Wednesday, March 3, 2010

He's Not Dead Jim!

The period of my absence is starkingly similar to the time I recently spent in a 0.0 alliance.
I won't talk about the alliance, but for any who are interested I can sum up exploration in the Drone Regions with one word:


Perhaps you can make some isk if you manage to get all the escalations for 'hierarchy', but then you also have to worry about logistics. You've gotta have something to haul all that drone poo. It's not like popping a faction ship and getting one module worth millions. You don't get anything like that in the drone regions at all.

I tried radar and mag sites as well, and was not impressed.

This was not the reason I left Cobalt Edge, but it was a factor. I went into that alliance with over 2 bil in my wallet, and after I'd sold off all my assets moving out of there, I was back at 2 bil, plus two badgers full of t2 or meta4 mods (from ratting in nearby tenal), and a spare tengu. Considering I've nearly doubled my isk since leaving.

Still, having had a taste of 0.0 you can bet I will be going back. With a different alliance.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Happy Holidays

Hope everyone had a happy holiday season. Mine was good, and I can also say that the Eve Santa just kept on giving this weekend. While my better half was playing the new sims 3 add-on, I spent some time moving a jc to 0.0, and doing a lot of hisec exploration.

It all started when I rescued those exotic dancers from that gurista hidden hideout...
The next thing I know, I'd found a Gurista Scout Outpost, being run by a moa and a drake.
I helped them kill the rats in the first room, and when they were gone, I warped to the next (Mr. Drake was 50km from the next gate, wtf?)

I focused on the satellite dish and for my effort scored a pithum c-type medium shield booster.
I continued scanning that day, and 6 jumps away I got another of the same boosters!

If this doesn't sound lucky, the next day I had only a few faction mods found. The day after that, which was two days ago, I found nearly 40 different exploration sites, 7 of which were gurista scout outposts. Three of which dropped pithum c-type medium shield boosters.

So in 3 days, that's 5 boosters worth nearly 400 mil each, 250mil in assorted radar decryptors and datacores (even counting the lower prices in caldari space as of late), plus a few other assorted faction mods that dropped from a few gurista watches.

I found it odd that I ran a total of 18 Gurista Watch sites, only 1 escalated, and only 2 had a faction ship spawn.

Merry Christmas CCP, I hope the drop-lords get a nice bonus this year :)

Friday, December 4, 2009

First taste of Dominion exploration

War is hell. Well, they're fun actually, especially if you can piss off your war targets.

Sometimes they like to gank you, so to that effect I went as far from my hq as possible in case I managed to lure some WT's away from the rest of my corpies. So I went off exploring in Black Rise, trying to pick systems off the beaten path that had few or no people active or docked.

I did find a lot of signatures, but something is definitely different. In two nights of exploring, I found only 2 radar sites. A gurista minor shipyard (with NO loot at all, wtf!), and another site that had maybe 2 user manuals. That's a pretty poor turnout for 30+ systems scanned.

Combat-site wise, I found 2 gurista scout outposts, 1 gurista watch, and 1 gurista vigil. I got a faction resist from one of the outposts, someone had already farmed the other, and I got a t2 low-grade beta from the vigil.

Pretty dissappointing, but I'm a long way off from the usual exploration circuits I use, so it could just be bad luck.

Oh, there was one other annoying thing. I found at least 15 Gallente Prison sites, which I believe are the final stage of one of the epic arcs. I was a bit excited when I found the first one, figuring it was time for a bit o' ninja-ing. Alas, I did not have the right tag to proceed into the second room. A quick check on contracts showed one person selling it for 180 million. No thanks.

Dominion sure looks pretty....and the space between the 'scan now' and 'recall probes' is a godsend. Props to CCP on those improvements. The whole interface and its performance feels a lot smoother now.

Now I just have to finish designing and modelling a T3 battleship (see pic) and see who I can flog it to at CCP...

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Dominion and Exploration

With less than 2 weeks left before Dominion I've been wondering quite a bit how this will impact explorers.

The impact on high sec exploration should be negligable, but I am suspecting several shifts in the market. For instance, I'm holding onto any faction frigate blueprints I find, usually Worms. Right now a Worm can sell for over 50 million, but after dominion? Who knows. Higher demand means higher price, right? Many of the other faction mods I find might fluctuate in price once things stabilize in nullsec as well.

