Exploration in EVE Online

  • New Player Friendly
  • ISK/HR
  • Work Required
  • Learning Curve


Overview

Exploration is a career very dear to me, as it was the first thing that blew me away in this game. Through exploration and gas harvesting, I managed to make 5 billion ISK in my first couple of months, which progressed me massively in New Eden. And you can do it too!

Exploration is the process of scanning down cosmic signatures, searching for relic and data sites to hack. At these sites, you hack cans to unlock them. After unlocking them, you open up the cargo and get your paydirt! The most lucrative ruin that I’ve analyzed net me 90 million ISK!

Disclaimer : This is an overview of exploration, not a guide. Additional resources to learn the process of exploration will be provided at the end of this post.

Ships

Many people fit many different things on their exploration fit, and you can see the flamewar of people who want to fit these differently in the comments, but these fits are the ones that I’ve always given my newbros to fly.

** Note 1: If you can’t use a cloak, it’s not the end of the world. Just scan cosmic signatures in a safespot!
** Note 2: Feel free to replace guns and scramblers with explorer modules.

Gallente

Imicus

[Imicus, Imicus]

Nanofiber Internal Structure I
Nanofiber Internal Structure I
Damage Control I

Relic Analyzer I
Data Analyzer I
5MN Microwarpdrive I
Cargo Scanner I

Core Probe Launcher I, Core Scanner Probe I
Prototype Cloaking Device I
[Empty High slot]

Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
[Empty Rig slot]

Core Scanner Probe I x16

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Helios

[Helios, Helios I]
Nanofiber Internal Structure II
Inertial Stabilizers II
Inertial Stabilizers II

5MN Quad LiF Restrained Microwarpdrive
Data Analyzer I
Relic Analyzer I
Scan Rangefinding Array I
Scan Pinpointing Array I

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II
Core Probe Launcher II

Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Low Friction Nozzle Joints I

Sisters Core Scanner Probe x8

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Amarr

Magnate

[Magnate, Magnate]

Nanofiber Internal Structure I
Nanofiber Internal Structure I
Inertial Stabilizers I
Inertial Stabilizers I

5MN Microwarpdrive I
Data Analyzer I
Relic Analyzer I

Core Probe Launcher I
Prototype Cloaking Device I
[Empty High slot]

Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
[Empty Rig slot]

Core Scanner Probe I x16

[collapse]
Anathema

[Anathema, Anathema]

Inertial Stabilizers II
Inertial Stabilizers II
Nanofiber Internal Structure II

Relic Analyzer I
Data Analyzer I
5MN Cold-Gas Enduring Microwarpdrive
Scan Rangefinding Array I

Core Probe Launcher I, Sisters Core Scanner Probe
Covert Ops Cloaking Device II
[Empty High slot]

Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Low Friction Nozzle Joints I

[collapse]

Caldari

Heron

[Heron, Heron]

Nanofiber Internal Structure I
Nanofiber Internal Structure I

5MN Cold-Gas Enduring Microwarpdrive
Relic Analyzer I
Data Analyzer I
Cargo Scanner I
Warp Scrambler I

Core Probe Launcher I, Core Scanner Probe I
Prototype Cloaking Device I
Light Electron Blaster I, Antimatter Charge S

Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
[Empty Rig slot]

Core Scanner Probe I x16

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Buzzard

[Buzzard, Buzzard]

Inertial Stabilizers II
Nanofiber Internal Structure II

5MN Cold-Gas Enduring Microwarpdrive
Data Analyzer I
Relic Analyzer I
Scan Rangefinding Array I
Scan Pinpointing Array I

Core Probe Launcher I, Sisters Core Scanner Probe
Covert Ops Cloaking Device II
[Empty High slot]

Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Low Friction Nozzle Joints I

[collapse]

Minmatar

Probe

[Probe, Probe]

Nanofiber Internal Structure I
Nanofiber Internal Structure I
Inertial Stabilizers I

Relic Analyzer I
Data Analyzer I
5MN Cold-Gas Enduring Microwarpdrive
Warp Scrambler I

Core Probe Launcher I, Core Scanner Probe I
Prototype Cloaking Device I
125mm Gatling AutoCannon I, EMP S

Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
[Empty Rig slot]

Core Scanner Probe I x16

[collapse]
Cheetah

[Cheetah, Cheetah]

Inertial Stabilizers II
Inertial Stabilizers II
Nanofiber Internal Structure II

Data Analyzer I
Relic Analyzer I
5MN Cold-Gas Enduring Microwarpdrive
Scan Rangefinding Array I

Covert Ops Cloaking Device II
Core Probe Launcher I, Sisters Core Scanner Probe
[Empty High slot]

Small Gravity Capacitor Upgrade I
Small Low Friction Nozzle Joints I

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Other

Astero

Coming soon!

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Stratios

Coming soon!

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Sites

Have a better video guide? Let us know in the comments.

Relic Sites

These are the money, these are what you want to aim for. These have the highest payout of the two hacking sites, and this is where you will make your fortune.

Data Sites

These are fairly consistent ISK-wise, which is still great for a new player. When you become old and bitter, you won’t run these anymore.

Wormholes

The wild west! I encourage you to travel through every wormhole you see and get completely lost in the world of New Eden! Nothing makes a game fun like some fear! If you ever get too lost, pop into our Discord and one of our veterans will walk to through finding your way home.

Additional Sites

Combat sites and gas sites aren’t really what you’re looking for, but if you have the ship to run them, definitely do that! Search around the website for overviews or guides to gas harvesting or DED complexes, you’ll learn more there about these!

Scaling

Most of the scaling done with exploration is speeding up your scanning methods, minimizing your losses, and improving your hacking. Nearly all of these are done with practice! Although all of these can be improved by skill points, the mechanical skill margin between a junior explorer and a veteran explorer is massive, so don’t let anybody tell you that skill points will hold you back.

Also, bonus point for reading this semi-worthless section. Here’s a tip that’ll save you time! If you are ever scanning and the signature becomes two red dots, the furthest dot is the right one!

The Astero is every explorer’s dream, and it’ll completely change the game for you once you obtain it. It is definitely a massive milestone that will help you out, once you train for it!

Conclusion

Exploration is one of the best careers for new players in EVE Online, and will easily allow you to maintain your Omega clone with a PLEX. If you end up enjoying the hell out of exploration, join a wormhole corporation! Pop into our Discord and we can refer you to some of our wormhole friends.

Also, don’t let ship losses bring you down, you will encounter many of them once you get out of high security space. It is all apart of the game, and trust me, that kill made someone else very excited!

Go undock and play the game!

Additional Resources

1. The best exploration guide, hands down.
2. Scanning Guide
3. Hacking Example

CEO of Krypted Gaming and whelper of fleets, BearThatCares spends his time maintaining the EVE side of Krypted Gaming and tackling targets across New Eden.
  • author image
    Kieran Starbuck Reply
    Aug 1, 2017 @ 14:53 pm

    Great guide!
    One thing to add is that each racial T2 is not created equal. While each has advantages, for exploring/ pure scanning Helios > Buzzard > Other from mid-slot scan dominance.

  • author image
    STARLEAP Reply
    Aug 2, 2017 @ 12:54 pm

    What do you do when you are in wh space with your Imicus,, Heron or Probe, and all the signatures you are able to scan have sleepers in them? I mean you are so far away from home, cant bring a bigger ship with you, just leave?

    • author image
      BearThatCares Reply
      Aug 3, 2017 @ 17:58 pm

      Pretty much, sadly. If you’re scanning in C1-C3 space, you’ll have a chance to find the normal, nullsec relic/data sites.