Thanks to the Red Moon Rising patch, miners can now protect the ore they mine and has inadvertently given players a means to clean out Macrominers. IMPORTANT NOTE: It's very easy getting caught in the fun of hunting ships in Empire space. ALWAYS be aware of your actions! Do not pursue someone unless you are 100% sure that this is a macrominer and are ready to take consequences in case you're wrong, i.e., banning, expulsion from your corporation, etc. If there is a question in your mind, ask for help or just leave.
What is a MacroMiner
First we need to define what a macrominer is: a macrominer(MM) is a player that runs mining ships through the use of 3rd party software to automate the process. These include barges that automatically move ore into a can, as well as haulers that pick up and drop off the ore. (This term has been generally used to refer to a myriad of players that strip belts, but may or may not be using 3rd party software to control their actions. See bottom for more information.) Usually it's being run to amass ISK that is then later on sold via chat spam.
Who is a MacroMiner
DISCLAIMER: This is where things get gray and hairy....so be careful and take these instruction with a pinch of salt. In the end, it's going to be your intuition that decides. You and your corp may be responsible for your actions. Here are some general rules in pointing out MM's:
- Names that make nosense or are random characters (usually Chinese Pinyin)
- Are in a Newbie Corp
- Are very young. They are usually only old enough to fly the ship they are in
- No/little response when ore is taken from their can (use this one carefully)
- Ore in can isn't stacked. (Some MMs do stack)
- They only have Miner I's and Civilian Shield Boosters fitted (requires Ship Scanner to find this out)
After you've determined suspicion of a MM, before you start stealing, try to convo the player. Do not say anything for a few secs to see what happens. You're looking for one of two things: One, the player will respond with completely random statements. If you respond, gibberish continues.(Please see below for notes on "gibberish") Two, there is no response at all.
After you've determined to your best ability that this is a macrominer, first, petition the player(s) with an EVE Exploit petition. If you don't, CCP can ban you. They feel that stealing from macrominers without a petition is an "exploit".
Mistakes In Identification
It is very easy to mistake an AFK miner (someone who fits cargo hold expanders to their barge, puts the lasers on then goes to do the washing up etc) with a macro miner. A mistake often made by macro hunters new to the business is to assume that no response in chat or auto-rejecting chat is a sure sign of a macro miner. This is more often then not an incorrect assumption. Always keep in mind that the real miners outnumber the macro miners by at least 20:1. If in doubt, check a guide to see if the behavior seems to correspond to usual strategies employed by humans.
Catching a MacroMiner
Catching a MM can be really easy, but sometime you'll have to get creative. Below are some techniques I've used.
The most basic and direct way of catching MMs. Very simple: Approach their can, and open it. Jettison your own can and move all their ore into your can. When the hauler comes to take the ore, it will take from your can, therefore giving him a criminal flag. Feel free to shoot at will.
Now, there are variations on this that can help improve success.
- Name your can the same as the one you emptied.
- Give the miners a +10 standing so that they can continue to mine and dump ore into your can.
- "Disappear" before the hauler shows up, sometime they won't take from a can with another player nearby
- Do the switch right before the hauler tries to take from the MM can...very difficult.
Some MMs just go out and ransack every can in a belt. These, too, are easy. Just lay cans out with random crap in them and wait for the hauler to come pick them up....fire at will.
I don't personally trust this one, but it does work. Sometimes macro groups will include an escort to handle the belt rats. I'm not sure how they're automated, but sometimes simply targeting them will throw them into motion. The script just assumes your an NPC rat and will shoot you. Of course, CONCORD will fly in and save you the ammo.
Not sure about this one too, but engaging a macrominer with a remote armor repairer shows up as an attack, while not provoking concord. Watch them attempt to "return fire" and let concord get to work.
There are some macro ops that don't have battleships, and rely on drones to fend of NPCs. While the drones usually take out the NPCs before they can do much damage, an NPC being remote repaired is sometimes capable of taking down the lightly shielded barges
- DON'T EVER DO THIS. You will get CONCORDED for assisting a criminal.
All of the above generally only work with the haulers, very rarely with the barges. So how do you get the big money ships? Using a suicide alt is an option. Go here: http://www.soapisgood.com/chris/eve/antimacro/ for a how-to on setting up an alt account. One account usually isn't enough, I'd say 3 are enough to take a barge down.
IMPORTANT: DO NOT POD THE MM's, CONCORD WILL DESTROY YOU! The pod won't flash red, so you'll know. There are guides to creating 'suicide'-alts that can fly ships with rocket launchers and require no training. One such guide can be found here --> .
Everyone has their own particular setup, but there are certain things that I suggest to catch a MM:
- Warp Scrambler - I use a 20k because they don't fit Warp Core Stabilizers
- Passive Targeter - Some MMs spook when you target them, this solves that
- Ship Scanner - Can help determine a true MM based on loadout
Many of these player are chinese, so what may seem to be gibberish may be Chinese Pinyin (romanization of Chinese characters based on phonetics). Just a quick note on this if you see the word "cao", they usually mean "fuck", so petition them accordingly. We can get them banned one way or another. It's just the same as if someone asks you if you want to buy ISK.