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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Tidying up

After logging in, I was able to get my 4 fuel cube BPOs.  Researching at a tower it should only take 3 days to get those to ME:40 which is "perfect" for the cubes.  Then it'll be a matter of laying in a 2 week reserve while waiting for the exact date of the change over and plan on converting all existing pos fuel stocks to the new cube format after the switch over.

I wasn't really prepared for the new tornado BPO (not to mention my work hours conspire against me being able to truly take advantage of it).  But I did manage to do some flip and profit on Mexallon as well as sell 2 Tornados at a profit (one at over 200% of mineral value) so basically I was able to get my own tornado for free.  I'm not worried about the investment in the BPO since it simply goes into the collection and can be pulled out for use at any future moment in time.  Sometime in the next 3-5 days I should really make sure it goes into the research slots.

Otherwise it was a quiet Wednesday.  I fitted out an AC Thrasher last night and an AC Tornado tonight.  Should be interesting to use em one day.  In the meanwhile I plan on heading back to incursions to make back the isk I just used to secure that long term investment that is the tornado.  Being independent of the whims of the market is rather nice.  If I've got the time I can analyze whether it's worth making my own or buying off the market.

But on to incursions for the weekend.

The PI tax whine fest

The thin of skin may want to avoid the Science and Industry channel on the EVE-O forums for a bit.  We need some cheese and crackers to go with that whine.

Some observations:

1) this game needed some more isk sinks and reduced faucets.

     1a) The high sec tax increases on PI are part of the more isk sinks,

     1b) The removal of insurance payout on concord ganking is part of the reduced faucet.

2) There needs to be a balance between risk and reward.

     2a) you are taking little to no risk doing PI in high sec. - you shouldn't get as much reward as 0.0 or low sec.

     2b) there are 3 choices for more risk:  work with a 0.0 alliance, work with a low sec corp/alliance, work with a wormhole corp/alliance.  The people putting up the gantries get to control the tax rates.  Find one you can work with or create a corp that can do so and you can control that.  That's the reward for the risk of putting out the gantry and getting a customs office in place.

someone's going to need to run a detailed break even analysis on the amount of time it takes for a gantry/CO to make back it's investment cost in high sec tax equivalent.

Let's do some back of the envelope calculations:

a gantry takes a bpc (25mil)  71 P4's (using the 1350000 average that works out to 95.85mil (some are used for the gantry and some are used for the upgrade) and a capital construction part (say 5 mil to be safe with current mineral volatility) that works out to a CO costing you 125.85 mil (or probably slightly higher).  Say you arrange a P1 producing planet to make you on average 8-10k P1's a day.  Exporting that each day will cost you 400k to 500k in taxes (More - much more for a production planet where you have to import most stuff and export the end product).  based on some calcualtions I did for production planets they effectively earn twice the taxes (import materials followed by export finished goods - the volumes are such that it effectively doubles the taxes or close enough not to matter) so, let's say 800k to 1mil per day (as a conservative number). 

so if you have a virgin planet in 0.0 space you're effectively "breaking even" on your investment in about 4 months for a production planet and 8 month for an extraction planet.  If you need to replace the 17% interbus ones a production planet CO only has to survive 2 months and an extraction planet CO only 4 months IF only one character is using it.  Remember a gantry benefits EACH character that uses it.

Say you have a planet where your corp as between 5-10 characters doing PI on it? well you "break even" on your costs about 5-10 times faster .  Let's take an example of what I mean:  The gantry benefits say 5 characters and you slap it on a production planet in 0.0.  3 of the dudes use the planet as a production planet, 2 use it as an extraction planet.  That means that you should break even on that planet in about 7-8 days and that's low long the gantry has to survive to pay for itself.

Moral of the story: if you like to work alone you're screwed.  A corp with enough characters doing PI on the planets they slap gantries on should be able to justify the purchase and installation of the gantries in about a week to two weeks depending on the use of the planet involved.

