Greedy Goblin

Friday, January 3, 2014

P2 PI in a C1 wormhole

I wrote several times that the main feature of a lowbie wormhole is having nullsec-level planets one-two jumps from highsec. Since highsec POCO ownership allows cheaper factory planet operation, I expected the price difference between P1 and P2 to decrease. I mean, a P2 product needs 2x8 P1, but its price is higher, providing the profit of running P2 factories. However I expected this profit to be minimal, so I set up simple P1 extractor planets:
With Command center upgrades 5 skill, you can run 10 extractor heads and 10 P1 factories, filling the spaceports in 5 days. With lower skills you have to alternate, decrease the number of heads when the storage unit fills up with P0 and increase the number of factories.

However the P2 prices did not move as I expected. The reason for it is that only determined PI users benefitted from the POCO change, the casuals are still learning the tax decreasing skill and paying tax to another corp, typically RvB. Some more profitable P2 prices:
  • Coolant: 8100 ISK, Electrolytes: 390, Water: 315, total materials: 5600 (69%),
  • Enriched Uranium: 9100 ISK, Toxic metals: 380, Precious metals: 420, total materials: 6400 (70%)
  • Fertilizers: 8100 ISK, Bacteria: 260, Proteins: 500, total materials: 6100 (75%)
  • Microfiber shielding: 9000 ISK, Industrial fibers: 450, Silicon: 420: total materials: 7000 (78%)
  • Polyaramids: 11000 ISK, Industrial fibers: 450, Oxidizing compound: 390: total materials: 6700 (61%)
  • Transmitters: 7800 ISK, Chiral structures: 470, Plasmoids: 270, total materials: 5900 (76%)
Polyaramids are shining out because there isn't a single planet that can produce them locally. Of course the P2 production is not without opportunity cost. You could operate one more P1 planets instead of the P2. Since one P2 planet can serve 4 P1 planets, we must compare the product of 4+1 with the product of 5 P1, so the P1 products must cost less than 80% of the P2 if we want profit. Of course it's only true in nullsec/WH, where you have the option of extracting well. In highsec you can't go that way as the product of a highsec planet is laughable, while a factory planet is almost as good (5% NPC tax). In Null/WH if you create P2, you must extract both of its materials, even if they are cheap, which has the opportunity cost of extracting something expensive. So if there is a P2 that sells for 6000 ISK and its materials are both 100 ISK, the P2 profit is 6000-2*8*100 = 4400, better than any other P2. But you are still dumb if you are making this, because you could extract 2*8*450 = 7200 ISK worth of P1 instead and you wouldn't even need the P2 factories. This is why I expected P2 to become unprofitable in WH.

Well, in case of Polyaramids, it's clearly not true, if you can build those, you should. Of course you should build them in highsec too. The other P2 materials are also profitable a bit, but in the "opinionated" range. However P2 production has a bonus: 4x smaller volume of the product, which is nice if you have to haul everything out of your wormhole in Epithals. Filling a freighter in 4 jumps instead of 15 is a bliss. The cost is that you have to warp with a filled Epithal to the factory planet POCO, which can be blocked by a bubble of a cloaked dictor, preventing you from filling the contents into the POCO before you lose the trivial cost of the Epithal. The number of warps can be halved by using the P1.5 design:
This is a gas planet Polyaramid factory. On the leftmost you can see the Reactive gas extractor. It fills the P0 to the storage. The first column is P1 factories producing Oxidizing compound and filling it back to the storage. The second column is P2 factories producing the polyaramids. They get the Oxidizing compound from the storage and the Industrial fibers from the launchpad. Only these fibers has to travel between POCOs. When you fill the launchpad with fibers you can also remove the completed polyaramids.

The pictured factory is creating 5*7*24*30= 25200 P2 a month. Counting with 10K polyaramid price, it's 252M/month/colony. Of course you also need a supporting P1, which uses 70-80% of its production for support, leaving only 40*2.5*24*30 = 72000 unused P1 a month, with 450 ISK, that's only 33M/month, so a pilot having 3P1 + 3P1.5 gains 850M/month. Since a WH can support up to 10-15 PI alts without serious depletion, you can get 7-10B/month from a lowbie WH, which easily pays for the PLEX-es of the alts. Of course after the pilots all have their PI skills ready, they can get involved in blueprint research or supercapital training for sale to gain even more passive income. Below you can see my PI alt setup (each line is an alt) and if you add the planet incomes, you can see that my C1 already paid for the mercenary cost of Noir and all losses I suffered in this wormhole, despite many alts lack level 5 PI skills:

This is why I'm sitting here puzzled why do people talk about "POS fuel costs" and other sums that are in the few percent range of what a near-highsec wormhole can earn.


Caldazar said...

Very very few new people have the amount of alts required. Even if it is possible and profitable to do so, making 15 alts is not necessarily interesting to everyone. Incidentally, the amount of alts required was one of the main reasons I quit eve.

Rammstein said...

