Once players have completed the Tutorial they need to find their own way in New Eden. EVE is a sandbox and players will soon find they need to make their own entertainment and income. This brief guide intends to describe some of the typical options that many EVE players pursue, together with the likely income from them.
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Administrative and Meta Careers
These careers involve either organising players or providing services for other players to assist them in playing the game.
- Main article: Forming a Corporation
Corporations often need a lot of manpower to run successfully. People are need to advertise the corporation, recruit members, set policies, conduct diplomacy with other corporations, arrange logistics and ensure that everything runs smoothly. Available roles will depend on your corporation and their needs. Players can even start their own corporation, although this is often suited to more experienced players who are able to use their experience in game to build a successful corporation. Starting a corporation often requires a large amount of starting capital - more so if the corporation will own structures like Citadels or Engineering Complexes.
EVE Online has a player-elected council known as the Council of Stellar Management (CSM), who provide feedback to CCP about the game and raises any concerns players have. New CSM members are elected once per year and attend meetings with CCP in Iceland as well as participating in online discussions about the direction of the game. They are required to sign a legal 'Non Disclosure Agreement' before they start their term as a CSM member.
There are many third party sites and podcasts dedicated to EVE Online. Many of them accept submissions and guest slots by players. This would particularly suit a player with good communication skills who has a unique perspective on the game. CCP also sometimes needs players to act as presenters for official events such as the Alliance Tournament and Fanfest.
Business careers focus on moving and selling goods to make a profit. They make use of New Eden's player to player market.
- Main article: Hauling
Logistics is vital in EVE Online, and haulers move items from point A to point B. It can be profitable to buy items cheaply in one place and sell them elsewhere, where there is greater demand. Other players will also often pay well for the service of moving their items through 'courier contracts'. The skills required to fly a basic industrial ship are low, but the amount of cargo it can carry is fairly small and it is vulnerable to attack, particularly in lower security areas. Players can train to fly a range of specialised hauling ships to carry bigger loads or to haul in lower security space. There are entire corporations dedicated to fulfilling courier contracts for a price.
- Main article: Trading
EVE Online has a complex player-driven market, which is studied by students of economics. By investing their ISK correctly, players can make a profit from buying and selling goods. This requires some starting capital and a good grasp of supply and demand. Some traders focus on buying and selling goods in the same station, while some will buy items with a view to selling them elsewhere for a higher price. Trading can be very competitive, especially in high traffic areas such as Trade Hubs, which can drive down profits. However, if a player finds a suitable niche it can yield a high income.
Combat is something that us unavoidable in EVE Online. Many players thrive on honing their combat skills, either against other players or against NPCs.
- Main article: Faction Warfare
In EVE lore there are four factions: Amarr, Caldari, Gallente and Minmatar. These factions are perpetually engaged in a struggle for power, and fight for control over certain areas of low security space. Players can join one of the factions and fight players from opposing factions in order to earn Loyalty Points and standings with their faction. Participating in faction warfare means that players can be attacked by members of their opposing faction anywhere, so it is a dedicated profession. Players are not restricted on which faction they join and can even join a different faction to their character's race, provided they have sufficient standings with that faction. There are many dedicated faction warfare corporations.
- Main article: Incursions
Incursions are high end PVE content, involving repelling NPC invaders as part of a fleet. Incursions appear in various systems around New Eden, so incursion runners tend to be nomadic and move from system to system following the incursion areas. Incursions are rewarded with ISK and Loyalty Points, though payouts are only made to a limited number of people on grid at the same time. For this reason, it is particularly important that each member of the fleet is effective in their role and so they tend to fly battleships and T2 logistics.
- Main article: Missions
Missions are one-time jobs offered to players by NPC agents. There are various types of basic missions, including combat, mining and courier. There are also more advanced missions called COSMOS and Epic Arc missions. Completing a mission is rewarded with ISK, Loyalty Points and standings with the agent and NPC corporation involved. Some missions also give a time bonus and some give items also (particularly the Career Agents missions). There are various levels of missions, which are increasingly more difficult to complete. Level one missions are easy for Alpha Clones or very new players to complete, but the rewards are low. In contrast, level five missions only appear in low security space and can normally only be done as part of a fleet. Players will need high standing with agents to be able to request higher level missions.
PvP is a fundamental part of EVE Online. Players can attack or be attacked by anyone at any time. Many player make PVP their main profession, and spend their time hunting for fights. PVP can be done either solo, in a small group or part of a huge fleet. It encompasses everything from frigate brawls to huge Titans. There are also various different roles players can fill, including tackler, damage dealer, scout, stealth bomber, EWAR pilot, logistics and fleet commander. To thrive in PVP players will benefit from a good tactical mind and a quick trigger finger, but it is easy to get into and can be done by Alpha Clones and very new players. Some players will go one step further and become a mercenary, who can be hired to do PVP for a price. Alternatively some players decide to become bounty hunters, and hunt down players who have an active bounty. Some players choose to become pirates, and hunt down their victims to either pillage their goods or demand a ransom for their ship or pod.
As well as other players, New Eden is full of hostile NPCc which are known in short as 'rats'. These spawn at asteroid belts, in cosmic anomalies and at stargates. Destroying rats earns a ISK payment in return for the bounty, as well as any loot or salvage which is dropped in the wreck. Some rats drop items known as Security tags which can be valuable. Some tags can be used to increase a player's security status. The rewards vary depending on the security level of the system, but the income is normally not high enough to justify it as a sole career, it is often something use players use to supplement their income and boost their security status when needed.