Personally, if I was a CEO in a corp that has enough characters doing PI, I'd use corp cash to slap gantries up, put an 8% tax until the initial investment is payed off then reduce it down to 2-4% to pile up cash for replacement gantries (for those lost to ganking and what not)

This is hardly the end of the world people.

The first night of Crucible

So, I picked up the new Tornado BPO.  Just as I expected it was around 600mil.  650mil to be exact.  But that was hardly surprising based on the prices of existing BPOs  Baked my first one and flew it to market.  Put it up for over 200% mineral costs and it went in seconds.  Those who were more prepared are making a first day killing as these things are selling like hotcakes.  Holly cow.  Does anyone remember the short term impact of the Noctis on mineral prices?  You ain't seen nothing yet.  It was almost like there was a major war or something and the fleet replacement purchase orders had come through.

Yep that new font is going to take a bit of getting used to but it'll work.  Being able to tell the difference between certain letters like D and 0 is a nice feature to have (only took you like 7 years...).

They still messed up my plans to make fuel pellets but apparently this morning's patch to the patch will fix that.  Yay!

The Economic side is still reeling from the changes to the taxing structure.  I'm not surprised they did the change. The previous taxes were based just about strictly on the volume of the goods.  Now they are based on values pinned to market prices in November 2011.  Honestly they just cut into profit margins.  This is definitely by design.  Need for those new gantries to have value.  This shocked the less observant.  Big surprise there.  I think this is more of a case of the grognards being grognards than anything else.  It's the sort of bitching that CCP can safely ignore.  And it does introduce more isk sinks into the game.  Well played.

Production planets will need to plan their production out much more carefully.  You'll want to minimize the amount of import and export you're doing.  I suspect that P2 extraction planets will come in vogue again.  Interestingly if you look at the import export rates compared to the previous level's import export rates you'll see that once you get the product you want you're stuck using it's export tax.  P2's can be manufactured on single planets (there isn't one that can't be as I recall).  for P3's and above SOMETHING must change planets prior to manufacturing.  if you look at taxes on an item and compare those to taxes on the next lower level's item going into it, you'll notice that the lower down on the PI scale an item is the less taxes you will have payed overall if that's the item you ended up moving.  EXCEPT P0's.  Those are never worth getting out of the gravity well tax wise.

What this means.  I suspect there will be 2 types of extraction planets.  P1 types destined for the direct market of a P3/P4 manufacturing planet.  P2 planets are probably more inefficient total goods wise compared to P1 extraction planets but the end product will pay less taxes than if you'd moved the P1's from another planet to a production planet.  Expect end use P2's (those not destined to be made into P3's and P4's) to come from those planets.  For P3's and P4's you're probably better off shipping in all P1's to take advantage of the break in taxes afforded at the P1 level and then have a mix of processing nodes such that the end product you desire is attainable on planet.  I suspect this will concentrate the serious volume trade on the P1's and that PI goods that are not also end use goods will stay on planet as part of a manufacturing chain to keep import/export costs down.

You're going to say AHAH! what about Integrity Response Drones or Wetware Mainframes???  It still applies since you would have needed to move P3's and P3's can't be manufactured full chain on a single planet, so some thing (either P2 or P1) would have needed to pay taxes to make the P3.  Tough luck there.

The old gun icons are back.  Surprisingly it applied to all turrets including salvager and tractor beams.

One thing about the new nebula that is rather glaring.  You don't see any changes until you actually jump regions.  Since they are not preternaturally generated I can understand the need to do it this way.  But damn the region jumps are jarring.  Otherwise they are gloriously glorious.

As a mainly Minmatar pilot, I'm not getting the full effect of the V3'ing of the ships yet but I assume that will be on it's way for the next expansion (poor overworked art department - but they do excellent work).

It's too early to judge but so far this rather small expansion (they got this done in only 6-8 weeks for crying out loud, there were what? 20+ weeks between the summer and now?) seems like it will be judged as a mildly successful one.  We'll need to see if they can actually deliver an expansion worthy of the name for the next summer's expansion.

edit: gah! typos... sorry about that for any early readers

pps: if it looks like I spent a lot of time with a spreadsheet while flying around - the answer is yes I did.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Ah, THERE's the CCP I remember

"Fuel block blueprints will not be seeded on tranquility today"

"The new blueprints for fuel blocks, as featured in the blog Starbase happy fun time blog by CCP Greyscale, will not be seeded immediately after the release of Crucible. We are expecting that these blueprints will be seeded on the market in the next couple of days."

