EVE Online: Diary Of A Noob Part 4

Click here to read Part 3.

What do you think is more important, brains or brawn? That is my question for you today as I return with EVE Online: Diary of a Noob —œ Part 4. Last time in Part 3, I discussed ratting and mission running, the PvE combat of EVE Online. I spoke about my main focus towards skilling my character towards missions and PvP, very fine roads to head down, but it isn’t the only one. PvP is an activity I participate in often and anyone who does it for a while will begin to realize it isn’t very profitable.

Being a combat focused character it is quite easy to just run missions for ISK, but ships and fittings can be expensive or in some cases hard to find or get to when purchasing on the market. I decided early on that I wanted to be a PvP player who made his own ships and fittings and generated ISK outside of combat. This means that down the road I could be entirely self-sufficient and that something I like to have in my back pocket. To do this I would need to dabble in Industry, the career path of choice for crafters in EVE Online.

MMO Games EVE Online Manufacturing Screenshot
 
Industry is perfect for people who want to make some serious ISK without having to gun people down for it. Don’t get me wrong, the Industry path can have plenty of adrenaline pumping moments and its fair share of danger, but you don’t face it as often as others might. Industry itself is just a generalization for many different activities you can perform based around crafting. There are the miners, the players who gather the resources used for manufacturing ships and equipment, the craftsmen who turn those resources in to the goods and finally the businessmen who sell the goods.

With these three main areas there is a huge list of ways to make ISK and you can participate in as many or little of the processes as you wish. Do you want to mine your own resources to make ships and then sell them yourself to maximize profit? Maybe you don’t mind taking a small profit cut by purchasing your resources? Or just maybe you just want to skim a bit off the top buying finished good cheap and selling for a marked up price. These are just some of the ways you can make yourself a living without fighting in EVE Online.

MMO Games EVE Online Bantam Asteroid Belt Screenshot

For me, I want to mine my own resources, make my own ships and fittings and not have to pay anyone a cut. I quickly came to the decision that if I was going to play the combat role and dive head first in to Industry, I would need to run a mining alt. Because EVE has real-time skill training, you can only have one character on an account training skills at a time, which means I would have to stop training for those big shiny guns in order to train for Industry. I couldn’t have this and it would slow me down so this was the birth of my second account, very commonplace in EVE Online (this game is insanely addictive!).

Now as a new character who wanted to make stacks of ships for his combat main, I needed to get in to mining straight away. Doing your Industry missions will give you a different taste of mining, manufacturing and running courier jobs. If you haven’t done the tutorials I suggest you do them to get some basic equipment. Ships use mining lasers and other equipment to extract resources in space, there are many different types of resources but a new miner only needs to worry about ore and minerals, found in asteroid belts.  You start out with a mining-style frigate, Caldari for example have the Kestral and even the Bantam while Minmatar generally use a Burst. These frigates can fit mining lasers to extract minerals from belts.
 
MMO Games EVE Online Bantam Mining Screenshot

To be quite blunt, mining is quite dull so if you are easily bored than this won’t be quite fun for you. Mining is great for a semi-busy person or someone who doesn’t want to have to fully focus on the game. Players travel to asteroid belts, lock on to their selected asteroids and start up their mining lasers to begin extracting resources. Pretty lasers shoot at the rocks and you must wait while the lasers suck the minerals in to your cargo, the more cargo space you have, the longer it takes to fill up. If you are in a safe area you can generally AFK / focus on another task while mining, especially as a new player in 0.9 and 1.0 security systems where no rats (NPC mobs) appear in the asteroid belts.

This works perfectly for me, on a quieter day I can mine while I work on the site or write other articles, only having to click in every 10-20 minutes to empty my cargo. Within two minutes and just a few clicks I have travelled to the nearby space station, emptied my cargo and positioned myself back at the belt. If you have access to a computer and EVE, there isn’t really much stopping you from semi-AFK mining in high-sec space with minimal interruption. Of course as you want more valuable resources and have to head in to more dangerous territory to mine it, this isn’t quite an option without protection.

