Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Making ISK

How do you make ISK in EVE?

We were having a discussion on Teamspeak last night about how various people make their ISK in-game, and I found interesting not just the variety of activities people do, but in the differences they approach it altogether.

Some ISK binge. Several alliance members do this. Instead of finding activities they can ‘do on the side’ they spend a weekend, or an entire week making ISK that will last them for the good part of a year. Farming missions has been a popular activity in Late Night, especially for the ISK bingers. (You probably won’t see any of these guys mission running for the rest of the year!)

Some pick ‘on the side’ activities that they can maintain as they go. Trading was a big one –and the variety in trade methods was very great! Some 1-ISK in major trade hubs. Others supply small, low-sec markets, especially where they tend to PVP themselves. Yet others trade specific items across regions.

There are a few guys who admit to having a high-sec mission alt. I admit, I’ve often wondered why anyone would high sec mission run when they can make oodles more LP binging on Faction War missions. But that’s the very thing –they aren’t bingers. They want to do something on the side—something that remains relatively stable, and FW mission payouts rely heavily on the state of the warzone.

And of course, there are many others. Guys with wormhole alts. (Or wormhole mains, and FW alts!) Guys who manufacture---ships, drugs, and/or other things.

As for me, I tend to be an ‘on the side’ type of ISK making girl. I hate binging. I don’t like making a huge puddle of ISK only to watch it slowly (or quickly!) dwindle to the point where I have to binge again. And, I like dabbling –always trying this or that. I have ongoing things, and short term projects, and experiments.

Currently, I make ISK the following ways:

First, I run an Alliance Shop. Admittedly, I spend a lot of time and effort doing this for not the greatest payout. Mainly, because the reasons I do it are not purely economical –it is also to help out my alliance.

The basis of the shop is to sell full fit ships—mostly tech 1 small ships that are considered ‘throw-away’ by most alliance members. Currently, I build most of the ship hulls right in Huola, because it is easier bringing in minerals and building what I need when I need it, than bringing in ship hulls every time I run out of something.

The hard part about the store is keeping track of everything. I sell nearly 20 different kinds of ships, and have to carefully keep track of all the price fluctuations so that I don’t accidentally start selling something at a loss.  I keep track of how much I sell of what ship, and how much I have in inventory. I keep track of how much ISK exchanges hand each month so I can extract a margin figure --% of ISK I make against how much invested.

On a really inactive month, I might only make a few hundred million ISK. On really active months, I might make 1-2 billion ISK. In general, this is my ‘fall back on’ ISK making activity. It pays the plex bills.

Since I started a year and a half ago, alliance members and other militia have bought over 4,500 fit ships from me, and spent 85+ billion in total throughput.

Secondly, I help supply a low-sec market hub. In particular, LNA’s home system of Huola which is also home to several other Minmatar alliances and corporations.

I’m far from being one of the major traders in the system, and tend to just get a few stacks of things, put them up, and forget about it. My alliance contract alt never leaves station, so I figured she’d be good to double as a part-time trade alt as well.

I rarely have more than 1-2 billion in trade orders up in Huola at one time—usually surplus from the alliance shop, or stuff I heard someone complain about not being able to find on the market at one point.

Thirdly, I region trade. I do this on a variety of items –some things that are long term items I constantly keep track of, and other items that are a weekend project. For example, this past weekend, someone manipulated the prices of a certain item in Jita. I happened to have built a few to try the manufacturing side of things and noticed the price change when I went to put them for sale and saw the price was 4-5 million over build cost. So, once I sold those I had built, I went and bought a stack in Amarr, where they were still 1 million or so over build, and threw them up in Jita.  I probably made 300-400 million off this item..mostly while I was pvping on Susan. =p

Long term speculative/region trading tends to be where I make the bigger chunks of ISK. You reach a certain point in trade, where trading ‘knick-knacks’ as a primary trading scheme is no longer viable with the amount of cash you have on hand. You’ll be adjusting market orders til kingdom come, and spreading yourself way too thin.

So, I invest bigger chunks of ISK into things that might take months to turn over. And, admittedly, it’s all very highly speculative in my case. I notice trends, and I pay attention to certain types of politics and manipulations.

A lot of people seem to think that they should ‘hunker down’ and research graphs so they can better 1-ISK people. And, I guess a lot of people make ISK doing this. But, I have found that I make better trade decisions by paying attention to things that might have nothing to do with ‘numbers’ and everything to do with people: Wars, alliances, fleet composition preferences, politics, who is fighting whom, who is winning against whom, who is assisting whom, where people are moving and why, what people think about upcoming expansion items and changes, and what people are thinking, in general.

After all, there are people who farm. And people who sell warp core stabilizers.

Anyway, that is how I make ISK. How do you make ISK?

1 comment:

  1. It is interesting to see the variety of isk making out there. It seems to be tailored to the player. For example, I make isk in a few ways.

    First, I run PI on 6 characters. This is very casual PI and makes me around 1-1.5B a month. I do this because this is often something I can do during the day while at work in random spare minutes. It may take me 8 hours to do 20 minutes of PI "work", but that is time I don't have to spend during my PVP time.

    Second, I post corp contracts for fully fit ships. This doesn't make all that much isk, but I tend to be able to pay for 1-2 ships per JF load. I do this more to help our guys stay in ships than the isk.

    Third, I run FW plexes while I PVP. In this sense, I binge as you described. I'm not running plexes to farm LP, I'm waiting for PVP and will abandon the plex for a kill. Once I get 5-10M LP after a month or two, I cash out. I post most of my items on sell orders in Jita, so I tend to get a slow trickle of isk flowing in rather than a giant influx.

    I used to do highsec industry stuff such as T2 manufacturing, BPO research, etc. I gave up on that because it tended to reduce my PVP time and required to much effort to track.