Friday, December 12, 2014

Milking Sleeper Data Sites

A few days ago was my corporation's "Corp Night", which is our weekly get-together to run C4 or C5 PVE sites to make ISK.  (We also will attack small-gang targets of opportunity if we find them, but this is rare.)  We have been doing almost solely C5 sites because they pay better than C4.  Because of this, our home system has gradually filled with anoms.  There were enough of them that I felt it was getting embarrassing.  It's like having a messy house; even if you don't have guests, you know.  So we ran our own sites for a change.

Among the sites we ran were four data sites: two Unsecured Frontier Trinary Hubs, and two Unsecured Frontier Digital Nexuses.  Among the four, we got one of the "site escalation" waves, which is an extra sleeper battleship and an abandoned talocan cruiser.  The latter is a loot can requiring a relic analyzer, which opens via the normal minigame.  It normally contains one or two hull sections in some state of repair (intact, malfunctioning, or wrecked), which are used to make T3 cruiser hulls.  Typically one of the cans is worth a few million in loot; not bad, but nothing earthshaking.

Well, this time in the one talocan can, we got a small wrecked hull section.  It showed no price on the mouseover, because this is a new item introduced in Rhea to build into the new tactical destroyers.  In the long run, it is likely that the prices of small hulls will drop to below that of the equivalent cruiser hull.  However, in the short run the prices for these hulls are very high.  People are paying a huge premium for the first Confessors.

(Here's the EVE Central search for "hull section".  As of this writing, Jita has the following prices for high buy/low sell:
Intact Hull Section:   23m/33m
Malfunctioning Hull Section:  2.2m/9.4m
Wrecked Hull Section:  500k/3.0m
Small Intact Hull Section:  215m/350m
Small Malfunctioning Hull Section:  100m/269m
Small Wrecked Hull Section:  36m/100m )

Nice.  So moral here is: do not ignore your data sites!  Even if you don't feel them worthwhile to run for the normal blue loot and salvage, warp in to check for the Talocan relic.  If it is there, cargo scan it to see what it's got.  If there is a "Small [X] Hull Section", you want it!  Crack it in a tank with logis [update: this doesn't work; any sleepers on site means you cannot crack a can], or clear the site and crack it.

Continuing with the story... the next day I noticed that all the data sites had despawned, except one.  In that site, I had not bothered to open any cans because all the data cans in these sites are essentially worthless.  (Yes, I scanned them all.  I keep hoping for a nice blueprint or something, but it does not seem to be in the loot tables.)  Anyway, this one extra half-dead site left a slightly unkempt system.  It annoyed me enough that I decided to fly over there and crack a can just to get rid of the site.

So I jumped into my exploration Buzzard, and warped on it.  Much to my surprise, there was a Sleeper battleship on grid!  I tried to cloak, but no, too near a can!  Uh oh... Warp!  Warp!  ... and I escaped.  Whew.  As I warped off, I noticed an abandoned Talocan cruiser.

Now, I am quite certain that can was not there two days ago.   If it was, I'd have looted it.  Nor was the Sleeper battleship.  I'd have noticed that, too, when I entered the site and scanned all the cans.

What happened here?  Evidently, you get a "die roll" each time a sleeper data site is instantiated, and if lucky, you get the escalation wave (which includes the Talocan can).  We did not get it on corp night, but then the site got de-instantiated at downtime.  Coming back two days later, I instantiated the site again; the site records that all the sleepers are dead, but I got a fresh check for the escalation, and more luck.

So, the moral here is: when you check out a sleeper data site, and there is not a Talocan relic, or there is but it contains relatively low-value stuff... don't give up!  Come back the next day, and the next, and the next, and try again!  (Sites despawn on the fourth downtime after they are first instantiated, so four tries is what you get.)


  1. What happened with Small Malfunctioning Hull and other sleepers loot in the last month?
    The prices dropped for more than 50%. :(

    1. There was a huge spike in sleeper loot value before the Confessor launched. This was in part due to it, and I think in part due to the depopulation of wspace after Hyperion. We've cleared a lot of markets.

      So some of it is just a retreat from an aberrational spike.

      The small hulls, though, are a different story. They did not exist before Rhea. Thus they were incredibly rare immediately after, and still they are rarer than they would otherwise be (that is, if they'd been in the game for a while). So they will continue dropping for a while... where the bottom is, nobody knows. It depends on the supply wspace PVErs are pulling out vs the demand for Confessors. But cheer up! Probably we'll get little price spikes each time one of the new T3 destroyers comes out.

      This pattern, BTW, is one we see in general with new technology in real world economics.

    2. Interesting, thanks for the info!

      I'm new to WH space, just run my first Unsecured Frontier Server Bank and was expecting 300-400mil in loot, but when i wanted to sell it I saw the big drop in price and didn't know why.