This is basically a rough script of this intro to ratting video(minus the second half).
So if you’re new to wormhole space I hope this information can help you out!
How to Rat In Wormhole Space
Wormhole Space has some of the Highest Risk to reward gameplay in EVE online and our goal is to learn to extract that wealth and stay alive to see a profit.
“Our goals are as follows:”
- Develop our understanding of wormhole space
- Identifying threats and developing security solutions
- How to actually Rat
Anoikis exists outside of New Eden, Anoikis has no gate network and all travel to and from systems within Anoikis are done via Wormholes. Systems within Anoikis exist as one of 6 possible classes ranging from C1 to C6. System class determines everything about that system from possible local effect severity to what kind of sites spawn.
The Wormholes used to travel system to system in Anoikis or “J-space” have several key attributes we need to consider such as their Size, Life expectancy in time, and Mass stability. Wormholes are not stable and by nature will collapse if too much mass passes through or by old age. Wormholes can come in 1 of 4 mass sizes, these include 1B, 2B, 3B, and 3.3B, there’s also a 5B but we don’t roll those unless we hate ourselves that week. In a ratting perspective what we care about in a wormhole system is how to secure them. Understanding that a wormhole left open or unwatched connects to a Web of possibilities that can ruin our PVE goals. Also before I leave it unmentioned, We say Bil, like hey that’s a 2Bil wormhole. But we know it has 2 million tons, not 2 Billion, I don’t why but it’s the lingo.
Rolling? Yes Rolling, the act of putting large amounts of mass through a wormhole so that it closes off, imagine you had the power to permanently turn off a stargate, pretty useful if you want to turn a system from a junction to an island. I hope my imagery can help you see how and why we want to roll off connections. Every open hole is an entrance for a scout and therefore a liability to our PVE goals.
I can’t go any further trying to explain J-space and how it works without talking about static wormholes, wondering wormholes and K162s. Every J-system has a static wormhole, and every wormhole has a type. So for example this system has a static lowsec U210, what does that mean? It means when you roll off this U210 static wormhole. It’s just gonna respawn and will do so until the end of time. A wandering wormhole is a wormhole that spawns in any given system and is the start of a wormhole(the named side). When you roll a wandering wormhole it will respawn somewhere else in Anokis, not back in your system, they travel J-space. Finally the K162, the butt end of a wormhole. We care about the type because if a new Cosmic Signature spawns, and we stop ratting as we should, we can then make an educated decision. If it’s a wandering, keep ratting, we are safe, or Alternatively… It’s a K162, someone has just connected to us, we are not safe, stop ratting!
So I hope I painted to you an image of Anoikis, a web of entangled Systems connected by temporary wormholes that build ever-changing dynamic connections of systems. Our goal is to tame the systems to be more favorable for our PVE conditions.
What does a Day Tripper’s security look like on a map?
An unsecured Hole:
Day trippers have the unfortunate situation of coming from a HS and not having a bunch of ships for the right job on hand but if you put the work in to send a roller out, security might look something like the secured hole above with eyes on the HS.
Wormholers on the other hand might have a chain that looks like this on any day :
As much as it sucks for the scanner, security for ratting in the static C3 would look like this after rolling…
No open connections to worry about. All connections where you live are dealt with and all connections in the system you are ratting in are dealt with. Side note: As your group grows in size and the amount of spare people/ toons increases your ability to not have to roll away connections to secure them becomes a possible option, this preserves larger chains for PVP/PVE content.
Being Safe in the Dark
When explaining the world we are ratting in I leaned on our first tool for being safe in wormhole space. That is rolling off unwanted connections. Any system we are not using is unwanted and should be rolled off. For wormholers that means we can create temporary artificial islands by rolling off all other connections. For day trippers the gameplay is different, you don’t have a multitude of ships handy to roll holes, scout, rat, and respond to PVP situations so rolling may not always be an option, adjust the gold standard to your operation.
