Naming Surprises and Cheeky Disguises 4

It’s time for another edition of what is becoming one of the most popular series on this blog, NS&CD. In this series we take a look at some of the strange, wonderful, or somewhat frightening names that pilots choose to give to their Mobile Tractor Units. I travel all over highsec, so if you live there and currently own a named MTU, there is a good chance you’ll see it featured here at some point in the future.

Before we begin, there have been some wonderful examples of named MTUs featured on Yadot’s blog recently, here and here, and I highly recommend you check those out!

Cardy MTU-B

At first I thought this name might be a reference to a certain American celebrity, but upon closer inspection the MTU’s owner (piloting a Skiff next to it) probably named it after herself. I do wonder what happened to Cardy MTU-A though!


Here we have a couple of named MTUs close together, the grammatically incorrect “A MTU”, and DENOS MOBILE. That second name looks Spanish, let’s crack out the online translator, shall we?

Translates to: GIVE US MOBILE

Hmm, an odd one, but you should really be giving me your mobile. If any Spanish speakers can shed any light on this, please do.

Recycle Bin

Treasure Coffer

Here we have a nice contrast. Quite a few MTU owners like to associate their MTUs with trash, calling them things like bins, trashcans, waste disposal, and the like. Some other MTU owners like to associate them with treasure though, and I personally share that sentiment.

Alara Alandiel's MTU

Here we have another MTU that the owner decided to name after themself. MTUs aren’t named like this by default, so the owner had to go out of their way to name their MTU like the default name for a ship. By the way, you should never leave your ship name as default, finding a pilot on D-Scan through their ship’s name is an easy way to hunt them down.


I believe “Scoop” would be a more appropriate name for an MTU, the only swooping involved with MTUs is when I swoop in and blow them up.

-= K =- -= T =-

These rare ‘Magpie’ MTUs with pretty names were surrounded by a swarm of Ishtars using Wasp II drones. It goes without saying that I was unable to claim them.

Cherry Picker 2

This seems like a good name for an MTU, I wonder if Cherry Picker 1 faced the same fate?


Here we have an MTU named after a popular sci-fi character, although I don’t really understand the connection here. Perhaps some Star Wars nerds can fill me in on this one?

1 Retriever

Here we have what looks like a cheeky disguise, although upon further reflection it could just be a descriptive name, as in the MTU retrieves items through it’s tractor beam.

Although named MTUs seem to be a lot more common these days, cheeky disguises are still somewhat of a rarity. The search continues, and we have more episodes of this series coming up! If you spot any interesting or funny named MTUs out there, please take a screenshot and send it to me (Pix Severus) via EVEmail.

Naming Surprises and Cheeky Disguises 3

Naming Surprises and Cheeky Disguises 3

I honestly wasn’t expecting to make a return to this series so soon, seeing as after multiple years of hunting MTUs I’d only spotted just enough named MTUs to make the last two posts, here, and here. After returning to New Eden from a lengthy break however, it seems that everyone is naming their MTUs these days, and after only a week of hunting I’d already found enough named MTUs to make a new post about it! So, let’s get into it, shall we?


First up, we have an MTU with a Dutch name, this is my first time spotting a named MTU in this language, let’s use an online translator to see what it says!

Translates to: YOUR MOTHER’S BOX

Oh.. Well, let’s move on quickly shall we?


A quick online search found Aboriginal origins for this name, apparently it means ‘sea turtle’ or something.

Kor -azor

This fellow liked to name his MTU after the region he deployed it in for some reason. Or perhaps it was named after the neighbouring system?

urmumhasdownsyndrome holmes

This rather.. inventively named MTU was found in the system of Nakugard, a hotspot for both MTU usage and hunting.

Weltraum Putze

Here we have another MTU from Nakugard, this time with a German name, another first for me! Let’s put it through an online translator.

German: Weltraum Putze
Translates to: Space Cleaning

For some reason, if you capitalise one or more of the words before putting them into an online translator, it can come out as ‘Space Plasters’ instead, odd.


There’s nothing more dangerous than an MTU stuck on the “suck” setting. It’s always best to dispose of them as quickly as possible.

remember locale

Yes, always remember the locale of your MTU, lest a hunter finds it before you!

Annie's MTU and Xand Vacuum

Here we have a double whammy! Proof that you can’t move for named MTUs these days. I had a hard time looking up the meaning of ‘Xand Vacuum’, the only references I could find were mentions of an old type of vacuum cleaner, but unfortunately those references were hidden behind paywalls, thanks nu-internet.

pls don't touch

When I first spotted this MTU, I immediately probed it down, and when I landed on grid with it, a Noctis had just arrived on the scene too, and promptly scooped it up before I could touch it.

