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Friday, January 28, 2011

Missions, PI and Ice and T2

Getting things underway again can be a bit of a work up.  I've also realized I should probably not have gotten into PI on my main per see except as it is proving useful for getting the bugs out of the new mechanics for my alts.

Last night I got on but only wanted a relaxing evening.  It was my main's turn on the PI stuff.  I'm currently running a 48h extraction program for my two characters doing PI at the moment.  Each character's "reset" day is offset 24h from the other.  I also try to be mining or doing some hauling on the other character on the nights where it's time to do that character's "run around".  So I started off doing another L4 mission for fed customs in Azer in order to push the standings a bit higher.  That got it to 6.03 net.  I need to get it to 6.70 in order to have 0% taxes when I refine stuff in Azer.  so things are progressing. 

The next thing was continuing manufacture of T2 goods (I over purchased moon materials due to a spreadsheet bug I didn't catch right away since I was not paying close enough attention to it).  Then it was out to do some ice mining.  I'm trying to build up a buffer of POS fuel so when I decide to put my other alt's research tower up, one day, I'll have a nice reserve of fuel ready to go.

In other news I'm currently closely tracking all PI transactions on my main hauler alt's account (Zindal).  Zindal started this sting with his PI skills at 3/4/4/4/4.  I'm going to push the skill that allows for upgrading to 5 (in 17 days) due to the way that raw materials pile up on the plannets when making P1s.  The plan for him is that he's the "for sale" PI producer.  I'm curious as to the ROI on PI goods.  The plan is 2 planets producing mechanical parts and 3 planets producing oxygen and robotics.  I'm tracking all upgrade/investment/export/import and sales costs and revenues on this one.  We'll see how this works out.  I can tell you the initial investment was on the order of 30mil.  But I had made back at least 2mil of that by the end of the 2nd day (only selling mechanical parts and oxygen, the robotics needs an extra 2 days to gain traction).  The plan is to put up low end sell orders instead of filling buy orders since this is for profit and not just dumping excess inventory.

I finished the night off by doing some ice mining as I mentioned.  This went relatively well.  I managed to play a game of blood bowl with some friends while my two characters were mining away.  Only occasionally missing a cycle.  This time I got a full orca load of ice.  182 blocks of ice.  Lost the game of Blood Bowl (although it may help the rest of the season - I did some damage to that Skaven team).

I figure that once I smooth things out I may be able to plan around much less in the way of travel.  Both for picking PI materials up and for bringing to the market.  For now it's much more micromanagement.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

PI and Ice

As I didn't have a lot of time last night, I did some PI and some Ice mining.  To the tune of about 1.5h of ice mining and some PI flying around, the rest while I was ice mining.  My alt finally has his Mining Foreman Implant and was boosting quite effectively.  The cycle time was down below 4minutes.  This makes calculating things dead simple.  Basically a block a minute or 60 blocks an hour and the orca can hold 182 block... do zee math...

Meanwhile of course I perruse the forums and listen to various contacts.  Seems like the asshats have found a new method of griefing.  Get in a gang, take part in the remote rep web, gank some noob, everyone in the chain gets konkordoken.  Moral of the story?  Even if CCP puts in some form of support for pick up groups, ignore it, it's a trap.  Never ever ever fly with people you don't know.

Also since sites have a cap on the size of fleet that gets rewards larger fleets have been crashing smaller sites and making sure no one gets any rewards.  Personally I'd have advised CCP to simply reward the largest fleets (split the rewards for tied fleet sizes) that are under the limit instead of no one getting anything.  But hey, griefing for fun seems to be their design choice of the moment.

Advice for any new players?  Simply avoid incursion - it's stupid at the moment.  Also, from reports, the Sancha AI is aimed squarely at the 10mil+ SP (in combat skills) players who can work with other players of the same caliber.  Newbies need not apply except as lemmings.

Amusingly this is probably working out well in 0.0 space.  Instant protection for an entire constellation and since territory is usually controlled a constellation at a time.  The controlling entity can run the sites themselves under controlled conditions and reap the concord LP  for meta capital modules.

Also the overview is currently a little broken (can't remove neutrals from it).  I suspect tomorrow's patch will fix part of that.  PI and Ice mining are looking rather nice ATM.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Soul Crushing Lag

Well after 3+ years of trying, I finally hit some REAL lag.  CCP is kind enough to even have the client tell you that no, it's not you, it's the 1000+ other pilots.  It also serves a purpose by providing a link to the communications monitor.  Very nice.  Unlike the whines of "fix the lag".  I'm more cognoscente of the issues involved and realize that until they can split their physics engine up between multiple processors, the odds of lag above 1300 players disappearing are slim.

Last night I went around and did the "pick up the datacores" routine.  I really do need to get 2 more agents (aka get that skill to 5 one day).  Was a nice injection of cash.  Kind of offset the recent sprint of expensive skills I've acquired.