A soft power alternative to rolling holes is putting eyes on holes. Having an alarm network around your ratting fleet to detect hole jumps and catch names lets you identify threats early and decide whether to stop ratting or not. Normally a scout will populate a hole, see ratters and alert their friends. Having eyes on holes lets you know when to call it quits. If you want to beef up the security, have them watch the hole with a bubbler. That way they can actively deny any hostiles from warping to your ratters.
Either I roll the holes off or me and my friends put their eyes on the holes. Not doing one or the other means you’re operating completely in the blind, which is fine I get it, sometimes you’re just a solo guy but knowing these security measures is important.
So all that can be summed up as a solution for making it so people can’t find you and if they do you know about it so you can react. Our next threat is our greatest fear because we can do nothing to control it, that is the K162. As mentioned, K162’s are the butt end of a wormhole meaning someone has connected to us. When a new sig spawns it could be anything but if it’s a K162 there’s bound to be activity nearby, a player is required in the motion of events that cause wormholes to spawn. Larger PVP groups stand up an entire PVP fleet with a rolling fleet and a scout, they then roll their static until they find PVP, and that fleet is already ready! To counter this we use the probe scanner as an alarm system and we treat all new signatures as threats until proven safe. That means when a Sig spawns we all call it out, stop ratting, begin aligning home and spamming Dscan. Our goal is to see in the minute after a sig spawns if a scout decloaks for a second, we want to see that, seeing that gives everyone the green light to sprint home, PVP is here. Typically though while we are dscanning and waiting for the signature to be verified by a scout I just stay aligned and ready to warp off.
Oh it’s a wormhole damn, we gotta stop ratting……. BUT WAIT earlier we mentioned wandering holes. Send the scout to the hole to verify if it’s a freshly spawned Wandering hole( has a named WH) or if it’s a K162 (butt end aka we are being rolled into, run!). One wormhole is fine, the other is not, please take the time to identify the difference. We call this Sig watch and is done by keeping your probe scanner on your screen at all times with either the unscanned sigs ignored or the whole bundle of sigs highlighted so when the fresh one spawns it is the only one un highlighted.
Okay so we talked about securing the hole and watching to see if a K162 is trying to ruin our day, what else? V, Yes V. This button should be faded. V is the default shortcut to your favorite little scan, the Dscan. From the time your scout enters a hole you are considering to rat to your exfil after you finished ratting, you should be Dscanning. This is your only eye into the world around you as J-space has no local. Oh 15 dudes just jumped a wormhole you didn’t have covered, the sabers in warp to you, how do you know: Dscan. It’s your last ditch security and your primary security, it’s your defense and your offense. Learn to make Dscan habitual. Dscan and the Probe scanner should have a spot permanently on your screen. These are everyday tools, so love them because they love you.
Finally the last thing to think about in our box of security: Locals. Yes sometimes wormhole space feels dead empty and dark but be warned. It’s not empty, nearly every 4 holes you run into are lived in by someone during some time zone, they may not be on now, heck they might be the smallest corp to live but they can and may log on. If you logged on and saw some people running your sites how would you feel, I’d be feeling like killing o’Clock. The only legitimate defense to this is to put eyes on the station and see that station count number, make sure it stays at 0. So while I bring this up because it is a thing, it does happen, the locals do log on. It’s not always something I worry about and outside C5 ops I typically do not watch stations.
I’m done talking about wormholes and security, I hope you see that they do and don’t have anything to do with ratting, these mindsets and knowledge can be applied to huffing gas, mining fleets, doing data sites, just generally staying safe and spatially aware in wormhole space.
How to rat in Wormhole Space, particularly C3’s
So coming up on a year ago I made an intro to ratting video and showed people new to Eve how to rat in C2 space. The reality is people do not rat in C2 space, like maybe people new to wormholes but the reality is C3 space and C5 space are where people rat. A rare select rat in C6 which is limited by access and a lot of wormhole political red tape and an even rarer group of individuals rat C4 space, I assume it’s because they enjoy the challenge (C4 space waves spawn 100km in different directions making them a challenge/annoying).
