Allow Mining Crystals to be used for Mining Mission Asteroids

Currently, Asteroid Mining Crystals cannot be used for asteroids found in mining missions. While this may have made sense prior when the crystals were asteroid-specific, the restriction no longer makes sense now that they cover a specific class of asteroids.

The reason this should be changed is that asteroid mining missions are the current bottleneck in the time it takes to complete them. Compared to ice and gas mining missions, they take significantly longer unless you pay an exorbitant price for ORE miners; but even then, it still takes longer.

Looking at every available L4 mission, there are five possible variations: a gas mission with 4,250 m³ (Gas Injections, Like Drones to a Cloud), an ice mission with 20,000 m³ (Cheap Chills, Ice Installation), a ore mission with 21,000 m³ (Not Gneiss at All), a ore mission with 44,800 m³ (Feeding the Giant, Geodite and Gemology, Mother Lode), or a ore mission with 45,000 m³ (Arisite Envy). Before I go over how long each of them take, first I will list the most efficient fits you can acquire for these missions (excluding storyline mining upgrades).

  • Gas mining: Hulk, 2x Gas Cloud Harvester II (9.88 m³/s / 400 m³ per 80.92 s)
  • Ice mining: Hulk, 2x Ice Harvester II, 3x Ice Harvester Upgrade II, 1x Medium Ice Harvest Accelerator I (42.2 m³/s / 2,000 m³ per 47.3 s)
  • Ore mining: Hulk, 2x ORE Strip Miner, 3x Mining Laser Upgrade II (37.2 m³/s / 4,840 m³ per 130 s)

Now that those are established, lets look at how long it takes to do the variety of missions available at L4. The fits used above matches the mission type:
ORE Strip Miner Comparison

Mission Type Amount (m³) Mining Rate (m³/s) Time (minutes)
Gas 4,250 m³ 9.88 m³/s 14.3 minutes
Ice 20,000 m³ 42.2 m³/s 7.9 minutes
Ore 21,000 m³ 37.2 m³/s 9.4 minutes
Ore 44,800 m³ 37.2 m³/s 20.1 minutes
Ore 45,000 m³ 37.2 m³/s 20.2 minutes

Even with the best fit possible, it still takes far longer than either the gas and ice mining missions. It should be noted, that is only the time it takes to mine the missions. 3 to 5 minutes could be added to the time for the ice and ore missions, since at least two trips are required. Even with a Mackinaw, two trips are required for the larger ore missions. So, the time it takes to do a ice mining mission is closer to that of a gas mining one than shown there, as the gas mining mission is unique in that even a Hulk can do it in only one trip.

Another thing to note: to even come close to the time it takes to do the gas and ice mining missions, you need to spend half a billion in ISK for the ORE Strip Miners. Unlike the gas and ice missions, which can be done with T2 equipment, instead.

So, I will also do a comparison with the Strip Miner I in place of the ORE Strip Miners, to provide a more realistic view of the disparity between the mining missions:
Strip Miner I Comparison

Mission Type Amount (m³) Mining Rate (m³/s) Time (minutes)
Gas 4,250 m³ 9.88 m³/s 14.3 minutes
Ice 20,000 m³ 42.2 m³/s 7.9 minutes
Ore 21,000 m³ 28 m³/s 13.5 minutes
Ore 44,800 m³ 28 m³/s 28.9 minutes
Ore 45,000 m³ 28 m³/s 29 minutes

So, what can be done to alleviate the time it takes to do the mining missions and to provide a cost-effective alternative for asteroid mining? Allow Asteroid Mining Crystals to be used for mining mission asteroids. Already, all of the mining mission asteroids are merely equivalents of normal asteroids. This can be seen in-game, where their regular asteroid equivalent is shown at the top left of their information card.
OreTypeMissionOre

Each of the mining mission ores and their equivalents are:

  • Banidine (Veldspar equivalent)
  • Augumene (Pyroxeres equivalent)
  • Mercium (Omber equivalent)
  • Pithix (Jaspet equivalent)
  • Lyavite (Kernite equivalent)
  • Polygypsum (Arkonor equivalent)
  • Green Arisite (Gneiss equivalent)
  • Oeryl (Dark Ochre equivalent)
  • Geodite (Crokite equivalent)

