15 July 2014

Let's End Asteroid Belts

There are some systems in New Eden which have a ridiculous number of asteroid belts. The top ten most populous have between 38 and 50 belts each. This is an absurd amount of belts in any one of those systems. Taking just the 50 from the top system and spreading those around the rest would be an improvement but still too many in my opinion. I also don't get the logic of making them all so small. Back in the dark days when I played EVE solo I would happily spend a Saturday or Sunday mining my way through an entire asteroid belt or two whilst doing other stuff around the house. I would do this with a single Hulk which offloaded to an Orca every now and then. Where is the idea that one ship could possibly mine a failed attempt at planet formation anywhere close to logical?

It's time for CCP to end this madness. Static asteroid belts need to go and what replaces them needs to grow. In wormholes the only mining offered to us is in ore anomalies. These used to be signatures which required scanning but for some dumb reason that was changed to allow anyone to instantly warp to them. Now only insane (or insanely bored) pilots mine in w-space. I am aware that these anomalies also spawn in k-space but my proposal is that should be the only source of asteroid to mine. Return ore sites to be signatures once more and force the miners to go scanning for them. In hisec, as enticement to keep searching for new sites, add in occasional higher-end ores to beef up the ISK/hr metric that some people find so important. In lowsec increase that ratio and just maybe the added security of requiring probes to find the sites will get more people mining there too (but probably not). And make the belts five to ten times bigger than they currently are. Get some sense of ridiculously huge scale planted in there.
A belt, today, in hisec (feeling sleepy already?)
Finally, miners still complain about how boring it is to mine. Why not liven this up by adding in a variation of the hacking mini game? Each pilot would have to 'unlock' the asteroid before they can start mining from it. Unlocking would take the form of analysing the rock looking for the most precious seam of ore to extract. Successfully analyse the rock and your mining would yield a better form of the ore. You would extract Fiery Kernite instead of plain old Kernite.

Of course there are downsides to this plan. People who don't actually want to mine but feel they have to do it to make ISK will complain that they have to pay attention to the game in order to make ISK. My opinion here is that of course you should be paying attention to the game when you're earning ISK. ISK shouldn't be something which just flows into your wallet. In any case you're paying attention for gankers anyway, aren't you? Plus we just made it a little safer for you to mine away from these gankers whilst giving you a (real world) skill-based way (how fast can you click?) to increase your potential earnings. If that isn't enough, go do something else and one of two things will happen - the cost of minerals will increase until it is worth your time to go mining again or other people who're still happy with the ISK/hr ratio will keep mining.

It's time to shake up the mining industry. CCP let's get it done.


  1. I like this plan. Add to this that the belts respawn during downtime. By the time the American West Coast logs in, many are farmed out. This makes no sense. I'd like a new mining module that blows up an entire asteroid into a spew of compressed ore. Can be done only from T2 miners, 2 minutes during which they are immobile (like Bastion Mode). Great for low sec / nullsec raiding...

  2. Don't want AFK ISK? Get rid of moongoo, PI too. With mining, you're at least in the space for more than a minute a day...
    Blowing up asteroids for compressed ore? Shouldn't that ore be rather some kind of decompressed one? You know, a lot of waste in form of soil, dust, ice and whatever. :-P