Posted Mon, Oct 17, 2011 by Space Junkie
With over six thousand agents in EVE, it can be hard to find just the right agent for you. Even with the new in-game agent finder, you can still end up with an agent that tries to send you into low security space or worse. This is a guide to the best EVE agents to run missions for if you have chosen the Caldari faction.
Most players begin their EVE Online careers as a Caldari, and naturally gravitate to running missions for them. In addition to their usual mission rewards in the form of ISK and loyalty points, the Caldari faction has three corporations with research agents that give good passive ISK once you have access to them.
There is also a unique benefit to running missions for Caldari: because Jita is in Caldari space, getting favorable standings with any Caldari faction will reduce the taxes on your Jita market orders. Additionally, if you run enough missions for them you will eventually be able to set up starbases in their high-sec space, a significant advantage since nearly all starbase fuel is routed through Jita.
If you find yourself unfamiliar with a concept that we discuss in this guide, it is likely covered in another one of our mission guides, the most important being:
The Agent Finder
Though the in-game agent finder tool is excellent for getting general selections of agents that are near you, it is more intelligent to pick and choose your agents based on geography and a long term plan. Haphazard agent use is convenient and simple, but gives diminished returns over time compared to carefully choosing what NPC corporation to work for.
The agent finder's other flaw is that it does not take into account whether an agent might potentially send you into low security space. Should this occur, the mission may be refused without ill effect, so long as you do not refuse a second mission within four hours. But should you get two missions in low-sec in a row, you would not be able to refuse the mission without a standings loss to that agent and his corporation, potentially setting you back days of grinding. Fortunately, there are agents that are located in constellations that do not have low-sec in them, and are sufficiently distant that they will not send you there. These are the agents you should be using.
The Big Corporations
When determining which agent is best for you, it is important to consider what other agents are available from that corporation so you will have a clear path of progression. It is also important to note what items from the loyalty point store you will want to sell. Finally, you should consider whether there are any other benefits to using that corporation. For this last, it is hard to beat research agents.
Many Caldari corporations have similar basic options in their loyalty point store but then have other additional options based on their specialty. For example, even though most Caldari corporations offer the Caldari Navy Raven in exchange for a large amount of loyalty points, only the actual Caldari Navy corporation offers blueprints for the ship at a reduced price that makes for better profits.
The corporation that I am going to advocate running missions for is Lai Dai Corporation, the source of many useful implants and modules. It also has a full complement of research agents, who are special agents the give you valuable datacores over time, once you have access to them. Unlike normal agents, research agents require that you have standings with their corporation in particular (rather than faction standings, which normally allow you to access agents from any corporation in a faction).
Most corporations do not offer research agents, while others do not have enough of them to make grinding standings with that corporation worthwhile.
Lai Dai Corporation
The Lai Dai Corporation is my choice for the best Caldari corporation for whom to grind standings. The benefits are as follows: