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A mission is a task offered by a non-player character (NPC) to a player which requires the player to accomplish a set of objectives in exchange for a set of rewards. Such NPCs are called "agents" and they describe the task and specify the rewards for its completion.

Basic mission types

There are three basic types of missions that are immediately available to new players: Encounter mostly given by security division agents, Mining given by mining division agents, and Courier, sometimes referred to as distribution, given by distribution division agents.

Encounter missions are combat-focused. The job is usually to kill pirates, retrieve stolen goods, or destroy strategic targets. These missions have the highest rewards but they are also slower and involve a risk of dying. (Note that Security agent missions will occasionally ask you to transport something to another station, or to fly out and mine some ore. See declining missions if you are unable or unwilling to do these tasks.)

Mining missions are given out by Mining agents and require you to mine an asteroid or set of asteroids and bring the ore back to the agent's station. There is a risk of combat in mining missions, though the "belt pirate" NPC hostiles that show up are usually rather weak. Note that Mining missions pay off in ISK and Loyalty points, you do not get ore from Mining missions.

Courier missions require shipping cargo from one station to another. Except for some L1 missions Distribution missions never require combat unless you are sent into low/null-sec space, in which case you may encounter PvP combat on the way to your destination. Courier missions are the fastest mission type to run so they are sometimes used for fast standings gains.

Mission levels

Mission levels go from 1 to 5. As your corporation and faction standing increases, you'll gain access to higher level missions. Each new level of mission generally requires that you have better skills and access to bigger ships. Higher level missions also increase ISK and LP rewards. The level of a mission agent tells you the level of missions that the agent will offer. Each agent offers only one level of missions.

  • Level 1 The most basic type. All three types can be run by basic frigates. Only the most basic piloting skills are required.
  • Level 2 While Mining and Courier may be run in frigates, Encounter is designed for cruiser hulls. You are expected to improve your abilities and learn how to fit out new ships.
  • Level 3 As you specialize, you will need a battlecruiser, mining barge, or a medium-sized industrial ship. These missions go faster if you have trained for better ships and at least some Tech 2 fittings.
  • Level 4 These require a battleship, an Exhumer, or a large industrial ship. These missions can be time-consuming, but they offer large rewards. These missions require omega to run.
  • Level 5 Special security missions designed for groups of players or capital ships and are exclusively located in Low Security space. Like level 4, these also require omega to run.

Special missions

These mission types are not regularly available and are bound by conditions you need to fulfill before they are offered to you.

Career missions, also known as "Tutorial missions", are missions that are supposed to help teach players how to play EVE Online. It is a good idea to do these when you first start playing EVE, as they give you starter ships and equipment. They also increase your standings with the faction offering the missions. Each player character can only do each tutorial mission from a given Career Agent once, but the Career agent mission chains do count as Storyline missions and thus increase faction standings after completing a full set.

Research missions are a part of the Industry career path. Instead of Loyalty Points, these missions award Research Points that can be used to buy datacores from the agent who gives the missions. You will need to have trained various Science skills to the level required by an agent before he or she will offer you a mission. Datacores can be sold at the Market, and some players run these missions to make ISK from trading - do keep in mind that the income is quite low. Most players, however, have not trained the Science skills that these missions require.

Epic arcs are long series of missions. Throughout the arc, you will be offered choices that will branch the arc into one or more directions, and thus the arcs have different outcomes depending on your choices. The missions that make up these arcs typically have very good ISK rewards and the last mission of the arc typically carries a handsome reward. There are seven Epic Arcs. Most players begin with The Blood-Stained Stars, an arc that can be completed in a T1 destroyer and gives a boost in standings with the Sisters of EVE and one empire faction of your choice. Seasoned L4 runners will be doing the four empire epic arcs while the fearless pilots can do the two pirate epic arcs. Epic arcs can be repeated once every three months.

Anomic missions (also known as "burner" missions) are optional Security missions that are offered by level 4 agents. They can always be declined without penalty. Anomic missions present a more difficult challenge compared to other Security missions. You will encounter a small number of very powerful adversaries and you are restricted in ship size. These missions require specialized and expensive ship fits and high skills to solo. They also require piloting skills that are otherwise rarely used in PvE such as overheating.

