CCP Introduces New Capital PvE on Singularity Test Server

2021-10-01

Art by Cryo Huren

CCP is making good on their promise of a new capital ship PvE experience. On September 29th 2021, CCP introduced a devblog titled “Summon the Swarm” and invited players to test the new content. In a nod to the community, the new content requires a CONCORD Rogue Analysis Beacon, or CRAB for short. Before we begin, CCP has warned that this content is subject to change based on feedback. With that out of the way, I decided to check out this new content and tell you about it, starting with the costs.

Costs

The very first thing I did after fitting a carrier for this type of PvE was try and gauge how much one of these beacons would cost. Any krab – I mean, all PvE players worth their salt are going to want to know if cost outweighs the reward. As of this patch on Singularity, the CRAB blueprint requires the following:

  • Tritanium (246000 Units)
  • Pyerite (5111 Units)
  • Isogen (10400 Units)
  • Zydrine (1840 Units)
  • Megacyte (120 Units)
  • Broadcast Node (10 Units)
  • Self-Harmonizing Power Core (4 Units)
  • Sterile Conduits (4 Units)
  • Wetware Mainframe (4 Units)

This price tag comes out to about 35-38 million currently on Tranquility, calculated at Jita prices. This puts this gear at twice the cost of several types of the PvE Cataclysmic (Tier 6) Filaments.

If you start me up!

I decided to test this new content with a self-repairing (dual rep-active fit) Thanatos. After refitting my carrier and buying the new CRAB, I warped to a belt to online the CRAB. It failed to online. The first thing I can tell you, then, is that only three of them may be active in a system at any given time. Once I learned that, I jumped to an empty system and tried again.

The second thing that has to be done, after finding a good spot, is to deploy the onlined CRAB. I warped to an asteroid belt and deployed it. After 10 seconds, I was allowed to link to the CRAB, which has a nice lighted circle to show you how close you need to be to link to it. After I started the linking process,  my ship was prevented from cloaking, moving, tethering, and warping. I also received 50% less damage, via a buff, while I was linking to the CRAB. The linking process itself took four minutes. After five minutes I was once again allowed to cloak, move, tether, and warp, but I also lost my 50% reduced-damage buff.

It’s Difficult

After successfully linking to the CRAB, a ring of lights appeared within 100 kilometers of my ship and the event began. The rats (NPCs, mobs) themselves were somewhat interesting to fight. I found a mix of tackle (Infested Jaguar), brawlers (Infested Raven, Infested Dominix, Infested Brutix, Infested Prophecy), kiters (Infested Oracle), and snipers (Infested Eagles). While not as diverse or interesting as an Abyssal Filament, they are far more interesting than anomaly rats. After 25 minutes of smashing rats, and several close calls, the site was completed. I nearly lost my carrier several times as some of the rats, especially the battleships and battlecruisers, hit my ship for several thousand damage at a time. I also lost two Templar IIs in the process. The rats also shred fighters in seconds.

Not Very Rewarding Currently

After the lighted 100 kilometer ring disappeared, I was able to loot the CRAB. It contained 531 Rogue Drone Survey Data, an item I suspect will be like the Triglavian Survey Database seen in Abyssal Filaments, and a Heavy Drone Tank Mutaplasmid of unknown value. I was awarded 46 million ISK in bounties and 24.5 million ISK from the Encounter Surveillance System (ESS), for a total of 70.5 million ISK with a Bounty Risk Modifier of 70%. After a while, the CRAB self-destructed due to its lifespan restriction. It took about 30 minutes to complete and loot the site. This puts it at about 130 million ISK per hour for me from the bounties alone, but about 61 million ISK per hour if you include the price of building the CRAB. The profit was worse if you add in the lost fighters (and why wouldn’t you?). CCP Swift has claimed that the payouts will likely increase.

The Meta So Far

Most people on the test server swear by HAW (High Angle Weapon) dreadnoughts. I also tested this out with a Revelation class Dreadnought. It was considerably easier, considering the bonuses dreads get to having an active tank and the raw damage they can put out. Dreadnoughts, with a good fit, will also be able to defend themselves quite well if a gang comes to gank them, since the rats will also target subcaps on the field. Considering the high tracking the rats have, it may be difficult to gank a dreadnought while running these sites without a large wing of logi (healers). While a dreadnought has far more survivability, the carrier can leave the site after the initial 5 minutes; so, capsuleers will have to choose wisely when running these sites.

CCP has introduced an interesting new PvE experience on Singularity. While the payouts are currently low, the content itself is more engaging than anomaly ratting and seems to favor dreadnoughts currently. While the payout appears poor and perhaps not worth the current risk, CCP claims it will increase the rewards to draw in krabs and hunters alike to this new content.

