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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Lots of Elite:Dangerous

I'd like to start this post with a non-apology. I don't apologize for not having written more posts. Writing is a funny thing. At times it seems there's not enough time, or electrons in the universe, to say what you want to say. At other times, it's like a cosmic void - not one helium atom (a good idea ;) ) in parsecs upon parsecs. Thus it has been lately. And I'd rather not waste your time with filler material. I know you have other things you could do with your time than just read filler.

But that doesn't mean I've not been busy playing games. I've spent most of my gaming time playing Elite: Dangerous. According to Raptr I have 61 hours invested in the game. Mostly I've been trading, upgrading my ship and trading some more. Here's what that looks like. Try not to get too excited...

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Back and forth, back and forth, with a docking required at both ends. This is not exciting work. However, it provides a steady income one can parlay into a better ship and even more income. Through the course of my 61 hours of game play I have amassed a respectable net worth.

[caption id="attachment_4344" align="aligncenter" width="800"]Mabrick's Net Worth after 61 Hours Mabrick's Net Worth after 61 Hours[/caption]

I am currently on my third ship. I purchased a Hauler as soon as I had the funds, which I subsequently traded in for a Cobra Mark III. I have upgraded the cargo capacity of my Cobra to 36 tons, as well as upgraded my power plant and my weapons. As you can see by the rankings I'm still rated as harmless and aimless. However, I have advanced to Dealer in the trade ranks - my third promotion; equal to competent in combat ratings. I've spent almost my entire career in Evarate trading between stations and picking up trade or reputation missions on the bulletin boards whenever I can. I've only been successfully interdicted twice. Once when I was in the Hauler so I ran away. You can see the results of the second interdiction in the lower right corner of the statistics display. His biggest mistake was interdicting a Cobra armed with pulse lasers and multi-cannons with a Hauler. Whatever he was thinking, he didn't think it for long.

I currently make about 30,000 credits a round trip hauling Tea and Marine Equipment. At first I thought that was a lot. Then I looked at the requirement for my next promotion. I have to earn 3,800,000 credits to get it. A quick back of the envelope calculation tells me I have to rinse, lather and repeat my run nearly 125 times to get there. Ugh. That is not at all appealing. But I could mix it up. I've not tried mining yet. And I've only collected the one bounty. Or I can find a new system with a better trade route, one that has a special rare item or some such. Or I could become a salvager. I did that once. Forgot to check the tobacco I picked up in deep space and ended up paying a 20k fine for bringing stolen goods into Ackerman Market. Oops. There are many other things I could do. Elite: Dangerous is, after all, a sand box. I can go anywhere.

And by anywhere I mean most of the 400 billion stars available in the galaxy. There are a few areas held in reserve for future alien expansions, but by and large I can travel anywhere. And many have been doing just that. But what exactly does that mean? What's the scope of "anywhere" and "400 billion?" In this week's news letter, #59, Frontier Development gave out some exploration statistics for the first month since Elite: Dangerous went live. Here's the report, emphasis mine,

It’s a big galaxy out there. Players have been out exploring Elite: Dangerous’ full-scale recreation of the Milky Way since launch, and together you’ve discovered 615,475 previously uncharted systems of the 400 billion in our galaxy.

On a simple average, that’s 17,585 systems per day, 732 per hour or 12 per minute. Good going, everyone.

But let’s put that in context, because with 400 billion star systems to explore the community have charted just 0.00015 percent of our galaxy. Let’s put it another way: if everyone keeps going at the current rate, it will take 150,895 years to map the entire Milky Way.

But with new players joining every day, we might just get the galaxy mapped before the turn of the hundred and seventieth century.


My mind would be blown except there seems to be a math error in this statement. If we continue to map 17,585 systems per day, that's 6,418,525 systems per year. Excluding leap years, which would see an additional 17,585 systems mapped, it would take 400,000,000,000 systems divided by 6,418,525 systems per year to map the entire galaxy. That's only 62, 320 years to map the entire galaxy, providing there is no interruption in server availability. That's still an impressive number, but is less than half the time Frontier states. What gives?

So, now you know what I've been up to. Now I think it's time to play some more Elite: Dangerous. See you around the galaxy.

Fly Careful.

