Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Another Look At The Probe

Sometimes I find it hard to believe that I actually find time to play Eve Online.  But I do.  Sometimes I even get a chance to think about more than scandals like Monoclegate.  Over the past week I took another look at one of the ships players receive doing the tutorial missions: the Probe.

For new players, I think the Probe is a wonderful ship.  A Minmatar frigate with nice scanning bonuses useful for ninja salvaging, the ship's cargo capacity leads some to prefer the Probe over the Burst despite the lack of mining bonuses.  For me, that cargo capacity makes the Probe an attractive ship for my main combat character Rosewalker, a nearly two-year old character.

Part of the problem I have is that I have no room in Rosewalker's skill queue to fit the skills to fly a Prowler.  I really love the Prowler and I've spent hours with Wandering Rose flying around doing courier missions or darting in and out of low sec picking up or dropping off blueprints or blueprint copies.  While Rosewalker can fly a Cheetah, the covert ops frigate only has a 200 m3 cargo hold and I'm not going to do anything disgraceful like fit expanded cargoholds in it.

Occasionally I need to make some cargo runs that Wandering Rose can't make, mainly to pick up datacores.  I've found that the Probe is a real good ship for making those high-sec runs, especially when I neglect to pick up the datacores for a couple of months.  Oops!

Here is what I fit for the outgoing trip when I'm not carrying any cargo.
[Probe, Probe - Cargo]
Nanofiber Internal Structure II
Inertia Stabilizers II

Cold-Gas I Arcjet Thrusters
Small Shield Extender II

Salvager I
Core Probe Launcher I, Core Scanner Probe I
Small Hyperspatial Velocity Optimizer I
Small Polycarbon Engine Housing I
Small Low Friction Nozzle Joints I
With my current skill level (I am just 21 days away from completing my Elite Core Competency certificate), my align time with this fitting is 2.5 seconds with a maximum warp speed of 7.2 au/second.  Mimatar Frigate V gives me a cargo capacity of 400 m3 without cargo expanders.  I carry 2 Expanded Cargohold IIs with me, which boosts my cargo capacity to 650 m3 at the cost of increasing my align time to 3.2 seconds, which is still pretty good.  I put the shield extender on just as a buffer in case someone tries to take a potshot at me.  It probably wouldn't help, but you never know.  And the reason for using an afterburner instead of a microwarpdrive is the increased warp range.  Hey, every AU counts.

I'm sure someone will find something wrong with this fitting.  But that's okay.  I just want a frigate for some quick cargo runs and this setting does the job, with a couple of additions just in case I run into something interesting.


  1. If you are packing a lot of datacores, it really pays to use a transport or even a freighter. A probe is easy to suicide gank.

  2. Usually I use my Cheetah for transporting datacores because I'm usually pretty good about collecting them. But for this one time, I took a chance. And that's part of the reason for making the align speed as fast as possible; to warp away before a cargo scanner can figure out what I'm carrying.