Would this be overpowered? I think not. However, there is a discussion between Type A vs. Type B. The former would be useless, since residue doesn’t affect the mission asteroids. So, the change could be only added to one of them or both of them. Though, while Type B might sound like a bad choice at first, it would be balanced for that to be the mining crystal chosen. Below is a comparison between Type A and Type B, using the same ore mining fit as described above but with Modulated Strip Miner IIs:
T2 Type A vs. Type B Mining Crystals

Crystal Type Amount (m³) Mining Rate (m³/s) Time (minutes)
Type A 21,000 m³ 40.2 m³/s 8.7 minutes
Type B 21,000 m³ 50.2 m³/s 7 minutes
Type A 44,800 m³ 40.2 m³/s 18.6 minutes
Type B 44,800 m³ 50.2 m³/s 14.9 minutes
Type A 45,000 m³ 40.2 m³/s 18.7 minutes
Type B 45,000 m³ 50.2 m³/s 14.9 minutes

As you can see, Type B is balanced enough. While the 21,000 m³ missions will take the shortest amount of time of any mining mission, the 44,800 m³ and 45,000 m³ mining missions will still take the longest; having a mining time slightly longer than a gas mining mission but requiring two trips instead of one.

So, the suggestion, and the tl;dr. Allow for the following mining crystals to be used with the respective ores:

  • Simple Asteroid Mining Crystal
    • Banidine (Veldspar equivalent)
    • Augumene (Pyroxeres equivalent)
  • Coherent Asteroid Mining Crystal
    • Mercium (Omber equivalent)
    • Pithix (Jaspet equivalent)
    • Lyavite (Kernite equivalent)
  • Complex Asteroid Mining Crystal
    • Polygypsum (Arkonor equivalent)
  • Variegated Asteroid Mining Crystal
    • Green Arisite (Gneiss equivalent)
    • Oeryl (Dark Ochre equivalent)
    • Geodite (Crokite equivalent)

This means, that for each mining mission level, the following mining crystals could be used:

  • Level 1: Simple and Coherent; Banidine, Augumene, and Mercium found in missions.
  • Level 2: Simple and Coherent; Banidine, Augumene, Mercium, and Lyavite found in missions.
  • Level 3: Simple and Coherent; Banidine, Augumene, Mercium, and Pithix found in missions.
  • Level 4: Complex and Variegated; Polygypsum, Green Arisite, Oeryl, and Geodite found in missions.
2 Likes

They introduced the stupid, complicated, unrequested and unnecessary feature of mining waste. This makes the mission ore insufficient for the stupid modules that have waste mechanic. And because the amount of waste can vary from one variant to another, they would need to add more ore into the mission pocket to make up for the worst waste scenario. Meaning that some players using modules with no stupid waste mechanic, or with lower stupid waste amount, would have the ability to mine more of the ore, in order to sell in contract or to keep for themself in order to “skip” some mission when they have accumulate enough (worst case you have to go into the mission pocket with a frigate or cruiser, kill the mission rats and dock up for the reward, no mining necessary that time).

Anyway, initially it was said to be their idea to ajust the ore in mining mission, but I guess they understood it was making things even more complicated, so they went with the simple solution of just banning the modules with stupid waste mechanic instead. What you do when you can’t admit you have a bad idea in the first place.

1 Like

Mission ore are coded to not have waste. The only way you can have insufficient ore from a mission, is if you were using mining drones and they deleted some of the ore due to you prematurely issuing a new command to them before they empty their load into your hold.

While T2 miners, at the moment, are useless since they can’t use crystals so they just end up being worse than T1 miners; T2 gas cloud and ice harvesters can be used without any issue. I use them both.

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If that was the case, T2 miners would not be forbidden, and this discussion would not take place.

They aren’t forbidden? The issue is that the crystals can’t be used for any of the mission ore. So, while you could use the T2 miners, they would just be worse than the T1 miners because you can’t put a crystal into them. What I’m suggesting is for the crystals to be allowed to be used for mission ore, too.

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