8 comments:

  1. That's one big universe right there... Mab, you seem to mention exploration a lot in the past, any thoughts on doing more of it in Elite?

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  2. For certain. There are several things I'd like to investigate in E:D. Before I head out though, I would like a grub stake and a ship with a very long jump range. Good defenses would be nice too. The Asp is the explorer ship but costs 6 mil. The Cobra is a good ship for most things but not great at anything. It'd work, but not optimally. I guess I have some decisions to make. :)

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  3. Yessir on the decisions. Looking forward to the updates when they happen :)

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  4. I don't mean to make you feel bad, but you really need to step up your game some. Start a rare trade route immediately. Here's a starter trade route I offer to newer E:D players:

    http://eliteraretrader.co.uk/?route=51,62,52,72,23,30,1,31,84,6&name=Babby%27s%20First%20Rares

    Start in Lave, pick up the item listed in each system, and once you get to Fujin, sell. Then pick up the items around Fujin, once you're done in Altair head back to Lave, and sell in the station where the item text is green. You can do ship upgrades in either Altair or Leesti (both are high-tech).

    With your Cobra, you will at least double your credit balance on your first trip and no I'm not kidding. Good luck and fly safe!

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  5. You can't make me feel bad. I spent a third of the time E:D has been released in Hawaii not even thinking about gaming - at all. And when I could play, I often didn't. My gaming time this year is less than half what it was last. Gaming just isn't my focus right now, and I'm quite okay with putzing around Evarate and its neighboring systems. The only thing about your comment that evokes any emotion in me is the implication there is a right and wrong way to play E:D. There is no wrong way to play E:D - and min-maxing has never been my style. I've always felt sorry for min-max gamers. They rush through games, trying to get to the end first, assuming that's what it means to win, and hardly taking time to enjoy where they are at the moment. Every step of any journey is equally as important as the step before or the step after. The goal should be to enjoy each step for its own sake, and not be lured into false beliefs that some steps are more important than others. They are not. I am content in the knowledge that all I really need to do is enjoy where I am, to be in the moment, and to take the next step only when the moment is done. And I do. That's how my life is, and that's the way I play games. The pace of my game is perfect for me, and I enjoy every little moment that comes along. That's all that matters. The rest will attend to itself.

    That said, I hope your pointer is of assistance to someone who is looking for that sort of information. Thank you.

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  6. Sorry for phrasing it that way. It just struck me that you spent 61 hours playing in a specific play style. You could be using the exact same play style to be having more fun, more challenge, and getting a much higher reward.

    Right now you're in a Badger hauling tritanium one way to make 1 ISK per unit profit and bringing scordite back the other way to make a profit of 3 ISK per unit. What I'm suggesting won't have you hauling w-space blue loot in a Badger but at least you'll be hauling T2 ammo, using the same play style but profiting at 50-100 ISK per unit. ;-)

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  7. Ha! Okay, that's an analogy I can really relate too. It's all good. You really didn't ruffle me. I've spent a lot of time fine tuning my HOTAS setup. I've almost gotten it to what I think is fight worthy and works with my control style. I'm using both trigger points on it right now though, lasers on position one and guns on two, and I don't like the way that's working. Now I'm experimenting with firing groups and using just the first trigger position. I haven't decided if that's got more lag for me than the two trigger positions. I also need to make a mounting board for the HOTAS. Suction cups are for shite. I've also been training myself to fly frameshift more efficiently. With station orbits being a reality and gravity wells being a real speed killer, it's often more efficient to skim a gravity well than to plow through it. I've been getting the feel of what the right skim is according to planet type and station position. That's actually been quite fun. I set a speed to maintain while hugging a planet and then manually maintain the orbit. I suppose my first month has really been about training myself to be a pilot. I should write a blog post about that. Oh, and I've been developing a spreadsheet to effectively track trade activity and considerations. You know, you can take the capsuleer out of EVE, but he's still going to use a spreadsheet. ;-)

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  8. You'll find this video invaluable:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LA7Iy5vQm7A

    The second one (linked in the first few seconds of this one) is even more valuable, but you have to watch the first one to completely understand it.

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Be civil, be responsible and most of all be kind. I will not tolerate poor form. There will be no James Hooks here. We are all better than that.