New Players' Survival in EVE Online

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Marius Labo

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Post 2015.10.13 15:28

New Players' Survival in EVE Online

There must be dozens of New Player guides out there for EVE Online. I have been meaning to add to the pile of these for quite some time. I think what inspired me to final do one of these was the recent excellent article at themittani.com (TMC) called "What Newbies need to know about EVE." I am going to echo some of those points and add bits and pieces of my own. And since this is on a forum, others are more than welcome to add to, detract from, and give input of their own.

Being a former member of EVE University I still find myself loitering around the halls of my alma mater helping out where I feel I can, in chat channels, on the forums, by continuing to teach classes, on Mumble (the voice comms program EVE University uses), on the wiki, and I still really enjoy helping out and nudging new players in the right direction (for them) so that they can get the most out of EVE Online for the experience they're looking for. I have learned that you can't push a rope. What that means is that no matter what, there are some players that when asking for advice and help are only looking for answers that they want to hear rather than accepting answers that are the better advice for the situations or circumstances they offer up in their queries. I hope that you have come here looking for a knowledge based on that better advice rather than just looking for what you want to hear. Finally, I am by no means an expert. I often consider myself as a newbie, still. And much of what I will offer here is my informed opinion, and can be taken as subjective over objective, although my goal is to keep it as objective as possible.

EVE Online is a very unique game in the world of MMOs. If you have any experience in other MMOs the first thing you should probably do is drop any preconceptions of how this game should be. Besides being a single shard, sandbox experience game, it is primarily player-driven for it's content, it's market (99% of items available are player produced or player supplied), and the PvE side of the game is probably best thought of as a means of background (some NPC-driven) content to support the player-driven content. It is a game of player conflict ranging from the most obvious PvP, "unfair" PvP, and suicide-ganking, to competition for resources, market "conflict" (or market PvP), in-game scamming, "stealing" or ninja-ganking of various exploration and combat sites, and using game mechanisms, such as war, to "grief" or deny an easy-go of things for even the most PvP adverse of player. I recommend you get over any notion that you should be able to be safe (in any variety of ways that could mean) or have a "right" to avoid any of this player conflict. Sometimes it can even go into the meta, and social aspects of the game. And the moment you undock in any sector of space, regardless of it's security status, you are flagging yourself as eligible for PvP. You can certainly learn things to mitigate the dangers of being in space, or even just in interacting with other pilots, and the more you apply the advice, wisdom, and your own lessons-learned, the more you'll be able to protect yourself. Chances are you're going to get burnt, or suffer what seems to be a major set-back. Don't worry, you can bounce back. Uniquely to EVE Online is the fact that you can't actually screw up your character. You may train a skill or skills you now think is/are unnecessary or unwanted for the direction you end up going in. Having any given skill won't prevent you from having any other given skill. You can't go back in time to "erase" that, and it simply takes time to train skills. Sure, you can learn to follow a skill plan that is focused towards your ultimate goals, but in the beginning, unless you really know and research everything, chances are you'll have skills that you no longer feel you wanted. Who cares. You haven't hurt yourself. The time has gone by, and you can't get it back. Biomassing (deleting) a character just to start over is the actual waste. I do recommend you use at least one of the other two character slots on your account to roll an alt (alternate character). You'll find it very useful, even if you never train that character (you can only train one character on your account at any given time, unless you pay for "Multi Character Training"). I'd only ever recommend biomassing a character if it's truly an unneeded alt.

Ships are simply items you will lose. Unlike in many other MMOs, ships are not akin to sets of armor or other similar "builds" and items (which only tend to get damaged at the worst when your character is defeated, not ever losing them as a result of the combat). Think of your ship simply as ammunition, something that you're prepared to expend in order to accomplish your mission. This leads rise to a phrase you'll often get told; "never undock in anything you can't afford to lose." More accurately, never undock in anything you're not prepared to lose and be able to replace several times over. By sticking to this basic "first rule of EVE Online" you shouldn't find yourself without being able to comfortably be able to replace your losses.

