Daily Archives: February 10, 2009

Sailing the River Styx

One of the things I did before I went into my holiday EVE Online lull was put up a series of buy orders out in a few more remote regions of space for ore.  It was veldspar mostly, but also kernite and omber.  And those buy orders were at prices that made resell of processed minerals attractive back then, when tritanium was under 3 ISK a unit.

And, in the sort of “out of sight, out of mind” way that things sometimes work for me, I forgot about those orders.  They ran their course while I wasn’t looking.

Then, this weekend, I did a search on my stuff to see if I had any veldspar laying around, as I sold every last bit or tritanium I had on hand, when I noticed a couple million units of the stuff loitering 8 to 16 jumps away from my main area of operation.  And about 400K units of omber and another 400K of kernite were sitting out there as well.

All in all, there were more than 30 mammoth loads worth of ore sitting out there in sizable clumps.  So I had a choice.

I could spend all day flying back and forth, loading and unloading my industrial.

Or I could buy two skills and a new ship and scoop the whole lot up in one round trip.

So, at last, months after I staked out the costs and the skills I would need, I finally bought a freighter.

45 million ISK and 22 minutes of training time for Advanced Spaceship Command.

67.5 million ISK and 75 minutes of training for Caldari Freighter.

920 million ISK and 3 jumps for a Charon class freighter, which I promptly named “The River Styx,” that being Charon‘s main venue in mythology.

The River Styx

The River Styx

Over a billion ISK spent in a few minutes.  A big shopping spree for me.  That was a bit more than I thought I would have to pay for the ship itself, but with the rise in the price of tritanium lately, I was okay with it.  At least you don’t have to worry about fitting out a freighter once you buy it.  There are no slots to fit anything!

Of course, now I have a few things to learn about freighters.

I was disappointed right off the bat that I could not stuff an assembled ship into the thing.  I flew out to pick it up in a destroyer, my salvage craft, thinking I would just toss it in the bed and drive home.  Even assembled the destroyer was smaller than the hauling capacity of the charon.

I got a message that said I would have to package the ship up to store it in the glove box of the freighter.

Unfortunately, I have two Auxiliary Thruster rigs on the destroyer, so I am loathe to repackage because you lose the rigs.

Are rigs seen as that expendable?  Do you just expect to lose them if you move ships via freighter?

And then there was getting the beast in motion.

Yes, I expected it to be slow.  But with Advanced Spaceship Command and Caldari Freighter both only trained up to level 1 (one gives a 5% agility boost per level, the other a 5% speed boost) it was painful.

Going through warp is fine, but making the slow turn to align for warp… oh, the agony.  I can hardly wait to take a few trips from my home base, an Amarr Navy station that pushes you out pointing almost exactly 180 degrees from the warp gate I use 90% of the time.

Slow it may be, but once pointed in the right direction, the charon jumps.  When flying manually and jumping directly to each gate, flight times are only slowed down by the need to align for each jump.  And even then, the ship sometimes jumps before it is pointed completely in the right direction.  More than once I notice the ship in warp pointed about 20 degrees off target.

But if you let it fly by itself, it is a long crawl to cross that 15 km to the gate.

I sent the freighter off on a 12 jump trip, turned on the autopilot, then went off to take a shower.  The ship was empty, the security levels were high, I figured I was safe.

But I got back and found myself only 5 jumps along.  The autopilot had managed to get itself hung up on a CONCORD billboard and could not get itself unstuck, a first for me.

After I managed to free the craft and get it back on course, I started looking up skills that would help freighters along.

But even at the slow speed and agility that my skills allowed, picking up all my ore and hauling it home in one pass was much, much faster than many trips in my mammoth.

And while I was out and about, I set up another one hundred million in buy orders.  Now that I have the big ship, I have to keep filling it.