Newbie struggle with ISK

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Krakken LaRum
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Newbie struggle with ISK

Post by Krakken LaRum »

Hey everyone,

I just want to share my journey with EVE and ask what am I doing wrong, or the game is intended to chokehold new players for a while.

So I'm a returning player, after several years, however did not dived too deep into the game last time, so consider myself a complete freshie.

When I picked up the game recently, I decided to focus more around piloting, leave mining alone as it bores me too much, and try to finance myself through different means. Running Security lvl 1 -3, it became evident, that it is not meant to be the sole income of a player, as mission rewards are minor, with lvl 1-2 mission I could barely reach 1-2 mill isk per hour. Even tried the use of MTUs, where I complete 2-3 sec missions, dropping the MTUs and going back with a salvage destroyer to collect the loot and salvage. Unfortunately, it only decreased my isk/hour average, there wasn't enough "cookie" there to make it worth. By trying to step up from destroyers to cruisers I needed another income with some more "meat" on it.

Given I was focusing on piloting skills and amarr ships, solo T0 abyss runs seemed to be the go-to activity to richen up a bit. Completed the bloody long sisters of eve questline, with a coercer, constantly upgarding it as i figured out what works where and how. Upgrading is actually a bit of a stretch as I was more swapping T1 modules around. The ISK from the epic arc wasn't too bad and it was enough to fit a coercer to safely run t0 abyssal missions.

In the same time i researched some industry skills to, as I thought, the increased standing I got through sec missions would help to get a minor advantage with fees, combined with BPO research I might be able manufacture some T1 items with possible profit. I spent hours reading about industry, hours learning support apps like ISK per hour, wrote down pages of data in a notebook and carefully selected a few high turn over item's BPO at Oris- Emperor Family Academy market. As I didn't have much ISK, the aim was to try my luck with cheap to make items, mainly blasters and energy weapons, with small profit margins (400 - 2000 ISK/unit), after all every bit counts. After a month, I can say the whole endeavor run with heavy net losses. I took my time buying mats, waiting for them to come down in price on the market. Finally managed to manufacture 50, sold two and people just cut underneath my price with a seemingly endless supply (200+ listings of the same item). I thought well, I didn't loose much other than wasted time, so I focused on Abyssal runs instead.

The t0 abyssal brings in a steady income stream, 8 mill ISK / hour average, with the occasional blueprints. I even managed to farm out most of the abyssal mats for a damavik (a single run BPC dropped), purchased the rest of mats and manufactured one, that yielded me approx 4,5mill profit. Whilst the ISK was slowly but surely coming, the game was taking a massively boring turn, all I did is log in, and run the same abyssal missions over and over and over again. So I had to change something because the boring part started to drive me away.

People on the chat corp chat told me stories of 100+ mill/hour isk income from "ratting", I had to give it a go. Did the research, learnt about the different combat sites, and knew which one to chase for escalation and which one to leave alone. I hunted Domain for days on end, in a face of heavy competition and finally, I got my first escalation. Excited I was, here comes unmeasurable riches, my first escalation dropped me 1,8 mill worth of loot. Well..... This is just supper unlucky I thought, keep it up. 3-4 more days worth of ratting (approx 2-5 hours each day) gave me a few more escalation, with some better loot. The more expensive measured loot is about 38mill. But it doesn't really matter as I can't sell the bloody stuff. Most of it is listed over a week, I'm adjusting the price daily to stay competitive (losing isk on it like crazy) but no luck. I haven't been able to do a decent sale on the dropped items, regardless of cutting under everyone on the Oris marketplace.

I also invested a fair bit (in terms of my limited riches) to PI. Mining and manufacturing items all the way up to Tier 3 (Robotics), but the income on it is very small plus my hauler got blown up twice whilst trying to move good from one planet to another.

So I feel, I'm kinda stuck here. I can do Sec 3 mission in my omen, but it is sometimes sketchy, I don't like to risk it. A battlecruiser would be a better fit, but I'm not looking forward farming a kitting a Harbinger out from t0 abyssal missions....

Is this pushing s@#t uphill gets any better, or the game is designed like this. I kinda feel it is unreasonably difficult for new players to bring in some isk. Ofc, being a newbie means a lot of loss of isk on stupid stuff. Like test fitting my ship, found a dual laser that looked good, got the skill, etc. but it was pretty expensive on the market. I bought 5 anyway, but only simulator fitted one of them, so I didn't realise the powergrid couldnt support 5. so it goes back to the market, fees and dropped prices ..... fair loss. Bought and fitted an arbitrator for a mission I couldnt do without drones... haven't touched it since...
So yeah, there is plenty of learning to take place, so I'm pretty keen to hear what are other newbies or more experienced players thoughts on this.

Regards,

GinTonic
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Koris the Second
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Re: Newbie struggle with ISK

Post by Koris the Second »

Hey there! First of all - don't worry, we've all been there and hat the same issues, basically. I'm busy right now but will take the time to reply more in-depth later during EUTZ.