"This is why I'm sitting here puzzled why do people talk about "POS fuel costs" and other sums that are in the few percent range of what a near-highsec wormhole can earn."

If you're willing to take yourself as a typical model, then low wormholes aren't worth doing, at all, because you can make more trading. If you're not willing to use yourself as a model, then why are you doing exactly that?

If you would just precede your discussion with the caveat "I'm talking about people who are willing to do every single site, endless mining, and run 10 PI alts with perfect PI setups", then yes, people would probably refrain from mentioning POS fuel costs. But you didn't preface the discussion with that disclaimer, so people were talking about what they perceived to be a much more average case.

Gevlon said...

@Rammstein: the mining and the sites are just a few billion combined and I explicitly wrote that they aren't that profitable.

The income source is the PI which doesn't need excessive playing or skills or whatever. Alts are being paid by PLEX so literally everyone could run PI in WH space.

Lucas Kell said...

When you consider the startup cost, which not that many people have, the time it takes to setup, work out, haul, fuel your pos, etc it all piles on. And you're doing it all for waht? For just about enough to plex the alts? My alts plex themselves from high sec PI. Why would I want to sit in a wormhole where people can hassle me with ease and I can never know where I come out in high sec? I can instead sit only a few jumps out of a trade hub with factory planets churning out more isk. Sure, I pay a couple of % tax, but I don't need to pay the overhead of a POS, so that's easily balanced out.

Think about it said...

Wormholes are like supercaptials - once you are in you won't leave it without enemy force.
I don't care how much ISK is inside a wormhole - I play EvE because it is a MMO and inside a WH there isn't any "MM" left.
It's like a singleplayer campaign.

As long as I can make 3-5b ISK a month with 3 production charakters in highsec I won't leave the world to get lonely inside a WH.

But that's just me.
Compared to my wife, my kids and my normal workday I would make more money/h if I work on an offshore oil rig... and spend less money if I ordered a hooker every now and then. More profit/h... less social interaction. Pretty much like a wormhole, don't you think?

Ever applied your hunt for maximum profit/h and minimum opportunity costs on your girlfriend?

"I'm sitting here puzzled why do people talk about ISK/h and other sums that are in the few percent range of what a MMO could give them in terms of social aspects."

Anonymous said...

"The income source is the PI which doesn't need excessive playing"

Your perception of that is what Rammstein meant. For example, from what you wrote, you are willing to regularly change PI setups to maximize income. No one of the 10 poeple I know, whose main income is WH PI - is willing to do that.

I have a C1 Wormhole for me alone (because the other corp members stopped being active in the WH), and I use it like you to get billions by PI each month... but I could never bear the amount of P1 hauling you are willing to do.

Emptying it once a month needs about 2-3 hours. I can't imagine to spend a whole day on that. So it's always P2 production for me. Or in other words: what's your ISK/hour for PI (including daily PI restarting, hauling, selling)?

Gevlon said...

@Lucas: 8-10B is a bit more than plexing 4 or 5 accounts.

@Anonymous: playing one hour every second day to restart extractors and 3 hours once a month for the hauling is pretty far from excessive.

Von Keigai said...

With Command center upgrades 5 skill, you can run 10 extractor heads and 10 P1 factories, filling the spaceports in 5 days.

I don't understand how you are keeping 10 BIFs (P1 factories) busy. Your extractor would have to be getting 1.44m R0s per day to do that. I have seen that much extraction only on a few super-high concentration planets, and only when a base is young. Are you really extracting that much? With two day extractor restarts? Are you moving your bases around on the planet to chase the high concentration spots?

I run planets that produce P2s, using one extractor with 10 extractor heads and 6 BIFs. I never move my bases -- that's too much work. (My designs are shown in this post for those interested.) I use 6 BIFs in part because few of my characters have command centers V. But mostly it is because my planets don't make that much. A BIF processes 144000 R0s per day (6000/hour*24hours). In my experience, almost any planet in wspace can produce at least 700000 R0s per day of any good; most will get between 800000 and 900000. That is the steady state; you get more in the first week or two. So my 6 BIFs collectively process 864000. Some of my weaker planets have just 5 BIFs, to free up the powergrid for 10 extractors. My one guy with command center 5 has a few planets with 7 BIFs. I have no planet anywhere that has ever kept more than 6 BIFs busy full-time, except when the installation was young.

Lucas Kell said...

"8-10B is a bit more than plexing 4 or 5 accounts."
It's still less than you can get in high sec. A factory planet can push you over 1b per alt after tax with relative ease, and there no POS to pay for and no hauling through random wormholes. You can do the whole lot a few jumps out of a hub, and all it takes is a single run in a hauler between the planet and the station once per day (or less if you store in the POCO).

Gevlon said...

#Von Keigai: I don't move, so I sometimes have to place the extractor far, which eats some powergrid, forcing me to use 9-9 or even 8-8 (extractors and P1). But yes, if the extractor is near the factories, I can run 10-10. Hell, my storm planet sometimes go crazy and I have to switch 9-11 because the storage fills up.

