Sunday, May 22, 2016

Zappity's Adventures: Buyback program magnificence

I started a corp buyback program. It is magnificent. And, fittingly, it is called ‘Zappity's Magnificent Buyback Program’. Now that I write it out, I must admit that the title isn't quite as imaginative as I imagined when I thought it up. Still, it gets the point across.

Why am I telling you about this? Well, I have been travelling a LOT lately for work. I can sadly report that the Pacific Ocean is of precisely the same immensity as it has previously been and I wish they would introduce a new and even faster Concorde with an Australia-US leg and also teleportation. Actually, just teleportation would be adequate.

Before I was distracted I was about to say that I have not been much in the mood for PvP. This isn't all bad because I do not like to pretend that PvP is the only thing that I find interesting in EVE. So here is an adventure about breaking into a new market activity.

It was not at all planned. I was messing about in Jita when a ping went out about a change to corporation policy. Apparently, the powers that be had decided to change the corp buyback rate from 90% of Jita buy via to 70%. This was purportedly to make room for independent marketeers to move into the space and take over but I think it is just because Gobbins is tight.

I looked at my trading corp wallet and saw lots of ISK and thought, “Hey, I could do that”. So I posted in the thread, “Gobbins is tight and is only paying out 70%. I'll do 90%.” And the contracts started rolling in. I didn't want anything too bulky so I initially excluded ore and minerals and PI (which scares me because I don't understand it) but after about a week I had paid out 10B.

Which was far too long in my opinion.

I took a careful look at the forums. There were buyback programs everywhere! This was just unacceptable. If I was going to bother with this thing then I was obviously going to have to crush them all.

I pondered my options. I pondered that I had a reasonably-sized 12-digit war chest, having liquidated a fair chunk of my trading items prior to the release of citadels and the price crash as a consequence of the inevitable liquidity squeeze. I pondered that I could probably manage for a while paying even 100% of the Jita buy price, admittedly with a sadly diminished profit margin. And I pondered that it was easier to retain customers than it was to get new ones.

So I posted that I was now accepting 100% of Jita buyback in Fade. Even more contracts started rolling in! Ha! After a week or so, I dropped the price back to 92%, confident that the general magnificence of the program, the higher payout, and the relatively rapid turnaround that I was managing would encourage people to hang around. I decided to ignore the Querious stations because they were just too far away. And because I was lazy.

Next, however, news went out that Pandemic Horde was moving into Fade properly and, subsequently, abandoning Querious. The corp program was paying 80% on everything. Hmm.

I added Querious to my program at 92% and bought another jump freighter in Amarr. I was still excluding really bulky cheap stuff (PI, ice etc) and was soon unfortunately forced to add non-faction T1 ships to the list. I thought a lot about ‘ISK density’, the curse of jump freighter pilots everywhere. But even excluding these items, I had soon paid out over 150B in Querious and needed to move some of it to Amarr.

I don't like jump fatigue for jump freighters. CCP supposedly likes to support ‘gameplay enablers’. I don't feel particularly supported to be honest. Jump fatigue is awful and frustrating. I understand the point of it - I even understand the need for it - but I don't like the way it feels, especially for a non-combat ship.

Things eventually calmed down in Querious and I was able to turn my attention back to Fade. My main competitor was now offering 93%! Disgraceful! Just the sort of shabby trick you'd expect them to play while I was busy. You just can't trust some people.

In addition to having a troublesome competitor, I had decided expand into ore and minerals. (I have a lot of blueprints, some admittedly more nefariously acquired that others, so I might as well do something useful with them.)

I faced a decision. Should I accept the presence of my feeble, so called competitors? Or should I CRUSH THEM!


  1. Sell them all mining permits instead!

    1. Ha, I'm not confident that approach would last long! It's actually pretty brutal in Fade atm. Goons are unjustly persecuting Horde for some reason.

  2. 150b... wow, that is a lot of isk

  3. Okay, Zap, I have to ask? How does someone like yourself end up with 12 digits worth of isk? I have a CEO who has been around since the days of BoB and his treasure chest defies contemplation. Are you one of the old ones as well?

    1. The frightening thing is that it is not that much isk. No, I'm not an old player. I can make a summary of my isk making endeavours the topic of a future post if you like.

  4. if i vote for you to crush them, will it mean more articles for your blog? =D

    (cause anything to get more articles! love reading your exploits)