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 [Guide] Chaining belts

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giand amazone
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PostSubject: [Guide] Chaining belts   Tue Nov 24, 2009 9:36 pm

Chaining belts


1. Chaining

There is a bit of confusion over what *chaining* means. In the old days, if you killed a ship in a spawn, it would reappear if you did not kill off the spawn quick enough. The more you killed, the more NPCs would appear - so if you got a 1.85m spawn, you could potentially get 2 more coming, then 3, 4, 5, 6, 7... all in very quick succession. Assuming you could take the DPS from the rats, you would make a mint, literally killing non stop for as long as you could last or your ammo was stocked.

This was classed as a bug and it got fixed. These days, chaining refers to the art of finding a spawn (any spawn, but it would be best if it had high bounties) and killing off the battleships (the big isk earners). After about 5-10 minutes, if you have left the frigates/destroyers/support alone (or at least not killed them) the battleships will return one by one. They will keep this up indefinitely, and you keep coming back to the belt every 10-15 mins or so and killing them off. Why stop at one? Maybe there is 2 or 3 good spawns in the system. Chain all of them. If there are others in the system ratting as well, tell them in Local what you are doing, and request they leave the support ships alone so that they will chain properly. Occasionally the rats vanish but you will usually find them at another belt - they move around every hour or so. This is perfectly normal.

Sometimes you will encounter support that warp scrambles you. This can be a pain when you want to chain because you want to warp off to another belt, but can not. But you can not kill the support else the battleships wont reappear. As this is 0.0, it is not a good idea to be scrambled in a belt, webbed, and unable to move. You COULD fit a couple of ECM mods and jam the frigate rats that scramble you. This is easier if you are in an armour tanking vessel as you will have the spare mid slots. In something like a Raven or a Drake, this is not so easy as your mid slots are taken up by your tank. It is up to you what you do here. Personally, I kill off the frigates as I do not want to risk being caught by an enemy gang, but that is just me.

2. Increasing your chances of a commander or officer spawn

There is a secret to how rats work. A spawn of rats is not random. Lets say we are in our 12 belt system and there is no one else around. It is just you ratting. You encounter a 3x cruiser and 2x frigate spawn of rats. Rubbish. So you ignore it - why waste your time on it? Well, there is a good reason to waste your time on it. If you kill it off, it is usually replaced with a slightly better spawn. Perhaps it will be 3x battle cruisers and 3x cruisers. Not much better, sure. But you kill that one off too. That gets replaced by, say, a double 500k isk battleship spawn. Kill that, it gets replaced with a 650K spawn. Kill that, you get a 800k spawn...>>>>> triple 1.85 spawn (Assuming your systems sec status allows it).

Now this is not always completely linear. You may find that it skips some steps - 500k > 800k for example. Again this is perfectly normal and nothing to be afraid of. The replacement spawn does not appear straight away, it takes the usual 5-10 minutes to respawn and it is not always in the same belt either! I am not exactly sure on the figures so I can not give you the equation, but if you rat in a system by yourself for a long time, you will notice a general trend for the rats to get bigger and bigger and bigger.... and then all of a sudden they go rubbish again.

They go rubbish because you have reached the end of the spawn - once you have killed off the top spawn, it resets to a rubbish one, and the cycle starts again.

At the end of the cycle, there is a chance, a small one, that instead of resetting, you will get a Commander Spawn, a hauler spawn or possibly an Officer spawn.

So it is a decision - if you chain every spawn (or most of them) you wont get many commander or hauler spawns, but overall you will likely get more isk on average per hour. On the other hand, if you wipe through every spawn killing off everything, you will have a higher chance of getting a commander or hauler spawn at some point, but overall the isk per hour will be slightly less. It is up to you, how you play, and what your goal is, to make that decision.

There are a lot of rumours about ratting
lots of supposed *secrets* to it. They are all pretty much *******s, frankly. What I have said above is everything there is to ratting effectively. Below are some of the lies, misinformation and mistakes that players spread amongst themselves. These well known *facts* are simply urban legends (or cosmic legends, I suppose) and you should ignore them. Better yet, correct them in public. Point them to this thread! Edumacate them!

Mining in a belt will increase the chance of a rat appearing in that belt.

Leaving the cans alone will increase the spawn rate of rats.

Killing off all the cans (shooting them) will increase the spawn rate of rats.

Leaving a rat in half-armour when chaining will increase the speed (or in some versions 'is required') to make the chain continue.

Chaining rats prevents you from getting a Commander spawn.***

Chaining rats will lead to poorer rats in the system.

The system will produce crappy rats if you 'wear it out' by chaining or ratting excessively. Give it a few days to "calm down".

These are all wrong and it is best to ignore them.

*** This is not so much a lie, it is more a misunderstanding of how the ratting system works. Chaining a rat spawn has no effect on if a commander will appear. Commanders (may) appear at the *end* of a cycle of a spawn. If you keep this cycle 'stuck', it will of course never cycle through to get the chance for the commander to appear. If you are chaining every spawn in system, yes, you wont get a commander whilst chaining because the spawns are "stuck" at a certain level. They can not mature to their new cycle and thus have the chance to appear. If you kill off the chains completely, you will get your chance like everyone else.

Think of it like rolling a dice. If you continually just pick up the dice and then put it down again, same side down as it was before (chaining) you wont ever get the chance to roll a 6, because you are always on 5. Do it 100 times in a row and you will always just have a 5 because you arre not allowing the dice to roll. But the minute you stop doing that and actually roll the dice (kill off the spawn), you MAY get a 6. Odds are that you wont of course, but the chance is there.
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