Greetings fellow pilots. Even in today’s Eve where ISK is much easier to come by than previous years, we still sometimes struggle with the all too real problem of not having enough money to really enjoy the game in a way that is meaningful to us. Today, I will show you my main source of income in the game. I genuinely enjoy this method of making a living in the game because it involves the two things that I enjoy – T1 production and solo / small gang pvp. I make my money by being an industrialist in Faction Warfare space.
FACTION WARFARE OVERVIEW
1. Faction Warfare is divided into the 4 races of the game. Each race has an NPC Faction Warfare Corporation that players enter by default. From here, players may choose to join a player run FW corp.
2. Requirements to try this game play style is very minimal. A player must only have at least zero faction standings against the faction he wishes to join.
3. The most unique advantage of FW players is their ability to farm large amounts of Loyalty Points in a short amount of time with little skill points required. LP is farmed by capturing plexes. Novice plex can be completed by frigates; small plex for destroyers and below; medium plex for cruisers and below; large plex for any size hull.
4. Below shows the LP pay outs for each size plex depending on the current tier of your faction. Tiers are the level of control that your faction has over your respective war zone.
You can see that these LP payouts are tremendous. Not only that, a FW player can reasonably farm LP at this scale even with just a frigate. So not only are you earning a lot of LP, you are not gated out of this mechanic simply because you cannot fly the more advanced ships in the game. However, be aware that these plexes are in a warpable beacon in low sec. So be prepared for pvp when you complete them. Personally, the fact that I can make money while potentially getting pvp opportunities make this mechanic all the more enjoyable.
Now that we have a basic understanding of how FW works and how LP is farmed, why does this matter to an industrial player? It’s all about the LP. Think of LP as a non-tradable material required for building faction modules and ships. Let’s take a look at Gallente faction battleships as an example.
As you can see, it only takes 250k LP to complete this build. When compared to LP store of other NPC corporations such as those used for level 4 missioning, this is at half the LP cost. If you were to complete a faction battleship build from scratch, it would literally take you a fraction of the time to do it since LP is farmed at a much higher rate in FW space and has a very deep discount in the LP store. Moreover, you do not need skills beyond what is necessary to complete T1 production jobs.
TEAM WORK CONCEPTS – Now you could do all the steps mentioned above and produce faction ships and modules all on your own. However, I do try to incorporate those in my industrial circles when it comes to liquidating my LP. I do this as a matter of personal convenience and as a means to reach out and involve others in my day to day affairs in the game.
1. Previously, I mentioned that LP cannot be directly traded with another player. However, I effectively launder my LP out of the war zone and turn it into ISK with the help of some industrialist friends. Let us again take the Gallente faction battleship as an example. If I had 250k LP and one of my friends wants to work with me so that he can sell one in the market, then he would gather all the materials needed to make the exchange in the LP store. All I have to do is make the exchange myself with my own LP since he cannot access the FW LP store. My friend would then pay me for a price we have agreed on as the value of the LP that was used for the transaction. This allows me to focus on farming LP and not have to worry about completing the build from scratch. My friend also gains an advantage in that he can be an effective player in the faction ship market without spending a single second in low sec.
2. Dedicated FW players often find themselves hesitant to move their own faction goods to market on the same toon because of the permanent war of the the FW mechanic. For these players, I recommend reaching out to your social circle and see if anyone would be willing to help you move your items to market via their own haulers. The less you time you spend not in the war zone, the less profit you will be making.
3. Faction Modules or Ships to Order – having a relationship with other players is key to really getting the most out of the game. If you have a friend who is interested in faction ships or modules at a particular volume, then see if you can be a dedicated supplier to meet their demands. This allows you less time to have to deal with moving your goods and baby sitting sell orders since you will be making direct trades with other players.
MARKET CONSIDERATIONS – You might be thinking why I am divulging some key information into what seems to be a very lucrative activity. The answer is in the sheer scale of this market. To control this market is not simply to control a particular item, you would need to literally control the faucet that feeds LP into each participating player’s inventory. It would take the drive and expert execution of mega cartels to monopolize this type of market due to the non-transferable nature of LP.
The market prices of items that are exchanged in the FW LP stores are bound to the tier of a particular faction. A faction that is stuck in tier 1 may have less LP per plex completion, but the value of the LP is much higher compared to the LP of a faction that has been going strong at tier 4 or 5 for several months in a row. This is supply and demand at work.
Personally, I have found a way to circumvent this inconvenience. As mentioned, you only need to have a faction standing of zero to participate in FW. I have taken the time to repair my FW toon’s faction standings for all factions. Currently, I can move from one faction to another, even ones that are thematically at war with one another with only a 24 hour cool down in between. This has effectively given me the ability to follow the money and have a steady source of high demand faction ships and modules to build and sell.
I hope this guide helped you in understanding a part of the game that is seldom explored by the majority of the player base. There are of course other ways to reap economic benefits from this type of game play, you just need to be a little creative and don’t be afraid to take chances if the reward is good enough. But therein lies the challenge and enjoyment in this type of space – creativity and organization is rewarded handsomely. Good luck out there and I do hope to run into one of you in a novice plex one of these days. Fly safe and good fights.