I'm also working on an overview sheet for new players on what to do for early ISK. Maybe this motivates me to push it a bit and get it done sooner.
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Koris the Second
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Re: Newbie struggle with ISK

Post by Koris the Second »

I promised a reply, a reply you shall get! Let's go through all your paragraphs one by one and deal with the issues you raise.
When I picked up the game recently, I decided to focus more around piloting, leave mining alone as it bores me too much, and try to finance myself through different means. Running Security lvl 1 -3, it became evident, that it is not meant to be the sole income of a player, as mission rewards are minor, with lvl 1-2 mission I could barely reach 1-2 mill isk per hour. Even tried the use of MTUs, where I complete 2-3 sec missions, dropping the MTUs and going back with a salvage destroyer to collect the loot and salvage. Unfortunately, it only decreased my isk/hour average, there wasn't enough "cookie" there to make it worth. By trying to step up from destroyers to cruisers I needed another income with some more "meat" on it.
You've got that part right. Security missions below L4 are - at least in highsec space - just a "warm-up" and are done for fun or for the standings, not really for the ISK. Because they are virtually risk-free, there isn't much to be made there indeed. Looting starts being worth it in L3s, salvaging - maybe - in L4s. A new player can play rather mindlessly here, but if you look for ISK - look elsewhere.
In the same time i researched some industry skills to, as I thought, the increased standing I got through sec missions would help to get a minor advantage with fees, combined with BPO research I might be able manufacture some T1 items with possible profit. I spent hours reading about industry, hours learning support apps like ISK per hour, wrote down pages of data in a notebook and carefully selected a few high turn over item's BPO at Oris- Emperor Family Academy market. As I didn't have much ISK, the aim was to try my luck with cheap to make items, mainly blasters and energy weapons, with small profit margins (400 - 2000 ISK/unit), after all every bit counts. After a month, I can say the whole endeavor run with heavy net losses. I took my time buying mats, waiting for them to come down in price on the market. Finally managed to manufacture 50, sold two and people just cut underneath my price with a seemingly endless supply (200+ listings of the same item). I thought well, I didn't loose much other than wasted time, so I focused on Abyssal runs instead.
Ah, Industry. You're competing against experienced, established traders with their own infrastructure and hundreds of times more assets than you have. Tech 1 items have notoriously low prices and are either used in a) doctrine fits or b) Tech 2 production, therefore they aren't sold too often and usually made locally for a particular purpose. In addition, producing in highsec space with low margin items basically makes sure you'll be pushed out of the market by the first nullsec producer building the same, as they spend less to make the final product than you do. If you are looking to produce something with a "safe" margin, I'd recommend looking into Tech 1 rigs.
The t0 abyssal brings in a steady income stream, 8 mill ISK / hour average, with the occasional blueprints. I even managed to farm out most of the abyssal mats for a damavik (a single run BPC dropped), purchased the rest of mats and manufactured one, that yielded me approx 4,5mill profit. Whilst the ISK was slowly but surely coming, the game was taking a massively boring turn, all I did is log in, and run the same abyssal missions over and over and over again. So I had to change something because the boring part started to drive me away.
So, blueprint copies. Unless you're an established industrialist you're better off just selling the blueprints. Having checked the contract market in Jita right now you would have made a tad less, but have saved a load of time. As for the Abyss - if it gets repetitive, change something up. You've been flying a Destroyer? Take a frigate. You've made some profit? Research the next tier, see if you can up the difficulty (and rewards) some. I'm afraid every PvE activity is "repetitive" in a way, so you'll need to find the one either most profitable or most fun.
People on the chat corp chat told me stories of 100+ mill/hour isk income from "ratting", I had to give it a go. Did the research, learnt about the different combat sites, and knew which one to chase for escalation and which one to leave alone. I hunted Domain for days on end, in a face of heavy competition and finally, I got my first escalation. Excited I was, here comes unmeasurable riches, my first escalation dropped me 1,8 mill worth of loot. Well..... This is just supper unlucky I thought, keep it up. 3-4 more days worth of ratting (approx 2-5 hours each day) gave me a few more escalation, with some better loot. The more expensive measured loot is about 38mill. But it doesn't really matter as I can't sell the bloody stuff. Most of it is listed over a week, I'm adjusting the price daily to stay competitive (losing isk on it like crazy) but no luck. I haven't been able to do a decent sale on the dropped items, regardless of cutting under everyone on the Oris marketplace.
You got one thing definitely right there - Combat Exploration is incredibly RNG-based, you just had a bad streak. As for selling items - don't sell it in Amarr. Take it to Jita. Market volumes are way higher there, and even though the prices will most likely be lower, you will at least get your ISK. Oh, and as you said you're adjusting the price daily...well...yeah, don't. Put it up for sale once and wait. Check every couple days for a general trend. If the price is really dropping, adjust. If not - keep your sell order up and it may take a couple days, but it will sell.
I also invested a fair bit (in terms of my limited riches) to PI. Mining and manufacturing items all the way up to Tier 3 (Robotics), but the income on it is very small plus my hauler got blown up twice whilst trying to move good from one planet to another.
Where are you doing your PI and where are you selling the goods? I'll assume you've set it up near Amarr. My suggestion to fix that - move your PI to the PC9-AY pocket of our main staging and sell the products either to local industrialists or to the buyback program.
Is this pushing s@#t uphill gets any better, or the game is designed like this. I kinda feel it is unreasonably difficult for new players to bring in some isk.
What you're experiencing is - quite literally - the start of every video game. You have little experience, you have little in terms of resources and options and you have to "make do" with what you've got. You're on a good track already, you just need to refine what you're doing and fix some of your minor (and totally relatable!) mistakes you've been making along the way.