Patience is king. One of the biggest mistakes new players make is rushing into a larger class of ship believing that "bigger is better". Each class of ship will have it's strengths and weaknesses. I've been on a PvP action where three of us, two in faction frigates (an improved Tech I frigate) and a Tech 1 destroyer easily took out a Tech 1, with Tech II fittings, battleship of an enemy pilot. I've also been in an exciting 1 versus 2 situation in a Tech 1 frigate where I took out two other Tech 1 frigates. I've also warped into a mission site in an appropriate and decently fit ship only to lose it rather quickly to the mission NPCs (mission "rats"). As you are able to get into other classes of ships, it's not just being able to "sit" in that ship, but having your other skills trained up appropriately such as those needed for the weapons, the support skills for those weapons, tanking (defensive) skills, along with the more generic skills used by most or all ships. The one thing you can't escape is the time need to train your skills, unless you decide to purchase Skill Point Injectors off of Regional Markets, which are fairly expensive, and provide diminishing returns as you increase your skill point total. And "buying" up skills this way, or even purchasing a character, cannot make up for actual experience for yourself. Injectors not withstanding, skilling up will take a fairly linear amount of time, with only things like implants and attribute remaps having an effect to either shorten or extend the amount of time needed. If you are impatient, chances are you will only lose that nice shiny new ship simply because your character wasn't properly skilled (or you lack the game experience) to be able to use it effectively. That being said, you don't need to be timid, either. Don't wait for "perfect" skills before you move ahead. Just realize your limitations and find ways to mitigate them, such as teaming up (forming fleets) with other pilots, for example. You'll come to learn that bigger isn't better. It's understanding the roles, the limitations, the counters, and the capabilities of your ship compared to what you expect to be up against, versus other players or NPCs.

There is strength in numbers. EVE Online is a game that has a lot of strength for you through player co-operation. Players that want to solo "everything" and be, or become minimally reliant on other players can have a great time, given that it's what they want. And there is nothing "wrong" in wanting to have that as your playing experience. You just have to accept that much of the possible content you'll be essentially unable to do because there are many things in EVE Online that require the "multi" in multi-player. One way that some deal with this is by opening additional accounts so as to have the needed characters available to even enter some of the activities and content available. I feel that one of EVE Online's greatest strengths is that of the social and inter-player co-operation aspect. Take advantage of the many player corporations and groups that; a) will help you learn the game (such as EVE University, or one of many others that cater to new players and new player retention) , especially those aspects that interest you the most, and b) a corp or group that shares your play style(s) and interests. Many experienced players will recommend you move on from your starting NPC corporations in order to get the best game experience. Ultimately, that will be up to you, but there is something to be said for the experiences of being in a good corp that is active and allowing you to participate in those aspects of the game you enjoy. And always look to fleet-up with other pilots to do those things outside of the obvious that would require a fleet. It may not seem like it, but if you group to do missions, exploration, site running, mining, further industrial activities, marketing, worm hole "day tripping", just to name a few, you will have a much better experience and come out much further ahead in those things. Yes, there are times and conditions where doing some of these things solo will be rewarding, if just for the solitude, but even though you may think "if I have others join with me to do missions or sites, then I have to split and share the rewards" means that you lose out, I'd say you're wrong. By fleeting up with others you can complete missions and other sites much quicker, and this allows you to gain rewards quicker than you could achieve by yourself over the same time, plus you have the benefit of mutual support for these activities in more dangerous space or dangerous times. And by grouping with others you'll form some amazing relationships that will serve you well into your capsuleer career.

Be careful who you listen to. If you ask a question about plumbing and you get an answer from a surgeon, does that mean the answer you get is valid? You need to take in and qualify the advice you're given, solicited (asked for) or otherwise, and understand how it applies to you. For example, in help channels, new players will often have questions about mining, an activity that is readily available to do, and one that provides a steady income stream, and often they will get the response of "mining is terrible" or "don't mine". Is this true? Is mining really bad? Well, it is for the person who offered up that response. That doesn't mean it has to apply to you. If you get a response like that to something that you're interested in doing, set that response aside and get your advice from those that do the activity you're interested in and especially those that love to. And don't be surprised if you get responses to your questions that result in "it depends", especially those questions where you may ask "what is the best...." This is because in EVE Online there are so many variables that there really is no "best" and it's really all determinate on the specifics of a situation or activity, and what your character is capable of given their skills and other parameters. What's best for one player or pilot isn't necessarily the best for you. The more detail and specifics you can provide in any question you may have can help get you to a better answer. Don't worry if you don't what those details should be. Helpful pilots will ask you further questions first in order to get you an answer that will best help you.