MMO Games EVE Online Belt Mining Screenshot
 
One of the first things I did as a new miner was begin to skill up for better ships constantly. Training for similar ships is easier because you can take baby steps towards your final dream ship by flying ships that require lower level skills of the same kind your dream ship requires. For example my end goal is to fly a Hulk, a very advanced mining ship that requires a list of skills to be trained very high or maxed out. Some of these skills that are required will let me fly other lesser mining ships at certain intervals throughout my training. The main two being the procurer very early on and then the retriever not much further off afterwards.

I was flying around in a Bantam, a small frigate that I was given fitted with cheap mining equipment. I needed something bigger, for AFK mining I just wanted lots of cargo space not fancy mining lasers. I trained for a standard faction industrial ship, the Badger Mark II. These industrials will vary for different races but are very easy to get early on and with the use of the fitting ‘expanded cargohold’ in your low slots, you can give yourself plenty of cargo space. These ships are the worst for mining though; they are slow and take a lot longer than almost any other ship you could use. Like I said though, I just wanted space not fancy equipment, if it takes 20 minutes to fill up that perfect for me; I have things to do.
 
MMO Games EVE Online Mining Screenshot

I instantly began training for a Procurer; a mining barge that let me fit the strip miner fitting, much more advanced mining lasers. This ship could only fit one strip miner, which just doesn’t cut it either but it was a step forward. This didn’t last long though; the next ship I mentioned was the Retriever which allows you to fit two strip miner fittings and still have a decent amount of cargo space. This is the ship I currently mine in, it lets me mine asteroid belts efficiently and I can even mine ice fields, a precious commodity in EVE Online. As you can see, I gradually step up my game with new ships that can fit better equipment while maintaining a focus with my skills on training for that ultimate mining ship.

Now selling your ore and minerals is a great, easy way to make some ISK; it doesn’t require any real effort. As you grow as a miner you will start using things like mining drones, little robots that help you mine or you may join a mining op. Fleets of miners can be a valuable tool for making some serious ISK, players can obtain mining bonuses and can work together to smooth out the process and maximize their yield. Team up with a friend who has a ship with a large amount of cargo space, sit at an asteroid belt and have him run the goods back to the station, leaving you to mine non-stop. Both of you have to do much work and you at least have someone to talk to while staring at space.

MMO Games EVE Online Mining Drone Screenshot
 
Want to step it up a bit? Bring another friend with a combat ship and venture in to more dangerous territory, continue your operation with your cargo runner while the combat pilot fights off rats and pirates. Now imagine adding a bunch more miners, cargo runners and combat pilots (or miners with combat drones) and you have a solid mining op. With combined efforts you can all walk away with a decent cut of resources or ISK that you never would have achieved alone. One final tip on mining before I move on, use the People & Places tab to bookmark locations within asteroid belts, I will explain this one.

You might find very quickly that it is tiresome travelling back and forward from an asteroid belt and having to re-position yourself closer to the asteroids. Mining ships are big slow things, it can take forever, and that why the experienced miners will use bookmarks. Set yourself up at a nice location in an asteroid belt, within range of all the most valuable ore. Now on the left menu open the People & Places window (Alt+E) and click the places tab. Down the bottom of this window you will notice a button that says Add Location, click on this and save the bookmark. Now whenever you right click while anywhere in the current system you will be able to warp straight to this location.
 
MMO Games EVE Online Location Bookmark Screenshot

Now you can undock from the station and warp straight back to where you were with no need to wait on that slow ship to get closer to the asteroids again. If you want to take this a step further, use a fast flying frigate to set up multiple bookmarks along the different asteroid belts in the system. For example put a bookmark at the far left, middle and far right of an asteroid belt so you can quickly move to another position if you suck one area dry. This will speed up the process and also allow you to be close to exactly the type of asteroids you want to be.

Mining resources is great for revenue and manufacturing items, another area of Industry. Crafting things in EVE Online requires a blueprint; these blueprints are generally obtained off the marketplace. For me, I do a lot of silly PvP roams where I fly cheap frigates like the Rifter or Merlin. This meant I wanted to have a stack of ships waiting there for me; I could be as reckless as I wanted, and they wouldn’t cost me anything. Luckily, these types of frigates have rather cheap blueprints and take very little resources to make, a great option for a new crafter looking to make an easy buck.

