Flieger, grüß' mir die Sonne, grüß' mir die Sterne und grüß' mir den Mond. Dein Leben, das ist ein Schweben, durch die Ferne, die keiner bewohnt! - Hans Albers, F.P.1 antwortet nicht (Adaptation in the 80s: Extrabreit)

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Getting rich as a skimmer scrapper

Some misunderstanding on how the law works made me get some bounties. Sometimes you have to wait to get shot at, even if interdicted and that NPC to already threatening to kill you in chat. Then there are missions where you are to destroy ships of certain factions. If they are not wanted, you also seem to get a bounty. Same happens when you are on a planet and stray too close to certain point of interest, a base or a wreck, which do belong to a "civil" faction instead of an unanimous illegal faction.

Once you incurred a bounty, you are wanted and cannot pay it off like a simple fine until some hours or days have passed. The bounty system has changed quite a bit since the early beta days, I had forgotten this fact, until I was wanted in the three main systems where I had the bulk of my missions!

Bottomline, I felt the need to put some lightyears between my meticously researched systems and myself. So I sold my stored Eagle and Viper and got out of there, back in my Cobra and about 16 million Credits.

I was a bit frustrated again, as all my planning and search for this system as a base of operations had been thrown overboard by me not being able to anticipate the bounty game system. More by chance than anything else, I hopped a bit around and chose the next bigger industrial system with a population count in the millions. Mula Wendes System. Three big space stations along multiple small outpost stations, plus even a colony and a plethory of outposts the planet surfaces. I started some missions from space stations, but after a visit at the planetary Fan Colony, I was so pleased by the look and feel of landing there, switched over.

Since then, I focus on "Skimmer" missions ushered at Fan Colony, with choices taking place in three neighboring systems. Go planetside, visit the target outpost, shoot skimmers. Easy. Except for the partially heavy fortification of said outposts. The real trick I learned from the forums: "Points of interest" pop up on the surface around the stations, and the skimmers over there are without any protection. Indeed, they even don´t shoot back when you shoot from outside the "infraction area", which those hover-drones are supposed to protect. Shooting sitting ducks. It only takes time to find those points of interests. But since I am totally in awe of planetary landings, I did not mind to boost across the surface and enjoy this new game element.

After a while, I realize that mission stacking is also multiplying my profits here. Three missions to destroy nine skimmers, with a friendly status with the contractor faction, yield me overall 7-9 million credits.

Since the Cobra hasn´t got exactly a good view, I switch to an Imperial Eagle, sold at Fan Colony. The canopy view with it is so much better with my VR-goggles than in a Cobra! And the engine noise! And such passes time in a less action-y, more serene way of playing out missions. The only hectic appears when I become wanted, and thus hunted by system security. In order to not gain even higher bounties, I choose to run. This sometimes becomes a very close affair; the Imperial Eagle is just a little slower than a Cobra, and this shows when being hunted by system security forces in, well, Cobras!

Not sure why I become wanted. Must be because auf said some points of interest do not belong to illegal factions, even though they are mission targets, causing my to tresspass on the "infraction area".

After four or five game sessions, my wealth is overall at 50 million credits, including a shiny new Asp, selling my Cobra. The Asp is mainly only the means to hyperjump, get down to the surface and have a great overview over the surface, to quickly find those points of interest, thanks to the Asps panorama canopy. I also fit four class 1 turrets alongside two class 2 gimballed pulse lasers. They are needed on one occasion, and I have great trouble fending off a Viper in a tight close-surface dogfight.

At some point, most mission-yielding factions in Mula Wendes System have given me "allied"-status. Time to move on, I guess. I can always come back here for some safe high yield income if there is need. But now it is time to move on to something different. 50 million credits should be enough to afford a fully equipped Vulture, a ship which I have not piloted yet.

It is late night, and the first five stations in high pop systems which I check do not offer a Vulture. I briefly consider a basic Python, but want to stick to my plan. However, wasting time flying around poking like a blind man into shipyards for a Vulture is again one of the less pleasurable game experiences. Surely, some fans will already have assembled in the internet a list of all shipyards which offer Vultures.

For now, log off.

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