Thursday, April 25, 2013

6-8M/hour for a fresh newbie while AFK (20M for a veteran)

Have you ever heard of mining missions? You probably didn't even know such things exist. If you'd ask an expert who knows the game in and out, he'd say these are horrible things where you have to warp to the mission area with a combat ship to clear out mission rats, warp in with a mining ship, slowboat 20+ kms with a 100m/s barge, jetscan mine, warp in with a hauler, slowboat with the hauler, do it with 1-2 more runs depending on hauler size. All this annoyment nets about the same LP/ISK than a combat mission without loot and salvage and 3-4x more time. Just forget it.

The expert was right until the mining barge buff. The tank buff made them able to easily handle rats and the ore hold buff removed the hauler from the picture. Now a lvl4 mining mission is: warp in a retriever piloted by a few days old pilot, slowboat once, launch drones, start mining, go AFK, dock, profit.

Yes, dear readers, the mining missions were not changed after the mining barge buff, despite now they are just as easy as AFK ice mining. I mean literally. I've ran more than 80 lvl 4 mining missions in a 0.5 system, AFK-ing for long times and only lost one barge, due to not launching drones.

The average completion time of these missions is almost an hour for a horrible skilled newbie (how I started them). A veteran with Orca boost can go up to 20 mins/mission. The payment is about 2.5M ISK and 5.5K LP, with mining connection and negotiation skills on 4. I could cash it out with implants for 1000 ISK/LP, so the income is around 7.5M/mission. (Note: 1000/LP is a baseline, you can get better ISK/LP, check It translates to 6-8M/hour for a few days old newbie and up to 20M for a serious veteran. Please note, that unlike FW orbiting it doesn't need any more knowledge about the game than the tutorial gives. If you can mine veldspar in a belt, you can do an L4 mining mission. All you need is Drones 4 and 4 T1 hobgoblins besides basic mining skills.

Mining missions beat belt mining in every aspect. No large volume stuff to transport, you don't have to take gates, you can't run out of asteroids, no competition can show up and gankers must scan you down first in your mission, then they must slowboat to you from the mission entrance (flashy pirates can't do that as faction police will come). So mining missions: AFK and easy as ice, safe as grav site and pays better than any highsec ore.

Tips: unless you are bound to Caldari space (due to standings), go elsewhere. The Guristas use ECM, which mean you have to retarget the asteroid, which is hard while AFK. Fit your retriever with civilian shield booster, full yield in lows, rigs should be resists against the rat damage profile. Of course you should never AFK-mine in an untanked Retriever if your implants worth a lot. The ship is cheap and ganks are practically non-existent in mission deadspaces. While the mission ores have various names, they are flavored normal ores, so you can use T2 miner with crystals. Mission reward depends on system security, mission in 0.5-0.6! 16 missions proc a storyline which gives high faction standings and good loot. The mission cannot be completed with the ore in the ore hold, must move it to the hangar.

The missions have various names and flavor texts but there are actually 6 missions, defined by the ore to mine:
  • Polygipsum: (Arkonor crystal). This is the nastiest mission, reject it if you can. There are 8 asteroids to mine, so you have to retarget 4 times. 44800m3 ore, you have to dock twice.
  • Green Arisite: (Gneiss crystal), 1 asteroid, 50km from the entry point. 44800m3 ore, you have to dock twice. The best method is jetcanning the first half, keep mining, dock when complete. Then refit the Retriever with nanos, 1MN MWD and a tractor beam, so you can get your can with much less slowboating.
  • Geodite: (Crokite crystal) 2 asteroids, 30 from entry, each having 22400m3, mine one, dock, mine the other.
  • Oeryl: (Dark Ochre crystal), 1 asteroid, 44800m3 15 km from entry point
  • Ice: you need ice harvesters and the income/hour is lower than ore. The solo asteroid is 15 km from the entry and only 20000m3, so can be completed without redocking.
  • Gas: this is the best ISK/hour without doubt and also needs just one dock. It should be completed in a Venture. Mitigate rat damage by orbiting at 500 and have medium extender, DCII, civilian booster, invulnerability field. The Venture has space only for two drones, but they eat the rats slowly.
I doubt that it worth upgrading to Mackinaw, as its yield is only 5% better, you can't really use the larger ore hold (as 44000m3 still doesn't fit in) and its much higher price might attract scanning gankers.

I have to add, the scenery is great, lot of artwork was done on it, much nicer than belts. Not like you'd watch it:

I don't know how much time till CCP rebalances mining missions, but until then, if you are mining anything else in highsec, you are doing it wrong. Expect some nice mineral and especially ice product price increase. I mean it really takes an idiot to AFK mine for 4M/hour when you can AFK mine for 20M/hour in a much safer place. While ice miners aren't really paying attention, I still expect the ice belts to empty and mining missioning stations to run full.


Anonymous said...

All true, been mission mining a lot lately, started it for standings then found the profit...
However, u need to get the standings up to 5 first, takes a long time, lvl 3 mining missions requires a lot of slow boating and switching roids...


Anonymous said...