If you are looking for something with a more predictable income and are not afraid of big, bad NPC null space, feel free to do some combat signatures in the PC9 pocket or belt rat there. For a new-ish player it should still be somewhere in the ballpark of 20M ISK/h and you'll learn something about safety in nullsec along the way. I also saw you didn't try exploration, diving into wormholes or filamenting into Null might be an option for you as well. There's also the regular mission fleets which will take you with a Cruiser or bigger and let you tag along and support the fleet.

Hope that helps!
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Re: Newbie struggle with ISK

Post by Arin Mara »

If I gave you 100M ISK, what would you do?
If I gave you 1 000M ISK, what would you do?
What is your goal? Earning ISK is a result, not a goal.

ISK per month is a much better metric than ISK per hour. Unfortunately, it takes a month to compute and substantial effort to disentangle losses and earnings if you are doing multiple activities.

For me, the journey is all there is! :) You had a lovely journey. What were you most passionate about?
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Krakken LaRum
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Re: Newbie struggle with ISK

Post by Krakken LaRum »

Thank you for the replies, I will definitely take it on board.

My goal was/is to be able to get a bigger, different ships and kit them out and have enough fat not to worry too much what happens when I get chewed up somewhere.
But for the time, I sold out shop in Oris, and decided to relocate to Stacmon and try my luck there. In case i can't sleep, or feel the urge to wake up super early I might be able to participate in some fleet events.
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Koris the Second
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Re: Newbie struggle with ISK

Post by Koris the Second »

Which TZ are you in? There's a couple mission fleets per week, and even though you said you don't like mining, joining a shared can and chatting on comms is a very relaxed and social way to make some bank.

Oh, and - feel free to drop some fitting ideas into #fitting-chat on Discord before buying them. We've got loads of experienced PvE/PvP players who can help you get the best bang for your buck.
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Re: Newbie struggle with ISK

Post by Relettov »

My go-to for ISK making has always been station and swing trading.

I'm not much of a ratter and trading can earn a fair bit of ISK passively. I bet it's not the highest return per day, but the highest return per time spent (on that alt).
If you're interested, take a look at the E-UNI page here, and check out some videos by OZ_eve who is a legend in this area.

Oh, and it doesn't need ridiculous skills to get started, and a bank account as low as 10 million is plenty

Edit: fix name, it's OZ_eve
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Re: Newbie struggle with ISK

Post by unstable unit »

For me, it's more about fun per hour than isk per hour. Sure having funds is nice and all, but games where I just grind and don't actually have fun, I'm not going to last long in, so don't forget to take that into account too. :)

You could Apply for a Mentor - https://wiki.eveuniversity.org/Mentor_Program. You can get a mentor who's experienced and can help guide you on your road to riches! (Don't forget me when you're a multi-billionaire lol).
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Re: Newbie struggle with ISK

Post by Gergoran Moussou »

I started playing in 2019. For a long time, while I found the occasional good source of ISK, but everything that did much more than cover my expenses didn't last very long.

I see that you said that you relocated to where E-Uni is and left Amarr. You are a member of E-Uni, so this is what you should be doing. The best ISK that I could get with the capabilities that I had when I was in E-Uni was by participated in their stuff, whether that was mining fleets, buyback programs that saved me a lot of time, or wormhole stuff. Making ISK is a lot harder alone.

Join a few E-Uni mission and mining fleets until you have a basic amount of ISK to set up doing something else. For me, that something else was huffing gas out of the Low-Sec Campus (now defunct) and Wormhole Campus, along with mining fleets, wormhole anomaly fleets, and other things.

You'll probably want to keep basic mining and missioning ships in Stacmon so that you can make some ISK and do stuff in a very relaxed environment, but if you really want to make ISK, you should get yourself set up in PC9 or WHC, especially since you mention having attempted PI. Nearly anything that can make you ISK in High-Sec can make you more ISK elsewhere. Especially industry and mining.

You mentioned losing ISK on industry. Most people who start out in industry do that. A common mistake is to start with inexpensive, high-turnover items. Ping me in E-Uni Discord #alumni channel if you want to talk about industry further, but there are better places to get started. A small-scale producer is just not going to be able to produce the quantities necessary to get very far on some of the cheap items and others are flooded with people who sell below the cost of building because they don't know any better. Tech II is, counterintuitively, an easier place to get started than most Tech I stuff and actually make a profit.

You mention PI, which tells me that you have a subscribed account. If you didn't, industry wouldn't be worth considering at all.
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