COSMOS missions are special missions found in certain regions of space. These missions vary wildly in difficulty from easy L1 to harder-than-usual L4. Unlike normal missions these missions require faction standings to accept. The COSMOS missions can be completed only once and can not be repeated if you let them expire or fail them.

Data centers involve handing in tags to the agent for standing gains. This effectively allows you to buy faction standings. Note though that each data center mission can be done only once.

Storyline missions

As you continue to complete missions, you will occasionally get a Storyline Mission offer from a special Storyline agent. The game tracks how many missions you've completed for each level and each faction.

For every 16 missions of the same level and faction (but not necessarily the same corporation) that you complete, you will get a new Storyline mission offer from the nearest Storyline agent of the same faction.

This will always be the Storyline agent closest to the regular agent who gave you your 16th mission (in terms of number of jumps) with two exceptions:

  • If the closest Storyline Agent has already made you an offer that you haven't accepted or declined, then it will be the second-closest Storyline agent that you get the offer from.
  • If the agent who gave you the 16th regular mission that you completed was in High Security, then the Storyline offer will always come from a Storyline agent in High Security.

The Storyline agent will contact you from a station - you will get a notification about an important mission offer - however, you will need to travel to the agent's station in order to accept the mission. Once you are in touch with the Storyline agent, you accept and complete the mission in the usual way. You cannot work for a Storyline agent unless you've received an offer from that Agent.

Completing a Storyline mission gives large increases to your standings with the agent's corporation and a moderate increase to faction standings. Note that you will also get derived standings, both positive and negative. If you keep doing Storyline missions for Minmatar Republic you will find that Gallente Federation will also like you while Amarr Empire, Caldari State and various pirate factions will gradually start to dislike you.

When trying to increase standings with a particular NPC corporation, it is possible to plan your missioning in a way that when you hand in your 16th mission, you get your offer from the Storyline agent of the corporation that you are focusing on.

The InterBus and militia corporations do not offer any Storyline missions.


Completing missions will reward you with ISK, Loyalty Points, and standings.

The amount of ISK received is influenced by the Negotiation skill giving 5% additional ISK per skill level.

Being paid with ISK is clear-cut, however new missioneers often forget about Loyalty points they gain whilst running missions. Loyalty Points (LP) are a currency that you receive from the corporation whose agent gives you a mission. These points can be used to buy things at the corporation's store. LP (plus a certain amount of ISK and/or particular items) can be exchanged for valuable items in the LP store of the mission agent's corporation. For some players, it is more profitable to accumulate LP in order to exchange them for goods that can then be sold than it is to kill, loot, and salvage in encounter missions. See Loyalty Points for more details on what to do with LP.

The mission LP rewards also scale with the system security of the agent. The formula for calculating the LP reward is:

LP reward = (1.6288 - System security) × Base LP

This means that an agent in an 0.5 security system pays 80% more than an agent in 1.00 security system. Note that the system security used here is the true security of the system.

the amount of LP received is also influenced by the "Division" Connections skills:

  • Distribution Connections - Improves loyalty point gain by 10% per level when working for agents in the Distribution division.
  • Mining Connections - Improves loyalty point gain by 10% per level when working for agents in the Mining division.
  • Security Connections - Improves loyalty point gain by 10% per level when working for agents in the Security division.

The rewards are also dynamically adjusted based on past completion data. This dynamic calculation affects ISK/LP payout, bonus reward, and timed bonus reward.[1]

Gaining improved standings with an agent, corporation or faction can also be lucrative. With higher standings, you will be able to take higher level missions, pay fewer broker fees in NPC stations and get cheaper refining in NPC stations. The amount of standing received is influenced by the Social skill - 5% bonus per level to NPC agent, corporation and faction standing increase. See NPC standings for all advantages of standings.

You will also receive ISK from bounties while killing pirate NPCs in combat missions. You will often get more ISK from bounties than from the mission reward. You will also be able to loot and salvage the wrecks though it depends on the mission level and killed NPCs whether it is profitable or not.

Declining missions

The "Decline mission" timer tells you how long you have to wait until you can decline another mission from this agent without losing standing.

Declining a mission for a particular agent more than once every four hours will cause a standings loss with the agent, corporation, and faction. Running out of time on a mission you have accepted will also cause a standings loss with the agent, corporation, and faction.

If an agent you recently declined a mission from offers you another undesirable mission, you can click DELAY, wait out the four hour timer while you go do something else, and then decline.