I had the last laugh though, two whole nights later, I was hunting through the same area and spotted it on D-Scan again! This time I touched his MTU, I touched it until it exploded.

pls don't touch

Click on image for full size.

Kill: Space Keendary (Mobile Tractor Unit)

I’d just like to thank Rent-A-Dream Pleasure Gardens for the assist! o/

No cheeky disguises this time, I’m just putting these up as I find them, but there will be at least one next time! That’s all for this episode, if you spot any interesting or funny named MTUs out there, please take a screenshot and send it to me (Pix Severus) via EVEmail.

Naming Surprises and Cheeky Disguises 2

Vocal Local 4

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, opening your mouth can be more trouble than it’s worth.

Local Chat

Local Chat

In the system of Inaro I had found an abandoned Gecko, a very expensive drone just lying out there in the cold dark of space. It wasn’t long before multiple people piped-up in local to claim ownership of the drone. This exchange in local was accompanied by 2 seperate private convos from each of the claimants.

Pix Severus > o/
Katakuna Katotekushi > hey
Katakuna Katotekushi > you won’t believe it, but it’s from my friend’s rattle
Katakuna Katotekushi > can i have it back and give it to him?
Katakuna Katotekushi > he forgot it after he ran away to the station
Pix Severus > nice try friend, but there is no way to know for certain it was your friend’s drone
Pix Severus > have a nice day!

ChikaPika > Please,return my gecko
ChikaPika > its my boyfriend account
ChikaPika > and i cant lose 1 of his gecko
Pix Severus > this is literally the 2nd private convo from someone lying, saying its theirs
Pix Severus > i applaud your efforts though, have a nice day!

I almost had cause to believe Katakuna when he said it was his friend’s drone, that was until ChikaPika convoed me saying it was actually her boyfriend’s drone, and then I quickly remembered what kind of game EVE Online is. Needless to say neither party had put a good enough case forward, and I confiscated the drone for my own personal use.

Shortly after leaving Inaro, I received the following notification, which I treated as the last desperate measure of a scammer who couldn’t get her own way.


I had only been passing through Inaro while on my way to one of my favourite MTU hunting grounds, and as luck would have it, I found another abandoned Gecko later on that night in my destination system of Lanngisi. The following day I found yet another Gecko in the system of Amygnon. There were no further claimants.

Upon arriving in the system of Aufay one night, my D-scan lit-up with the familiar sight of a Mobile Tractor Unit. Whilst probing it down, it became apparent that this MTU wasn’t abandoned, but was accompanied by a Hulk. Unusally, both the MTU and the mining ship were nowhere near an asteroid belt, which is where you’d expect such a ship to operate, so out of interest I decided to take a look.

After warping to the MTU’s signature, I found myself some 30k away from the MTU and the miner, inside a Mining Mission. The miner quickly scooped the MTU and began negotiations.

Menodian > how much do u want
Pix Severus > its ok, i dont hurt miners
Pix Severus > i just hunt down abandoned mtus
Menodian > okay ty
Pix Severus > have a nice day sir

The miner had instantly assumed I was there to hunt him and wasted no time in offering me a ransom, which I declined. I was only there for the MTU, and since it had been scooped, there was nothing left of interest to me. In hindsight I could have perhaps taken this a little further and tried to convince him to let me have his MTU.

At this point, the miner warped away and docked at a nearby station, and shortly afterwards opened a private convo with me.

Menodian > if got a noob question
Pix Severus > ok
Menodian > how did you find me :O
Pix Severus > i fit a probe launcher to my ship, and used combat probes, mobile tractor units are very easy to scan down
Menodian > okay thanks m8
Menodian > i’m worried the wil gank me lol
Pix Severus > you fly a hulk yes?
Menodian > yes
Pix Severus > consider using a skiff instead, most gankers tend to avoid those because they have huge ehp
Menodian > okay ill buy one and sell my hulk
Pix Severus > hulks have better yield, but are very weak
Pix Severus > and make sure to put a tank on the skiff
Menodian > okay
Pix Severus > the reason most miners die though is because they mine afk, which gives gankers lots of time to kill, mining can be tricky these days
Menodian > yeah i no i lost a hulk already lol
Menodian > brb diner time thanks m8 for advice
Pix Severus > np, feel free to chat anytime o/

It would seem, then, that the miner had chosen to mine inside of Mining Missions for the purpose of avoiding gankers, not a bad idea, but as you can see it won’t stop people from probing you down regardless. In EVE Online, the best advice is always free, if you ever have any questions about the game, follow Menodian’s example above.

Unfortunately Menodian chose not to follow my advice, and instead began mining using Retrievers, weak and easily gankable mining vessels, of which he has lost a few already.