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Comments

  • Rammel Kas

    Other folks salvaged the sites. Most the wrecks were empty and it only yielded salvage worth around 7mil on live evepraisal prices.

    On the first day people reported mutaplasmids dropping from some of the wrecks, but only sometimes.

    October 1, 2021 at 10:38 AM
  • Guilford Australis

    Alas, my PVE days are over, and have been for a long time.

    In fact, I’ve had my old (very expensively fit) Nidhoggur I used to use for incursions sitting around in 1DQ for about two years. First person who replies to this comment who is (1). Imperium, (2). Someone I recognize from INN, and (3). Will actually use it rather than be a dick and resell it – gets it contracted for free in the 1DQ First Imperial Palace Keepstar.

    October 1, 2021 at 6:49 PM
    • GuardianDevil Guilford Australis

      Why don’t you refit it and use it for pvp? Or do the new sites until pve becomes pvp 😀

      October 1, 2021 at 8:50 PM
      • Guilford Australis GuardianDevil

        My PVP carriers are the CapSwarm doctrine fits, which use T1 rigs. This one has T2 rigs, which cost 700M when I bought them, so I’d rather give it to someone who will use it than strip the rigs to fit T1s so I can be in doctrine compliance.

        October 1, 2021 at 9:00 PM
    • Susurrus Synaesthesia Guilford Australis

      I’ll take it. I’m eager to try this new CRAB thing when it launches. Doubt you’d recognize me though.

      October 4, 2021 at 4:58 AM
      • Guilford Australis Susurrus Synaesthesia

        It’s yours. Just let me know the character you’d like it contracted to.

        October 4, 2021 at 10:16 AM
        • Susurrus Synaesthesia Guilford Australis

          This one. Same name. 1DQ is perfect

          October 4, 2021 at 2:37 PM
          • Guilford Australis Susurrus Synaesthesia

            Done and done. Enjoy it in good health, my friend.

            October 4, 2021 at 7:20 PM
  • Nate Hunter

    I think there’s a high likelyhood these things will be dead on arrival. Wormholers seemingly are already using caps less and that’s without big find me here sign that these things currently give to all of EVE. You rightly compared this to T6 abyssals and that is what these will compete with along with possibly pochven. I think payouts would need to be at least double that of a T6 abyssal (300 mil ish/hr) or about 600 mil /hr about equal to wormhole drifter.

    October 1, 2021 at 10:01 PM
  • Michał Piotr Stankiewicz

    Considering 8+B build cost for Dread / carrier, doubt that anyone will go for 60M/H

    October 2, 2021 at 1:10 PM
    • CCP probably won’t tune the payouts to what capitals actually cost to build and then not many people are building them so it’s not just the cost factor to replace them. Would have been better to just make huge anomalies that would need an actual fleet of capitals to kill than tiny capital pve modules.

      October 3, 2021 at 9:52 PM
    • I doubt anyone would do it for double or triple that an hour. It’s hard enough to try ratting with your cap in this era of eve without having someone drop 50+ bombers or kikis on you, add in the blinking arrow that comes with this annom pointing at your general part of space in the content finder and it’s only going to make people less willing to risk those ships.

      October 4, 2021 at 6:56 PM
  • Elithiel en Gravonere

    I guess ratting is the preferred PVE experience of PvP’ers since they’ve put their skills into combat skills mainly. But why would you put billions on the line for a measely 60 million per hour? Mind you, as an industrialist, I often wonder why you’d put any ship on the line when you can make the same per hour doing production without having to leave your citadels lol.

    So this comes back to who is this gameplay aimed at? Most people rat early on in their careers, but once they’re over a certain wealth level, it is actually more profitable to earn income off your investments (market trading, production, moon goo, contract markets, etc) and let’s face it, shooting rats in eve, is really just target practice and not overly engaging content. Thus, who will do this sort of thing? I guess the bored capital class pilots who just want to have fun, or baiters. The later is where this sort of gameplay gets interesting. Waiting in ambush for the fools to warp on grid… now that’s what I see Goons really using these for!

    October 5, 2021 at 3:07 AM
    • Nate Hunter Elithiel en Gravonere

      It’ll probably be tuned to about 300-600 mil/hr most likely. Still not really enough and CCP will have a hard time preventing the most efficient ships running it not to be marauders.

      October 7, 2021 at 4:54 PM
  • So the first thing you do is cart a structure around and then sit there doing nothing for five minutes while it onlines?

    Yup, sounds like CCP gameplay 😀

    October 8, 2021 at 4:22 AM