Good EVEning, CSM!
(CSM @Steve_Ronuken this might be of particular interest to you)
This is an issue I’ve discussed with CCP via ticket and was directed to bring to your collective attention.
I’d like to draw to your attention what I personally consider to be a massive problem for industrialists: without knowing about the futility beforehand, many industrialists such as myself have or will end up expending a lot of time and ISK researching the Material Efficiency (ME) on blueprints that simply do not have enough runs (off the BPCs and/or BPOs) to yield “free” products or any discounts on input materials worth mentioning. I’ll use some examples to make my point and propose some plausible solutions the serve as the basis for further discussion. (I am using https://eve-industry.org/calc/ and https://www.fuzzwork.co.uk/blueprint/ to corroborate my data)
Please note that the following examples take place in NPC stations; however, for the “problem cases” I have confirmed that the problems persist even in a Sotiyo with the appropriate T2 manufacturing rigs. I always pick the higher run count limit of BPO or BPCs except when there is no “problem” to begin with.
===Example A: 10x Hyperions w/ ME10 = 1 Free Hyperion===
Here is a baseline case of something that does and should work as expected and intended. The Hyperion BPO requires sufficiently high amounts of each input material, and both the BPO and BPCs permit sufficiently high run counts (ie. 10 or more; 265 for BPO, 283 for BPC) so that you will score 1 or more free Hyperion’s worth if you have the resources, time, and will to do so.
This is what should happen. This is worth the time and expense of max ME researching the BPO on the order of 113 days and and a few hundred million in a HS NPC station
===Example B: ME 10 Astrahus===
By contrast, only requiring one of each of its input materials means that, mathematically speaking, an Astrahus BPO would also require at least 10x runs to get a freebie… except that the BPO only permits 7 runs and the BPC only permits 9. This means that there is literally zero benefit to researching ME to any level at all whatsoever on the Astrahus BPO.
Theoretically, if the run count on either were 10x, then we should get one free Astrahus, but unfortunately this is not the case.
How much did people who max researched an Astrahus burn? Around 2 years and 2 billion in a HS NPC station.
==Example C: 10x-13x Raitaru w/ ME10 = Zero Free Raitaru?==
Here is where things start to get absurd. Now we have (more than) enough run counts to get a free Raitaru with ME10 and… we don’t get a free Raitaru. Why not?
What’s the burn? Around 500 days and about 15m in a HS NPC station. ISKwise it’s not worth mentioning, but that’s a long time for a science slot to be go wasted.
===Example D: 7x Athanor w/ ME 10 = Laughable Discount===
Manufacturing the upper limit of 9 Athanors per BPC ME 10 saves you a grand total of… 2 Structure Reprocessing Plants, saving you about 280m, or about 3.2% of a 9-run job. Shittastic. I’m pretty sure nobody and their grandmother had this in mind when they researched the ME of the Athanor BPO.
Technically speaking there is a discount in this example, just not a discount worth spending over 2 years and 20m in a HS NPC station to research ME10 over. In this particular example, raising the runcount would permit discounts to apply to the other input components and give us that free Athanor we all crave.
As stated earlier: Yes, I have checked, and the above problem scenarios do exist in a Sotiyo with the appropriate T2 manufacturing rigs, so it’s not a matter of POS vs NPC stations.
To summarize my points:
- There are times when researching ME provides zero benefit under all circumstance due to insufficient run count
- There are times when researching ME provides zero benefit under all circumstances despite sufficient run counts
- There are times when researching ME yields laughable discounts that do not merit the time and expense of researching ME. This is due to a combination of:
- Low run counts
- Certain materials that have sufficiently high quantities to be discounted not being discounted for some reason
How do we address this? Possible solutions:
- The direct solutions are to
- Up the Run counts on BPOs and/or BPCs with less than 10
- For those that already have 10 or more, actually give us the accompanying discounts on input materials, thereby giving us the equivalent in freebies
- Alternatively Incorporate an “ME Block Flag” that prohibits players from researching ME on the problematic blueprints precisely so they don’t waste their time and money on BPO/BPCs designed to never yield benefit from ME.
- It is completely and totally understandable if certain BPOs were never intended to yield freebies given that they would be too disruptive to the market; that’s understandable, but a players should not be punished for their ignorance of the worthlessness of ME research of these BPOs. Such a flag would protect them in this regard.
- If this is done, CCP/CSM should consider resetting the ME to 0 and provide some form of reimbursement to the BPO owners for the value of the useless ME research. (T2 BPOs, anyone?). I doubt this would actually happen, but it is worth discussing.
- Another way to achieve the same effect as the last proposed solution is to make the ME research time and cost virtually free and instantaneous in cases where there is zero benefit at ME10 as intended and that is never to be changed. This will make it easier for trading via contracts because, you know, who wants to buy a BPO with ME0? My reimbursement suggestion remains the same, except that there would be no ME reset.
- The biggest downside with this concerns third party developers: poor @Steve_Ronuken and others would have to update their programs to identify BPOs with this “Useless ME” flag that have their own unique formula for research time and cost. The formulas would be straight forward (perhaps a constant 1 second and 1 ISK at all levels, for example) but it is still an inconvenience to them).
I appreciate your time and consideration in this matter.
(I apologize in advance if there are any spelling/grammatical errors or messed up sentences; I’m sleep deprived and will iron this post out when my head isn’t as mushy)