Sunday, 4 July 2010

Staying Safe in a Wormhole

Wormhole space is currently the least densely populated area of the Eve universe. Unfortunately this can have the effect of lulling people into a false sense of security. Often in a wormhole you won't see anybody who isn't in your corporation for days; it may begin to feel like nobody else plays the game.

This attitude can often lead to complacency, and complacency will get you killed. Because the reality is that wormhole mechanics mean that wormhole space is the most dangerous place in Eve that you can be. More dangerous than Highsec, or even Lowsec and Nullsec.

The key reason for this is the lack of local which enables other people to enter your system unawares. Also new wormholes can spawn at any time, giving people an ideal opportunity to surprise you. For these reasons, wormhole space is the easiest place to gank people in Eve.

This matters very little if all you are losing is perhaps one Drake per month, especially when compared to the riches that can be harvested from wormholes. But once you start mining in Hulks or hauling Sleeper loot in your Iteron V or running anomalies in your Tengu - a gank becomes a whole lot more worrying.

So here are a quick few tips for wormhole safety.

Stay Cloaked

There is no better way to remain safe than cloaking. Not only can your enemy not see you, but they also don't can't even know that you're there. You can be 5km away from a totally unsuspecting target. Use cloaking as both an offensive and defensive tactic.

Stay in Your POS

Minimise the time you spend outside of the warm and comforting embrace of your POS shield. Just be aware that people may be watching you. So if you suspect there are hostiles in the system, warp away to a random position before warping to your true destination.

Keep Some Probes Out

There is no excuse not to have probes out whenever possible. If you are running a mining operation or a Sleeper combat fleet be sure to assign somebody to keep an eye out for any suspicious new signatures in the system. There is no better way to surprise someone than jumping out of a newly opened wormhole.

Keep Spamming D-Scan

The Directional Scanner is your dim torch in the darkness that is wormhole space. It won't spot everything, but it can save your life. Just make sure to uncheck the option to use your overview settings, this way you are sure to notice scanner probes.

Keep a Scout on a Wormhole

If there are any dangerous wormholes and you have the luxury of an alternate character that can cloak, put them next to the wormhole. The wormhole activation noise is very distinctive and will be a tell-tale sign that you have a visitor. This is the only definite way to notice somebody entering into your wormhole.

There are many other precautions that you can take, but these are some of the best and most basic ones.

Pick which precautions to take based upon what is at stake. If you are gas mining in a Tech 1 Cruiser, then perhaps some of the precautions are more trouble than they are worth. But alternatively if you are flying around in your swanky faction fitted Tech 3 Strategic Cruiser, then it might be a good idea to protect your investment well.

I am sorry to say that despite these saftey measures, you will still get blown up at some point. It's just a fact of wormholes. But nothing so lucrative should be risk-free.

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