Thank you so kindly for messing up my travel plans.   It wouldn't be a CCP expansion without delayed features any more.

A relaxing break before the shiney

So, I did some PI (of course) and then navigated out to an ice belt over in matari space.  My alt had already been sent on afk ahead in the Orca with the Mak in it's cargo hold.  I know I know you're going to go "Let, dude, wtf are you doing mining ice?  You're making gobs of iskies doing Incursions, just buy the ice".  This is true but the incursions were down to 1 incursion last night and I wanted to pre-position myself for post-patch activities (BPO acquisition) and lay in a supply of matari ice for my alt corp's research tower when the time comes (I've pilled up quite a bit of BPOs that need research).  So I decided a relaxing evening of filling up the Orca with ice was called for.

I figure a 2-3 month run of research should get things slapped back into shape.  Need to research the bombs and a 2 BS BPOs and what not.  Getting my alt corp to do that (they're all T1 researchers) should make it easy. 

So by the end of the evening my Alt was back at my high sec base and the ice had been contracted back to my main.  My main was in place ready to rock once the patch lands.  And my other alts had done some PI work.  Fun fun.

Now I just have to survive the day at work...

Monday, November 28, 2011

I just realized

I'm a stealth blog again!  After getting dragged kicking and screaming (well no, not really, I just never asked to be put in a blog roll or a blog pack - that was never why I blogged) into the blog pack.  Twice.  I have finally regained my status as a stealth EVE blog.  I just noticed that EVEOGANDA doesn't have me listed in either the pack or the sites list.


/me cloaks up and slinks away.

p.s., is Rixx the new blogfather?  Did he actually kill off CK?  Where are the bodies buried?  Inquiring minds want to know.

Crucible Patch Notes

For your TL;DR needs:  The Crucible patch notes are here.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Not bad

After 3 sessions of Incursion and having run 34 vanguard sites, I'm up 310mil isk over the weekend.  Unless I'm totally mistaken that should make 45k ish Concord LP when those incursions finish up (if they do - no clue how that works).

This meshes very well with my 149mil isk investment in my Scimitar.  So overall I'm ahead 160mil which is rather good considering am now over 1b again and on the 22nd of November I was at 209mil...  Ah yes, EVE is like getting on a bicycle.  Just takes a while to knock the rust off is all.

I must admit I like incursions - going in with a fleet reminds me of other MMOs where you do things as a group. People from other MMOs are going to find it rather familiar territory (with of course eve specific idiocyracies - like the danger of suicide ECM boats breaking up your rep chains).  Out of all the activities in EVE Incursions are probably the activity that bears the most resemblance to other MMOs.  The only problem is that with a requirement of having 3 logistics pilots for the first tier that actually pulls in isk, it's pretty much strictly for the veterans instead of something that could be used to ease other MMO players into EVE.  Ah well.  Another lost design opportunity in EVE.  We should be used to those by now.

As I look forward to a more relaxing evening than concentrating on keeping fellow pilots alive in incursions I'm feeling pretty good about returning to EVE.  At this point my plans post-patch are pretty set.

1) Get the fuel pellet BPOs
2) Get the Tornado BPO.
3) Convert existing fuel reserves into the new format
4) Get the 3rd account re-activated and that pile of un-researched BPOs researched (I need to consider some character moves so that the corp/research characters are all on the same account - gah)
5) Get a suitcase carrier
6) Get an isk reserve buffer
7) Head back to 0.0

On the skills front, I'm doing some emergency shoring up of drone skills (What? I can't fly T2 logi drones??? Damn it! - not to mention the T2 mining drones for that vanguard site -.-;).  I'll get back to the carrier skills once that shoring up is done.  I may slip in Command ships soon though as I killed off all the pre-requisites.

