Piracy in high-security space seems difficult at first, especially as a new player. High-sec pirates need to deal with complicated war and aggression mechanics. New players often seem to lack the skill-points to really take somebody out in PvP. Fear not, my piratical newbies, this guide will see you through making some mischief, despite these seemingly insurmountable obstacles.
This guide lists four ways to generate profit through mischief, in ways that EVE Online's more straight-laced pilots would probably categorize with negative value-judgments.
style="font-style: italic;">There are lots of ways to be a jerk, even as a new player.
Stealing ore from miners in high-security space is a time honored newbie tradition. Mining in high-sec belts is a dry, boring profession. It's so boring that it is your sacred imperative to make it more interesting by harassing and stealing from unwary miners.
The main way to do this is to find a miner that is "can mining." Can mining is when a pilot jettisons his ore and continually transfers further harvests into that can. Because cans can hold much more than dedicated mining ships, this technique can allow more mining to be done, with less time wasted on hauling. Unfortunately, that also means that unscrupulous pilots can remove the ore from the can to their own ship. This is an excellent way to convert your time into other peoples' headaches.
Consequences: The person you steal the ore from (and his entire corporation if he is not in one of the NPC corporations) will be able to attack you for fifteen minutes after you do so, without CONCORD intervening. If he aggresses against you, you will be able to attack him over the next fifteen minutes. This leads us to the second part of this evil plan: if you can get a miner to attack you, perhaps with drones (as most hulks carry), then you can come back in a combat ship and blow their hulk out of the sky, consequence-free.
Another decent plan is setting up your ore thieving ship so that it can actually defend itself and kill a hulk (or whatever) that is trying to gank you for stealing his ore. 'Badger Mark II' ships are particularly good at this.
You get bonus pirate points if you steal from the same people so many times that it borders on griefing them. If players start linking your name in local and putting bounties on your head, it may be time to try extorting ISK from the people whose lives you are making miserable. Ask for a reasonable enough payment in exchange for leaving them alone, and they may well pay you off. A few million ought to be enough, considering you are being paid to not do something.
If someone takes something out of a "jet can" that you have jettisoned, then you (or anybody in your non-NPC corporation) can blow them up for the next fifteen minutes without CONCORD getting upset, or docking your security status. This is the cause of much mayhem, even though killing pods is still verboten.
Get a ship that can cloak, like a stealth bomber, and jettison something that seems semi-valuable (a best-named microwarpdrive or cheap tech two module, perhaps), near a station or gate (though not too near) where people are likely to see it. When someone inevitable takes your jettisoned item out of the can, you can decloak and destroy them. Of course, many people are aware of this trick and will try to lure you into attacking them in a ship capable of defending itself, or in a ship that can escape before you can tackle it. Others will be unwilling to take the risk of removing your bait, or will do so in a ship that is without value, perhaps a newbie ship.
Like fishing, if you do enough of this, you will eventually catch something worthwhile. Sometimes it's an industrial that is carrying other stuff, sometimes it's just the value of the salvage from the wreck that you blow up. Either way, it's a great way to be able to pick and choose your PvP, avoiding fights with dangerous ships and pursuing them with vulnerable ships.
As an extra way to screw with people, you can have people from your corporation cloaked with you, or even logged off at that location. When someone takes the bait, they can de-cloak or log on, and join the fun.
Fair warning: GMs have been known to get involved when this is aggressively pursued in "rookie systems" where new players start their games. Tricking players into giving up CONCORD's protection is apparently not alright if it is a player's first day. Anywhere else is fair game, though.
Salvaging is not like can theft. It is completely allowed by CONCORD, and you cannot be attacked for it as long as you do not take any of the items out of the wreck or, after you have salvaged, the container that remains behind. This is great because there is nothing that your targets can do to you, and some people get really, really mad about it.
style="font-style: italic;">As a pirate, you will quickly learn to appreciate the art of harvesting tears.
The best way to do this is to master the art of probing out ships in missions (or complexes), then to warp in with a fast moving ship and salvage wrecks out from underneath whoever is running that mission. They cannot attack you without CONCORD blowing them up, so long as all you do is salvage.
Especially for level four missions, there are often millions of ISK of salvage to be had. For this reason, players tend to get really, really angry about "ninja salvaging" as it is known. Expect some good "feedback" in local chat.
One thing to watch out for is if there are still NPCs in that mission. If so, they may cycle through targets and attack you, a new batch of NPCs may appear that will include you amongst their potential targets, or the mission-running ship may depart in order to cause all of the NPCs to attack you. Just be aware of your surroundings and ready to leave at a moment's notice.
Rip And Run
A related activity to stealing salvage is probing out peoples' missions (or complexes) and stealing mission-critical items from the mission NPC wrecks. This exposes you to them (and their corp-mates) being able to attack you for fifteen minutes, but can potentially ruin their ability to complete that mission. Failing missions can potentially result in agents being unwilling to talk to that player anymore, and a standings drop with that agent's corporation or faction. They also miss out on any mission rewards or payment, and lose any mission deposits that they have paid.
Understandably, this gets people pissed. The main way to turn this into profit is to offer to sell the item back to the player that you stole it from. They likely won't pay an absurd fee, but you probably can get a decent payment for it. For level four missions, a critical mission item should be worth at least a few million ISK.
In order to be effective at this, you will need to familiarize yourself with missions enough to recognize what NPCs in the mission deadspace complex will drop mission-critical items. This way you will not waste your time with non-item missions, and can position yourself to retrieve the important item before the mission-runner.
Another possibility is that you shoot the mission-critical NPC yourself. If the mission-runner takes the mission-critical item from the wreck, you can attack him (see can flipping, above). Obviously, you should only do this if you are prepared to fight the mission-runner. Backup is a good idea, especially if you are messing with level 4 mission-runners.
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