Tag Archives: Invention

Rocket Science

A while back I started in on the long skill path to get to tech II heavy missile launchers for my alt.  And as I was setting that up, I thought that perhaps I ought to start working on making some tech II missiles to go with them.

If you’re going to mount tech II launchers, you might as well be shooting the best ammo out of them.

Fortunately it was going to be some time before my alt was ready for those missiles.  I had time to plan.

Nothing like this is ever quick in EVE Online.

This was going to be another foray into invention, and unlike some of my past ventures, I wanted to keep this light on the wallet.

I already had original blueprints (BPOs) for the four heavy missile types as well as their cruise missile variants.  All of them had material research done on them previously, so I was setup in that regard.  It was time to make copies.

You can only do invention on a copy of a BPO, called a BPC.  The queue for doing copying can be quite long.  I counted myself lucky that I found a system not too far off from my home base with a facility where the queue was only 14 days.

So the copies once the copies were in the oven it was time to start looking into datacores.  You need datacores, usually two types in my limited experience, for an invention job.

One of the datacore types, Electronic Engineering, I already had coming in from an R&D agent to use in the creation of tech II mining crystals.

The second datacore type, Rocket Science, was new to me.  I had to find an R&D agent that was within a reasonable distance with whom I had enough standing to start in on research with.  I used EVE Online Agent Finder to locate some likely suspects.

I actually found a level II agent with whom I had enough standing pretty easily.  The nice thing about having done enough missions to get 8+ standing with three Amarr coprorations is that I have run enough storyline missions to have my base standings with all Amarr corporations bumped up quite a bit.  I had never done anything for this corporation but I was already eligible for a level II R&D agent.

However, I saw that if I did a little bit of mission running with the corp, I could raise my standing enough to get a much better level III R&D agent working for me.

I went that route because I wanted the better agent, and thus more datacores per day, and because I had some time before I could start doing any Rocket Science research.  First I had to go buy the skill Rocket Science (that will be 10 million ISK please) and train it up to level III to use the agent.

Plus I had to go free up a research agent slot.  I have the skills to have five R&D agents working for me, so one had to go if I was going to pick up Rocket Science.  I had started research on Mechanical Engineering for some past plan that never came to fruition and had just been harvesting and selling the datacores for a tidy profit.

I made a note to go collect my final datacores from that agent and cancel the research while I ran a few missions.

Again, fortune favors the silly and I was cleared for missions with a level III agent with the very corporation with which I needed standing.  Membership has its privileges… or something.

So I was able to run some missions and get my faction up, break things off with my old R&D agent, and take up with a new one offering me Rocket Science datacores.

And then I waited for copying to finish, to get a couple more skills up to snuff, and to get a supply of Rocket Science. datacores

Finally, the day came.  I had some datacores.  The copies were done.  My skills were primed.  It was time to invent.

And for once I got a hit on my first shot.

Widowmaker Fury Missiles

Widowmaker Fury Missiles

The limited number of runs seemed a bit disappointing to me until I looked at the new blueprint.  Unlike regular missile blueprints, which only turn out 100 missiles per run, the tech II versions turn out 5,000 missiles per run.  A six run blueprint like this can make 30,000 missiles.

So then I had to start making the missiles.

I was a bit worried at how much the missiles would cost to make.

Yes, they required some exotic materials like Phenolic Composites, Plasma Pulse Generators, and Rocket Fuel, the origins of which are a mystery to me, as well as morphite, megacyte, zydrine, nocxium and a good pile of tritanium.  All of those combined add up to a production cost of about 140 ISK per missile.  At that price I can afford to shoot them or make some money selling them.

I have started producing the fury version of the four basic heavy missiles, Widowmakers, Thunderbolts, Havocs, and Scourges.  They seem to work well and the sell well.

The precision version of the missiles I am less sure about.  I have made a few blueprints, but my tests with them against smaller ships didn’t seem to show them as dramatically better than standard heavy missiles, which run about 20 ISK each to make.  That and the market for them, the sell price around my area is about my cost to make, discourages me from doing much else with them.

The blueprint copies for the cruise missile versions should be ready soon and I can look into making a few of those as well.

Invention: A Tenfold Increase

Okay, invention is starting to… well… not pay off, but at least pay back some of my investment.

After making more copies of my Expanded Cargohold blueprint while I was in Hawaii, I was ready to start in on invention again.

This time, using blueprint copies with the maximum number of runs allowed, 1,000, I set to inventing. Fortunately, stations for invention are readily available and the inventing only takes two and a half hours with this particular blueprint.

And after the two and a half hour wait, I was rewarded with:

10runchii.png

Okay, ten runs does not seem like very much, but it is a heck of a lot better than a single run!

And getting a run of 10 means that, at the current local market rate in my area, about 1.6 million ISK, selling the first two covers materials and production costs. (I have done well on the materials, having low-ball buy orders out for all the parts for some time now.) That is about 12 million ISK gross profit.

Of course, you do not get an blueprint every time you invent. I seem to be hitting about 50% or so with my skills trained up, so that cuts the profits down under 10 million ISK per successful invention run.

And then there is there is all the money I invested in invention already. Over 200 million ISK for my folly with rigs, which just happened to overlap, skill-wise, with the skills for Expanded Cargohold invention.

Still, it is nice to see my ISK balance going up rather than down. I have a battelcruiser to replace.