That should keep me going for a bit.

I will point out the irony of wanting to be in 0.0 but being unable to generate the income necessary to progress there in 0.0.  Good design CCP.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

First serious Incursion

So I log on this morning and "head to the sound of the drums".  I.e. get in my Scimitar and open my Journal and pick a likely incursion in high sec.  So off I go to the Amarr one.

All in all a rather buys time but we hit 9 sites and got the rewards for 7 of them, so this prety much brought me about half way to pay for the Scimitar I just purchased for this endeavor.  I got lucky and there was a good FC on hand.  A Black Legion pilot - I remember those guys from the days I was in Rage back in Vale of the Silent.  They hung in nearby Geminate at the time.  At any rate, as soon as he had his 3 logi pilots, namely to other Scimitars and myself and the knowledge that we had 4 tracking links between us, he got 4 faction battleships and 2 T3 to go with his Sleipnir.

All in all it was a very good first run.  I can tell that part of the job is going to be being able to know what the spawn patterns are for each site as in this case with solid logi and dps the FC was able to burn the sites as fast as possible and we were able to keep everyone alive.  Less logi support and we would probably have been better clearing out the waves although that would have taken longer.  So taking notes for when I get my own pilots together for this one day.

So for the afternoon:  Make the rest of the isk spent on the Scimitar up and start making forward progress toward more isk for Tornado BPO and a Nidhogur.  Not to mention all the skill books for capital modules I need to acquire and command ship skill as well.

Looks like I'm back.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Preparing for Incursions

As I got home from work, I did the usual PI (now planning on manufacturing a medium minmatar control tower) run and then proceeded to grab an incursion fit for the Scimitar.  Noticed that what looks like a canonical fit is acr based instead of ccc based like my current 0.0 fit scimi.  So I decided to simply buy a new one and fit it out as indicated.

So off to jita and 150mil isk later I'm tooling back to my high sec base in my brand new scimi - 4 large repers and an ab and it's all cap stable - woot.  Noticed I can't use T2 logi drones and immediately slapped some skills in to begin addressing that.  Carrier 3 should finish as I sleep.

The idea is to see if I can get in on some Incursion action over the weekend.  Time will tell.

Off to bed for now.

Oh right, the two alts also had PI going...

PI is low-ish maintenance once it's up and running.  But getting it up and running?  Yeesh.  Have the alts on a 4 day cycle.  I'll see how that works out when I have both toons contract their PI goods to my main and simply use the main to either do the further processing or selling on market.

Also did a run to Jita to get rid of more trash.

Not much else to say, everyone seems to be in the "get ready for the patch on Tuesday" mode.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

More carebearing... And some rust... Lost of rust...

And I just reactivated one of my alt accounts.  In celebration I went and found a grav site.  Well more like I found it and then decided to celebrate my alt's re-activation with some light mining.  For those who are just stumbling onto my site for the first time and might be newbies (or PvP pilots - same thing as far as mining goes).  Gravimetric sites are exploration sites that contain mine-able asteroids.  The particular site I found was supposed to contain Kernite as well as the Omber, but obviously someone else wiped the Kernite before I found it.  Well waste not want not.  I killed the Omber to de-spawn the site.

I will note that once again DA RUST is showing.  Talk about embarrassing.  So I get to the site.  Start mining.  Damn!, a Myrmidon is on grid.  Ok, switch to my combat ship.  Face palm.  Oh right.  Need to offline the lasers and empty the cargo hold before the switch will happen cleanly.  so there's my hulk, sitting empty in space floating serenely when the rats come on in and wouldn't you know it target my hulk!


Well THIS is most embarrassing.  So I get my alt to launch drones and take care of the rats while I shove the Loki back in the Orca my alt is flying and scramble madly to get back in my Hulk.  Good thing Low SP Myrm pilots are not likely to have hulk skills or someone would have been justified in sneaking off with my Hulk.

It's the little things.

