Updated Sun, Oct 16, 2011 by Space Junkie
Running EVE missions is a much-loved pastime. It is also one of the best ways to earn ISK. Learn about the what, why, and where in our introductory guide to EVE missions.
What Are Missions
Missions are the EVE Online version of quests. Using them is a familiar formula: talk to an NPC, who will ask you to perform a task for him in exchange for a reward. The details of these tasks vary, but the basic types are:
A new character only has access to the lowest quality agents, though with time and effort spent running missions a player gains access to better agents.
Research agents are special agents that are unique to a few corporations. Once you get one working for you, it will produce valuable datacores over time without any further interaction. Since the less activity required to earn ISK, the better, these are a major long-term advantage to running missions.
Grouped by faction, these are the corporations that offer research agents:
Some other factions and corporations have a smattering of research agents, but not necessarily level four or a sufficient quantity of them (you want there to be at least five in your corporation). Unless you really know what you are doing, you should be running your missions for one of the listed corporations and sticking with them all the way to level four.
The best way to find the best EVE agents that your character can use is to log into EVE Online, dock in a station, select the "agents" tab in the station management screen, and click on the agent finder button. Alternatively, you can use the agent finder located in your captain's quarters.
As you run missions for that agent, you will find that your standings with that agent will increase, as will your standings with that agent's corporation. Periodically, you will be offered storyline missions from a random agent, usually of the corporation that you are running missions for. These storyline missions offer much bigger rewards than normal missions and will significantly boost your faction standings, allowing you access to a much broader range of agents.
There are three main goals of running missions over the long term: