Having finished the Minmatar Cosmos series back in June my next job was to complete the Thukker Cosmos missions, unfortunately they were proving very difficult to complete at Alpha Clone Level. The Gallente missions were a handful as well, so after writing up the initial agents I abandoned the series. I didn’t have a plan B and needed something to keep me logging in.
I stumble across abandoned MTU’s on a reasonably regular basis. More often than not I would contract a bookmark and send the owner a message and would get mail in response, but for some reason over the last year or so owners don’t seem to be grateful for the heads up. I decided not to send emails and contracts. I decided to let Concord inform them off the loss.
To start my new killing spree I found an abandoned MTU (Mobile Tractor Unit) inside a complex and decided to remove it. Simple task – just shoot it till it explodes and keep an eye on local and D-Scan in case the owner popped next door for some ammo. The MTU had a couple of Social Adaption Chips making it a semi-rewarding kill. I popped another after that but didn’t find any more targets during my travels.
When Pix Severus posted a blog on July 8 it reminded me to check D-Scan for abandoned MTU’s and since then I have become slightly addicted to it.
MTU hunting isn’t as easy as you might imagine. Luck plays a good part in it. The proliferation of Mobile Depots makes scanning tedious and other MTU hunters are depressingly efficient.
Looking at the stats on zKillboard and there were around 8 to 9 thousand MTU’s destroyed per month in 2019. That figure has risen since December last year to over 10,000 a month peaking in May with 14,167 which might have something to do with lock down and more recently influenced by the war. The vast majority of losses occur in Low and Null security space but the board is sprinkled with the glow of green and yellow High Security space kills.
In High Sec space, owners who leave their units behind seem to have one thing in common, they lose a lot of MTU’s. This makes me wonder if they are Bot’s or just forgetful? Of course not all units are abandoned. There are several hunters who are very proficient when it comes to killing MTU’s in mission sites with the owner present. Sometimes they kill the owner as well. Personally I am just concentrating on the abandoned ones, it fits my play style.
Since the middle of July I have averaged an MTU kill a day. I have also recovered 22 Salvage drones and a few combat drones. One added little bonus recently was a bounty payment. It appears that an MTU is treated like a ship resulting in a slice of the bounty pool.
MTU hunting can lead to sessions where you just know Bob is laughing at you.
I found an abandoned MTU and warped in to check it out and the room was full of Red Crosses. The site looked like the final phase of ‘The Blockade L4’ with several Cruisers and Battleships remaining. zKillboard indicated that the MTU owner abandoned units frequently. I added him and his corp to my contact list. He was off line and none of his buddies where in the area. I rushed off to get a ship capable of killing off the remaining rats.
Luck was with me, I got into the site and killed off the remaining NPC. Unfortunately I miscalculated. I wasn’t in the final spawn, I had just triggered it. While I was grinding my way through them I noticed a red dot appear in local chat. This is one red dot I am grateful for. The MTU owner had just logged in so it was time for me to leave.
As with everything in Eve there is something to be learned. I should have tanked the last NPC and killed the MTU rather than stuff about. One consolation was the 8 million in bounties and the salvage all taken while the owner was having dinner. Small reward but reward none the less.
I have seriously thought about re-subbing both my accounts, but with current world affairs and a general lack of funding I don’t see that happening anytime soon. Hunting MTU’s means I can log in for an hour or so and more often than not there is a target available. Keeps me amused for the time being and pushes that Ragnarok loss further down the front page of my kill sheet 🙂
Fly Safe as always (and remember to scoop your MTU)