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From Wikipedia on Piracy :

A pirate is one who robs or plunders at sea without a commission from a recognised sovereign nation. Pirates usually target other ships, but have also attacked targets on shore. These acts are known as piracy.

In Eve, one may swap the words 'at sea' for 'in space'. Pirates are, under this definition, pilots who attack other ships without political motive nor under the command of a non-pirate organisation, rather for financial gain or pleasure.

Pirates are usually to be found operating in Low-security Space either roaming Asteroid Belts hunting for Miners or NPCers to attack or Gatecamping, usually on gates that lead to High Security Systems. Some Corporations choose to operate in High Security space, Declaring War on corporations who are unable to defend themselves. This is sometimes reffered to as High-sec piracy.


High-sec Piracy

In regard to high sec piracy there are two different types, there are two which many players in Eve, including veterans do not know about.

One form of high sec piracy is the one stated previously, but this type of piracy requires a extremely well organised team. One pirate, most likely in a NPC corporation will scan down the any battleships that are undocking in a mission hub station. It will then see if it has any officer modules on it (officer modules are around 500mil each). If the ship has quite a lot of officer and faction modules then the same ship will start to scan down that ship name, locating it's mission using a probe. Once the ship has been found, 5 insured ravens and more warp to the location. Once they have entered the location and targetted the ship, all 5 ships activate their only modules on the ship, 6 torp launchers and 2 heavy neuts. (See Alpha Strike). The ship will pop, and the one that scanned them down picks up the loot and splits it. The insurance on the ravens covers the cost of the lost ships apart from around 6 mil ISK per ship. They then make a heafty profit from the loot.

Another unknown form of piracy is the aggression kind, a pirate will steal something from the victim in a relatively small ship while the victim are in a battlecruiser or higher. This gives the victim a boost of confidence and attempts to take an easy kill because he can fire on the pirate ship without CONCORD intervening. The pirate and his corporation get kill rights on the victim. The pirate will warp out safe and the victim will carry on his merry way doing whatever he was doing previously. A nanoed ship of some kind will join the victim, either the pirate or one of his corporation members, he will tackle the victim and if the victim is smart he will get his drones to attack the nanoed ship. Following in quick concention will be the dps dealers and soon the victims tank will break and he starts seeing a lovely explosion around his pod. The wreck is then the property of the pirates...

The Golden Age of Ore Theft in High Security Space was from 2003 to 2005, with its sunset ending in early 2007.

Low-sec Piracy

Even in Low-sec space, there are consequences for comitting acts of piracy. Firstly you will become Criminaly Flagged upon initiating agression against another player. This means that:

  • You can now be attacked by anyone without consequence for 15 Minutes after your last agressive act.
  • Any Sentry Guns you come into proximity of (found at Stargates and Stations) with fire upon you.

The second consequence of comitting an act of Piracy is that you will lose some Security Status.
If your Security Status falls too low, you may be prohibited from entering the higher Security levels of space and eventually, when you reach -5 Security Status you are considered an outlaw and may be fired upon anywhere by anybody without consequence.

See also: Occupations:The Pirate

NPC Pirates

There are five main pirate Factions in the EVE Universe:

Ships from these respective groups can be found all over Empire and 0.0 space, in varying numbers and severity, and are all marked with a CONCORD bounty, and flaged on the HUD with red crosses. Restrictions regarding Rules Of Engagement do not apply to them, and the may be shot at, and destroyed anywhere, on sight. The destruction of these ships, both in missions, and at static spawns can provide a healthy income and is the primary source of Named Modules.

Needless to say, these AI-controled pirates are signficantly easier to outwit than most player pirates, above. NPC pirates are often referred to simply as 'rats' ('belt rats', etc), to distinguish them from actual player pirates.


Rats is believed to be an acronym, similar to T.E.R.A.

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