Thursday, March 11, 2010

Ways to Learn Faster

Okay, today we have a break from the ongoing Low Security Space series to talk about the various ways to accrue those all-important skill points a little faster.

Your learning speed is based on your attributes (found on your character sheet). Interestingly, your learning speed is the ONLY thing that is based on your attributes. Having a high Intelligence won't make you better at science, it will just make you better at learning to be better at science. Someone with 3 intelligence and the Science skill at V performs just as well as someone with 20 intelligence and the Science skill at V, but it took them a lot longer to get there.

As a starting character, your attributes should all be 8. Different skills are based on different attributes. Each skill has a primary and secondary attribute. You can find out what they are by right clicking on the skill and choosing "show info". The only was to learn a skill faster is to improve the relative attributes. There are three ways to do this:

1. Implants. These go from +1 to +5 and you can plug in one per attribute. The +1s are relatively cheap and a full set of the +5s can value at hundreds of real world dollars given current isk/USD exchange rates. The down side to implants is that if you get killed, you've got to buy a new set. You will get a couple of +1 implants as rewards if you do the tutorial missions, as well as the skillbook (Cybernetics) that you need to train in order to use them. You should plug in the +1 implants as soon as you get them and then not worry too much about losing them. They are cheap enough to replace. Eventually, when you get your hands on more expensive implants you will want to start thinking about keeping two clones, one with high value implants and another with cheap or no implants.

2. Attribute Remapping. There's a button on your character sheet in the attribute tab labeled "Neural Remap". Doing this will allow you to shuffle around your starting attribute points, taking from one and adding to the other. The trick is that, as a new character, you get to do this twice and then, after that, you can only do it once per year. most of the combat related skills use Perception and Willpower, so there's something to be said for just maxing out those, but I guarantee that, if you do, you are going to curse every time you want to train something like Engineering (increases the power grid of your ship, allowing you to fit better modules) or Hull Upgrades (gives you more hit points and allows you to fit better armor modules), both of which are Intelligence/Memory skills. Of course, like every RPG, the Charisma attribute is practically worthless, so unless you're opposed to min/maxing or the idea of being a virtual boor, a good idea might just be to push that down as far as you can and sprinkle those points around. Then you can play for a while and see what training direction you want to go in before using your second remap.

3. Learning Skills. These are horrible. The game would be better if they didn't exist. However, being as they do, we need to talk about them. The learning skills are just regular skills that increase your attributes and thus make other skills faster. There is one skill called "Learning" that affects all attributes and then there is a basic and advanced skill for each attribute. The terrible thing about these skills is that they give you no benefit other than faster training time and, of course, time spent training them is time not spent training something actually useful. The end result is that training them basically amounts to making a gamble on how long you're going to play the game for. For example, if you train all the learning skills to V, you will then have to spend about three years training other skills before you will have saved more training time than you sank into the learning skills in the first place. Even if you are only going to play the trial, though, it makes good sense to train "Learning" and all the basic attribute skills (except charisma) up to II.

My advice would be to train no learning skills at all during the first day you play and then to buy the "Learning" skillbook just before the end of your play session. Fill up your skill queue with skills to last you until your next play session, then drop "Learning I" and "Learning II" in at the front of the queue. You should see the total training time actually decrease. I'd hold off on actually buying the skillbooks for the individual attributes until you have decided if you're actually going to keep playing or not. Fussing with learning skills is decidedly un-fun. Once you start thinking of your time in New Eden in terms of weeks and months, rather than hours and play sessions, then it is time to download Eve Mon and figure out a good training schedule for the learning skills. Until then, train skills that will maximize your fun rather than your skillpoints.


  1. Keep on doing this! Its awesome

  2. sad0clown thinks that this article should be in the tutorial....well he wished it had been there when he was in the trial...anyway...eve learning aint for everyone...and thats ok...

    good job is what i meant to

  3. Great articles, very well written and informative. CCP must have listened to you because no more leaning skills :)

    I hope you keep writing these type of blog posts.

  4. More good stuff!

    Please update for the learning skill change if you're still playing :)

  5. Simply love this article after reading i am your fan.

  6. Most great articles, I am very interesting to your 3rd paragraph. Here you write about learning skill. So, I am permanent visitor your site.