It's your game, play it as you want. Ultimately there is no right or wrong way to play. Do what you want to do. As I said in the third paragraph, you want to avoid comparing how other games should be played and progress to that of how it can and does happen in EVE Online. Here you get to set your own course, chart your own way. You'll have access to any and all the information and resources you could possibly want. Don't take those for granted. If you're in a player corp, such as EVE University I strongly recommend you take advantage of everything that's offered. Get on the voice comms. I know that some people can be very shy of that, and it's okay. Take the time to do a little research, especially if you're given links or other media to review. This is just so that you have the information so that you can determine what is best for you. Some players advocate maximizing your "ISK per hour", whereas others will suggest not to worry about squeezing every last possible ISK out of what you do, but to relax and enjoy what you're doing. Neither view is right or wrong. It's your view that counts. Some say that the ore (and subsequent minerals if you refine it) you mine yourself isn't free. Some say that if you didn't spend ISK to get it, then it is free. Again, neither opinion is right or wrong. I, myself, am not interested in Incursions (a form of higher end PvE similar to "raids" in other games), but that doesn't mean they aren't something you shouldn't want to do. There isn't one play style that's invalid. You want to be a scammer? Scam away. You want to be a lowsec pirate? Pirate away. If you want to be a suicide ganker, gank away. You want to command an industrial empire? Then embark on that journey. It's your game, your reward.

New!! Alpha Clones, a.k.a. Free-to-Play. Check out my write-up and link here further in this thread: Alpha Clone state accounts.

Finally, I'd like to leave you with some links to various resources that are very helpful to new players. Check them out and enjoy. I hope you find them useful to your journey into EVE Online.
  • EVE New Citizens Q&A - the official EVE Online forums meant for new players including those on trial accounts.
  • EVE University's wiki - a well maintained and useful resource for many aspects of EVE Online. Often considered to be one of the best wikis available for the game. Don't be shy, go ahead and use the "search" feature.
  • Opportunities and Career Agents - a briefing for new players and how the New Player Experience (NPE) works.
  • EVE Online Flight Academy - CCP's video channel of quick tutorial videos that are also available in-game via the Help (F12) window, on the Tutorial Video tab. They are also shareable in-game from that window.
  • Seamus Donohue's youtube channel - a video resource by the famous EVE University Professsor, covering various aspects, both beginner and advanced, of game play. Note that he has tagged some of these as requiring to be updated.
  • Jonny Pew's youtube channel - another great video resource covering all aspects of game play, especially for the current (Vanguard) NPE.
  • What to do in EVE Online - a nice visual on what you could get involved in, albeit somewhat dated.

I'll leave it at that. There are a lot of resources out there. You'd be surprised but you can probably find a video that is relatively current for almost any aspect of game play simply by googling the topic.

I now place this thread at the mercy of my peers, enemies, and fans (if I have any), and most importantly, you. Feel free to ask questions or make comments. I know that our collective goal is to help you, the new player, get as good a possible start, and enjoy playing EVE Online no matter what we advise or how "bittervet" we may come across.
Last edited by Marius Labo on 2016.12.24 10:03, edited 6 times in total.
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Turhan Bey

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Post 2015.10.13 15:41

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

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"The first mistake most gameplay zealots make is thinking that the game should revolve around them. The second is believing that it already does."
"Maybe it's just a game. Or perhaps it's a world. Perhaps it's a community. One thing is for certain: If it's only a game to you, then that is all it will ever be."
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Sikandar Cole

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Post 2015.10.13 19:09

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

Good stuff, Marius. Very insightful.
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Croixant

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Cross Campus Initiative Manager
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Post 2015.10.13 22:23

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

I approve/endorse this service/product!

Good write up!

Croix
o7


Croixant
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Daniel Wittaker

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Post 2015.10.13 23:11

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

Marius Labo wrote:Be careful who you listen to. You need to take in and qualify the advice you're given, solicited (asked for) or otherwise, and understand how it applies to you. For example, in help channels, new players will often have questions about mining, an activity that is readily available to do, and one that provides a steady income stream, and often they will get the response of "mining is terrible" or "don't mine". Is this true? Is mining really bad?


One, mining is bad. I know this because I do other things. Like shoot miners.

Two, every time you tell a bunch of newbros to question advice they're given, I spend the next six f***ing weeks dealing with shitheels who want me to mathematically show them, in chat, why buffer-tanking missions is awful. I mean, literal requests for math.

Three, if you must mine, mine with friends. Anything done alone is worse than anything done together.

Four, that wasn't shit.
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Jorj Onzo

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Post 2015.10.13 23:23

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

I've read a bunch of these lately but this one still felt compelling to read.

Marius we had a brief chat the other night in QAchannel about mumble. Someone else was asking for help and it was suggested they get on some uni mumble channels. Then I piped in the clarify a point: When to use mumble? It's not clear to everyone how integral audio channels are to the game. Or they might be uncertain about how to engage in chat. For instance, I've used mumble for classes, and a fleet or two. But I'm one of these idiots who didn't initially get it. I guess it's my first real MMO environment or whatever. But some people don't realize how handy mumble or teamspeak is. When I left it on when hanging around lowesec, I've learned so much more about what is happening in the local area, and it's a way to get to know people. So thanks for highlighting mumble in the write up, I think if new players are pushed to be on mumble whenever undocked, for instance, it can only strengthen the corp.
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Marius Labo

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Retired Director
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Post 2015.10.14 00:19

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

Daniel Wittaker wrote:Four, that wasn't shit.
For all the sparring we've had in various forms on these forums, I really do ♥ The Wittaker ;).

