The tankiest mining barge

I have never been a miner. During my years playing Eve I have maybe mined for a few hours in total. So, I may be overlooking something completely obvious. But just for fun, I’ve been playing around with ship fittings for mining, and I noticed something: The Rokh may be the best mining barge for Highsec.

Not accounting for mining drones, the Procurer Fit I came up with yields 16.56m³/s with 2 Strip Miner II and one MLU II, and with T1 rigs, T2 tank and a mid left for a Survey Scanner it has 79k EHP.

The Rokh fitted with 8 Miner II and 3 MLU II, it yields 16.16m³/s, which is about the same. With T1 rigs, T2 tank and a mid left for a Survey Scanner it has 128k EHP, and due to the significantly shorter cycle times, there should be less empty-cycling, which in turn should more than make up for the 0.4m³/s the Procurer can do better.

A Skiff fitted with 2 Strip Miner II and 2 MLU II yields 20m³/s, and yes - that’s about 25% more than the Rokh, but with T1 Rigs and a T2 Tank it still only has 102k EHP, is significantly more expensive and has worse insurance payout in case of its eventual death.

So, why don’t we see many more mining Rokhs than we do? The only downside I can see with the Rokh is, that it doesn’t have much cargo space. But that should not be that much of a problem when mining alongside an Orca, right?

Is it because to make anything more than chump change, Miners need to run a whole fleet of Barges in parallel, in which case the small cargo of the Rokh would make it way too stressful?

It depends on your business model.

Take my typical skiff set up. True, it is not a barge, but it is a dedicated mining ship and I want to maximize it for that purpose. So, with two strip miner II and three MLU II, it gives me 22 m3/s. And yes, you would include mining drones. With a flight of 5 x mining drone II that adds another 5.5 m3/s.

My tank - allowing for a sacrificed mid for survey scanner - is still 72k EHP. Less than a procurer, but for much better yield. Plus, one of my rigs is also fitted for ice, meaning I can swap over from ore to ice with the one ship.

With a 15,000 m3 ore bay I can mine ore on my own for a solid hour, jet canning, and stop for maybe only 5 minutes per hour to pick up in a miasmos. That just strikes me as being much more versatile than a rokh - for ore/ice mining at least.

I excluded mining Drones because all these ships can field 5, and they do the same for all of them. Adding mining drones into the calculation makes the difference in yield between a Rokh, a Procurer and a Skiff even smaller in relation:

Without Drones:

Rokh: 16.16m3/s (baseline)
Procurer: 16.56m³/s (+2.5%)
My Skiff: 20m³/s (+23.8%)
Your Skiff: 22m³/s (+36.1%)

With Drones:

Rokh: 21.81m3/s (baseline)
Procurer: 22.21m³/s (+1.8%)
My Skiff: 25.65m³/s (+17.6%)
Your Skiff: 27.65m³/s (+26.8%)

So, factoring in drones makes the Barge and the Exhumer look even worse in comparison to me.

And in concerning the tank:

Your Skiff: 72k (baseline)
Procurer: 79k (+9.8%)
My Skiff: 102k (+41.7%)
Rokh: 128k (+77.8%)

If you wanted to maximize yield, you’d take a Hulk, slap 3 MLU II on it and get more than twice the laser-yield of a Procurer. Yet, people don’t commonly do that in Highsec either, because it would probably not survive even a day.

That is unless you are well hidden away somewhere in an ore anomaly or mission deadspace at the ass-end of highsec, of course. But those types are not the ships we commonly see in highsec anyway, because … well, they are hidden away. What I wonder about is the stuff that goes on openly in the asteroid belts, where suicide ganks are common occurrence. And there I see a lot of Procurers and Skiffs, but almost never a Rokh, even though it seems to at least be in the same league as the other two as far as mining is concerned, and beats them hands down when it comes to tank.

The tankies mining barge is a Procurer. Not Skiff, not any battleship… Battleship is actually not a barge and it is a good idea to use tools for the job they were invented for.
Why?
If you mine in low / null and you are not in Rorqual you are doing it wrong.
So let speak about high sec.
Properly fit Procurer cost about 30 million ISK and can tank 3-4 ganking T2 catalysts until concord arrives. 1 T2 ganking catalyst is over 10 millions ISK with fitting and all. So gankers will lose more ISK, than they would kill. Cause they need 4 to 5 catalists and that is over 40 milions lost with 30 milions killed. They would lose ISK war and that is what they do care about.
Your EHP in Rokh will not save you since your ship will cost more, than swarm of catalysts gankers will lose. Skiff even more so. 1 T2 ganking catalyst does over 700 DPS. So 10 catalysts will need less, then 20 seconds to chew through your 128 k EHP and gankers will still be positive in isk war.

That’s a useful analysis.

Hulks you do see quite frequently in ice belts, and (more occasionally?) in moon belts. But only ever in the presence of an orca.

What I did to maximize my yield - on ice - was to always fly a fail-fit retriever and doubly throw caution to the winds by self-insuring. Payback time if you do get splashed is so short it’s an easy bet to make. Ironically, the only time I ever attracted “attention” on ice was flying a mackinaw. Just too much of a prestige target to ignore, I guess.

But, on ice, I would also need to fail fit the mack to match my skiff’s yield, and the skiff has oh so much better EHP. The smaller hold is easily compensated for by jet-canning but it is a real pain to do that with a hulk. I did experiment with a solo hulk in low sec, and it really is superb on ice. But it is a real barge in all other aspects and attracted WAY too much attention whenever it was spotted on D-scan.