Apart from that I'm going to have to decide soon what I am going to do corp wise - stay in high sec and check out the Sancha thing or start making some investigations as to a potential corp in 0.0.  With a big alliance.  We'll see.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Been doing stuff

Well, now that the full patch is in, I figured it was time to check out the changes.  As you can see from my previous posts, I tried out the new character generator.  Got all my alts and my two accounts done and then re-done (even got a common theme going). 

I'm currently exploring the new PI.  Indeed it is MUCH less of a click fest.  Carpal tunnel is no longer a danger.  Also my main hauling alt is getting almost total maxed out as a Orca mining fleet booster (Foreman 5, Director 5, Warfare Link Spec 5, Orca 5, Leadership 5) I only needed Cybernetics 5 to get the mining foreman mindlink installed.  That will happen sometime tonight.  So I did a bit of mission mining and actually made use of my freighter to haul everything that needed to be melted over to a station I have perfect refines at.

I still need to work on my PI layouts and plans.  One thing that I think will throw a lot of people is the mix of units in the same columns on some of the screens.  For example when looking at the links table it shows incoming and outgoing links.  The problem is that the incoming units seem to be units per hour and the outgoing seem to be units per cycle.  Allow me to object to this strenuously as a stupid bug.  That's going to cause a lot of hair tearing and complaints on the forum for nothing...  *sigh*... I mean come on, this is "logbook 101" level stuff.

That complaint aside, one piece of advice I have for people with POS fuel chains is that you can always make a gas planet as your final manufacturing planet.  Just use one extractor for the oxygen and you'll get tonnes of space for the advanced factories to make the actual robotics (i.e. in high sec you could set up 5 planets: 2 Lava, 2 Barren and 1 Gas and get Robotics and Oxygen).  Ah well.

As far as development plans for Letrange ge, I've just finished getting Propulsion Jamming V (and incidentally picked up the Heavy Interdictor skill).  Stuff on my "Short List" include:
  • Frigate Construction 5 (Want to be able to build Jaguars)
  • Logistics 4 and 5 (Want to be able to fly a proper logistics ship)
  • Battlecruiser 5 (To get into command ships)
  • Anchoring 5 (to get Starbase Defense, so it's not just my alts that can POS gun)
  • Various navigation Skills to 5.
  • Shield tanking skills (need to finish a few things off)
  • Armor tanking skills (ditto)
  • Lowsec and 0.0 ore refining to 4 (so I can use T2 crystals on those as well)
So, that's the short term plan.  We'll have to see if I'm back for more than just a quick visit or if I'm really back.  If so I'm going to have to start shopping for a 0.0 home (going to have to decide which 0.0 alliance I want to hit up and would also accept a 58mil SP JOAT).

Friday, January 21, 2011

Updated new me

Ok, I've decided to do some light sessions to see how the new PI works out.  The latest patch hit and allowed us all a bit of a re-spec.  I decided to play with my cheek and jaw structures as well as the hair and adding glasses and changing the clothes a bit. This is what I got:

New Me Redux

I think that worked out a bit better than the previous attempt.  Glad they gave us re-tries.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Zindal looks coooool

Ok, so I reactivated my hauler alt (Gallente Jin-mei) and damn did that turn out cool looking.

I'm too cool for you

Fun with the new char generator, oh yea...

The new you

Out with the old:

Old Me

In with the new:
New Me

Amusingly I gave my Jita alt a Caldari station background... for what I hope are obvious reasons...  And all my scout alts will be getting shades.  I'll address my main hauling alt once I get that account re-activated when I come back (no not yet - probably after Incarna goes live).

Monday, January 10, 2011

Just a slight change to the right

I decided to mess with the gadgets on the right a bit.  Removed the not so useful profile (you get one profile per account instead of per blog and since my blogs tend to be about the avatars involved themselves instead of my RL identity, this is inconvenient).  At some point I'll get a Letrange picture in that spot.  Probably after the new character generator gets installed and Letrange's new look gets created.

With 500+ blog posts I figured it was time I put in a search gadget.  For fun and giggles put in "Thrasher" and see that I've written previously about the Minmatar Destroyer.  This should help diving through the mass of older posts for interesting nuggets.

CK missed one

Occasionally The Mittani comes up with some seriously insightful posts in his "Sins of a Solar Spymaster" series over at Ten Ton Hammer.  CK missed this one.  Go read it.