Currently I do daily restarts as my pilots needs some training anyway and I have nothing else to do in EVE at the moment, but I tested 2 days restarts and they run with 10-8 well.

@Lucas: I did highsec factories and would love to see the 1B/alt setup with 10% tax.

Solai said...

Echoing Von Keigal's confusion here. I do some planets in Nullsec, and 7 BIF's is more than enough to to process the output of a 10-head mining planet. In fact, I've got a planet with a resource band that's entirely filled - highest resource density possible, seemingly - and it doesn't require more than 7 BIF's.

I can't conceive of why you would need that many factories, unless there's some kind of 'global modifier ' on wormhole planets, making them that much more rich than null-sec.

Meanwhile, PI has so many variables involved that benchmark numbers, and a common frame of reference doesn't seem to exist.

I suspect we'd need to communicate our exact cycle length and head-count in order to start nailing things down. Even then, P0 output per cycle length doesn't seem to scale in a linear way, so we'd probably need identical cycle timings to make comparisons.


Michael LeBlanc said...

Even if Lucas's numbers are high, you still have to factor in the opportunity cost of whatever the correct number is, which is certainly a lot higher than 0. Your newbie page gives 450mil/alt/month with only CC Upgrades III.

Moreover, you contradict yourself saying this only takes an hour every two days, then say you use 1 day cycles, and that 2 day cycles only allow you to get 80% output.

Gevlon said...

@Michael: I told the 2-days cycle against "excessive" playing. You can get worse, but still decent results with minimal time.

@Solai: WH planets have -1.0 truesec

Anonymous said...

"I told the 2-days cycle against "excessive" playing. You can get worse, but still decent results with minimal time."

Mainly, I was not talking about excessive overall playing time, but playing the PI clicking nightmare. I was referrering to your perception of that.

You are currently willing to spend 1h/day on PI clicking. Even 10min/day was so much clicking that I changed to 15min/3days (no matter if I had something better to do or not).

In other words your threshold of what is bearable is about a magnitude larger than mine. It also shows when you call 15h/month as "mininal time" wrt PI, when you can get away with a fraction of that. Maybe it's because you aren't doing it for years yet.

Oh, btw, please do *not* transfer numbers like simply using your 1h/day and saying 1h/2days works, too. It doesn't work that way. For example, I need 15min instead of 10min when I restart every 3rd instead of every day - a 50% increase - because more adjustments are necessary after 3 days.

And at the same time, it also reduced your output to 80%. Mixing data like that makes it impossible to compare what you do to our experiences. That changes the ISK/h I tried to get from you.

Another point in that direction: in your post you talked about mixed planets that need P1 hauling, but when you talk about 1h/2days you talk only about restarting. So what is it?

In short: I would be much interested in your real, effective income and real spent effort, instead of some projected numbers, since those you posted don't add up and sound as if they are of off, as two others have already mentioned.

BeepBoop said...

I think your forgetting about players commitment. I wouldn't even remotely enjoy logging in 10 alts every day or even every second day to do PI when i could be literally doing anything else and have more fun. Eve is not a simulator in how to make money at its heart eve is a game and people play games to have fun. Not everyone has fun running 10 PI alts so they can be space rich

Anonymous said...

Dear Goblin,

I really enjoy reading your blog, your ganking campaign against untanked miners was an inspiration, even for an EVE player who hasn't ganked one single mining ship in hisec.

I do PI in a WH. "My" WH doesn't have a temperate planet, so my optinos are Coolant, Super conductors, Condensates, etc.
At the moment, they sell for about 7k-7.5k/u. So far, I have produced P3 Ukomi Superconductors which sell at about 40k/u.
Although I log into EVE almost every day and although I go through the "excessive clicking process", I sometimes can't harvest enough resources to let my P3 production chain run permanently. So far, I refused to tear down my extractor unit and place it somewhere else, but apparently it seems one should do so once in a while.
So far, I have made around 2-300 Million Isk/month/char. I was thinking of getting more PI alts (3 on one account) to have mor "passive" income, but PI prices are so volatile and dynamic that one needs constantly watching markets and needs to adapt similarily. So less passive than its reputation ^^

Now I have to go back and redo all my PI calculations just because of the figures you gave out...

Anonymous said...

I've started playing about 8 weeks ago, and PI about 3 weeks ago. Last weekend I've stumbled on a class 1 WH and set up an experimental PI on a Storm planet. I can confirm that it can produce enough of any resource (including Ionic Solutions) to feed one BIP per extractor head on a 3 day cycle! So that is what I plan to do.

What I do not kow yet however is how to transport the huge amount of P1s out of there: I plan on using two P1-only WH alts and contract the P1s to my main for Hi-Sec processing.

I've laid my eyes on the Epithal which offers a very tasty PI storage capacity of 45000 cubic meters before bonuses and requires only a minimal amount of training. I'm not yet sure how to fit it though, considering that my alts will park in my WH of choice, and only leave it to ferry the products to the next low/hi-sec system.

So, what hauler/fittings do you use, or suggest?