Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Meta considerations - PI edition

I recently posted some hard numbers for my PI efforts, comparing top tier P2 production to P3 production. This post generated a lot of interest, so now that I've had this setup in place for few weeks, I thought I should comment on some things that fall outside the numbers.

First, however, let me say that practice has borne out the theory. I'm making about 100 million ISK/day (gross) across three characters. This is slightly better that the numbers in my earlier post, but that's because I'm not making Sythetic Synapses on all three characters - two are making Guidance Systems, which are even more lucrative than the Synapses.

Nevertheless, I am considering whether I should revert to P2 production. I'm working through the numbers now, and looking at the options for my particular planets, and if I can come up with an arrangement that gives me 90% of my current income, I'll probably switch one of my characters around on a trial basis. If that works, I'll probably shift my entire system.

The reason I'm willing to take a 10% income loss to move back to P2 production revolves around how you actually have to manage a P3 production chain.

With P2 production, you log on with each character, reset your extractors, possibly shift some product to the Customs Office if you need space, and then log off. Every few days you run around with an Epithal collecting your product, and store it until you can take it to market.

With P3 production, you log on with each character, reset your extractors, shift P1 to the Customs Office, collect it and take it to your factory, move it to your factory while collecting P3, and take the P3 to your storage facility until you can take it to market.

Running around the system on three characters takes time, roughly doubling the time spent on PI, going from about 10 min per day to 20 min per day.

By itself, that's not really a big deal. What is a big deal is the additional vulnerability. Because I have to shift product around each day. Every day that I fail to do so, I'm out 100 million ISK. It's the factory planet, not the extraction planets, that is the bottleneck.

I'm in a C1. Most of the time, my only connection is to low sec, and low sec visitors just are not a threat to a stabbed up Epithal. I've been ambushed a few times, but it's just not a big deal. I overheat my Invulnerability Field and wait to warp out.

But null sec and w-space connections are another matter. They tend to bring an interdictor, which will stop me cold.

The situation is aggravated by the fact that my alts have very low skills. I can see the Sabre on D-scan, and I can be spamming 'warp', but with minimal nav skills the alignment times on my alts are appalling.

I've lost a couple of Epithals now - all on alts - and while the losses are no big deal, the lost production time is a much bigger deal.

So if I can hit 90% of my current income with P2 production, which I can leave in place any time I feel the system is unsafe, I'm still coming out ahead of P3 production where I lose more than three days of production per month due to hostiles camping the system.

On a related note, I think that this experience very much justifies my decision NOT to set up in a C2. When you have a strong online presence, such as the Tuskers do in Chaos, a static w-space connection is a fantastic way of generating content. As a solo player, though, you are the content, making that kind of connection much more of a mixed blessing.

1 comment:

  1. Great info on PI strategy. One question tho... are all your toons on one account? If not why not follow the Epithal toon with a cloaky combat ship like a Stratios? This was my general method when i ran PI in the old corp i was in. I ran three toons, each toon while running PI sorties in the Epithal was shadowed by either a Stratios, Loki, or whatever else depending on which character was free.