I am not sure that this is correct.

Assuming no insurance, a rokh hull will cost you 170M, and you get about 70M or so back when it dies. So the loss is about the same as 10 gank Catalysts, and they get no insurance payout for that.

If you insure it, it costs you 225M, and you get 170M back when it dies, so the loss is only half of what the gankers lose.

hull != fit.
Gankers do not care about your income, they do care about the killboard. And there is no insurance payments on it. Please do not forget why they gank in the first place. They try to fix their severely damage real life self-esteem by doing something, what make them seem to be dangerous, or at least successfull.

I Don’t stick to the tanking philosophy….

There is one valuable variable that you cannot buy in this game, it is the time you give to Eve…. So, my time is precious and when I mine, I only want the best yield possible to maximize the time I give to the game…

It means that I will never sacrifice yield to tank. Most of the time in LS or NS, tanking will only make your agnony a little bit longer but you will die anyway.

Of course, tanking can save you in HS but when I was mining in HS, we were able to find systems in which we never seen any gankers. so no need to tank.

In LS, we are mining ice and moon ore and considering the amount of isk you can make in one hour when you have good mining & reprocessing skills, you just consider that a covetor is just 20M isk tool that you can repay in half an hour… So I Don’t even bother to use a procurer.

Of course, the place we are is quiet & quite secured by our alliance. It helps a lot.

Which is an interesting point. It never seems to get mentioned in the various ganking threads that the best way to counter ganking - or the best tank you could have - would be the absence of a killboard.

The killboard as I understand it is a third party serveice and therefore is not a fundamental component of game mechanics? If CCP would stop allowing third party access to their data (at least in this instance) then ganking would become a more economically (and legitimately) focused enterprise.

Killboard is a meter. Any game must have one. You get rid of it, game will fade.

Must they? Why?

Why? What is your reasoning?

Alternatively, if this is true, why do CCP not do it themselves, directly?

The fittings on all 3 ships I compared cost about the same. Around 25M each. When we factor in the fitting, the cheaper ship may even be a juicier target:

The rigs can’t drop, so let’s say there are 20M that are droppable. Makes 10M loot on average. On the catalysts, there are about 8M in droppable modules, makes 4M in loot on average. If we assume the gankers looting the field after ganking a Procurer , then they lose 4x10M-10M-4x4M=14M, which is still less than the loss of a Procuer, even fully insured, because the biggest part is the fitting. And they get a 40M Killmail.

A screenshot from zKillboard:

What exactly each ganker cares about I cannot say, and neither can you unless you are clairvoiant. There is no point in speculating what their motives might be.

@Johnny_Boggart

All good reasons, to do what you do, but what you do in Nullsec or Lowsec doesn’t really matter for the topic at hand. Neither does Mining while far out of sight from most other players. The thing I wonder about are the guys mining in the asteroid belts in well populated areas in Highsec. Frankly, I don’t get mining in Highsec Belts in the first place, but I have accepted by now that that may just be me. Lots of people do it after all.

This, I agree with. Mainly because I am also a solo miner. My response(s) to you are therefore tailored to the fact that my mining ships tend to work on both ore and ice, which changes the fitting dynamics. A little. But it also means as a solo miner that I do not understand why anyone now would not just mine in 0.5.

Ores in moon belts are more valuable and, more importantly to me, the typical rock size is so much bigger. True, some of the natives are unfriendly, and they might not be to accommodating in the timing of their belts. Which is why I can always fall back on ice.

Cause it is player vs player game. You need some sort of measure how good / bad you are comparing to others. Game will fade cause active players will not be display their achievements.

What achievements? As @Neuntausend pointed out, ganking might well cost you more isk than you gain through drops. Yet, the measure on the killboard is how much isk you destroyed vs how much you lost. Which is an artificial measure, as it makes no allowance for insurance, or whether those drops were actually collected (and by whom).

If you want to measure how many ships you dropped vs how much lost, then sure, it works. But once again, if it is that important a measure, why do CCP not provide it?

Plus, if various people keep harping on about how playing the market is still “PvP”, then why don’t we have a “bank balance board” ?

Wrong part of a screenshot. Correct one is this: image
That is what they call ‘green killboard’.

And one does not need to be ‘clairvoiant’ to understand why they gank defenseless ships in belts. ISK drops are meh, comparing to ganking industrial ships. It is bragging and blackmailing what they are after in belts. So (possible) insurance payments are totally irrelevant here. Salt, fear, despair is what they a farming, not isk.

Well, it’s not like they don’t gank industrial ships. Those move a lot, however, and they aren’t available at all times.

Could it be that the one who cares about these arbitrary numbers a lot is actually you?

artificial measure fits perfectly into artificial game. And CCP provide means to post kills in chat. It is like the star map. In game map is garbage so everyone, who is at least a little bit competent, uses Dotlan map.

Clever answer. Yet not sufficient.

Not for immediate travel, including an assessment of how many pilots are currently in system etc. At least, I don’t use dotlan for that. Again, a clever answer on your part … not sufficient.

I do not say they do not gank industrials. Opposite, I wrote they gank them for ISK. But reason why they gank miners is very different. I am out of that discussion cause I made my point clear to anyone who can read. My killboard would be much more greener if I would care about it as much as gankers do.