Faction warfare is an ideal way for a new (and old) player to get into pvp and have a lot of fun in EVE without having to train a whole bunch of skills or spend a lot of ISK. Here’s my advice to help you get started.
Getting set up
- Choose your faction. Your decision might be based on the faction of your character or your favourite ships. Currently the Minmatar/Amarr warzone is heavily dominated by the Minmatar and the Gallente/Caldari warzone is fairly balanced. The Gallente/Caldari warzone is larger and generally has bigger fights. Minmatar currently offer by far the best LP making opportunities.
- Don’t worry about standings loss. You can always repair your standings later if you decide to leave FW. If you are really worried about standings, you can always create a new character or Alpha account just to play FW.
- Join a corp. New players especially will find FW a lot more enjoyable with a group of friends to play with.
- Install and use the relevant audio chat software such as Teamspeak. The ability to hear what people in fleet are saying is really important. You can always type your response if you don’t have a microphone or don’t want people to hear you. If the corp you’ve joined are jerks on teamspeak; either be a jerk with them or join a different corp as you prefer.
- Un-fudge your overview. The default overview settings will likely lead to you shooting or running from a friendly. If your corp joining instructions don’t include information about overview settings, ask in militia chat “how can I un-fudge my overview” and somebody will help you.
Paying the bills
- Fly a cheap ship, especially at first. You will lose a lot of ships and a t1 fitted frigate with a microwarp drive and warp scrambler is sufficient to be involved and helpful to FW fleets. If you can, buy several ships all at once and have them fitted and ready for action. Your corp/alliance may supply ships on contract to help with this. If not, ask around if there’s anybody that can hep you to get a supply of ships deployed in or near your warzone.
- Loot everything and take it to high sec. There’s a huge amount of valuable loot that often gets left on the field. Sometimes it’s very valuable, like faction warp scramblers, but even things like tech II drones left in space and faction npc wreck loot can quickly add up to more than the cost of replacing your frigate. Take the loot to a high sec trade up and list the valuable stuff on sell orders to get the best price. A high sec trade alt (maybe another alpha account) can really help with this.
- Find a way to liquidize your LP. If you’re into industry, you may be able to use your LP as part of your manufacturing to turn it into isk. If not, find somebody else who is doing this and see if they will buy your lp (or rather, buy FW store items such as blueprints from you).
Choosing your target
- Make use of evewarfare.com and the in game faction warfare UI to see which systems are most contested. Generally these will be the systems with the most players in. Depending on what you are looking for, you might want to either avoid or head for those systems.
- Sometimes you’re just outnumbered. When local is full of the enemy faction and you’re on your own, it may be that you’re too outnumbered to do anything productive in that system. Pick a new system and gather some allies until there’s enough of you to go back and take the fight.
- Lower numbers can still win. It’s possible even with lower numbers of pilots than the enemy to pick of stragglers and play cat and mouse (you’re the mouse) to claim sites from under the enemy’s nose. Just slowing an enemy down can be really valuable, especially if your faction has new pilots due to log on some time soon.
Fighting the fight
- Be prepared to die, a lot. As a new player most of your fights will be with people with better ships and skills than you. Even in an equal fight, you will die 50% of the time. Don’t let death get you down, get back out there to fight another day.
- Use your friends. Two players in cheap ships can often defeat one flying something of greater total value if they work together well. If one of you dies, regroup before going back into the fight rather than going back in one at a time as easy pickings for the enemy.
- Use the sites. Most of the high end stuff that will kill you is fast, kitey stuff that will pin you down while sitting out of your range. Take your fights inside the faction warfare sites, and catch your prey on the warp in beacon before it can take range.
- Slide like a penguin. When you are approaching a site, select the acceleration gate before you leave warp and repeatedly click the warp button so that you activate the gate the millisecond that you land. This will enable you to dodge any gate camps outside and take the fight inside with your friends, where you have the upper hand. If somebody does get caught outside, it’s normally not worth rescuing them unless you have a good Fleet Commander who can keep the fleet together as you bounce out of the site and back to the gate.
- Remember that it’s just a game and the enemy faction is not evil in real life. Don’t get angry; get even.