The earlier part of the evening was spent finishing the setup of PI on some nearby planets and getting a T1 hauler of the appropriate cargo space/maneuverability setup so that I could finish off the work started yesterday.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Datacore run and some PI

So, last night I worked on my datacore situation.  It hadn't been as long as last time so the isk was less.  But it did allow me to setup another level 4 R&D agent which is the max there is with core complexion in high sec.  The 5th slot was occupied by a level 3 agent.  This brings my total of agents up to 5.  This should help out on the passive income stream, while I get to work on more active methods.

I also finished "bunkering up" for some T1 manufacturing runs.  This means having a mix ratio on hand that is good for most manufacturing tasks.  I like to run an inventory of 4000 Megacite at "bunker full" state with each mineral below that x4 the one above (so 16k Zydrine, 64k Nocxium, and so on down to 16mil~ish Tritanium).  Although the ratios are off for any specific faction manufacturing run, in the aggregate it works out quite well as a good "bunker" ratio.  What runs out first depends entirely on what I've been building and it allows me to pump out at least 2 BS without having to calculate "do I have enough materials on hand".  The idea is to build what you want then put up buy orders to re-fill the bunker, taking advantage of the buy/sell difference instead of simply deciding to build something and buying the minerals at the `sell` price.

Last but not least I got 2 planets of PI going to get some PI materials going as well (might as well, I`ll be in high sec for a bit after all.  I just setup a cheap high cycle (20h) one extractor setup.  Going to work on some math to figure out "at what point is it worth destroying the extraction head and buying a new one else where".  We'll see. 

I'm also starting to organize things among some pilots I know to get a core Logistical group together to go run some incursions after the patch.  The idea being that so long as 3-4 of us have Logi 5 and we have some DPS we trust, it is relatively easy to get DPS to run vanguard sites.

We'll see how those plans go.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Inter bus shuttles are going for HOW MUCH?!?

As I was cleaning up my inventory of "stuffs" I decided to look at the value of some of the one off stuff I've collected over the years.  Most of it are not worth moving for the moment.  But then I saw the Interbus Shuttle - only difference is a 20m³ cargo bay vs a 10m³ cargo bay.  It's going for over 200mil on contracts!.  Load up the Prowler with a bunch of meta 4's and that shuttle and haul ass to Jita.  Do the usual "cloak thru Uedama" on the way and there we go, iskies to replace the iskies spent getting the Minmatar Carrier skill.

A bit of light exploration and some Noctis work later and I hit the sack.  Going to have to do a datacore run soon as well.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Nothing knocks the rust off like...

Well no, I didn't get a kill mail or loose a ship.  I did manage to brown streak a Pilgrim.  Here's the story of how a neutral Mammoth pilot got a really good laugh:

So, I decide to do a bit of exploration in the area I'm hanging in high sec.  Hummm, 2 wormholes in the same system.  Must be a Saturday.  So I switch to my cloaky Loki.  Warp to and take a look at the first one.  Nope running out of time.  Probably not a good idea.  So I warp to the next one.  Humm, time left but the hole is abused.  As I sit there cloaked about 3500m off the wormhole, a Mammoth warps up and jumps!

Decloak.  Jump!

And this is where the predictible script departs into keystone cops land.  I spot only one ship on the overview and I: aproach->target->point->f1.  Then I notice it's targeting me back?  That's when the ship type registers: Pilgrim.  Then my initial volley slams into it.  Bang no more shields!  While my artillery are cycling, he jumps out.  I do believe I managed to panic him quite effectively.  Unfortunately he took the wormhole with him.


So now I'm sitting dumb and vulnerable without a quick exit.  My wormhole reactions kick in.  Cloak and move off the spot in case he has friends on the way.  While my brain is still in "evasive action" mode, the Mammoth uncloaks and warps to his tower.  This is where my time away from EVE shows.  I did not react fast enough to lock and tackle the Mammoth.

Stupid rust!

So then the conversation in local starts up.  The Mammoth pilot thought I was with the Pilgrim.  And I thought the Pilgrim was with the Mammoth pilot.  Lord knows what the Pilgrim pilot thought.  So we had a good chuckle at the keystone cops routine and I inquired whether that wormhole that just went poof was the static.