I've heard a few of the changes in dominion are meant to be appealing to explorers as well. As part of the sovereignty changes theres new structures that improve the odds of combat sites spawning in your 0.0 systems. Personally I'm doubting this will have any noticeable impact. Even if you are part of an alliance holding a lot of space, that's a lot of capital to invest in all those structures. That's a pretty small niche for that much upkeep.

In this case I'm hoping that Dominion causes alliance sovereignty to shrink, thereby opening a lot of 0.0 space up for more, um, neutral access. If the major alliances, especially those I could be hostile to, are concentrated in a smaller number of systems I might just be tempted to start exploring in nullsec.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Almost Epic Failure

Well I can't say I had my ass handed to me, but a couple nights ago I was the target of some good gloating by another explorer.

It happened as I was on my way back to homebase, with a cargo hold nearly full of loot and salvage (mostly faction) gathered during a few days of exploring. I didn't even have much room left for the full range of missiles I usually cart around. That was my first mistake.

I scanned down a gurista scout outpost, and warped to it. As I got into the first room, I saw an ishkur pop the last rat. He was pretty close to me, and I should have paid attention to how fast he was going when we both raced to the gate to the final room.

In the second room, he sped off towards the satellite dish, and I started firing at the dish immediately. By the time I got there, he was already there as well, so when my missiles finally popped the station, a split-second frenzy insued to see who could loot the can first.

I lost, but not before seeing the prize, a pithum c-type shield booster. Mr. Ishkur instantly went flashy red, and I responded in kind with my warp disruptor. Mistake number 3: no web. Perhaps this also goes with mistake number 4, no precision or faction EM missiles. With the kinetic resists the only precision missiles I had just weren't cutting it. Still, I fired anyways. This far away from the warp-in spot I was not worried about any of his friends coming in.

In short order, he was 60km away, and smacking in local. All I would tell him was, "Well played".

We both warped away, and I made my way back to homebase. I made some corrections to my fit and ammo loadout. Seems like I'll be swapping out the codebreaker for the web and switch back and forth as needed.

The irony of all this is, the next day I undock from homebase, drop probes, and scan a gurista scout outpost right outside the station. And just my luck, I got a pithum c-type medium shield booster.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A decent haul

Last night was probably the best haul I've had in that short a time. It started when I found a Gurista's hideout combat site, which I reluctantly decided to do after finding nothing else in system. It escalated to several jumps away, so I decided to scan down all the systems inbetween escalations. In total I ended up with two more gurista hideouts, 1 which also escalated, a gurista scout outpost, an several radar sites. Also I had gone to the anomaly 'gurista forlorn hideaway' to kill some rats while scanning a system down, and got a drop from a dread gurista ship there too (nice t2 implant).

In less than two hours, I had netted a Worm BPC, 1 faction shield resist, 1 dread gurista em shield hardener, 1 low-grade crystal delta implant, and quite a number of decryptors and datacores.

In total about 250 million isk not counting the faction mods and bpc which I kept (for dominion!)
Oddly, most of this exploration occurred in high traffic systems with 50+ in local. Guess the odds were in my favour ;)

Friday, November 13, 2009

Luck of the Draw

Explorers in eve will know that the most tedious part of the job is finding the site.
Something everyone in hisec likely knows has been getting progressively harder these last several months. More explorers = less sites to find, more competition, more loot stealing, more risk of pvp (yes even in hisec).

Several times in the last month I've warped into an exploration combat site to find it is already being done, and by much more heavily equipped players. I'm seeing a lot of t3 cruisers. Every advantage you can get seems to count.

I warped into a Gurista Watch and saw an odd-looking tengu blasting at the rats in the first room. Lucky for me, I had a gurista tag in my hold so I used it to warp to the next room and grab the faction loot (Yoink!). I was already out and gone for nearly 20 minutes before a chat window popped up asking how I had done this. To be a good sport, I told him how I'd done it, and what I had gotten (Dread gurista EM shield hardener)

Last night I found something that really peaks an explorers interest....I warped into a system, alone in local, and 9 signatures in close proximity. A veritable gold mine!!!

9 Frakkin Magnetic sites, which everyone knows in hisec they are worthless. That's the luck of the draw.