That just about wraps up this edition of Vocal Local, if you see me in space, give me a wave. o/

Vocal Local 3

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.


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.

Incidentally, the best places to find abandoned drones tend to be the systems that have level 4 security agents, and the systems surrounding those.

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:


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.

Progress of an MTU Hunter

In my previous post I detailed the first steps I took into the world of MTU Hunting, including my first MTU kill. In this post I will explain how I improved my ability to hunt down MTUs and increase my MTU/hr ratio. This is the final part of my 3-part introduction into the world of MTU Hunting.

With my first kill under my belt, it was time to step things up a notch, I had been training scanning skills during my early hunting days and now it was time to put them to use. Instead of solely using D-Scan, I would now be using a combination of D-Scan and the Probe Scanner. I hadn’t used the Probe Scanner in years, so instead of re-learning how to use the old one, I decided to use the new beta version of the Probe Scanner instead.

Probe Scanner


To use the Probe Scanner I needed to fit a probe launcher to my ship, and unfortunately my little interceptor didn’t have a lot of CPU for fitting one. Instead of doing the smart thing and finding a new ship that could fit one, I decided to fit a Co-Processor II, which gave my interceptor just enough CPU to fit a Sister’s Expanded Probe Launcher. I would then carry my guns and other combat-related modules in my cargohold, and refit for combat at the nearest station after scanning an MTU down. Not the most efficient way of doing things, but I managed to rack up an impressive 90+ kills using this method.

Throughout that period I had been training the skills needed to use a type of ship that had been introduced to the game during my hiatus, the Tactical Destroyer. I decided to go for the Gallente variant of this ship, the Hecate, as most of my skills at that time were suited for it. I will go into more detail about this ship in a later post, but I will mention that with more than twice the DPS of my interceptor, over 4 times the cargo capacity, and a bonus that allows for easy fitting of a probe launcher, this ship would be the perfect MTU hunting ship.


Anybody for some planking?

With this ship, my MTU/hr ratio went through the roof, and I could now hunt down and kill MTUs quickly and efficiently. Now that I had the skills and tools necessary for MTU hunting, I headed out to the most lucrative mission hubs, the busiest trade hubs, and the quietest systems in the farthest reaches of empire space. Would I find riches beyond my wildest dreams, or would I find oblivion? Would I find adventure and experiences worthy of sharing, or would I find disappointment?

Add this blog to your bookmarks, and keep reading, to find out.

Birth of an MTU Hunter

Hello there, my name is Pix Severus and I have been playing EVE Online since 2010. This blog is about my adventures in EVE Online as I strive to become New Eden’s ultimate MTU hunter.

If you’re here, you may have seen me appear red or yellow flashy in local and found the link to this blog in my bio after checking me out. If that’s the case, don’t worry, I’m probably not after you, but if you have an MTU deployed right now you should probably get ready to scoop it.


Not creepy at all.

After returning to EVE Online from a year’s hiatus, I decided to take a break from suicide ganking in highsec to pursue a different career altogether: Hunting Mobile Tractor Units (MTUs).

An MTU is a large metal container with a tractor beam on it that sucks up nearby wrecks in space. These metal containers can be shot at by other players until they pop (explode) and then the contents of the container can be looted by anyone. It is classed as a mobile deployable structure, and players can use them to store ship modules for the purpose of refitting their ship in the field. However, they are most commonly used for automatically looting wrecks in missions, or dumping ore into for easy collection whilst mining. Many players leave these containers behind, and either forget where they left them, or simply don’t know how to scan them down to find them again. That’s where I come in.


Can you guess which system I was in when I took this screenshot?

There were 2 factors that influenced my decision to start down this road. The first was that I would constantly see MTUs appear on D-scan while travelling through highsec, even in systems that aren’t populated or typically used for mission running. The second was when I was poking around some asteroid belts and saw someone shooting an MTU that had been left behind by a miner. I had mistakenly thought that shooting MTUs without a wardec would result in CONCORD intervention, but the person shooting it was in an NPC corporation and therefore not at war with anyone. While he was shooting the MTU, he had suspect status (indicated by a yellow flashing skull) which meant that any player could freely attack him, so doing this is not without it’s risks, just like anything in EVE. Knowing that I could attack these things freely made quite the difference in my attitude towards them, which up until then had been one of nonchalance.

With this revelation, and the knowledge that these things are all over highsec and could contain any number of expensive items, I decided to start actively hunting them down. My long term goal with this is to eventually start killing mission runners, with MTU molestation being merely the bait to lure them into attacking me. For now, however, I’m quite content traversing the known galaxy and removing every abandoned MTU from the spacelanes.

Ladies and gentlemen, I’m about to take killboard padding to the next level.

Part 2