Let’s wrap up this series about mission running with the end game of high security space mission running: Level 4 missions.
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To access level 4 mission agents, you will need a standing of greater 5 to the corporation your agents works for. Level 4 mission are quite a bit more difficult than level 3s with NPCs now mostly in battleships and battlecruisers with a few frigates and dessies as support.
The missions itself are not very different from level 3 missions, with some of them having the same names and objectives to their level 3 counterparts, just with bigger NPC ships.
As the title suggests, I have recently got the Rep for level 3 missions. I'm looking for and up to date ship and fit for level 3 missions. For the level 2 missions I was running a Vexor with Hobgoblins for drones. What ship and fit should I be using for Level 3 Gallente Security Missions? Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks, Rusef Book.
To run these solo in a timely fashion you need to upgrade your mission boat to a battleship, and from level 4 mission on, you will also need to put some more expensive modules on your ship to run the mission smoothly.
I sticked with Caldari ships and picked the Raven, the Caldari battleship missile platform, to run my levels 4s. If you are following the ship progression from the previous parts of this series, the step up to the battleship sized hull, medium sized drones and large sized missile launchers will only need a couple of additional days training.
This is the fit I used:
In the high slots we have 6 ‘Arbalest’ Cruise Missile Launcher Is as the battleship sized missile based long range weapon system. These fire out to over 200km with max skills, which is enough to hit any ship in every mission pocket without using your propulsion module.
In the mid slots we have an active shield tank, centered on a Pith A-Type X-Large Shield Booster, which boost about 250 HP per second with this fit. This is such a big amount because of a Shield Boost Amplifier II, which boost the rep amount of the shield booster. Two Large Cap Battery IIs give enough cap to boost for almost 3 minutes with the MWD off. As the propulsion module, we have 50mn Y-T8 Compact Microwarpdrive, which you need to move towards acceleration gates within the mission pockets, but shouldn’t use during the actual combat. Two shield hardeners that need to be switched to the mission specific damage increase your resists, which benefits the effective shield tank of your shield booster.
In the rig slots, we have 3 Large Capacitor Control Circuits I, which increase you capacitor regeneration to feed the always hungry shield booster.
In the low slots we have 3 Ballistic Control System IIs to increase missile damage and one Drone Damage Amplifier II to increase drone damage. To help you regenerate the capacitor used by the shield booster, there is one Capacitor Power Relay II fitted.
The fit is completed with a flight of medium and light drones, which also can be switched to the mission specific damage weakness of the NPCs.
The fit is not very skill point intensive, which faction medium drones and T1 cruise missiles. Of course the T2 version of both will increase the dps quite a bit, but will require some serious additional training. The fit can deal almost 700 dps with max skills and the shield booster tanks most mission fine, if you change the hardeners to the NPC main damage type.
With under 500 million ISK, the price is in the medium range of what you can spend for a level 4 mission boat. Without the dead space shield booster, it is only 300 million, but this will significantly reduce your tank and increase the amount of time you need to finish a mission.
With level 4 mission the amount of ISK you get from rewards and LP gets way more important, than the ISK you earn from the bounties by killing the mission NPCs. That’s why it is better to finish a mission as fast as possible than to kill all NPCs and collect bounties from them. The same is true for loot and salvage, which takes a long time to collect. Time that is better spend on finishing another mission. The process of using the fastest way to finish a mission is also called to blitz a mission. For most missions it is not obvious what the fastest way to complete it is. Often the UI indicates mission objectives that are not really required to finish a mission. A good example is, when the description asks you to kill all enemies in a mission room, but actually only a certain group must be destoyed.
The best way to figure out what actually needs to be done in a mission, is to read the mission description carefully. If you use Eve Survival for your infos, there is usually a section called Blitz in the description.
This section will tell you what to do to finish the mission as fast as possible. If you are offered a mission that has no easy way to blitz it, but requires you to destroy a lot of NPCs, it is sometimes better to decline it and ask your agent for another mission to skip the time consuming ones.
I ran 10 level 4 missions with this fit and calculated some statistics from the payout. I used a Mobile Tractor Unit to scoop loot during the mission, but did not come back to salvage any wrecks. I also didn’t wait for the tractor to collect all loot, but scooped it back into cargo once I could enter the next mission pocket or completed the mission. If there was special loot mentioned in the mission description on Eve Survival, I of course looted it.
In average I made around 30 million ISK / hour including the loot and loyalty store points, which I calculated as 1500 ISK per point. In average, a mission took me about 22 minutes. This resulted in 100 million ISK after a bit over 3 hours of mission running. You can see by the stats, that some mission give a better ISK / h payout while others give less. Some missions also take quite a while to finish, which are mostly the combat heavy missions with lots of NPCs to kill. The higher paid ones usually have very easy objectives and can be blitzed easily.
After finishing my statistics for the Raven, I wanted to try out how the income could be increased by bringing a better ship and a more experienced pilot for mission running. I used my main PVP character for this test, who can fly most ships pretty good and has skills for all T2 weapon systems. So I fitted a Rattlesnake, the Gurista Pirate battleship, which is also a missile boat similar to the Raven but additionally has a massive heavy drone damage bonus and can use heavy drones.
The fit I used is shown below:
This fit has 1100 dps which is 400 more than the Raven fitting above. The tank is a little weaker, but since the dps clears the battleships in the missions much faster, there is not much tank needed. I am using Rapid Heavy Missile Launcher IIs instead of cruise missiles to clear battlecruisers and smaller ships and used the heavy drones on the battleships.
Eve Online Level 4 Mission Ships
These are the stats for running mission in the above Rattlesnake fit:
The average time for a mission went down to 10 minutes und the payout up to 45 million ISK / h.
Eve Online Mission Ships
If it is really worth the ISK spend on the ship to increase the payout by 50% is up to the reader. With the higher dps it can be easier to blitz a mission by simply killing the main objective and warp out asap. The Raven fit above has sometimes not enough dps to blitz these missions and warp out with tons of incomming dps.
The way I ran my mission is probably the way most people run missions. However, there are of course some points that you could optimize to increase your income.
Firstly, I only count the LP you get as 1500 ISK per point. There are usually a lot of items that sell for more than that rate, especially if you sell your goodies not in Jita but at the minor trade hubs like Rens, Dodixie or Hek. Good candidates are usually skill hardwiring Implants that improve scanning skills, hacking skills, research skills or weapon damage. It will most likely take a while to sell these on a sell order, but if you have the patience, you might make 3000+ ISK per LP, which translates in a couple of million more per mission. The 1500 ISK rate I used for my calculations is for items that can immediately sold to buy orders in Jita for instant ISK. 8pm utc to pt.
Eve Online Lvl 4 Mission Ships
Some of the missions don’t require the dps and tank of a battleship and could be done in smaller and faster ships, which will reduce the time required for the mission quite a bit. One example is the Recon missions series, which can easily be done in a fast cruisers in half the time you need for it as in a slow warping battleship. For these shortcuts, you would need a selection of ships at your mission running hub and not only the battleship.
Another way is to only accept the missions that are easily blitzable and give good ISK/h ratings and decline the bad ones. If you make notes like I did you will know the stats for all mission eventually and can cherry pick the good ones. As long as you’re standings towards the corporation you run for is high enough for level 4 missions, you can just keep declining missions.
This wraps up my experience and suggestions with level 4 mission running. The ISK income can be quite good for high sec standards, but also requires some initial investment and training to get to level 4 mission, where the most ISK can be made.