Whale Ho!

Or perhaps habemus Orcinus orca would be more appropriate.  I give you the Ambulocetus:

The Mighty Orca
The Mighty Orca

With the invaluable assistance of corp mates and the market gods, I was able to complete the training for and compile the isk necessary to pilot an Orca.  I think the Orca is the first ship in Eve that I actually had the name for before I had decided to train for it let alone purchase it.  With diligence and persistence, I was able to generate the 500 million+ isk for the ship, the skills and fittings within the time it took me to train for it and give it to myself on my birthday.  Considering not long ago, I had not seen 100 million isk in the game, getting over the 1/2 billion mark in short order is a bit of a personal milestone.

In an odd twist of fate, it turns out that I ended up purchasing the beast from one of my most regular buyers of copious quantities of minerals.  Talk about reprocessing.  At least I know where all those minerals are going now…  And in a story I’m sure will be retold elsewhere, it was the second ship I purchased from the same player this weekend.

I still have a few days to get the skills necessary to use the mining foreman gang assist modules, but everything else is online and fitted out.  Fully rigged, it can haul 77,879 m3 of cargo (at the moment), has 40,000 m3 of corp hangar and a 400k m3 ship maintenance bay.

With a top speed of only 59 m/s at the moment, its wont even win a drag race with Wil’s Charon freighter, though I think its probably more agile.  Or at least I want to think so.

But wait, there’s more:

Role Bonus:

250% bonus to tractor beam range

100% bonus to tractor beam velocity

500% bonus to survey scanner range

99% reduction in CPU need for Gang Link modules

Can use 3 gang link modules simultaneously.

Industrial Command Ship Skill Bonus:

5% bonus to cargo capacity per level

3% bonus to effectiveness of mining foreman gang links per level

What it lacks in speed, it makes up for in utility.  Simply put, it allows more miners to put more beams on more rocks for a longer duration.  The Orca is literally the hub of small mining ops.

Belt Operations
Belt Operations

Just for a test drive, we ended up with sort of an ad hoc mining op.  While I was mining on one account and manning the Orca on the other, Wilhelm stopped by in his salver to survey the situation and park in the ship bay.  Eventually, he came back with his hauler and took the ore from the corp hangar back to base.  Later, Gaff came by with his two Hulks and we tore it up.  Hulks keep eating, Orca tractors the cans in.  All without moving.

When Wil had to go AFK, I eventually had to haul to base with the Orca, but carrying 4+ jet cans a trip meant relatively few trips which were not as painful as I might have imagined.  Not sure I would want to use it to ferry loads out of a solar system, but very workable.

I can see that for our small corp, a configuration of 4 miners, the Orca pilot, and a part time hauler/part time miner would probably be optimal.  With the ship maintenance bay, the Orca could ferry the extra mining ship while the other pilot flew the hauler to the mining site.

So far, its pure awesomeness.  Possibilities abound.

8 thoughts on “Whale Ho!”

  1. Whoo hoo!

    Pity the freighter can’t unload from the corp hanger in the ship. Still, great stuff! You can also haul an awful lot of refined minerals to market with that much space as well.

  2. How long (roughly) did it take you to train the skills for the orca? It’s a dream boat of mine, but although my learning skills are good, I can only see about 3 months of training ahead of me. I’ve got about 100m in the bank; multiplying that by five feels pretty depressing.
    Been playing for a couple of months now, so obviously don’t know all the ropes. Any tips from an old pro would be great. Email, or on here.
    Happy hauling.

    1. Hi Seven,

      If you don’t have it yet, go get Eve Mon (http://evemon.battleclinic.com/) and get it set up so you can test skill plans. It will also make suggestions to decrease skill time.

      For example, I have a complete noob alt that I’m experimenting with low level PvP. I’ve only trained a few days of skills on him since you can only have one character per account in training and my “main” always is working on something important.

      According to Eve Mon, he could train to fly an orca in about 76 days, but with training all his learning skills first, it comes down to about 51 days. Less than two months in Eve can go pretty quickly and having a goal like that can get you focused on generating isk in the mean time.

      I think it actually took me about a month to go from 200 million isk to about 500 million ish solely through mining in high sec with a Hulk on one account and an industrial hauler on the second. If you aren’t in a Hulk yet, that should be your immediate goal. See Halada’s guide (https://potshot.wordpress.com/2009/03/17/haladas-the-complete-miners-guide-30-extended/)

      It really helped to understand what maximized isk in mining. Grismar has an ore chart (http://eve.grismar.net/ore/) but I made one myself in excel where I put in market prices, the size of the ore, and the minerals it refines into.

      Long story short, Veldspar and Scordite were always on top of the list for maximum isk/m3 of hauling space (your rate limiting step). Veld usually wins in my region of space (Amarr) because it refines to 1000 units of tritanium per batch and the trit price has been above 4 isk per unit.

      Only selling Kernite to mission runners at 200+ isk (unrefined as a turn in for certain missions) was a better deal, but much less predictable, so I often mined much veld, refined as efficiently as possible and since I was impatient dumped the minerals where there was a high buy order for immediate cash rather than listing and waiting for a better price. I was often willing to sacrifice a few percent on price to have isk in the bank immediately.

      If i got burnt on mining, I’d try to run a mission or two and hope I got one with asteroids to mine. They tend to be bigger and best of all, no competition.

      Mining a little all the time was the key. Of course, once I did get the orca, I still had to train up additional skills to use the gang boosters and to bolster its hauling capacity. I’d still like to to more, but I spent another month getting those up to skill level IVs.

      Finally, I recommend checking out the Ancient Gaming Noob (tagn.wordpress.com). Wil is a good friend and has much more experience in Eve and I constantly refer to his site for stories about overcoming all the hurdles Eve throws your way.

      Good Luck!

  3. Thanks for answering comprehensively!
    I’m currently mining with a small corp that myself and a friend have set up; we have about 13 members now, which is great for passing the time whilst chewing rocks. Also, they’ve agreed to do the occassional ‘fundraiser’ in the meantime in order to help cover costs (Industrail Command Ships, I’m looking at you..).
    I’ve wasted time messing around with an alt, but I’m fully focused on the Orca, and mining, now. With the right amount of effort I know it can be done.

    Thanks again; I’ll look forward to future posts here.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s