Costa Deltole

Whilst you’re out MTU hunting, you will begin to notice certain systems as being special, in that they always seem to have an MTU or MMJU deployed, ripe for the popping. One such system is Deltole, in the Sinq Laison region, a short distance from 2 of New Eden’s 5 major trade hubs, Dodixie and Hek.

The reason there is almost* always a mobile structure to kill there is because of a DED site in the system called Contested Gallente Skeleton Comet. This site is perpetually run by players who sit there for hours on end shooting the never-ending spawn of NPCs that appear at the site. The players running the site are often in Cruiser-class drone ships, such as Ishtars and Vexors. They put down MMJUs at the warp-in beacon (this site has an acceleration gate) to jump straight into the action, they then put down an MTU (or three) to suck up the hundreds of NPC wrecks they create.

Click image for full-size.

The Contested Gallente Skeleton Comet site. Click image for full-size.

I have repeatedly popped their structures while they are running the site, but as yet they haven’t risked aggressing me, despite being yellow-flashy, and outnumbered. The following is an example of an MTU kill at this site:

Kill: Blade Sharpenter (Mobile Tractor Unit)

Not the greatest loot, but another MTU down is fine by me. I do tend to get more MMJU kills in Deltole though; One player in particular has lost 5 MMJUs to me in this system so far.

The sheer number of mobile structures isn’t the only reason Deltole is notable to me, it is also home to a friend of mine, a notorious ganker called Paranoid Loyd. At least I think he’s a friend, he hasn’t tried to kill me lately anyway. I occasionally drop Exotic Dancers on his doorstep to keep him appeased.

Contract: Exotic Dancers, Female

*fingers crossed*

Deltole isn’t the only system that’s special in regards to MTU hunting, I will showcase some more of those systems in future posts.

*If you find no mobile structures to pop whilst passing through Deltole, it’s probably because I just passed through there.

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Abandoned Drones

Early on in my MTU hunting career it became apparent that the majority of abandoned MTUs are either empty, or hold very little loot. I wanted to keep some steady ISK trickling-in to help pay for ammo and other expenses, so I wouldn’t completely burn through the liquid ISK I had set aside for this project. I decided, then, that it was a good idea to subsidise my MTU hunting with the additional activity of scanning down and scooping abandoned drones.

Drone

Beep boop.

Drones have many uses, from aiding you in combat, to increasing your mining yield, and beyond. One thing that all drones have in common though is that they are often left abandoned, intentionally or otherwise, by the person who deployed them. I like to think of them as lost children, orphans, who need someone to help them find a new home, that home being the Jita marketplace. Most often they are abandoned because someone was careless and forgot to retrieve their drones before warping off from a mission and completing it, but there are other possibilities too, such as the person dying in a mission. Abandoned drones along with an abandoned MTU, in a mission site that still has active rats in it, is a good indicator that the mission runner died in the mission and their wreck was sucked into their own MTU; I’ll go into more detail on this phenomenon in later posts.

Scanning down drones is a lot harder than scanning down MTUs, unless you’re trying to scan down a ‘Magpie’ MTU, those are notoriously difficult to scan. Because of how time-consuming it can be, it’s worthwhile setting yourself a limit on which drones you should scan down, and which you should ignore. I personally go for any T2 or faction drones I see on scan, I only go for T1 drones if they’re medium, heavy or sentry ones, and only if I’ve had bad luck finding anything else that day. I’ll only scoop T1 light drones if I had accidentally scanned them down instead of a different set of more expensive ones.

Note: You do not gain Suspect Status (yellow blinky/flashy) for scooping drones, so you can do this ad infinitum with very little risk.

Cleaning a system of all those extra scan signatures can be a very satisfying thing indeed, it can also be very profitable. One time, whilst exploring an empty system on the outer reaches of Amarr highsec, I found 5 ‘Augmented’ Vespa drones, which sell for around 12m ISK each (at the time of writing this). That’s 60m ISK earned in a couple of minutes, just from scanning down random stuff. I also found an abandoned Occator just 2 systems away, that day was a profitable one to say the least.

Whenever I pop an MTU filled with loot, or scoop a large amount of drones, I dump it all in the nearest station and then I use a hauler to go around collecting all that loot later on. After spending some time (read: a few days) hauling over a month’s worth of stashed loot back to Jita, this is what my hangar looked like:

Drones

Click image for full-size.

That’s over 600m ISK from casually scooping drones in highsec, over a period of around a month and a half. Not a bad little side-income, and yes, people do leave Geckos out there too.

Vocal Local

One thing I have noticed during my travels throughout highsec space is just how quiet it is, there could be over 100 people in local, and not a single word is uttered between those players. This makes me sad, so I like to encourage discourse where possible.

Sometimes, however, I don’t even need to say a word to get other players talking.

Local Chat

Whilst shooting MTUs you gain suspect status for a period of 15 minutes, also known as “going yellow flashy”, this is indicated by a flashing yellow skull next your name in local.

Local Chat

It would seem that most people instantly become suspicious the moment you go suspect. Also, why do people keep calling me creepy? It’s creeping me out.

Local Chat

Going suspect isn’t the only way you’ll have attention drawn to you when you’re out MTU hunting.

Local Chat

Sometimes honesty will get you nowhere, and simply having a highsec career other than mining and mission running will be enough to scare away the locals.

Local Chat

Local Chat

See what I mean? How about one more for the road?

Local Chat

Sigh.