So when it comes to how to rat in wormhole space we go through 3 general processes, I’ll share my top C3 ratters later but for now back to our general processes. These include identifying the challenge, designing a fit to do it, and testing it out.
We are going to use Rykki’s Guide to identify the challenge of C3 sites, Pyfa to design and prototype a fit, and then like a baby lamb we are gonna run out there and make some money. While we go and rat we will apply the basics of security that I mentioned earlier to increase our survival chances.
Looking at the Fortification Frontier Stronghold we can pull out several bits of information that we care about such as DPS and Neut-Pressure. We can see wave 3 peaks with 678 DPS and 16 Gjs of Nuet pressure, not particularly hard but do note that Fortifications are the Easiest of the sites, let’s look at a harder one…
Here at the Outpost, we can see 814 DPS, some Webs, and no neut-pressure. At this point I got the numbers I want to have some design criteria for my C3 runner. Such as it has to be able to Face tank 814 DPS, and withstand 16 Gjs.
Now Face tank vs Sig tank: You can choose. If you’re running a cruiser with an afterburner you can do something called sig tanking, that’s where you Repair far less than the site does in DPS but you mitigate most of the site’s DPS by simply not being hit. So something like a tengu can sig-tank and does depend on that method but something like a praxis needs to face-tank.
Now rather than do an hour of fit ideology and just designing a new fit let’s look at 2 different tried and true fits, one that face-tanks and one that Sig-tanks. To evaluate important data such as EHP/s we are going to use Pyfa, a fit simulation software that you can link your skills to see how you perform.
In J-space Sleepers tank omni damage and do omni damage so the pyfa preset for damage profile of omni works great for our simulation.
Looking under recharge rates in the image below we can see that this Tengu gets 566 EHP/s. Sig tanking will make up where this tank falls short.
On the Left, we have the Nishem Tengu, and on the right, I have a Praxis similar to my Newbro praxis.
The Tengu depends on its mobility and traversal against battleships to sig-tank the sites. Soloing the Outpost can be considered hard for many but the trick is to give yourself plenty of space from where wave 3 spawns, so you can kill all the webbing frigates before the battleships get in range of you.
On the other side of the spectrum, there is the praxis, a slow beast that can’t dodge any shots. It reps 826 EHP/s which is more than plenty for face-tanking an outpost and honestly you can probably get away without using drugs.
I’m making a fuss about sig tank Vs face-tank because I have gotten feedback from people saying a fit’s tank didn’t work, and they didn’t even move so come on and move and get that transversal UP!
The Praxis is +26 GJ/s, so plenty against any wave, we run into but the Tengu is just shy with +14.5 GJ/s. To that, I say don’t worry that’s not too bad, be smart with what you shoot off first, Too much neut pressure? Shoot the thing neuting you! Just be careful with triggers and emergency drugs always help.
The act of having the probe scanner up and monitoring for when a new signature spawns. The best defense against getting K162ed.
The act of putting large amounts of mass through a wormhole to make it roll off(Die off, Disappear). Rolling requires a Higgs Rigg and Appropriate Prop modules.
Dscan is a tab that can be used to ping 14.3 AU around you to see what is near you in space. The shortcut is V.
End Of Life. It means a wormhole has less than 4 hours till it dies off from age. If you watch a wormhole go EOL in front of you, it has exactly 4 hours from the moment you saw it happen until it dies.
A butt end of a wormhole. Each wormhole has a beginning and end, a K162 is the End. Being K162ed means someone just rolled into you.
A fit simulation software that shows you how your fit performs with your current in game skill levels. Can be found here
The OG Site Guide that gets us through these waves! Has been updated and passed through several caretakers. Can be found here
When you put an alt toon that is running on a second screen/Evo-preview and use them as eyes and ears on wormholers to log and monitor jump activations.