up a Loki

Due to various reasons, mostly the inability to string a long enough session together, I haven't been able to hit a Core Reservoir for a bit now. That all changed yesterday afternoon. One of my alliance pilots needed to vent his frustration at having a class 5 wormhole system pop next door to the Grotto. So he contacted me with a message on Skype while I was at work. Great now the two of us were frustrated. After checking wormhole durations and estimated spawn time (I asked him, didn't log on), I told him to schedule an op for when I would be getting back from work, since a good chunk of our gas miners would be on by then.

Further exploration revealed 3 core Reservoirs... Chomping at the bit I kept plugging away at work. Some coordination with the scorpion pilot to make sure he'd be online for the op and we were set.

After grabbing some food on the way home, I jumped in game and imediatelly grabbed my battleship after confirming that a corp pilot was at the wormhole to high sec (I was in a different wormhole system). Some scanning in the grotto itself revealed that I had 19 jumps to go to join them so I got a burn on. Some quick conversing while I was in transit allowed me to confirm that a matari gas mining vessel appropriate to my skill level would be ready by the time I got there. The POS owner just needed to re-purpose one of the salvage destroyers they had on hand.

By the time I got there the final strike force was gathered and in the final stages of preparation. Off we went to the gas sites next door. The strike force consisted of a Dominix, a Scorpion, two Drakes and my Maelstrom, with remote shield repping on the 3 BS. So we then tackle the 3 sites like a well oiled machine. Without the scorpion we would probably have been a little short of remote repping power for the two close range sleeper battleships. As it was we were fine and the two advanced sleeper battleships at the first and second sites went down by the numbers.

It turns out the 3rd site was bugged not having any gas or sleepers. Ah well.

Once this was all salvaged up it was time for the gas mining to begin. Plenty of battlecruisers with one of the 5 of us hauling with an alt and me in my loaned Thrasher worked out fine. My share of the 12000 units of Fullerite-c320 and 1000 units of Fullerite-c540 made the trip well worth it. Even the extra hour for hauling the stuff back to my current wormhole. Basically, at current Jita prices we made about 900mil in 4h between the 5 of us. Of course most of this is going straight into our respective T3 projects instead of on the market but that still represents 175mil for 4h of the op... each... or 46mil an hour. Note that except for myself who was further away, this includes most of the opportunity costs of an op like this (I.e. mostly gathering the forces). Well worth doing.

By the time I logged off I had the reactor going full blast getting me my carbon86. By tomorrow night I should have a Loki again. I may need to buy a subsystem or two off the market to get the exact fit I want on that first Loki, but I should be able to build a second one right away from stockpiles.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Learn a new thing every day

Or in this case figure something out. So yesterday I was left with the issue of getting all my ore to high sec, refined and put on the market. As luck would have it I have figured out how to use a trick of the map to see if I've got stations with perfect refines nearby.

The trick is to use the auto linker. Or your standings tab. Both work. Simply find a corp you have perfect refines at. Show the corp info sheet. Select the "Settled Space" tab and there's a button on the bottom. Punch it.

The starmap now highlights all systems with stations belonging to that corp. Combine this with the job of finding out where your wormhole has wandered to over night and it makes it easy to find out how far the closest perfect refines is. Which I did last night. One jump. Sweeeeeet. Some hauling later (with the alt's help) and... There we go all refined.

And that's how I shoved up 250mil-ish worth of minerals up on the high sec market. Since this did not take all evening I spent the rest of the evening mining a gas site for some c70 and some c72. Not the most remunerative but my gas bunker was a little low on c70.

Incidentally if you wanted to do an hour of reaction of each of the reactions you would need:

500 x c50
300 x c60
300 x c70
200 x c28
200 x c32
200 x c72
200 x c84
100 x c320
100 x c540

Note these are not the ratios they are used in. Just the ratios if you wanted to react 1 hour of each reaction. Useful for figuring out how much of each gas to stockpile.

Monday, October 12, 2009

I get my Mining on

It's been a while since I had a nice quiet class 4, plenty of time in front of me and undisturbed access to oodles of ore all at the same time. But let's back up a bit.

Last night I managed to do some ninja salvaging/codebreaking. Some corpies (yes I can say that now that the corp is slowly fleshing out) had run part of a frontier radar site before getting interrupted by some PvP. By the time I was around that had all died down and they were going to abandon the site to the BS spawns and log off. I decided to check it out... So after some scanning down of mining sites I got a copy of the book mark to the site from a departing member.

Cov-opsing to check out the situation I find there's a wrecked cruiser there... Well we can't abandon that. So I get thinking... humm ninja time. I decide that fast orbiting ab-ing t2 frigate is my best bet against sleeper battelships. So I refit my wolf a bit to be able to salvage the wrecked Talocan Cruiser. My intention was to salvage it to crack the "can" and grab the hull piece and run before the BS could a) splatter me and b) scram me. Since they were starting over 100km from the objective I figured I'd have enough time to get out of dodge.

As luck would have it... It turns out that none of these battleships agro frigates outside 100km...

blink blink...

