Maximizing Revenue from Mission Running

Revenue Sources and Factors that Influence Them

Agent/Corp Standings Skills Mission Level Mission Agent/Mission
System Security Level
Tractor Beams/
Mobile Tractor Units
Salvager Module/
Salvage Drones
ISK Reward X
  • Negotiation
 X  X X
LP Reward X
  • Distribution Connections
  • Mining Connections
  • Security Connections
 X  X X
Standings Gain
  • Social
  • Connections
  • Criminal Connections
  • Diplomacy
  • Fast Talk
 X  X X
Bounties  X X
Loot  X
Salvage  X  X

ISK Reward

  • Although Negotiation increases the ISK reward, the Social skill should be maxed out first.
  • The lower the agent/mission system security level, the higher the reward

LP Reward

  • Loyalty Points (LP) are used to buy exclusive goods from the corp’s Loyalty Point Store
  • Inapplicable skills need not be trained. Since Security missions are the most reward (and fun!) mission type, most players need only train Security Connections
  • The lower the agent/mission system security level, the higher the reward

Standings Gain

  • High standings increase the ISK/LP mission rewards, and lowers the costs of doing business with NPC corps at NPC stations (industry taxes, trade fees, etc), among other things
  • Of all the skills that affect standings, Social is the most important, and should be trained to L5 first.
  • Inapplicable Social skills need not be trained, as they may not apply to you based on which factions you work and which kinds of agents you use. Some skills, such as Social, Connections, and Negotiation affect all agents/corps/factions/etc
  • The lower the agent/mission system security level, the higher the reward

Bounties

You will earn far more from bounties than you will in ISK rewards. In L4 missions, many NPCs have bounties of 1M+, and are one-shottable in many configurations.

Loot & Salvage

  • Loot
    • Loot is almost always worth far more intact to yourself or your corp/alliance than reprocessed or sold on market
    • Mobile Tractor Units (MTUs) can be used to collect wrecks for you while you complete the mission
    • Tags are a special kind of loot used in conjunction with LP for buying certain items in LP stores
  • Salvage
    • Salvage is used to make rigs, which are semi-permanent modules that cannot be removed or replaced without being destroyed
    • Salvage Drones can be used to salvage wrecks while you are completing the mission

Should I bother with loot and salvage?

When you’ve finished a mission, should you try to collect the remaining wrecks not yet collected by MTUs?
  • No: if you want to maximize ISK/LP/Standings gain, you’re better off taking what the MTU’s have accumulated and move on to the next mission
  • Yes: if you feel:
    • the loot would be plentiful and of value to you or your corp/alliance. The lower level the PVE, the less likely this is to be the case. As a rule of thumb, it is not worth looting/salvaging anything below L4 missions or its other PVE equivalents as you gain far more mission rewards and bounties than you do in value in the time spent looting and salvaging. There are even some L4 missions (and equivalents) that themselves aren’t worth looting/salvaging.
    • you are looking to accumulate more tags or salvage
    • you are proficient enough at trading you could make an excellent profit selling them (moreso than moving on to the next mission)
    • you are desparate in need of their reprocesses materials (ie. minerals) and feel it would be better to reprocess the loot/salvage then go mining or buying materials from market
Should a fleetmate (eg. second account, corpmate, etc) dedicate themselves to loot and salvage collection?
  • No: if any of the following is true:
    • You answered “No” to the previous question
    • Your fleetmate would be able to collect the loot/salvage faster than you can complete the mission
    • Your fleetmate is not using a proper loot & salvage build (Noctis or “Poor Man’s Noctis”, typically in the form of a gunboat destroyer outfitted with four tractor beams and four salvager modules)
    • Your fleetmate does not know how to D-Scan or Instant Warp for emergency evacuation (this is especially important when using a relatively pricey Noctis!)
    • There is very little loot/wrecks to salvage (lower level missions have less loot and have fewer wrecks to salvage than higher level missions)
    • The mission being run is not a security mission
  • Yes: otherwise

Endgame

  • Relevant skills in the Social category have been maximized. The earlier these are maximized, the better!
  • You are running Security missions, which are the most rewarding and most fun
  • You are able to at least solo L4 mission or L5 missions in fleets and complete them quickly using builds optimized for mission running. Typically this leverages combat drones (which alternate with salvage drones) and long-range weapons.
  • You are running missions in systems with very low security rating. If you don’t want to deal with the risks of nullsec (esp. interdiction spheres), then at least aim for missions with agents located in .1 systems (the lowest of Lowsec)
  • You have maximized your standings with your mission agent and mission corp (10.0)
  • You kill most or all of the NPCs without slowing down your ability to complete the mission (eg. without taking longer to jump acceleration gates than you would otherwise)
  • You are able to collect most or all of the loot/salvage without slowing down your ability to complete the mission. Typically, this means:
    • Carrying at least one MTU
    • Carrying at least 5 salvaging drones
    • Collecting the loot and MTUs before jumping acceleration gates and upon mission completion
    • Having a fleetmate dedicated to loot/salvage collection
  • Completing missions in fleets

Profit Margins

Depending on various factors, you could easily make over 50m+ in ISK, and kind every 15-30 minutes while mission running. Mission farming (which is not the same as mission grinding) can further the ISK/loot/salvage gains further at the expense of LP and standing gains.