EVE: Low-security Hauling

So I had my fancy new Iteron, and I was setting up to do some heavy duty hauling. My market research was showing, basically, that I needed to have initial investment cash before actual trading could be significantly profitable. You can pick up player missions, though - you lay down some money, pick up cargo at one station, carry it to another, and get your money back along with some pay. Sometimes this takes you into dangerous territory.

I'd run a few low-security hauling missions before when I spotted very small cargoes for high rewards, by using the zippy little shuttles instead of anything bigger and slower. Security is rated from 1.0 (perfectly safe) down to 0.0 (no law, no safety). I'd been down to 0.1 security systems in the shuttle, and never seen a single hostile ship, let alone been attacked.

I went mission hunting, and spotted a cargo I could carry in the Iteron, in a not-too-distant 0.3 system, and the actual transport distance was a total of three jumps. Fine, I thought, and set up my autopilot to carry me in. Arriving in the system, there wasn't even anything on the gate. So I warp to the pickup station, and suddenly my board was blazing red with hostiles - about twenty players with the worst security ratings I've yet seen hanging around the station. "Oh look," one of them said on the open local channel, "An Iteron II. How nice." I was hammering through the keys to get away to a safe point, any safe point, and I've never been so aware of the incredibly slow turning speed of an Iteron. And I made it.

And then I did something incredibly stupid. I assumed that since they hadn't blown me out of space in one shot when I arrived, they'd leave me alone if I did it a second time. So I flew in again, and began to approach the station. Two shots was all it took, and I was floating in space, my Iteron blown to shreds, and in fear for my life. I warped out in my pod, swearing at my own dumbness, and also at the casual maliciousness of someone who'd take the time to blow up an unarmed, unloaded freighter.

Fortunately, the ship was insured to the hilt, had no fittings, and was unloaded. So it could have been much worse - I could, for instance, have already had the cargo on board and have paid the 750,000 ISK needed to get hold of it. But still, an interesting experience.

So for the foreseeable future, I'm going to be avoiding stopping in any system that's 0.4 or under, and I think that low profits or not, I'm going to go for the trading option. My ISK-per-jump is going to be terrible at first - I think it was down to 4K for the first such run I did, but I literally couldn't afford to buy any more stock to sell at the other end, even with a 30% margin. It'll climb gradually, and the limit will eventually be how much I can fit in the hold.

I got myself a new Iteron with the insurance money, and I'm naming it Shining Harvest.

Posted by Drew Shiel at November 28, 2006 1:02 PM

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