So I get cracking on the 10 cans while I"m at it and do the entire radar site >:)

Of course as soon as I drag all of that back to the pos, a quick trip to high sec to get some missing datacores and I get some RE going on the malfunctioning and the wrecked hull piece. an hour later I have a shiny new 10 run of Loki. Mmmmmm Lokies....

The evening ends off with me mining about 11k of Arkonor.

The next day the class 4 has moved on and we're in a new one. The end result of this is finding a nice core deposit. This is where I get a good solid 6h of undisturbed mining in and get another 15k of Arkonor, 15k of Bistot, an incidental 25k of Kernite and 120k of Veldspar (for use in the wormhole itself).

Now this isn't much for some of the miners in my alliance who have been known to do crazy 14h mining ops but was still plenty sufficient for my immediate needs. Now I just need to get it to market...

Friday, October 9, 2009

I think I lost you guys on that last one


Did I loose you guys on that last one?

3 Spawns or 4?

Occasionally I run across a new site that I've never personally run before. So I check the alliance wiki and find out that although the site is partially documented it's not complete. The trigger and spawn patterns are not documented properly.

So I start running this one, updating the wiki as I go. Let's just say that everything is fine until the 3rd wave. Now most Perimeter sites are 3 wave sites. The 4 wave sites tend to be the more difficult Frontier and Core sites.

So I'm in a BC. and I've got the following third spawn to deal with: 1 x Sleepless Patroller, 4 x Emergent Patrollers and 4 x Emergent Escorts. Doable right? But the escorts are proving problematic and slowing me down such that I'm having issues getting under the Sleeplesses guns. So I start offing Escorts. Now I'm on the 3rd spawn and there are not indications that there would be a 4th spawn right? and even if so, the odds are only 33% that the escorts are the trigger for the next spawn.

Wrong! Last one goes down and overview fills with red... 8 more cruisers and 4 more frigates... Worse, I didn't spot the frigates initially and thought I'd taken out all the webbing frigates. For the clueless, one of the major methods of dealing with spawns is speed. Keep your speed up reduces the damage you take from missiles (including those incoming Phantasmata missiles). It also tends to reduce damage from bigger guns due to tracking if you're "under the guns". I'm still left with dealing with the following total ship count:

3 x Awakened Escorts
5 x Awakened Patrollers
4 x Emergent Escorts
4 x Emergent Patrollers
1 x Sleepless Patroller

A bit of armor repair at the POS later and some help from some alliance pilots later and that's all under the rug but still... Ouch.

Now for bonus points, which site was I running?

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Slow progression

Well things are progessing in my plans to go deep in wormhole space. Just 9 more days and I'll have reverse engineering on all 6 types of BPCs (5 subsystems and hulls) at a usable level. this means Reverse engineering 4 and all appropriate skills to 4.

My hauler/pos-gunner/pos-refiner alt is finally approaching his designated "hold up" point. What this means is that although there are other skills I could get for him, he's at the point where I don't really need to work on him for my current uses of his skills. It will soon be time to switch over to my hauler/researcher alt on that same account and get his skills up so he can research/copy the more advanced blue prints.

The entire weekend was spent with my main in high sec. I was doing the usual run around for datacores. This particular session was more amusing than most since at the first stop I got a storyline mission. This necessitated the imediate purchase of a Mammoth, three T2 Expanded Cargoholds and a T2 Inertia Stabilizer. 3 round trips later and the 40k m3 of cargo was transferred and the Mammoth and modules were back up on sale and I was just under 5mil richer. By the end of the day all the modules and the hull sold so it was well worth it. On the third stop, it was a courier mission two jumps into low sec.

Ok, look, I fly a Prowler. Low sec courier missions just don't scare me any more. So off I go. I drop off the stuff, finish the mission and head on back. Just as I jump thru the mid point stargate I come out on the other side with a -9.9 pirate 14km from me. One of Ka Jolo's boys. And of course he greets me:

pirate> Hiya!

Select desitination high sec gate. Hit warp to, cloak in sequence.

Letrange> Byea!
pirate> :P

Man I love blockade runners. Especially ones with Low Friction Nozzle Joints and Inertia Stabilizers. I find people tend to fit BR wrong a lot of times. Look There are two aspects to survivability in a BR. The first is the cloak. The problem with the cloak is that people can un-cloak you. This is why I fit my Prowler and rig it for maneuverability. The move and hit cloak trick tends to stop people from locking you up. But if they are quick and in an interceptor they could be close enough to move to your area and de-cloak you before you warp off if you're not nimble. Fit like I am I can usually warp off from a standing start around 4 seconds. Unless I'm horribly un-lucky I can usually get to warp in the time it takes an interceptor to get to me and un-cloak me.

If you fit your BR for cargo, you're missing the point of a BR. If you need to move volume thru dangerous space - use a DST, not a BR. A blockade runner is for small volume, high value stuff thru the most dangerous space going. The only exception to this would be back ops support where you need the volume for jump bridge fuel. THAT is when you fit for volume on a BR. It's the only case.