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I'm thinking about returning to EVE, but i don't know if there is a career for me - last time i did a few courier contracts in lowsec with my Cheetah and some exploration missions - i don't find shooting at ships or asteroids that much fun.

I wonder if being a one-character freelance spy would be a possible career in EVE (I don't mind losing a ship from time to time or not making a profit in the end).

The question:

  • Is it even possible to gather some usefull intel by flying into a system with a covert ops and scanning that couldn't be found out by easier ways (e.g. disposable alts)?

What i also wonder about:

  • Would there be demand for such intel?
  • For how long will it stay usable?
  • Is there a standard format to give the intel to other players - printscreens, videos, 3rd party applications that read game data?
  • What contract type should i offer to the other party so that they can decide to pay me if they find my intel usefull?
  • After jumping into a system, my ship is invisible - can i always jump out before they can attack me or what are their options - how much time do i have in average?
  • Besides safe spots, what other tricks should i learn to increase my survivability?
  • What are the best blogs/forums/news to read about politics, major and minor aliances in EVE?
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There are a lot of questions here: meta-game, contract mechanics, gate mechanics. Some of these questions don't have objective answers. This post is not likely to give you good results on this site... perhaps you'll get better results if you break it down into separate posts with focused questions. –  David B May 26 '12 at 16:05
    
@DavidB i highlited the main question what i'm asking here ;) –  Aprillion May 26 '12 at 16:25

1 Answer 1

up vote 3 down vote accepted

This question is a little bit subjective, as "viable" in this game can be very different for some people and not others.

I don't think a freelance spy career is particularly viable, for these reasons :

  • Trust. People wouldn't usually trust intel from an outside corp. That said, I guess it might be possible to build a name for yourself, and get known. This would seem extremely difficult in this game, as it is well known for the scams that people run, and therefore usually people will automatically distrust intel from outside of their corp.

  • There is no real way to guarantee you'd get paid. They would either have to trust that you'd supply the goods if they pay in advance, or you'd have to trust that they'd pay after you've given the goods if they pay after. Contracts that i've seen don't seem to cover this situation at all.

  • Most people in demand of such intel run their own intelligence gathering. Corps who are roaming will nearly always put one of their members as a scout to get "quick" intel, which is basically just who is in system, what they're in, and where they are. This intel is nearly always just ships, so will only stay current for a couple of minutes. Corps who need intel that lasts for longer are more likely to have their intelligence arm, which consists of people who sit in hostile systems and watch comings and goings, or spies who actually join the hostile corporation and get intel such as Teamspeak/Vent details, and where and when they are going to deploy in what ships, also possibly with an eye to steal anything that isn't nailed down.

I would suggest what you probably want to do is just join a corp who roams frequently in your timezone, build up their trust, and offer to scout roams. Some corps around will probably offer you free ships to scout their roams if you do this and are good enough at it.

Either that, or be a proper thief-spy. Join a corp, build up their trust, get a position of influence and access in the corporation, then steal everything that isn't nailed down.

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+1 for stealing everything that isnt nailed down. –  TrewTzu May 28 '12 at 4:31

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