Fixing Mining Without…. Fixing… Mining

Ok, first off, I’m a fan of about 95% of what I’ve seen come out of Iceland.  I am.  The only real nasty bit for me was the mining “improvements.”  If you had to make a list of adjectives used to describe mining in EvE, I’m fairly certain terms related to “Boring” and “Repetitive” would show up in the top 10.  In fact I’m sure derivatives of them would make up the top 10.  Now CCP seems to be set on fixing this by adding “Lucrative” to the list, which I’m fine with, but damnit, why isn’t there a change to the mechanics of mining?

I’m actually ok with boring.  I work in a bank.  I study accounting.  I write a blog about EvE Online.  I watch baseball.  Boring is not a huge problem, but there’s a LEVEL of boring that is.  Log in to EvE.  Check the market prices.  Update your spreadsheets.  Find a good bookmark for mining the ore you want.  Warp in, click *snooze*.  Seriously.  Warp in, target, wait for the hold to fill, warp away, lather rinse repeat.  It’s actually less interesting than work.  At a bank.

I’m ok with mundane, even routine, but mining isn’t interactive.  Even missions you have to manage your tank, move around some (maybe) and keep swapping targets to shoot what you need to shoot.  Mining… you can do mining more than semi afk, find the right system with the right rocks, and you can go completely AFK till the hold fills.  Warp to your station, warp back.  Start filling the hold again.

Pardon me but this is a bit dull.  Sure CCP could make the rocks smaller, but that’s hardly going to do much other than drive people mad, a skilled player can tune his ship, his skills, and use his knowledge of mechanics to mission faster.  Rat faster, and market games are highly dependent on skills I don’t actually seem to have in game.  There’s no real “player skill” involved in actually mining.  It bugs me.  A lot.  There has to be an elegant solution.  There has to be someone out there that has it.  That has something INTERESTING, interactive, and useful to add to the conversation.


I'm using it every time I can

I’m using it every time I can

About Corelin

An Eve playing Fool who occasionally writes about the shenanigans he and his minions get up to.

Posted on April 28, 2013, in PvE, Things I think I think. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. Baby steps.

    They’re introducing a minigame to hacking. If they like the response to that they would be in a good position to introduce such a game to mining, making it much more bot-proof. But if it’s a disaster it only effects a couple of hundred players all of whom can just do something else instead. And wouldn’t utterly tank the economy.

  2. Personally I like the idea that…

    All rocks would contain a variety of ores instead of just one type. Each roid would have 51% to 80% of one type but the rest would be split among the rarer ores, IE 72% Pyroxies, 12% Clear Ice, 9% Omber and 7% Arkonor or somesuch based on current ores/sec/etc. The thing is no rock would be all one type.

    The std Ore Scanner will give you an approx total for the main component of the ‘rock’ but not the other ores contained inside.

    Then a Detail Ore Scanner (or a script) would be needed to do a detailed scan of a given rock and this would return a ‘graphic overlay’ on the roid showing all ores and totals. These would show where the ores are as color coded ‘hotspots’ on the rock.

    Now you have a choice, you can just target the whole rock, but if you do you will get a lower per cycle return of only the main ore present… For the more valuable ores they would have to target the ‘hotspots’ individually for the best yield….

    So, you can target carefully on the ‘hotspots’ and get a very good max yield of the one ore (or each ore in turn until the whole roid depletes) you are after… but, these ‘hotspots’ deplete more often, some times in just a few cycles and then you have to scan and target the next ‘hotspot’ until all of that ore is depleted.

    If, however, you target the roid as a whole you will get, oh say somewhere between 75 and 90% of the main ore and then the whole rock depletes and you lose all the higher value/lower concentration ores.

    In other words you could still AFK mine if you wanted to… and throw away upwards of half the value of each rock, or you can get active, PLAY the game and go for the Maximum Yield of all the ore types available in each rock… and, as we all know real miners are ALL about Max Yield right? =]

    I’d would also prefer the roids to get smaller and smaller as mining goes on giving a better visual of the ‘action’… LOL

  3. Yeah I was also thinking a mini game would be good for mining, but I’m not sure how much that would help people pay attention to Dscan if they are busy playing some stupid little game.

    At the moment my concern is that they seem to have given with one hand and taken away with the other – they’ve given better rocks in low sec but at the same time removed grav sites (pretty much the ONLY form of protection for a low sec miner) AND added ‘tags4sec’ onto the SAME belts where miners will mine.

    So they’ve simply upped the traffic in those belts due to this new item that I can see being very lucrative for ratters and pirates but next to useless for miners.

    You can be sure that if two pirates come across a belt looking for tags and see a miner they will most likely gang up on the miner before they fight each other, so either way the miner is more at risk of interuption or destruction to the point where it is probably even LESS of interest for low sec miners than before.

    If they look out belt rats and moved ‘tags4sec’ into anoms or a different form of anoms it would mean that miners can mine and know that anyone who comes into or near the belt is after a fight and it would mean that pirates would have to look on the belts specifically for a fight rather than get one as a bonus prize while looking for tags.

    I’m interested how CCP can implement any sort of ‘small gang’ defense for miners as the dev blog says they want them to be defendable by small gangs – but any PvP engagement is subject to a blob so unless they specifically add size / ship limits to belts (somehow) I can’t see many people rushing out to defend barges knowing full well they can just be blobed to dust.

    • To the first thing you said: It won’t help them check the D-Scan. Which is AWESOME. Because then they’d have to rely on a dedicated lookout/Security contractor (with the changes to Suspect Flagging, Mining Security is becoming less of a joke), increasing CCP’s teamwork-mining vision.

  4. I’ll admit that Hisec mining, be it for ice or ore, is one of the most mindnumbing activities I have ever experienced. Nullsec, at least the bluespace that I lived in, was much the same, park the Mack/Hulk – usually actuially a Retriever because I’m a cheap bastard and build them myself from bpcs – and occasionally switch targets while I worked on something else on the other screen.

    Lowsec mining on the other hand is a whole different can of worms, one I’ve opened repeatedly over the last few years. I only ever break out a mining barge/exhumer when I find a gravi site, preferring to use the new Venture, which has been a godsend for mining in lowsec. And even then I do a pretty good impression of an iguana as I keep one eye on local chat and the other monitoring d-scan as I religiously refresh it every few seconds. I’ll even admit to being a bit on the insane side by admitting that I ran a (small) POS in Minmatar lowsec for research, without leaving to mine ice, for nearly six months.

    Now the upcoming changes in the Odyssey expansion really aren’t going to effect mining in High/Null since the actual mechanics aren’t really going to change, just the locations of the materials. But for those of us in lowsec, belt mining will become a nearly suicidal prospect as pirates scour them looking to find tag to re-up their security status. And with the movement of gravi’s to the anomaly system they will become only marginally more difficult to find than a belt. Now if the “tagrats” were to spawn in some other location, say gates or some other static location, (1&2 DED sites maybe?) then maybe such a crushing blow wouldn’t be dealt the admittedly few of us who run industrial operations in lowsec. The new changes to mineral composition would be a great benefit even, as the most common gravi’s to find in lowsec are those containing Gneiss and Spudomain, which are receiving a massive boost to their lowend mineral content.

    I do like TurAmarth’s idea for mining though, it would introduce more interactivity into the mining profession without overly complicating it for those who just want to get the most lowend materials. Perhaps a system similar to the one in place with PI material values could be put in place, even allowing for some unavoidable margin of error no matter how skilled you become.

  5. @Ldwater – those improved minerals in low sec ore only apply to rocks in grav sites, since those are actually null sec asteroids. The ones in the belts are not receiving any changes.

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