Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Surviving Low Security Space: Bookmarks Part 1

Low security space tends to have a reputation of being a very dangerous place in New Eden. This lawless space is frequented by capsuleers interested in one thing, destroying other capsuleer ships. Low security space is any system in New Eden rated as 0.1 to 0.4, the lower the more dangerous it is. The reason low security space, or low sec which it is commonly called, can be such a dangerous place is the fact CONCORD do not police these systems. The only form of enforcement of laws by the empires are by sentry guns which are commonly found anchored near stargates.

So any capsuleer interested in surviving low sec must learn several important techniques used to enhance their chance of survival. This post will cover one such technique using a feature available to all capsuleers called a bookmark. Bookmarks are a way a capsuleer can save the location of a place and be able to use the bookmark to know how to return to the location. Bookmarks can be created and found in the People & Places menu which can be opened by your side bar. The People & Places menu has three tabs which are Contacts, Agents, and Places. We are interested in the Places tab which would show all our current booksmarks, if you have any, as well as any bookmarks created by your corporation.

The menu is very helpful to record places like the location of major trade hubs, super secret starbases, and many other places. Now how do bookmarks help us in surviving low sec? One important feature of the bookmark is the ability to save the location of any place in space where you can fly your ship to, this includes anomalies and exploration sites, positions in a battlefield, or in the middle of nowhere. These places in space can help a capsuleer quickly move around to avoid (or engage) danger.  So to create a bookmark in space, open up your People & Places menu while in space and click the Add Location button. Another menu should appear asking you to name the place and which folder to save the bookmark in. Write a helpful name and save the bookmark. You should now have a bookmark of a place in space which you can warp to. Just be sure to be 150 km or greater away from the place to be able to warp to it.

Instant undock bookmarks

Time to use bookmarks to increase our chance of survival! One of the first activities any capsuleer should do when calling a new station their home (or even temporary home) is to create instant undock bookmarks. These are bookmarks created 150 km or more away (most of the time extremely far away) from the undock of a station. The reason they are called instant undock is because as soon as your ship undocks, your ship is going at enough speed to allow it to warp away. So with a carefully placed bookmark, your ship will be able to instantly warp off from the station as you undock, avoiding those nasty station campers! So how to create an instant undock bookmark? First undock your ship and go full speed ahead until you get to the distance away from the station where you want to save the bookmark. Sometimes your ship will drift a bit in the direction it is heading which can cause bookmarks from long distances to be not aligned with the undock, to fix this it is common to immediately stop your ship as you undock and then go back to full speed and make your bookmark.

So what is the best distance away from the station? It is generally recommended the farther the better, but keep in mind if your initial alignment was wrong, it would take your ship a slightly bit longer to align to warp off. So ideally any bookmark "off grid" is a good choice. The grid includes the space up to 250 km away from your ship, objects located in this grid will appear in your overview, while objects off grid do not appear in the overview. The grid can be manipulated to increase its range allowing people to be sighted from greater distances. So generally 300-350 km or more is recommended to create an off grid bookmark. The problem with an instant undock bookmark within the grid of the station is they are easier to be found by other capsuleers, which means a smart enemy will create their own bookmark at around the same location and lay a trap for you. I recommend creating multiple bookmarks, allowing you to alternate locations and always have different choices of escape in case your bookmarked location has been discovered.

Now to use your newly created bookmark! First have your bookmark be easily accessible, you want to warp to the bookmark location as soon as possible when undocking. You may do this by having the People & Places window open, opening a bookmark folder (right click the bookmark folder and click open group window), or be quick with your right clicking in space. When your ship undocks, your ship is temporarily invulnerable until your ship moves or 30 seconds have passed. This should give you enough time to decide whether the situation is clear or to use your instant undock bookmark. Now within those 30 seconds, warp to your bookmark. You may choose different warp to distances away from the bookmark to help keep any possible enemies guessing your location. Now that you have warped off the station, you are free to go on with your business, ignoring those pesky station campers!

The next part of the guide will cover creating bookmarks in safe spots and instant dock bookmarks.

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