Sightseeing in the Cluster

Rusty Ridge Mine

Rusty Ridge 1

The dense dust clouds surrounding Rusty Ridge are easily visible here.

The miners are ascendant in New Eden. With mineral prices through the roof thanks to ongoing economic turmoil, it is suddenly once again profitable to mine. Mining may not be the most interesting profession for us demigods, but in a cluster where destruction of ships seems to be the only thing experiencing economic growth, mining the raw materials needed to replace those ships has only grown in importance. Many people often look down upon miners as people who waste their time doing a boring activity, but miners are the lifeblood of New Eden. Without miners, there would be no way for us to get the materials needed to build the new ships that us capsuleers like destroying oh so much. Mining may not be the most glorious profession out there, but it’s a noble one that is essential for the basic functioning of the New Eden economy.

Rusty Ridge 2

Professor Science banks as it heads for the heart of the dust cloud. The ghostly remains of the mining station can barely be made out.

That’s not to say that it’s necessarily a safe profession though, as proven by the ongoing Hulkageddon. With over three weeks still left in this year’s event, the total damages have already reached 634 billion isk. Organized by Helicity Boson and financed by the ever befuddling Goons, Hulkageddon has already overseen the destruction of over three thousand capsuleer-piloted mining or industrial vessels. The ironic (and perhaps intended) thing is that Hulkageddon serves to drive up mineral prices even higher, making mining yet more profitable, as long as you’re willing to take the risk of mining during these dangerous times. In many ways, Hulkageddon encapsulates that overriding New Eden principle: if you want the reward, you’d better be prepared to take the risk. It’s not a principle that miners are necessarily familiar with, but the sooner that they learn it, the sooner they’ll be able to take advantage of the profits that await them.

Rusty Ridge 3

Ishisomo cannot even be seen here, blocked out by the dense clouds.

Of course, not all mining resources last forever. Not every mine has unlimited wealth to it (something that ORE has very much taken to heart). And if you look around New Eden, there are plenty of abandoned mining colonies that show what happens when those mines run out, or even worse, if they were never able to begin in the first place. As might be expected, these kinds of abandoned mines are particularly common in high security space, since those areas of space have been developed the longest. As such, the empires have had plenty of time to pick the bones of mined asteroids dry in search of mineral wealth. The Caldari in particular are known for this, with their relentless pursuit of corporate efficiencies. Indeed, today’s site is the remains of one of those Caldari mining colonies: The Rusty Ridge Mine.

Rusty Ridge 4

A Cormorant has set up shop near the large cache of veldspar.

Somewhat surprisingly, Aura had very little information for me regarding the background of Rusty Ridge. I suppose there’s little to really distinguish Rusty Ridge from the countless other abandoned mining projects out there though. Indeed, the most notable thing about Rusty Ridge was the incredibly thick dust fields surrounding the old mining project. While most sites have some form of nebulosity that end up surrounding them, I have never seen dust fields quite this thick. In fact, in the center of the clouds, they entirely blocked out Ishisomo, the local star. Instead, the particles of dust reflected and refracted Ishisomo’s light, given the cloud a rather disturbing glow, as if it was about to collapse into itself and form its own star. My sensors informed me that that was not the case, but it was still unnerving to have to put down my view filters in order to properly view the rest of the site.

Rusty Ridge 5

The serpentine remains of asteroids already sucked of all useful materials.

Not that there was much of it to see. Near the center of the site sits the remains of a large Caldari industrial complex, clearly the original focal point of the mining complex. Unlike some of the other sites I’ve seen, scavengers here seem to have picked clean any of the mining equipment that the megacorporations may or may not have left lying around. As such, the station superstructure, long abandoned, was the only man-made structure left at Rusty Ridge, leaving it as a ghostly shell, barely visible in the depths of the nebula. I wasn’t entirely alone at the site, however. Two agents have set up shop near Rusty Ridge, each asking me to help in their plots to maneuver one megacorporation into dominance over the others. Being a proud Gallente citizen, I politely declined to help in their corporate machinations.

Rusty Ridge 6

The station remains are almost entirely invisible. In the distance, Ishisomo VIII is visible

One thing that surprised me about my surroundings was the fact that there were still some mineable materials left. There was a significant chunk of veldspar left to be harvested by some fortunate soul who, unlike me, actually had mining lasers attached to take advantage of it. But most of the remaining rocks were sucked dry of any usable resources, leaving only a serpentine shell, or left to gently disperse in the solar winds, adding to the eerily bright gas clouds surrounding the heart of the station.

I admittedly didn’t spend much time at the site. Mining had never quite been my calling, and I know that my insights into miners could only be those of an outsider. But that doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate what they do both for me personally and for all of New Eden. And I know that, especially these days, despite the lack of excitement in their tasks, they were being very well rewarded for their efforts.  After all, the miners are ascendant.

Basic Information:

  • Attraction: Rusty Ridge Mine
  • System: Ishisomo
  • Security Rating: 0.7
  • Region: The Forge
  • Potential Hazards: If you’re below a -3.5 in security status, or -5 standing with theCaldari, you’ll have to deal with some rather unpleasant policemen.
  • Additional Notes: This also serves as a Caldari COSMOS site. Furthermore, some asteroids here are capable of being mined.

One response

  1. Pingback: New Eden Regions: The Forge | To Boldly Go

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