Stupid stuff I have done in EVE, part 1 in a series of many

The other day, set up a new character as a miner. The idea is that she’ll sit in a station training skills for 40+ days with me just logging in to adjust her training queue, until she can fly a Hulk, at which point I’ll transfer her to my main account and no asteroid will be safe ever again.

That was not the stupid thing. The stupid thing follows.

I’d transferred some money from my main account to the miner, so she could buy some implants and skill books, and here’s where things went wrong. Skillbooks were easy enough – they’re a set price at the newbie station where my aspiring miner was based. Implants, on the other hand, were a lot more expensive and worth shopping around for. So:

Step 1: Search market for +3 Memory implant.
Step 2: Find +3 Memory implant fairly cheap two jumps away. Buy it.
Step 3: Search market for +3 Intelligence implant.
Step 4: Find +3 Intelligence implant fairly cheap at another station in the same system. Buy it. Feel smug.
Step 5: Search market for +3 Perception implant.
Step 6: Doorbell rings. WOOHOO INCOMING PIZZA!
Step 7: Collect pizza, garlic bread, potato wedges. Start munching into pizza while absently looking through market browser.
Step 8: On mental autopilot, select cheapest price available and click buy before brain can catch up with fingers screaming NOOOOOOOO, and…
Step 9: Uh-oh.

Buying the cheapest item in a region is not necessarily a bad thing, but buying the cheapest item in a region without checking the location of said item first is Not Wise. I brought up the assets tab to find out where my new expensive implant was, and…

Great. It’s 16 jumps away.
Great. It’s 16 jumps away in lowsec.
Great. It’s 16 jumps away in lowsec in Rancer.

Rancer is a lowsec system on what would otherwise be a major trade route between the trade hubs of Jita and Hek. Since Rancer is a bottleneck system – one way in, one way out – and since a lot of people doing the Hek-Jita run don’t know better than to avoid it, Rancer is almost permanently occupied by opportunistic pirates who want your blood. You do not go into Rancer to shop unless you are planning to bring an army.

(Pod kills in Rancer in the last 24 hours. Dangerous? You think?)

I did not have an army. I had a newbie ship, a six-week training plan, and a 10-million isk implant sitting in the middle of doom.


Well, the good news was that I didn’t have much to lose by going to get it. I could (and probably would) lose my ship, but it was a newbie ship, they’re free anyway; I could (and probably would) get podded and wake up a clone vat, but hey, no implants, no big loss. And if I didn’t manage to get the Rancer implant, or got it but immediately lost it by having my pod blown up, well, then I’d be right back where I was now. Literally, thanks to the clone vat. DEATH AND/OR GLORY! I swapped the newbie ship for a shuttle (more agile, still cheap) and set off.

Uneventful highsec system followed uneventful highsec system, and on, and on, until lowsec Crielere – Rancer’s evil little sister. Crielere was fairly quiet, although the names in local featured far too many little outlaw skull-and-crossbones icons for comfort, and the gate into Rancer was littered with wrecks. Tempting though it was to stop off and do some looting (hey, they’ll shoot on sight anyway, right?), I hit jump and held my breath.

After passing through a jumpgate, you’re cloaked for 30 seconds – anyone on the other side of the gate will know that you came through (because the gate goes all glowy), will know who you are (because you’ll appear in local), but won’t know what you’re flying, so it’s a good time to stop and take your bearings. My bearings included a whole more wrecks, and one battleship flashing an ominous red in my overview. Security status minus-something-drastic, huge bounty, bio a few paragraphs of evangelical atheism. O-kay then. Hey, maybe if he gets me I can talk him into a ransom by discussing theodicy! Or, er, not. Anyway, there’s only one of him, so that could be worse, maybe the gatecamp broke up and they’ve all just docked to pick up some sandwiches or something, I’m in a tiny ship that warps quickly and is tough to target, score! I warp to the station where my implant lies, shuttle still in one piece.

Dock. Check list of other pilots docked in station. Oh hey, pirates, there you all are! Plug in implant, pre-emptively say goodbye to 10 million isk, undock fully expecting them to have at least somebody watching the undock ramp, but nope, nothing. Warp to gate.

So here’s the thing: if you warp towards a gate, and you’re hitting the ‘jump’ button like crazy, you should be jumping as soon as you fall out warp, making you pretty near impossible to kill…

Unless the person trying to kill you has a smartbomb, which it turned out my flashy red friend did.

So, a short word about session timers. Session timers stop you doing stuff after stuff has been done to you, or after you, yourself, have done the kind of stuff to which a session timer might apply. You cannot dock immediately after undocking; you cannot switch to ship A immediately after docking in ship B; you cannot jump back through a gate immediately after jumping through it the first time. I’d like to say that I’d remembered this at the time, and that as my shuttle crumpled around me, I was thinking about that 30-second timer preventing me from jumping after my ship was destroyed. Instead I was thinking more along the lines of “!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!IMPLANT!!!!!!!!!”, but the session timer thing, that’s definitely the way it’s supposed to work. The session timer should have got me killed then and there.

However. It turns out that the session timer doesn’t kick in absolutely instantaneously. Close, but not absolutely. So if you’re manically hitting ‘jump’ like your life depends on it, that can kick in just before the timer, and… shuttle went boom, gate went zoom, and with a triumphant cry of “WHERE IS YOUR SAM HARRIS NOW?”, I’m back in Crielere, pod intact.

My alt is now docked up in high-sec once again, all kitted up with expensive implants, learning mining skills. I can’t help but think that after her first hour of life, mining’s going to be a bit of a letdown.


4 Responses to “Stupid stuff I have done in EVE, part 1 in a series of many”

  1. 1 Adam
    May 7, 2010 at 7:58 pm

    I just found your blog today (linked from crazykinux) and liked all of your posts. I’m interested in Eve, but haven’t played yet, and was wondering if you knew of any “beginner resources” that might help out.

    Thanks for any help, and keep up the excellent work on the blog, I subscribed via google reader :D

  2. 2 Azyrie
    May 7, 2010 at 10:01 pm

    These has been pretty good to me:


    I started about 3 months ago, so I’m not an expert per say.

    Great post Calluna, I laughed. :)

  3. May 8, 2010 at 1:05 pm

    LMAO! You jamy jamy jamy …. something! That was epic. Don’t forget to get miner chick to buddy me ;-) OK, not played in 2 days due to kitchen crisis then eve downtime. Will be on this afternoon. Btw, losing focus through pizza is totality understandable.

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A new EVE Online player comes to term with spreadsheets, spaceships and the steepest learning curve in MMO history. (SPACESHIPS, you guys!)


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