So, for the first time, I finally opted to try Incursions.

Normally, I have avoided Incursions for a few reasons.  The first was that I was in 0.0 and we just didn’t have time.  The second was that my normal level 4 missions paid me pretty well when I combined mission loot with LP and pirate rewards.  The third was that I don’t know any trustworthy low-sec incursion groups to join with (not that there aren’t any.. I just don’t know them.  It is Eve after all…).

However, as our corp has recently moved back to more familiar space, I found that there was an incursion going on nearby.  Being a rather curious sort, I decided to check it out.  From reading other blogs and from the chat that pops up whenever you enter an incursion, I decided to bring out a Guardian.. a ship with no offensive capability.. but still a popular addition.  It didn’t take long before I was picked up.  Btw, for those who are also new to incursions, here are a couple terms you should know:

“LFAF” – Looking for Armor Fleet

“LFSF” – Looking for Shield Fleet

“L” – if you are Logi and are at the acceleration gate into a mission.

Also, it is a common practice to show your current configuration when looking for a group, so be sure to do that.  Maybe it was because I was tired, but it took me some time to figure out what LFAF was..

The FC in our fleet was clearly experienced in Incursions, and I could tell that the fleet was impressed by his efficiency.  We averaged about 10.5 million isk per player every 10-15 minutes (not counting LP rewards), or the equivilent of a really good Level 4 mission.  We did our best to avoid mining missions, but there were three fleets operating in the system and soon we were stepping over each other.  For High-sec incursions, it seems that two fleets per system is the max that can operate without bumping together.  The handling of the isk was done automatically, so there was no drama involved with that, and loot didn’t appear to be an issue either.

The next night, I did the same thing, pulled out my Guardian and joined up with an incursion.  While not as fast, it certainly wasn’t bad and still compared well versus a typical Level 4 mission.  The gang wasn’t as solid as my first one.. and there was a shield tanked Maelstrom as one of the DPS ships.. which we nearly lost because he wasn’t armor tanked.

So, all in all, what do I think of CCP’s Incursions?

Pros:

  • Time wise, easily comparible to a profitable level 4 mission.. and likely has the potential to give more if I go into Low or even nullsec incursions.
  • If you fly logistics well in 0.0, you will work well on Incursion ops.  Since most gangs are between 10-15, you can easily keep most of the fleet on your watchlist and be quite proactive in your job.
  • Much better for time management.  Maybe you want to play Eve, but you only have half an hour.  In a level 4 mission, you pretty much can do only half of one, maybe a full one if you don’t salvage.  With Incursions, you get your LP and you don’t worry about loot and most of the combat runs last 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Incursions really favor older pilots with multiple ship skills or Minmatar pilots, as both shield and armor specific fleets are popular.  Another factor in this is the popularity of Faction battleships like the Vindicator, Nightmare, and Bhaalgorn.

Cons:

  • If you don’t have logistics skills.. good luck getting in a fleet.
  • Still deal with boneheads who join armor fleets in shield tanked ships or vise versa.
  • Pretty fast paced, expect commands to only be given once.
  • The FC makes all the difference in Incursions, and if he can’t hold the fleet together and keep it moving from assignment to assignment, then you are going to lose money.
  • No direct pirate bounties.

All in all, I really liked the fact that I could jump on, get with a fleet in short order, then have the freedom to leave a fleet in a half an hour to an hour.  I still need to see how I would do for DPS.. but we’ll try that soon.

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