You can get 2K-3K ISK per LP for some corporations. Minmatar Mining Corporation sells faction damage mods BPC and have many lvl4 mining agents. There is a good service for rough checking LP/ISK ratio:

Gevlon said...

Yes, you can pick rare items with high LP value, but it's hard to mass-produce. Link added anyway.
You can skip L3s by getting faction standings via distributions+storyline, career agents and so on.

Anonymous said...

If the goal is to get fiction standing, are mining missions better than distribution missions?

Gevlon said...

No, distribution can be completed faster as you can carry mission items from several distribution missions while you can't make 2 mining missions at the same time.

Stabs said...

"If the goal is to get fiction standing, are mining missions better than distribution missions? "

Does fiction standing give you storyline quests?

Anonymous said...

Mining missions have always been like that...the barge buff just means you can do it in a retriever (which you could anyway) as well as a hulk/mack or w/e.

It was never the L4 mining missions that put people off, it was the L1-3 ones you had to grind to get there.

The venture struggles on one of the gas mining missions, unless you have an AB to speed tank, but then you go out of range of the cloud, so you have to orbit, approach, orbit, approach. With T2 fittings,the drones get to about ½ shield.

Also, 20m/hr for Orca support assumes you are not splitting the rewards...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the tip Gevlon. I've been reading your blog for a long time, since I used to play WOW and love economics. After reaching 50k profit per day in WOW, 1+ million in gold and having bought all rare/epic mounts and pets, I quit and started playing Diablo 3.

I've been playing EVE for 3 weeks now. I buddied a second account that I will not renew (i'll be playing Neverwinter soon, so I will do PI, trade and industry to PLEX the one account), but I currently mine with it to gain starting capital while I grind distribution missions for Caldari with my main.

After doing L4 missions I got a security storyline I couldn't finish. Do all L4 missions give combat storylines? My main thing is to get a starbase for ME research, so Caldari Navy standing is secondary.

Also, do you know if EVE Mentat or another program has a function where I can state that I want active buy/sell orders in different locations, and then get a list of the ones that are missing from my current orders? I feel I will need this to expand my trade venues.

Thanks for your great blog, I wish I could have been in your WOW guild because I loved the idea of bidding on BoP drops and not being expected to craft for free, etc.

Gevlon said...

Every mission (mining, security, distribution) create a storyline mission if you do 16 of them.

Storyline missions give faction standings, normal missions don't. If you want lot of storylines, your purpose is to do the 16 normals fast, that's best with distributions.

Storyline missions are random, can be combat, can be hauling and can be giving the agent something (typically ore).

The 20M/hour is with Orca boost and not splitting, if you are on it, you have your own Orca alt and a dozen miners doing the missions.

Dàchéng said...

Wait. So AFK mining is okay now? What about the AFK-leeches you were complaining about last month?

Gevlon said...

@Dacheng: probably the "rebalance", "fix", "unbalanced" words missed you. I consider this a bad system, exactly because it encourages AFK leeching.

Dàchéng said...

No, I understood that. But that's exactly what the 'AFK-leeches' were saying. They were doing it because in mining's current 'unbalanced' state, the optimal way to mine is AFK. Why was their optimal behaviour 'leeching', but your AFK missioning not leeching?

Anonymous said...

Gevlon: "I consider this a bad system, exactly because it encourages AFK leeching."

Dàchéng: "Why was their optimal behaviour 'leeching', but your AFK missioning not leeching?"

May I suggest that you read again what he just wrote? He actually said he considers it leeching, just the same.

I guess it's a perception issue by you: Since Gevlon says it's currently the best way to do mining, he can't mean it to be leeching.

Those are not opposing views: Something can be the most efficient way to accomplish a goal, even if you consider it harmful for the game.

Anonymous said...

Another thing to note: Incursion ISK firehoses buy Lyavite off contracts for around 1.5 million per 255 units to dump even more ISK into the economy. Before CCP fixes botting and stupidly massive farm in incursions, you can sell Lyavite for insanely high prices.

Anonymous said...

" it really takes an idiot to AFK mine for 4M/hour when you can AFK mine for 20M/hour in a much safer place. "

Your 20m/hour is for an orca fleet. Therefore, your AFK isk/hr should also be for an orca fleet, which is well above your 4m/hr, which is below a solo miner mining in highsec.

Anonymous said...

"I mean it really takes an idiot to AFK mine for 4M/hour"

IMHO you are underestimating ISK/hour decent mining skills give.

- ore price 150 ISK/m3
- Retriever, 2x Modulated Strip Miner II with T1 crystals, 3x MLU3
- Mining V, Mining Upgrades IV, Astrogeology 3, Mining Barge 2
- Yields about 67Km3 ore/h or about 10M ISK/h

These skills are far from perfect and unboosted.

One can do 4M/h with Venture. Your comparision of unskilled, unboosted mining income to boosted Orca fleet of mining missions is silly at best.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know if mining mission spaces are treated as scannable anomalies in Odyssey which don't have to be probed down? I was ganked last night just a minute or two after landing in the mission Site. If they're treated the same way Grav sites are in Odyssey, then it's much easier for gankers to find you.

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