Of the five attributes in EVE, Charisma is clearly the least useful. It is the primary attribute in three skill groups –Leadership, Social, and Trade — and the secondary skill in only one, Corporation Management. I like the Social skill tree (I’m a mission runner at heart), but even I shunt my points away from Charisma to something more important. I’m sacrificing the ability to learn social skills quicker, in order that I might learn everything else faster.
But in the real world, I put too many points in the intelligence attribute…
… because this trade off got me thinking. I’ve usually held that I would be best served by a balance of attribute points in the other four areas — Intelligence, Memory, Perception, and Willpower. But in looking at the skill groups and their linked attributes, its pretty clear to me that Intelligence is the most important to my interests. Let me explain:
- Corporation Management: Memory/Charisma — I don’t plan to run a corporation, ever. Ideally, I’ll join one, but I think I would best serve my Corporate Overlords through mining, exploration, or mission running.
- Drones: Memory/Perception — I’ve never used drones, and I don’t really want to start. I know they’re really useful and all, but they don’t interest me. If they did, I’d play Gallente. This said, there are a few Caldari and Amarr ships that use drones, and they’re highly regarded.
- Electronics: Intelligence/Memory — A necessary core skill group. Electronics makes any ship run better.
- Engineering: Intelligence/Memory — Same as electronics.
- Gunnery: Perception/Willpower — I plan to blow crap up with LAZORS. So, also useful.
- Industry: Memory/Intelligence — Industry isn’t an immediate interest of mine, but I do like the occasional mining jaunt.
- Leadership: Charisma/Willpower OR (rarely) Willpower / Charisma — This would be really useful in a fleet, but not for solo play.
Learning: Memory / Intelligence
- Mechanic: Intelligence/Memory — Great skill set here.
- Missile Launcher Operation: Perception/Willpower — Not at all important for my LAZORS, but missiles are always nice, and I have experience playing Caldari.
- Navigation: Intelligence/Perception — Also a good skill set.
- Planet Management: Intelligence/Memory OR Charisma/Intelligence — Don’t know about this, but there are only five skills in this group right now.
- Science: Intelligence/Memory — I plan on being an explorer, and many of the probe skills, not to mention Archeology and Hacking, fall into this category. Must have.
- Social: Charisma/Intelligence — I like running missions, so I do learn these skills. There aren’t many, though.
- Spaceship Command: Perception/Willpower OR (rarely) Willpower / Perception — Important.
- Trade: Charisma/Memory — Selling stuff is nice. I’m not certain I’ll ever need to do more than that, at least right now.
So the core important skills–Electronics, Engineering, Navigation, and Mechanic– are all Intelligence/Memory. That same combo also governs Science, which is important to my chosen profession (exploration). However, Perception/Willpower governs two very important areas–Gunnery and Spaceship Command–plus Missile Launcher Operations.
… come December 14th, Learning skills are going bye-bye, replaced instead with 12 points in each attribute. This does two things — 1) it makes the old Memory/Intelligence combo less important, and 2) it means that everyone will be granted very high levels in all attribute points. Even if I ‘spec out’ of Charisma, come Tuesday I’ll still have 17 points (base 5+ 12) in that attribute–which is absurd, because I’ve never stuck with EVE long enough to get Charisma anywhere near that high. And, for the next 30 days, I have access to the Cerebral Accelerator, which means all of my skills are boosted by three more attribute points.
So where does this leave us?
Like I said above, even skills I’ve specced out of will have 17 attribute points in them, which is craaazy. Only two skills really jump out at me as being really important–Intelligence and Perception. Memory and Willpower are good, but they’re rarely primary skills; as such, any points put into those attributes would be contributing half their value, verses the full value if put into the primary attribute.
So, I’m thinking of putting all of my remappable skills points into Intelligence and Perception, and leaving the other three at their very base level.
… this is all, like we say in Warhammer 40k, ‘theory hammer’. On paper my idea looks alright, but I don’t yet have an intuitive sense of whether or not this is a good decision. Advice, dear readers, is always welcome. Please.