Daniel Wittaker wrote:every time you tell a bunch of newbros to question advice they're given
My point, and more than likely not the most clear, is not to question the advice, but simply not to take every answer or piece of advice at face value, but rather understand what's behind the answer given. I recall as a newbie seeing a question asked in "E-UNI" chat about hybrids/railguns to which an answer was given about how "crap" they were and that lasers were the only way to go. I didn't question that, especially as I was still so newb, and so I began a fail-fit journey of hilarity with my at-the-time treasured Catalyst.
SPOILER WARNING!
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And I went on to duplicate this sort of fit for a while.

I sort of knew that the Catalyst should use hybrids, but I took to "heart" that hybrids, in particular rails, were bad (and at the time they weren't the best I came to understand) and that I should be fitting lasers. That one comment did more to foster some sort of belief that didn't lend itself to proper fitting.

Jorj Onzo wrote:Marius we had a brief chat the other night in QAchannel about mumble.
I recall this. And I'm glad that my advice had some traction with you. You're very correct in that being in voice comms (Mumble, TeamSpeak, Skype, RaidCall, EVE Voice, Vent... whatever people are using) adds a dimension that just can't be duplicated from chat channels alone, especially in a game a complex as EVE Online.
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Gavello

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Post 2015.10.14 01:21

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

Marius Labo wrote:I recall as a newbie seeing a question asked in "E-UNI" chat about hybrids/railguns to which an answer was given about how "crap" they were and that lasers were the only way to go. I didn't question that, especially as I was still so newb, and so I began a fail-fit journey of hilarity with my at-the-time treasured Catalyst.
SPOILER WARNING!
Image
And I went on to duplicate this sort of fit for a while.

I sort of knew that the Catalyst should use hybrids, but I took to "heart" that hybrids, in particular rails, were bad (and at the time they weren't the best I came to understand) and that I should be fitting lasers. That one comment did more to foster some sort of belief that didn't lend itself to proper fitting.


I can totally heart this due to me having a similar ordeal. When i first joined the uni all I could fly was caldari and during one of the big ops at the time we were being told to put ships in a certain location so they were ready. I dutifully got some tackle frigates (weren't too awful) but I wanted to fly something bigger and we were being called upon to bring Thrashers i think. I looked my cormorant and noticed, hey they have similar slot layouts I can just use the same fit right? People were saying sure go ahead, we needed arty! Of course this was terrible as I was putting arty guns on an unbonused hull that at the time I don't think I even had the skill for so I just injected it quickly so I could use the guns. I still have one of these ships in Jita as a reminder of the kind of noob fitting mistakes you can make as a new player. I still facepalm every time I see it haha.
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HSC | Incursion Group | <3 LSC | Loser/Importer of many Thrashers
Mercenary
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Daniel Wittaker

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Post 2015.10.14 11:23

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

Marius Labo wrote:My point, and more than likely not the most clear, is not to question the advice, but simply not to take every answer or piece of advice at face value, but rather understand what's behind the answer given. I recall as a newbie seeing a question asked in "E-UNI" chat about hybrids/railguns to which an answer was given about how "crap" they were and that lasers were the only way to go. I didn't question that, especially as I was still so newb, and so I began a fail-fit journey of hilarity with my at-the-time treasured Catalyst.


lol, I'll have to dig up some of my early losses and EFT them out for you. Spoiler: active-tanked Feroxes with no hardeners, if I'm remembering things.

Remember, kids: bittervets are bitter mostly because they've done way dumber stuff than you.

Marius Labo wrote:For all the sparring we've had in various forms on these forums, I really do ♥ The Wittaker .


Luv you too, baby.
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Xael Nocllew

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Post 2015.10.14 13:08

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

As usual, an excellent write-up, Marius!

I think the biggest piece of advice I could give any new player is to not get discouraged by either losing a ship, or not knowing what questions to ask, or asking a question and then getting nothing more than a link in chat, or just the feeling of being overwhelmed by the intricacies of the game. Yes, Eve is hard and has a learning curve somewhere around a vertical overhanging cliff (where's that picture?). As Marius mentioned, be patient and take your time. You'll get there!