"Um... please tell me that was your high sec static..."

"yea it was"

"Oh good"

Of course now my course of action is clear:  Scan my way back out to high sec.  Shouldn't be too much of a challenge.  While I was scanning the center of the system, my friendly Mammoth pilot mentions some combat probes and a Buzzard on scan.  I comment that he probably had a good laugh at what happened, then settle in to find my way out while the Mammoth pilot logs out at his POS.

The scanning down of the exit (of course, it's the last one I check), got my scanning skills knocked back in shape rather quickly.  Getting the old D-scan habits back in shape and what not.

So eventually I get myself back to k-space and start chugging back to base, with little to show except for that all important experience and no ship losses to show for my mistakes (bonus!). 

Later on in the weekend I managed to get out all the way to Vale of the Silent in order to un-snafu a manufacturing slot that was stuck in F-D49D.  Kind of quiet there.  Only ran into 1 bubble camp with no campers and another gate that had a sling bubble that didn't interfere with my travel plans as I approached the gate from a different celestial than was intended.  Manufacturing slot un-stuck. 
BPC and stuff trashed (just 35 x 10mn Afterburner I's so don't freak out - just not worth the hassle of selling to the Russians or Raiden.) so it doesn't clutter up my assets.

I also had a quick convo with my CEO about future plans and the fact I would not be coming back down to 0.0 until I built up the isk and got myself a suitcase carrier.  Not to mention I need to get at least one alt account re-subbed for the cyno alt.

Slowly waking up after a summer's break.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Pardon the dusting

Hey all (or hey the 3 who still have links to this blog)!  As those paying attention to my comings and goings know, I've been logging in quite a bit for very short stays lately.  And although there's not much in the way of industrial changes in EVE, there are quite a few new fixes and what not coming in the next patch.  This leaves me with an important decision coming up.  Do I get active in EVE again or not?

As you all (or the 3 of you as the case may be) know I un-subbed my alts and moved all my assets back to high sec in order to skill flip wait out the fall and see what the winter brought.  As my post about destroyers indicates, I am still paying attention to what goes on development wise.  I still say CCP is in full blown panic, knee jerk reaction mode, but it looks like some long standing issues are getting some love.  I feel sorry for the CCP employes who got the axe over the summer but "Pride goeth before the fall".  And the little guys pay the price.

I will point out that the dev production since REALLY pointed out how much EVE development has suffered with CCP's concentration split between the two other games.  I hope for their sakes they can get DUST out the door without an entire year's delay (Me has PS3, me want BETA).  While I'm on the subject.  Allow me to point out something to the absolute IDIOTS in charge of the Nex store.  It is not that Incarna will eventually be useful to EVE.  It can be.  The way you introduced it and marketed it, however...  What drugs were you on?  I also fail to see why you guys were so attached to introducing a horribly flawed secondary micro transaction system when you already had possibly one of the best micro transaction systems in gaming (talking about PLEX here - would someone please explain to Hilmar that PLEX IS Micro transactions even without the NeX).  Your players are far from stupid and they WILL call your bluff.  8% reduction in subscriptions (the number I've heard somewhere) since the high point should point out the true cost of these miss steps to your game and hence your company.

Meanwhile let's get back to the decision point. Here's my current situation:  RHI basically imploded and left Cascade Imminent [FAIL].  Yaxi is rebuilding it and has joined Cascade Probable while he does this.  I'm still in RHI, but my previous experience with 0.0 life has left me with the issues that unless a corp/alliance is prepared to support non-cap pilots properly, living in 0.0 is not only rather difficult but actually costs more than it brings in.  Definitely compared to life in wormhole space.  So, I'm currently rather leery of that since I still don't have even a suitcase carrier.

So the question is: has CCP done enough with it's winter patch to address things and justify coming back.  And if I do, my choices are:  Stay with RHI and give another crack to 0.0 where my options are severely restricted or go and do something else that will build up my isk total as opposed to drain it.