Is there a crysis of choice in EVE online

As an aside - although it's a very Goonswarm perspective on EVE online this series should be required reading for all new alliance leaders.  Probably even some old ones.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Thrasher - Glass Cannon fit

A few have inquired about my Thrasher fit so here it is:

Glass Cannon

For the EFT mavens:

[Thrasher, Glass Cannon]

Gyrostabilizer II
Gyrostabilizer II

Sensor Booster II, Scan Resolution
Sensor Booster II, Scan Resolution
Tracking Computer II, Tracking Speed

280mm Howitzer Artillery II, Republic Fleet Depleted Uranium S
280mm Howitzer Artillery II, Republic Fleet Depleted Uranium S
280mm Howitzer Artillery II, Republic Fleet Depleted Uranium S
280mm Howitzer Artillery II, Republic Fleet Depleted Uranium S
280mm Howitzer Artillery II, Republic Fleet Depleted Uranium S
280mm Howitzer Artillery II, Republic Fleet Depleted Uranium S
280mm Howitzer Artillery II, Republic Fleet Depleted Uranium S

Small Ancillary Current Router I
Small Targeting System Subcontroller I
Small Projectile Collision Accelerator I

Fit discussion:

I was playing around with rigging this last night.  Basically without an ACR there is no way to put projectile rigs in.  Un-rigged there is less than 1 PG left.  In order to fit 2 Projectile rigs I would need to push Projectile Rigging to 5.  Well I'm on sabbatical, I will at some point.  The idea is to lessen the PG impact of the Projectile Rig penalty.  For this fit to be able to have 2 projectile rigs I need exactly level 5.  Level 4 is still not enough to fit 2 projectile rigs.  Even then there will be only 0.96 PG left.  So although I could fit something in the 8th high right now - I probably won't.  The Targeting System Subcontroller is used to increase the scan resolution, increasing  locking speed.  I had a real internal debate between that and a Low Friction Nozzle Joint in my head but decided that decreasing the time it takes to lock up an enemy for a ship like this was more important.

Basically there are 3 ammo types one would want to carry in the cargo hold of this ship at all times:  Tremor S, Quake S and Republic Fleet Depleted Uranium S as well as all 6 scripts for the mids.

The 3 loading patterns would be:

  • Tremor, Targeting Range, Optimal
  • Quake, Scan Resolution, Tracking
  • Dep U., Scan Resolution, Tracking
The travel loading is the Dep U.  This is because while traveling the chances of running into something at short range increases.  If it's withing 25km of you, you can usually insta-lock a target thanks to the massive scan resolution boost provided by the turned on sensor boosters (you did turn them on while in warp didn't you?).  You can then unload with an alpha of 1182 damage (and my skills aren't totally maxed out for this although I'm getting close).  Tracking is nice at .193 under these conditions.

If you suspect you're going to run into cruisers or heavy drones, it's time to up the damage and go Quake.  With my skills I get 6.5km, 1798 alpha and .120 tracking.  I compared quake with Rep. Fleet EMP, which gets 12km, 1773 alpha and .160 tracking.  But since the idea is to land close to the target that's probably not moving too much yet I figure the quake is the better choice, allthough it can be argued that the extra range and tracking for a few points of damage make the Republic Fleet EMP a better choice tactically.  

If you know you're going to be able to engineer a ranged engagement, you should go with the Tremor load out.  With it you can target out past 80km and with a 46.5km+13.5km=60km engagement range you can reach out and tickle someone at a decent distance with an alpha of 1027 @46.5km.  The tracking is a paltry 0.030 though so if they get close you're toast pending an ammo change.

Once I get my Projectile Rigging skill up to snuff (level 5) I'd replace the TSS with a Small Projectile Locus Coordinator and get an extra 5km engagment range.  

Note that this fit is all about the shock value of it's alpha and range.  It can vaporize T1 fit frigates and 2-3 shot T2 frigates.  It's all about panicking the enemy.  It's also the canonical wolf pack fit.  A squadron or two of thrashers fit like this can lay down an awesome amount of hurt very cheaply in a very short amount of time. It's an eggshell armed with a sledgehammer.  Tactically it's an ambush predator or a wolf pack predator.  With a 4.17 seconds zero to warp speed it's no slouch at getting to and from warp either.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Advanced Weapons Upgrade 5

For those new to the game, the significance of the skill in the title and specifically the level 5-ness of it may seem to be a little strange.  For the long time EVE player they know exactly what it is and what Milestone it represents.  I have wanted this skill to get to this level, literally for years.  This is the fitting skill that will allow me to fit the canonical Glass Cannon Fit for a Thrasher.  This is the skill and level that will unlock the Marauder skill (still need to get Minmatar Battleship 5 to fly an actual Marauder but *shrug*).  So even though I am still on my EVE vacation, it is worth noting it's acquisition.



Right, going on...

I'm about to enter a section of what I like to call "Backfill" on my skill plan.  This is where I go over various skills that I've skipped over in my quest to get my "main plan" skills in place and plug the holes I've got in my character development.  Some EW skills, Finishing off Frigate Construction 5, Getting Propulsion Jamming 5, Finishing off some Navigation skills (a Matari pilot without full nav skills, how embarrassing is that?), shield skills, armor skills, leadership skills.  I could go on but you get the picture.  The next few months should flesh out some missing sections in my skills sets.  I figure I've got upward of at least a year more to go before I even consider getting into a capital ship (outside the freighter of course).

Although I'm in EVE-online frequently.  I am waiting patiently for the new character generator.  It will be interesting to see how close I can get the new Letrange to resemble the older one once that gets to TQ.

See you guys at the next milestone.