MMO Games EVE Online Assemble Ship Screenshot
 
You should be getting a picture for how a craftsman works in the EVE world, they get their blueprints, gather or buy resources and turn them in to finished goods. If you don’t want to mine your resources you can do everything from a station, using no resources of your own and still come out with a tidy profit. The key to pulling this off is to find a blueprint that makes something in demand, check what the item is selling for, then check how much it is to buy the resources to make it. If the resources are cheaper than the sale price, you can make a profit without much effort. At most you may have to travel to pick up the resources, seeing how a cargo runner comes in handy now?

To create something, players must find a space station that offers Science & Industry services. Once in one of these stations players can right click a blueprint, click manufacturing, pick an installation from a list (the workshop basically), click okay for a quote of resources and fees, and finalize by accepting this quote if the requirements are met. The item will be placed in to a production queue where it will take a certain amount of time to manufacture. Players can order more than one copy of the item to be manufactured and can run multiple installations at once with the right skills.

MMO Games EVE Online Assembly Line Screenshot
 
Like everything in EVE, once you get over that first bump, everything becomes easier. If you want to become a successful businessman or woman in EVE Online, or want to make a living as a miner, or a mix of everything; you can. Finish the tutorials, run through the entire process yourself from mining to manufacturing and then selling on the market. Watch what the hot items are on the market, what are people placing buy orders for that aren’t being sold? Can you craft it and complete the buy order? Do you just want to make your own fittings and ships to save money?

That all I have to discuss on the Industry front today, but not all that I have for you. I am currently an active member in the corporation known as Interstellar Fleet, a corp which focuses on enabling players to play how they want to play. Whichever area of the game you want to tackle, they have a group of people to teach you and take you along for a ride. They are a really helpful bunch with some great advice that has cut a lot of the learning curve out for me, so to finish off the article I have invited Jimmy Jam, an Industrial expert from Interstellar Fleet, to have a chat and share some thoughts. Check it out below.

MMO Games EVE Online Ice Field Mining Screenshot
 
Me: What att
acted you to the mining/industry side of EVE Online?

Jimmy: I have always been a “crafter” in MMOs and decided to give the crafting system in EvE a go.  I found it to be the most involved system of crafting that I have ever experienced and immediately fell in love with it.

Me: What is the biggest perk of being an industrial capsuleer?

Jimmy: The ability to make lots of ISK while you are offline or with very casual game-play.  Virtually everything in EvE is player made and as a result, players who craft will always have income.

Me: What is the worst part about Industry in EVE Online?

Jimmy: It’s not the most exciting career path in EvE and can be quite boring.

Me: What advice do you have for an aspiring industrial capsuleer?

Jimmy: If you are sure you want to walk this path in EvE, spend your early life skilling up to use the Hulk mining barge. It is an absolute must have.

Also, read the mining guide located at EVE-Wiki. Like in life, in EvE, time is money. To squeeze out the most ISK/hour means increasing your mining yield. Read the guide and that will make sense. 🙂

Me: What is your fondest memory while mining?

Jimmy: My fondest memory was being involved in my first mining op that successfully cleared 8 asteroid belts in 4 hours. That fleet was a sight to behold.

Me: Anything else you think our readers should know?

Jimmy: With anything in EvE, if you choose to be an industrial pilot, you have to focus on that in the beginning. Mining is tough in the beginning with all the ore thieves that like to swoop in a steal your ore, but that is life in EvE. Don’t ever get mad at losing Veldspar, that’s what I tell all new miners. 

If you have pirates flying about in the system you have chosen to mine in, then just dock up and wait them out. They quickly get bored and move on. The single best piece of advice I can give is save up to buy giant secure containers which you can anchor, do this and you will never have ore stolen again.

MMO Games EVE Online Mining With Drones Screenshot
 
I think I should clarify for anyone wondering about the ore thieves Jimmy mentioned. Sometimes players like to jettison their ore they are mining in to space, either for their cargo runner to pick up or to stockpile until they are ready to haul it back to station. Doing this is generally called jet canning and pirates like to swoop in and steal your ore when you aren’t paying attention. Players can set up secure, password protected containers to counter this issue, something very simple to do and it saves a lot of lost ore.

Well that all for Part 4 of my Diary of a Noob, for anyone still confused on mining I will be doing a video beginner guide on mining and industry soon, stay posted on the site for that one. In part 5 we will be taking a look at how players can use Science to improve their Industry efforts and the Explorer career path. Stay tuned for more and as always, if you have any questions just comment below!

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