Last Updated on 2023-08-30 by Kshal Aideron
What is the Deep Space Mining Fleet?
EVE Rookies maintains a once a week mining fleet that operates in “dangerous” locations throughout New Eden: Wormholes, Low Security Systems, and Pochven. The purpose of these fleets are to gather resources that larger, traditional fleets are unable or unwilling to target, those resources being some of the most valuable ones in the game.
The goal of this is twofold: To teach players how to acquire any type of resource in New Eden, and by extension let aspiring industrialists discover ways to construct anything their heart desires; and to provide a unique mining experience in an environment where risk is minimized by providing support from a fleet.
Who Can Join the Deep Space Mining Fleet?
The fleet is open to all players regardless of clone status, skillpoints, or affiliation, so long as participants are willing to cooperate as a group to achieve our objective. In this way, the Deep Space Mining Fleet is similar to a Not Purple, Shoot It fleet (NPSI), except we primarily shoot rocks in space instead of ships.
Alpha pilots who are limited to the simple Venture as their only form of mining ship are especially welcome as many places the fleet will go are too dangerous for a barge to operate in. Because of value of materials we harvest, however, even an alpha Venture pilot may find themselves with a resource haul meeting or exceeding the income the most expensive mining barges and exhumers would bring in high security space.
When is the Fleet?
The EVE Rookies’ Public Deep Space Mining Fleet runs every Saturday at 15:00 EVE Time, barring some holidays or other events that would prevent the fleet from running. Participants are encouraged to be on a little before fleet time and in the formup system that’s posted on EVE Rookies’ Discord server, found in the pve-fleet-pings channel. Once the fleet is assembled, we’ll set out to our target location to commence mining.
The fleet is pretty flexible and members may come and go as they please, though in some instances it may not be possible to join the fleet a long period of time after it begins–this could be because of the mechanics of the game not being conducive to it (IE, the entry path to our system has closed) or that the distance of travel and logistics involved would make getting to the fleet in time futile.
Technically, anything that can fit a mining laser or a gas cloud scoop could be used. Practically speaking, the fleet focuses on two ships: The humble Venture and its bigger sibling the Prospect. Depending on the activity, however, the Endurance and Mining Barges such as the Covetor may be used as well. Exhumers, being very expensive to deploy in hostile space, are virtually never used or only brought at a pilot’s own expense.
A listing of ships and fittings can be found in the in-game channel “EVE Rookies Mining Fleets” for fitting ideas. A basic fitted Venture is available at most of our dockup locations for those without a ship, although sometimes fleet members may need to fly one of their own to the fleet.
Areas of Operation
True to its name, the Deep Space Mining Fleet operates far and wide, often away from friendly stations or even permanent habitation. The fleet traverses wormhole space, dives into Pochven, and sifts through both lowsec and nullsec regions in search of rare and valuable materials. This often entails significant travel on the fleet’s part to reach its destination, which can be an experience unto itself–exploration knowledge is almost just as valuable for this fleet as is mining ability.
Wormhole systems are a favorite, owing to their reliable availability of resources and relative safety. Quiet areas of low security and null security space are also frequented, which have their own sets of advantages and disadvantages. And finally, Pochven’s unmatched value for mining is occasionally targeted as well, despite the high activity and thus threat to the fleet from the system.
Wherever we’re operating, one thing remains true: Every member of the fleet is at risk of ship and pod destruction more so than any other common mining location. This is not something to be lamented; instead, it’s that incredible risk that drives the value of these fleets and makes the resources we target some of the most lucrative ones in the game.
What We Harvest
The fleet targets the following resources, from most common to less common:
Mykoserocin (And sometimes Cytoserocin) Gas
High Tier (R16, R32, R64) Moon Ores
On rare occasions when there is a need for it or the majority of the fleet is Omega, we may harvest:
Things we don’t harvest:
High Security Belt Asteroids
HS (R4) Moon Ore
These materials are occasionally harvested by EVE Rookies, but at a different time and by a Highsec Mining Fleet. There’s no reason you can’t go to both fleets if you want, though!
One thing nice about the Deep Space Mining Fleet is that by its very nature, the ships flown are usually pretty cheap. This is great for everyone’s stress levels because the fleet usually pays for itself after about 30 minutes or so of operation, so it doesn’t really take long for things to be considered a success.
This is a huge boon for new players especially. Not only are you virtually guaranteed to turn at least a tiny profit, but it also means if you’re not sure of something or are worried you’re going to “mess up” and somehow get everyone killed, you don’t need to be. This is the kind of fleet for learning how to handle different situations, familiarizing yourself with mechanics you’ve never even known about, and in general how to work together as a team with your fellow capsuleers. The absolute worst thing that could happen is the FC might have to go hunt pirates, or join an incursion fleet, or fly missions for the Empires, or do something that doesn’t involve shooting space rocks for a couple of hours to get another Porpoise for next week’s fleet should this one not make it home. If you walk away from the fleet more knowledgeable about mining in hostile space than you were the day before, your FC will be happy with your performance.
Of course, that doesn’t mean things are extremely lax, either. Capsuleers on the fleet are expected to be paying attention to their surroundings to the best of their ability–“AFK Mining” as done elsewhere is not a good way to operate for 90% of the fleet, though running for three hours, it’s understandable if someone needs to get up, stretch, or otherwise take care of IRL business. Likewise, the FC will be making calls to the fleet to perform certain roles or duties and fleet members will need to attempt to follow them as they are able. This could include not chatting in Local, avoiding an engagement with another player, warping out from a site, or in an extreme case, attempting to engage a hostile in a suicide mission to preserve a more expensive ship or the fleet’s cargo. The calls are always made with maintaining the highest value for the fleet by keeping members safe first and foremost or attempting to preserve as much ISK as we can when complete safety is impossible.
Fleet Payouts and Ship Replacement Program (SRP)
Many fleets, corporations, and alliances have a Ship Replacement Program which guarantees reimbursement for the loss of a capsuleer’s ship during an operation provided the FC’s orders were followed, up to a certain ISK limit. The Deep Space Mining Fleet is no exception, which is done to both reduce the burden on individuals for ship loss and encourage higher yield ships to participate where possible. The Fleet’s payout structure is designed with SRP in mind.
During the fleet’s operation, all resources are collected together and held by the logistics wing of the fleet. Sometimes this is a dedicated hauler ship ferrying resources to a secure location, sometimes it just means stuffing everything into the Porpoise’s mining hold, and on some occasions this means every fleet members holds their own materials makes their own dropoffs when possible. Regardless of how it’s done, all the resources wind up in a giant pile at the end of the fleet.
Then, if there were any ships lost during the fleet, an equivalent value of resources is set aside to pay for it. So if a Venture worth 5m ISK was lost, the pilot in question would get 5m ISK from the fleet’s payout first and foremost. Note that each fleet will only cover individual losses up to a certain point–this is often the upper limit for Prospects/Endurances (About 30m ISK), though in some cases may include up to the value of a Mining Barge (60-80m ISK). After SRP is deducted, the remainder of the haul is split into even shares.
From here, each participant may be paid in raw resources or in their ISK value, whichever is preferred. An example would be if the fleet harvested 800m ISK worth of materials and there were eight participants, each member would be paid 100m ISK.
One caveat about payouts is that the ore/gas/ice harvested must actually make it back to the station; it only counts if it can be sold for ISK! This is why protecting the fleet’s resources is crucial, as until they’re deposited into a station, they could be lost at any time.