Losing a ship is normal, it will happen eventually, and hopefully you learn something each time. Don't be worried about your killboards cuz they're mainly only good to show pvp activity, not skill. Your ship is your ammo, use it wisely (or foolishly for the lols).

Don't know what questions to ask and when ya did, all ya got was a link? Take the time to check the link out to get the basics, then come back and ask more informed, clarifying questions. Everyone learns differently, so complex questions have to be approached differently. A simple yes or no question is easy to answer. Someone asking about the best fitting for a ship is not a simple question, as Marius mentioned above. Use the myriad of resources available to get a better understanding of the why's and how's. You'll often find that doing so will give you even more questions! However, those new questions will be backed up by a better understanding of the subject and you'll will get much better answers!

And 100% agree with getting into voice comms! I'm one of those guys that doesn't talk a lot in comms unless I have something to say, but I've probably learned more just listening to comms than anywhere else. Remember those resources I talked about? This is by far one of the most important!

Fly safe! o7
"My King, it is an honor to die by your side."
"It is an honor to have lived by yours."
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Locke Eistiras

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Post 2015.10.15 17:52

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

I haven't been playing very long however the best piece of advice is get an idea of what you want to do and then find information on it. A steady revenue stream is also very important as the idea of "don't fly what you can't afford to lose" is great up until you lose 2 ships back to back and have no revenue to replace them. Mining has been a godsend for me, as it allows me to replace anything I lose within a few hours. However if you aren't setup to be able to watch lasers pulse off and on with no actual action than you are going to be bored to tears. The one thing I would love to see is more classes that teach the basics of a steady revenue stream from within the different choices you have in Eve. Mining is mind numbing for most but provides excellent low skill revenue, mission running can be decent but seems to take a long time to reach the point you make enough isk to replace say a Tristan or Cormorant. Exploration can be awesome or terrible depending on your luck but teaches you to learn dscan and probe scanning which are really good survivability skills. Ultimately as has been said in the previous posts do what you feel is most suited to you and enjoy the game. If you run into major isk issues get some help from more experienced corp members.
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Rogwar Toralen

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Post 2015.10.18 16:18

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

I wonder how do I delete?
Last edited by Rogwar Toralen on 2015.10.20 21:21, edited 1 time in total.
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Rogwar Toralen

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Post 2015.10.18 16:18

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

Really nice post and filled with a lot of helpful information.

I find some of the opinions against mining are funny since those shiny ships would not be around without minerals and other industrial resources. Always be wary of advice where someone replies that is boring or that is bad etc. Everyone seems to make fitting mistakes. Sometimes it's a result of information in the uni wiki. As a new player you are going to make a lot of mistakes in this game. Sometimes new players with a bit of experience find neat alternatives and out of the box methods as well.

Eve University offers players to experience many different aspects of the game. Try a lot of them out.

Mining is bad/boring?

Take a boosted uni fleet of 20 Procurers into a WH to get some ore. Include scram modules, T2 drones with good skills, and other nice surprises on those Procurers. Get jumped by some people thinking, awww miners, easy kills. Soon afterwards their attack fleet runs away minus 2 ships in very quick order. :twisted:

Earn a billion in a few hours combined of gas huffing. Get all explodey every now and then. :)
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Daniel Wittaker

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Post 2015.10.18 22:29

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

Rogwar Toralen wrote:Mining is bad/boring?

Take a boosted uni fleet of 20 Procurers into a WH to get some ore. Include scram modules, T2 drones with good skills, and other nice surprises on those Procurers. Get jumped by some people thinking, awww miners, easy kills. Soon afterwards their attack fleet runs away minus 2 ships in very quick order.

Earn a billion in a few hours combined of gas huffing. Get all explodey every now and then.


"Mining's not boring. Just instead of mining, do bait PvP with a gimmick fleet."

Also, is that a billion across 20 Procurers? Cuz if so, then lol.
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Rogwar Toralen

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Post 2015.10.20 21:22

Re: New Players' Survival in EVE Online

Daniel Wittaker wrote:
Rogwar Toralen wrote:Mining is bad/boring?

Take a boosted uni fleet of 20 Procurers into a WH to get some ore. Include scram modules, T2 drones with good skills, and other nice surprises on those Procurers. Get jumped by some people thinking, awww miners, easy kills. Soon afterwards their attack fleet runs away minus 2 ships in very quick order.

Earn a billion in a few hours combined of gas huffing. Get all explodey every now and then.


"Mining's not boring. Just instead of mining, do bait PvP with a gimmick fleet."

Also, is that a billion across 20 Procurers? Cuz if so, then lol.



Procurers cannot harvest gas.
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