I haven’t written much about EVE lately, because I haven’t been doing anything other than setting up colonies/factories on planets. I’m finally closing in on having 3 characters producing Advanced Commodities (Nano-Factory, Organic Mortar Applicators, Sterile Conduits).
It has been a slow process, because I bootstrapped all of it from ~8 million ISK. 2 million of that went into buying the skillbooks for my first character, and 4 million went into developing the first colony. From there, I reinvested the profits into more colonies, skillbooks, and PI expansion for my 2 alts. Soon, around 6 weeks after I started, I can just accumulate the profits for a while.
Others also recommend Planetary Interaction – Mabrick has a nice write up. The catch with his setup is that you need more seed money to start, around 80 million ISK (!!). I had 10% of that, earned from the newbie missions plus the intro storyline arc, The Blood-stained Stars. EVE is like the real world – if you have a nice chunk of money, you’ll have an easier time making more. Mabrick does offer a solution for this – a generous loan program. Check it out!
Mabrick suggests making Nanite Repair Paste. I looked into doing that, but there were two obstacles I couldn’t overcome: 1) 50 million ISK for the blueprint, and 2) needs 6 planets (level 5 Interplanetary Consolidation – about 3 weeks to train after level 4). Maybe I’ll come back to NRP after building up the ISK and taking the extra training hit, and of course crunching the numbers to see how profitable my setup is.
Sugar Kyle also writes about finances and newbie players, with some advice and the observation that “trickle income” might be enough.
As a newbie player myself, income or lack thereof, is something I’m keenly aware of. For all that various players talk about risk and fun outside of high-sec, the reality is that a player needs an ISK cushion large enough to absorb some losses. Whatever a player might want to do in game, they need a steady/reliable income source to fund it. As a newbie, this is difficult because you have almost nothing to fall back on, so the risk you can shoulder is minimal. There are profitable things to do, but I find two of them very boring (mining, trading).
I wouldn’t recommend what I’m doing – I can’t imagine spending 6 weeks to setup PI would have widespread appeal. To be totally honest, I recommend that newbies just buy a PLEX and sell it for the 500 million ISK or whatever current rates are. Doing this crossed my mind a lot, but I’m stubborn.
Someone that does go the PLEX route can take that pile of ISK and have some fun in game; the only requirement is for them to figure out an income stream before burning through it all. They could do fun stuff in the meantime. They’d get to see if they enjoy what they want to do versus flailing around trying to make ISK as their overriding concern. They might end up with nothing, but that can happen anyway. In that event, they are out the cost of 1 PLEX and can decide if continuing their subscription is worth it to them. May as well find out sooner rather than later.
Planetary Interaction Profits
I’ve shifted around my PI schedule a few times. I started with a 4 day/3 day cycle, so that I was fiddling with PI on the same two days a week. Then I tried a 23 hour cycle, but it was too much time for me. Then I tried a 2 day cycle. Now I’m migrating to a 7 day cycle (technically a 6 day 22 hour cycle), and this weekend will be a turning point – I’ve finally built out PI across 3 characters, and can accumulate profit rather than reinvest into expansion.
A ~7 day cycle won’t result in maximum production, but it fits my desired schedule better. I’ll track profits and report here.
Basically, I’m trying to avoid Jester’s Strangled in the Crib scenario, where I drift away from a combination of 2 things: lack of ISK, and lack of enjoyment earning the ISK.