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Based off of this thread.

“Meta”, often the word is referred to in “metagaming”, but really it originally comes from the term, “metadata” or “metacontent”.  Oddly enough, for most US citizens the first aspect of “metadata” comes from learning a common organizing system used in libraries, the Dewey Decimal system.  So, with this in mind, the Developers at CCP put together the meta system for Eve Online as a way to organize and categorize the modules in game.

The problem is that the value of those items is very.. sporatic.

For example, currently the meta system in Eve Online evolves this way:

Most (but certainly not all) items in general follow this rule:

  • Meta 0 = Base Item
  • Meta 1 = Better than Meta 0
  • Meta 2 = Better than Meta 1
  • Meta 3 = Better than Meta 2
  • Meta 4 = Better than Meta 3
  • Meta 5 = Better than Meta 4
  • and so on…

The problem comes in when the skillset is applied.  In order for you to use a Meta 0 to Meta 4 weapon, all you need is a 15 minute skill.  That’s it.  This means that Meta 4 will ALWAYS be the favored and sought after.  Meta 0 retains some value in that it is the only module that can be constructed by players, but since the values scale up, Meta 1 thru Meta 3 items never retain any value whatsoever because it doesn’t take all that long for players to reach the skills necessary to use Meta 5 (tech 2) modules, which are also built by players.

So, the lifespan of the Meta 0 thru 4 items is very, very short indeed and currently do not compete in any way with Meta 4 or Meta 5 modules, outside of a minor difference in CPU usage, which is typically held only by Meta 1 weapons, or depending on the mix of values, the meta 4.  But this isn’t a good enough reason for a fully trained pilot like myself to use them.  Typically a PVP ship is constructed around either the offence or defense.  So, I will NEVER use a Meta 2 or Meta 3 weapon as my primary armament.  Maybe a secondary one, sure.. but never primary.  Same with the tank, I will never use a Meta 0-3 as a tanking piece.

This is why the meta system in Eve Online is broken.  There is no reason to use those other items for the vast majority of the time.