New Eden is vast and contains many secret sites with hidden valuables. Exploration is about tracking down those sites.
Exploration and hacking
- Main article: Exploration
Players can use their onboard scanner together with a probe launcher to scan down Cosmic Anomalies and Cosmic Signatures. These will contain either groups of pirate NPCs, resources like gas clouds or asteroid belts, hackable containers with loot or wormholes. Hacking and archaeology involve a mini-game to break into the container. Lower security areas tend to yield the most valuable loot and resources, but players are vulnerable when doing exploration which is why it's best to use a ship that can cloak. Exploration is easy to get started with and can be a potentially lucrative source of income, especially for a new player. Wormhole sites are a more advanced form of exploration in more hostile space.
- Main article: Salvaging
Each time a player or NPC ship explodes it drops a wreck. The wreck sometimes contains loot, but the wreck itself can also be salvaged for useful parts. Salvaging enable a player to collect those parts with a view to either selling them or processing them rigs for ships. Salvaging can be a profitable side career, normally alongside either mission running or PVP. Salvaging is quick to train into and can be done by a new player, often as part of a mission fleet. The salvage is normally split between the fleet members, so it can be a good income for relatively little effort. Players can use tractor beams to pull wrecks towards them for faster salvaging, and there a is even a specialised ship, the Noctis. Alternatively, players can use a Mobile Tractor Unit which collects the wrecks in one place.
Industrial careers are focused on gathering resources and creating ships and items. This is often referred to in other games as "crafting".
- Main article: Manufacturing
Almost everything in New Eden is created by players. Blueprints can be used to produce items from minerals, which can either be refined or bought from the market. Manufacturers may create items for personal use, or to sell on the market for a profit. Although the basic skills required to manufacture items can be trained quickly, increased skills will greatly improve efficiency. Players need a base to start manufacturing, which could be an NPC station or a player owned structure such as an Engineering Complex. Manufacturing can yield a good income, but some items cost more to manufacture than they are worth so it is possible to make a loss also. It can also be highly competitive, driving down profits in high traffic areas. In addition to manufacturing, players can carry out invention to create more valuable T2 items, and conduct research to improve the efficiency of blueprints, making them more valuable. Players can work with dedicated research agents to obtain datacores, which can then be used in invention.
Mining and refining
- Main article: Mining
Asteroid belts spawn throughout New Eden and can be mined to extract ores. In addition to ores, players can use specialised equipment to mine ice from ice belts and harvest gas from gas clouds. The ore, ice and gas can either be sold in its raw form, or refined into minerals. In general rarer and more valuable resources are found in lower security space. Mining has a low entry barrier, though mining efficiency can be substantially improved by training the right skills and implants and using more advanced equipment and ships. Alpha clones can mine, although the only specialised mining ship they can use is the Venture. Players can mine either alone or as part of a mining fleet, and can produce a stable income stream. However, miners are always vulnerable to attacks by other players as well as can flippers, so it can be a risky profession, particularly in lower security areas.
- Main article: Planetary Interaction
New Eden has thousands of planets, and players can establish a colony on a planet in order to produce resources. The resources (or 'commodities') which are produced can either be sold in their raw form, or combined with other commodities to make more complex products. Ultimately these can be used to make fuel and parts for structures, boosters and components. Planets in lower security areas tend to yield more valuable commodities. Planetary interaction has a low entry barrier, although through training skills players can increase the number of planets and the efficiency of their colony. Planetary interaction does not normally require much active management once the colony is established, and most players will use it as a passive supplement to their other income.
Unlike many other games, being a criminal is a viable career option in EVE Online, and not against the EULA. Many players find that crime does pay, quite handsomely.
- Main article: Can flipping
Players can jettison items into space, creating a jetcan which can be opened not just by the player who created it, but by anyone. A common reason for players to do this is when they are mining, to store their ore for later retrieval. Some players use this as an opportunity to steal the ore inside the jetcan, which is known as 'can flipping'. Sometimes this is done purely for the goods inside, but it is often done to provoke the miner into trying to attack the person stealing their ore. This will set off a combat timer, allowing the 'can flipper' to switch into another ship and shoot the miner with no retaliation from CONCORD (since they are technically acting in self-defense from the point of view of the game).
Scamming or theft
Scamming others out of their ISK or luring them into traps can be an exciting way for some people to play the game. Such scams take many forms. Some of the most common are misleading contracts, selling goods for much more than they are worth, "ISK doubling" scams, making players an offer that is too good to be true for the purpose of leading them into an ambush, requesting ISK in return for joining a corporation, infiltrating a corporation for the purposes of emptying their corporate resources. It will suit a certain kind of player who thrives on the chase and has the confidence and personal skills to pull it off. The income can potentially be huge, there have been some very high profile corporation thefts of many billions.
- http://slides.eveuniversity.org/?slidesID=270 - Slides for the Introduction to EVE Careers class
- https://myeveguide.files.wordpress.com/2011/05/eve-wtd.jpg - A plan showing how different careers interact with each other
- http://content.eveonline.com/CareerGuide/EVECAREERSGUIDE.pdf - EON magazine's EVE careers guide (as per the Apocrypha expansion in 2009)