A Tech II Blueprint At Last!

After eight tries, at roughly 2 million ISK a try, I finally saw this message:

chrigsuccess.png

Yes, I successfully created a Cargohold Optimization II Blueprint!

Of course, again, EVE has a new twist in store for me.

The blueprint copies I was working with allowed 100 runs. I thought, somehow, that the number of runs I would end up with on the tech II end of thing would be a number… well.. BIGGER THAN ONE!

chrigbpc2.png

250 million ISK invested and I finally see a result, only that result is not so valuable at all.

Yes, much of what I invested went towards skills, which I get to keep and which I can continue to use, but I thought I might be able to get some of my investment back. However, looking at the contracts market, somebody is trying to sell the same blueprint, only with three runs (is that another random factor?) for 50 million ISK and failing, so the outlook for my being able to sell in single run copy for much… if I am able to sell it at all… looks pretty bleak.

Still, I actually possessed the blueprint now. That is something, right?

I thought perhaps I could use the blueprint to produce some tech II rigs myself and sell them to help make some of my money back. But then I looked at the bill of materials.

chrigbom.png

I have never received any of these items as a salvage drop, so I went to the market to get pricing. I found the following average prices:

  • Interface Circuit: 3 million ISK each (37)
  • Power Circuit: 5 million ISK each (22)
  • Single-crystal Superalloy I-Beam: 6 million ISK each (31)
  • R.A.M.-Armor/Hull Tech: 40K ISK (1 per run)

So to make ONE of these, I need 407 million ISK which, ironically, is almost exactly how much ISK I had when I started this little project. And, if I want to use the blueprint’s single run to its maximum, I would need a cool 4 billion ISK. Ouch.

So it appears that in my desire to explore invention, I have really pursued the wrong path as I cannot get back to where I was and I cannot afford to go forward.

Anybody want to buy a blueprint?

The Road to Invention!

I have grown used to something of a regular pattern EVE Online, at least when it comes to equipment and abilities. The general rule seemed, to me, to be:

Once you have learned the minimum skills, you can use the item or ability it unlocks.

You may not be very efficient or effective with it, but you can learn more skills to help you with that. The key item is that if you only wanted to do a single thing, you could get the skill and do it as badly or as slowly as you wanted.

If I want to use a medium hybrid turret, I just need the right skill. I may not be accurate or do much damage, but I can mount the thing on my ship and blaze away for all I am worth.

Similarly, if I want to use a blueprint to make 150,000 Widowmaker missiles, I need only the skills and the raw materials and I am set.

Basically, everything is out in the open. If you cannot do something, you know why. If you cannot do something well, you can find out easily how to improve.

And so, when I decided to venture down the road of Invention in EVE Online, that was my pre-conceived notion. Learn the skills, do the inventing.

I figured the main barrier to invention was the price and scarcity of the skills.

I decided I wanted to make a Tech II blueprint copy of my Cargohold Optimization Rig blueprint.

To get there required an arm’s length of skill learning. While some of the skills were a bit pricey, running in the 10-20 million ISK range, nothing ranked up there with Minmatar Encryption Methods. There was exactly one of that skill on the market and the price tag weighed in at 139 million ISK.

But I was determined. I bought the skills and trained them.

The data cores were over a million ISK each, and invention called for four of them, plus a Cryptic Tuner Data Interface, which could only be had for 35 million ISK.

But I was game. I spent my money, trained my skills, copied the blueprint, and ran off to do invention for the very first time.

Unlike material efficiency, or copying for that matter, there were plenty of slots available for invention.

So I put everything I needed, the blueprint copy, the data cores, and the interface, into the items window at the station, opened up the Science and Industry window, selected one of the many free invention slots, installed my job, and then waited.

Even the wait was not that long. Inventing was going to take me less than three hours.

So I started thinking about what to do with this spiffy, new, tech II blueprint I would be producing.

Should I keep it and try to sell it?

If I kept it, I would hold the source of production. But the materials costs are pretty steep, and I was already in the hole over 200 million ISK at this point.

No, I should sell it. But for how much? Enough to cover my costs, of course. But for how much beyond that? How much would this blueprint copy be worth? There were none listed in the contracts for my region. It could be very valuable indeed. This could set me up for a lot of other activities. This could be my big score!

Or so my thoughts ran while I waited.

I ignored the usual warning signs of doom, the thought that I was going to get a huge benefit from a relatively easy (if expensive) task.

And, finally, the timer popped, invention was over! It was time to reap what I had sewn!

I opened up the Science and Industry window and told it to deliver the completed job.

And I got this message:

nothingofvalue.png

NOTHING OF VALUE!?!?!?!

ZOMG!!! WTF?!?!?!

What does it mean “I’ve got a good feel for this job?” Is there some hidden stat that determines this? What beyond the skills do I need?

Obviously there is more to this invention stuff than skills and an empty invention slot.

Well, at least I made two copies of the blueprint, so I don’t have to wait for another copy to be made before I try again. Yes, it ate the blueprint copy as part of the process.

And the four data cores.

At least the data interface did not get consumed. That is 35 million ISK saved.

I knew, somewhere inside of me, that this seemed too easy.

But I feel a bit betrayed by CCP on this.  Here is something that violates the patterns established by the game.  Here is, apparently some hidden stat or attribute, a concept that seems contrary to the way the game is laid out.

Time to go see what I can find on invention.