Missioning with a fleet

Main article: Mission Fleets

Members of a fleet who run missions can share all of the standings, LP, and ISK rewards from the mission and bounties automatically. Loot and/or salvage can be shared by hand. This is especially good for newer players, as they generally gain more standings than they share. There are two main kinds of mission fleet: Spider, where everyone runs their own missions, but shares standings, etc. at the end; and Locust, where the fleet members all work on the same mission together. Read the article on Mission Fleets for more details.

Advice for new mission runners

If you're new to mission running and your goal is to gain loot, pile up LP to buy things, or to increase your standing with a faction, then you may want to lay out a plan to help you run your missions with a minimum of down time. Here are some suggestions.

1. Pick an area in which to work

The last thing you want is to be running missions in the middle of a contested low sec region where combatants will shoot at you, or in systems that lie on a busy trade route where griefers will target you. Use the map and look for a group of fairly high security systems set off from the major trade routes and other active systems. Keep in mind that you can be scanned down in mission pockets and war targets will attempt to do so.

Good mission map.jpg Bad mission map.jpg

2. Know what you want; check out what the various agents offer

Successful mission runs give you ISK and Encounter missions can also give you loot. They also give you standing with the agent that gave you the mission, the agent's corporation, and the agent's faction. In addition, they give you LP that can be redeemed for items in the corporation's store. The corporation you gain LP for is important.

Most corporation stores sell the same sets of augmentation implants. However, different corporations offer different sets of skill upgrade implants, and different factions offer different modules, hulls and ammunition. Roden Shipyards, for example, sells warp drive and astrometric skill upgrades, while Astral Mining offers mining upgrades. Weapons and ammunition offers correspond to the faction's spaceship preferences - Minmitar offer projectile weapons and ammo, Ammar offer laser weapons and crystals, and so on.

3. Pick A Corporation With Multiple Agents In The Region

Nearly every station has at least one agent, and there are many duplications in terms of standings and items offered for sale. So if you want to improve your standing with Gallente and you want to buy equipment to improve your mining, then Astral Mining is one of the corporations you would want to consider. Since there are many Astral Mining agents in Gallente space, choosing this corporation will not restrict your choice of star systems all that much.

Once you have a goal in mind, use the Agent Finder to narrow your choices of star system. Keep in mind that when you finish running level 1, you will almost certainly have to move to a new system to find a level 2 agent, and again for level 3 and 4. So try to find a group of level 1-2-3-4 agents that are fairly close together.

To avoid unfavorable missions such missions in low/null security space and missions that require you to kill empire ships you will need to decline missions every now and then. It is best to choose your location so that you have a second and even third agent as backup once you can't decline the mission offered from first agent without losing standings.

4. Pick A Base Station And Start Running

Here is the map for that area: Verge vendor mission map.jpg

You need a base because as you go along, you will buy ships, ammunition and other gear and you will pick up loot and salvage from completed missions. It's easiest to keep all this stuff in one place, so plan to go to your agent's base to run missions, then fly back to your base when you need to resupply. It is often best to bring all the refit modules and extra ammo to the agent's station so you don't need to travel more than is needed.

Two hints for being sure your mission is complete

  • Look for a green check mark next to the mission
where the green checkmark appears
  • If you think the mission is finished but you don't see the green checkmark or want to check your objectives, click on the little down arrow next to the mission name and select "Details" from the menu. This will show you the mission briefing and you can take another look at your objectives.

Note that some missions may not get this completion mark.

Mission preparation and walkthroughs

Never fly what you cannot afford to lose applies to running missions as well. When starting out, fly the cheapest ship that will do the job and only pay for expensive upgrades once you're sure you can replace them. Also, keep in mind that no activity is 100% safe, mission runners can get scanned down and ganked and even an empty transport ship can become a target for a bored ganker.

NPC's in missions tend to be very predictable in their setups. For example, Gallente and Serpentis use only Kinetic and Thermal damage against you and are most susceptible to Kinetic and Thermal damage themselves; when they use any form of EWAR, it's always sensor dampening. It helps quite a bit if you set up your ship to deal damage that NPC's are vulnerable to and defend against what they will throw at you. Check out NPC damage types for a full description and a handy chart that you can keep in your Neocom Notebook.