So, I'm coming up on almost one month of playing EVE and still can't say enough about how awesome this game is. I don't know why I am writing these blogs, I've never blogged about anything before.
PLEX is an abbreviation for Pilot License Extension. These can be purchased with real money through the Eve website www.eveonline.com or they can be purchased in game with ISK, the currency used in the game to purchase everything you need.
Since Eve is a pay to play game (after the initial 14-21 day trial), you'll need to plan on how you intend to continue playing the game to finance the monthly fee. You can do missions, mine, kill other players, trade, etc, but eventually if you don't want to pay real life cash you'll need to find a way to extend your online play.
The PLEX value in game can range between 450,000,000 ISK to 600,000,000 ISK depending on where you are, and how readily available it is. Early on, it's going to be fairly difficult to earn this type of ISK to purchase a PLEX in game, but it's not impossible at all. We'll cover creative ways of earning ISK in the future, but for now just know that if your are resourceful, you can play this game and never have to spend real money.
Another use for PLEX is to buy one with real money, and turn around and sell it for lots of ISK. Some people recommend buying one PLEX immediately to jump start your finances, but I recommend waiting at least 2-3 weeks for multiple reasons. In the beginning you're going to make lots of mistakes, and that's ok , this is a learning experience. Best that you make those mistakes and not have them be too costly. If you have the money you'll spend it, then get blasted and then lose the money. Another reason why I think you should wait is the early level 1 missions you run will earn you between 25,000 - 200,000 ISK per mission, and the skills you receive and the lessons you learn are necessary. If you go out and buy a PLEX day one, you don't have much incentive to run the missions because you already have enough cash. What's 50,000 ISK when you have 500,000,000 just sitting in your wallet? It kind of takes the fun out of running missions, or salvaging, or mining, etc. Once you can legitimately buy expensive stuff and not lose it immediately, then it makes more sense.
One final thought on PLEX, and cargo in general that you don't want to lose. Don't ever carry a PLEX on your ship and move around with it in your Cargo. In the event your ship gets destroyed, your cargo is jettisoned into space, meaning that if someone scans your ship, sees that you have a PLEX in your cargo, you can almost guarantee they are going to blast you out of the sky and steal your PLEX, even in HighSec where they will be blasted for blasting you.