Posted Fri, Nov 11, 2011 by Space Junkie
Player-owned starbases are the acme of industry in EVE Online. They are lunar satellites that can perform important tasks such as moon mining or blueprint copying. They can also serve as a base of operations for corporations seeking to invade a region of space. This is a guide to choosing which starbase to use, and how to best customize it for your purposes.
Starbases are an unfortunate corner of EVE Online: they were introduced years ago as the means by which solar systems could be conquered, with a very rough implementation and interface. Though they no longer feature as a part of sovereignty warfare, starbases retain incredible value as the way to harvest moon minerals, react chemicals together, and to set up private production facilities or labs.
Learning to use starbases is a pain in the butt. They are expensive, most valuable when used in dangerous territory like low-sec or wormhole space. They are difficult to use, with a really terrible Windows 98 style interface. They are also buggy as heck, requiring GM intervention with moderate frequency.
Starbases also require an expensive cocktail of fuels, and long periods of time to online and offline the individual starbase modules. As of the upcoming winter expansion for EVE, much will be done to allay these last two problems.
An Overview Of EVE Starbases
Starbases consist of a central control tower that is anchored at a moon and loaded with fuels, plus any additional structures that the controller has added on. Each control tower has a finite amount of CPU and power, just like ships. By themselves, the starbase control towers do not do anything except project a force field that protects creatures within its radius. In order to use the starbase for more sophisticated purposes, you must anchor the starbase equivalent of modules, called structures.
Getting Ready To Use A Starbase
Setting up a starbase requires the "config starbase equipment" role in your corporation. Since NPC corporations do not give out roles, this necessitates being in a player-run corporation. Many already-established corporations will not give this role out to just anybody, since it would allow you to tamper with any other starbases that they have. It's easy enough to star your own corporation, though.
Starbases must be anchored at moons. Some restrictions apply: