Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Eve Online: Dotlan

I use this site so much that I thought I'd spend some time writing about some of it's uses and how it can be used for a multitude of functions. Handy for the veteran planner or the newbie looking to learn a few new tricks.


DOTLAN is it's name, and if you ever wanted to know some extra details about systems, alliances, and corporations, this is a site that you need to familiarize yourself with.

On the initial page you've got a series of regional maps and faction warfare maps that you can check out, each of which will take you to a fully interactive overview of that region. Go ahead and click on the regional map Catch and once inside you'll notice all the system names, which alliance owns it (if any), the sov level of that system (1-5), if there are any outposts in that system and what type of services that outpost offers. You can also find Ice Belts, whether or not a system is contested, and which other regions connect to that region.

In the top right corner of the map is a drop down that allows you to change what type of information you want to view on all the systems such as; Sovereignty (which alliance controls the system), Corporation (which specific corporation owns that systems), Security Level, how many belts, planets, moons, if there are any permanent DED complexes in that system, jumps in the last hour/day, ship and pod kills in the last hour/day, NPC kills in the last hour/day.

Let's say for example that you're trying to plan a roam through null sec to go pick a fight (or avoid a fight). I'm going to look at the regional map for Catch and I'm interested in entering Null Sec through HED-GP, and heading down towards Stain. I'm going to check to see which systems in my path have had recent activity lately so that you can steer your roam in that direction, or away from that direction if you think a large gate camp may be present. I'm going to filter by jumps, then by kills, then by NPC kills to gather some initial intelligence on the system.

After filtering by ship/pod kills, I notice that there have been 16/9 kills in WD-VTV in the last hour. That tells me that 16 ships and 9 pods have died in WD-VTV so there is most likely a gate camp there. If I change it to in the last 24 hours I see 227 ships and 93 pods have died in the last 24 hours. Either a large fleet battle took place, or one hell of a gate camp. Now I'm going to click on the WD-VTV system and drill down and get some more specific information on what's been going on.

By clicking on a system you are now presented with tons more information for your viewing pleasure.  Let's focus on kills by clicking on Kills next to the pretty pink heart.  This will now tell me all the ships that have been killed in the last 48 hours in this system, who died, how many were involved, what time they blew up, etc. If you want you can also click on a specific kill that will take you to the actual killmail, showing you specifically who was involved, as well as everything else that comes along with a killmail.

Pretty handy stuff right?! 

Let's head back to the home page and take a look at some of the other elements that Dotlan has to offer. On the right side of your screen you can see the Most Violent Systems for null sec and low sec in the last 3 hours, Top Sovereignty Changes in the last 7 days (who has gained the most or lost the most systems), Alliance Movement showing who has lost or gained the most members in the last 7 days, and the last 5 shiny New Outposts that have been constructed. Each of these stats can be clicked on to bring you to a more complete list if you're interested.

In additional to all of the above, Dotlan also offers a navigational tool, that can help you plan a trip, including ships capable of using jump drives. Simply click on the Navigation tab, input your systems into the jump planner, including any waypoints or systems to avoid and BAM! You're all set.

Last but not least the Faction War tab will take you to a list of all the systems out there involved with faction warfare, who owns it, if it's contested or not, and where you can find it.

Anyways, that sums up my synopsis of Dotlan's EveMaps. Check it out, use it, abuse it, and fly smarter (or more stupid if you prefer). Either way you can plan it better now.

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