Cave Mining

FPS cave mining provides the motivation to visit beautiful landscapes and appreciate the modelling and soundscapes.of their subterranean worlds.

The First Caves

This notification by Wakapedia on the forum gives some useful information about the new cave systems:

“…We have added 15 caves to the game, 5 on each of Hurston, Aberdeen, and Daymar. These caves can be discovered by accepting a regional missing person mission that can be accepted by one person at a time but is shareable to your party. Along with the missing person mission, you can also find caves using your ships scanning feature to see them from a short distance…”

Note: You can only scan from a few of the ships.

Prerequisites

To complete this part of the game you will need:

  • A Rucksack Core armour item
  • A Greycat Pyro Multitool
  • A Greycat mining attachment

You will also need to master:

  • Endurance for repeated long haul trips terminated by server disconnections etc.
  • Creativity to solve frequent random usability bugs.
  • Philosophical attitude to random strangers who kill you for no reason.
  • Extended patience for the correct type of mission to show up.

You could try flying at 5 am to get some peace, stability and quick access to the right mission. …but for the usability bugs …aaaah …that’s a bit more awkward. I suggest you play The Moonlight Sonata and have a good cry.

Get a Rucksack

You’ll need a rucksack to hold all of the mineral fragments and anything else you find.

You can get a rucksack at a store on Port Olisar, filed under Armor > Torso > MacFlex “Rucksack” Core. There are a large number of other torso items in the list but this one has a longer name than most so you can spot it using that.

Get a Multitool & Attachment

In order to do the actual FPS mining, you will need a multi-tool and a mining attachment. You can find this in Conscientious Objects at Levski on Delamar (find the map here).

Equip the Attachment

You won’t get very far trying to mine without the attachment in place. There isn’t anything to specifically tell you, but you have to go into the equipment manager on your mobiGlass and under Utility > Utility Item, Multi-Tool > Multi-Tool Attachment ensure you ‘equip’ the attachment and save your choice.

Find a Cave

Hostiles at a cave entrance

Actually, this is the worst thing you can do. When you get there, you can expect to see hostiles in the air, on the ground or in the cave. If not, then maybe your ship will be a smoking ruin when you exit. If that doesn’t bother you you can go to Hurston, Aberdeen and Daymar and look for a location with ‘mine’ in the title and try your luck.

Get a Cave Mission

If you do this you will probably get a cave to yourself.

On your mobiGlas, open the contracts manager and go to General > Investigation > Missing Client. They aren’t all cave missions, one took me to the Corvalux Hub.

Corvalux Side Note: To solve the Covalux Hub mission, go into the station via a broken window in the control room and download data from computers scattered around inside. There are ships lurking nearby that might attack your ship while you are inside. Maybe try hiding your ship under some cover before you do the EVA.

Arriving at the cave site with no-one else around.

As hoped, the investigation mission does not include being harassed by other players. The cave itself is well executed and has a smattering of organic life and a haunting soundscape. The missions took me to bigger caves than the ‘public’ caves you can find by name from orbit.

The caves have some organic life despite the lack of light.
Plant harvestables may also have value.

A Crystal Vein Reference Image

The crystal veins are quite hard to find. It seems likely they will be at the furthest reaches of the cave to make you explore more. We can expect to see a crystal vein on loose rock because the rock will be destroyed and this is easier to do with an isolated rock asset.

A thin vein of Hadanite is shown as a purple line in the centre of the screenshot.

Note how small the vein is. In the wrong lighting, you could easily miss it.

How to Use the Multitool

Earlier, you will have ensured that you are equipped with a rucksack, a multitool, a mining attachment and that the attachment is ‘equipped’ to the multi-tool (to enable it). This is how you use it for mining:

  • Press 4 to put the mining tool in your hand.
  • Press and hold R to put the tool away.
  • Press the right mouse button to look down the sight
  • Point the tool at a crystal vein to begin scanning
  • Use the left mouse button to start the laser
  • Use the mouse wheel to control the laser power

The following screenshots explain the stages

Point to Scan

The first stage is scanning. That will tell you which crystal you have and how many crystals you will get from it.

Increase Power to Raise Temperature

In the right of the centre at the back of the tool, you can see the laser power meter. It has a laser symbol above it, starts at zero and has no power bars.

To get the laser power up to the right value, the power input indicator has been set to 100%

Move you’re mouse-wheel forward to increase power. If you can have the wheel running freely, it will make things easier. The heat indicator is on the left of the HUD. A white bar and triangle move up the scale. Nothing will happen until it passes the first horizontal line.

Decrease Power to Avoid Catastrophe

Be aware that once you pass the first horizontal line, the heating speed will increase and you will quickly have to lower the power in order to stay beneath the ‘over-heating’ indicator.

The over-heating condition is shown with a red bar sitting at the top of the scale on the left. The power setting has been lowered to 47%.

Asymmetric Power Control Keeps it Safe

You need to keep the power between the two horizontal limits. A green bar fills out space from right to left and the red bar will recede at half the rate that the green bar does.

As the green bar expands, the red bar recedes. The power level is just about adequate at 51% but will need to increase.

Correct Heating Safely Breaks the Rock

When the green bar reaches the end of the indicator, the rock will fracture. You will be damaged in proportion to the value of the red indicator, so get rid of it as much as you can.

The green bar has reached the end of the indicator.

Stow the Crystals in Your Rucksack

At this point, you should be able to pick up the valuable Hadanite and stow it. Unfortunately, due to the bug-ridden untested code, it was impossible to stow it even though my rucksack had 97% free space. There was nothing else to do but log out.

Finally, Selling Some Hadanite

The next time I logged in, I still had the right gear to do the job although my rifle was erased from my pack for some reason. After several more attempts, I managed to successfully mine Hadanite and pick up some plant life from a Hurston cave without getting disconnected, shot, jammed in a wall or killed by an exploding rock.

I abandoned looking for the ‘missing person’ for fear of losing the loot, then made my way back the Admin office in Lorville where there are some trading consoles.

I thought Hadanite was valuable… but the 27 pieces I had spent about a week trying to collect was worth 7425 aUEC. The other objects I picked up were worth maybe 150 aUEC. So in other words, I could have earned the same amount of credits a week ago on just one delivery run :O(

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