So you’ve cut your teeth in high sec, made enough money off of managing the mission runners surplus to buy a Covops. You’ve learnt to probe targets and you’ve trained your analyzer, codebreaker and salvager modules. We all gotta start in high sec, but enough’s enough. Let’s get into Low Sec.
I’d like to take another moment to manage expectations before diving into this weeks post. In M-E-A we lika da pew pew. Our exploration focus aligns itself to our core focus in the following ways.
Probes allow us to find safed up targets and locations that may contain targets. Salvage modules allow us to make the most of our kills and get it on the isk provided by other peoples kills (I find it incredible how many elite wrecks are left in space after an engagement).
This is why a large portion of our strategic approach to exploration, which is based on low-sec opportunities, always has pew opportunities at the heart of it. It’s important that readers (all three of you) make this distinction. You could go for a Core Probe Launcher, heck, it frees up a tonne of CPU to fiddle with, but then you by and large lose out on what value you can add to the fleets we have up and will end up being more solo oriented.
None of this is problem, in fact, I started my life as a capsuleer enamored with the exploration career path and played that way for several months. It is hugely enjoyable, devoid of all political crap and definitely supports the login n go mentality that we should all have.
It just isn’t as much fun as PVP. Nothing in this game is. Even the thrill of finding a 40m isk ops manual in a radar is outlasted by a seat of the pants t1 frigate duel. You can make isk for two reasons as far as I can tell in EVE. Plex or gear or both. Plex is game time. Gear is why you buy game time.
I digress. The point is this. We explore WHILE we PVP. Our exploration activity is part of our PVP activity, a submissive sub career to it, and it makes all of us significant ISK for either agenda we may have. We generally favor the gear side because we lose a lot of it in fights.
We perform basic exploration. Our frigate focus (or fanaticism if you prefer that term) doesn’t allow us to complete DED 5’s. Although we got really close the other night with just AF’s and a Dramiel speed tanking the aggro, we needed two Canes to finish off the hive mother, but it was fun to try.
I think I’ve made my point and now it’s time to talk about the ISK making mechanics we have in place. And in my opinion, the ‘least intrusive to your PVP’ way of making ISK in low sec.
If you open your in-game map and look at the filters there’s one that serves very very well. The Deadspace Site Report indicates where all the non-probe requiring DED sites are in New Eden. Ok that’s great but why should I care about that?
Two reasons. DED sites drop deadspace loot, which sells very well on contract, is awesome to fit to your ship when you are feeling saucy and serves as about the most tempting bait in the game.
Secondly, the gates are locked to ship hulls of a certain size. DED rank 1 and 2’s only allow frigates and destroyers through. Low-sec is a blob fest, but you can sit at that entrance spamming d-scan in your Hurricane until the cows come home. You can probe me out, well done, but when you warp to me, you warp to the entrance and can go no further. Go get yourself a frigate/destroyer hull if you want to tango.
In MEA part of our agenda is to control the low-end DED item market by controlling the low-end DED’s. We make ISK, we get to shoot a lot of frigates coming in looking for the prize and already have 2 or 3 such sites by and large under our control.
I opened a friends hangar the other day and noted he had by my account close to 500 million isk worth of drops deposited in the 2 months he was using the hangar. All of this WHILE looking for pew opportunities.
So you’ve launched your probes and are looking for target. There aren’t any. Do you recall your probes?
No. Take an extra 5 minutes. Maybe a target does arrive and that’s a bonus. But there are some cosmic signatures that you should have a look for.
Primarily, our focus in low sec is on two kinds. Magnetometric and Radar sites. These have cans which contain very valuable loot. You deserve to earn some isk whilst flying around supporting your fleet. You have a team of guys on hand to clear out the site of any nasty crosses. Whilst you open the cans, they deal with the crosses, and you use your modest tank to stop caring about any aggro you might receive.
If you don’t have a team and have some time on your hands while you gather intelligence and map the systems (oh THAT’S why they tell me to get the cartography cert), you can dock up and fit those guns onto your ship (see part 1 further down this page). The biggest thing you’ll come across at these sites in low-sec are NPC cruisers/bc’s, which will eventually die to your 50+ dps and your modest active tank will not have any real concerns with the damage they deal.
A true low sec explorer and junkyard dog mentality. I’m out here looking for fights, but I’ve found this ISK. I’ll take it.
Other sites, like gravimetric and ladar, cannot really be utilized with your Covops boat. It doesn’t really matter, because they take so much time to complete and the ships that can are like sitting ducks for your combat probes, I usually ignore the signature if one of those pops up but there’s no reason not to complete the scan, get the bookmark and just keep your eyes on it.
So there you have it. Low-sec exploration is about firstly, strangely, focusing on PVP. Why would you want to explore Low-Sec if this wasn’t the case. High Sec is the place to be if you’re not looking for fights or flying with a team that is.
Whilst looking for PVP opportunities, we can control the DED 1’s and 2’s with good frigate fleets. Fun.
Whilst looking for PVP opportunities, we can help ourselves to the Radar and Magnetometric loot we come across.
Lastly, this is why it’s very important for newer explorers not to become enamored with the Pew Imicus, or shield tanked Anathema, because they limit your opportunities and really don’t help you fulfill your primary goal in Eve. Making ISK whilst learning about PVP, target types and getting out in low sec finding fights and gathering intelligence for your corporation.
Join MEA capsuleer. You’ll find it is alot of fun to fly this way.