SWG Second Lieutenant
Dancing Stalkers of Kauri
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This guide is intended for the purpose of finding the optimal method to get Bounty Hunter experience in order to complete the Investigation branch with as little game time as possible. This guide is geared towards those who wish to make the most of their time, and may not be best for those who wish to role play their character and/or have fun at the same time. J Here I will detail some of the things I have tried to progress through this branch as quickly as possible. Every second saved can sometimes mean a 10-minute savings. How many times have you arrived at a shuttle/spaceport only to see or hear your ride take off without you?
I do not have a compiled list of waypoints to all the informants and terminals. That information can also be obtained from other threads, though it would be nice for someone to put together one comprehensive list that covers all levels. I will disclose what cities I used for terminal/informant combinations. There may be some combinations that work well that I am unaware of. Most of this guide is devoted to the ‘hard’ Bounty Hunter missions, though there are also some tips for novices. I welcome any additional ideas to make more effective use of time.
The Raw Numbers:
For those of you new to the branch and are wondering how much time and many missions it takes, here is an estimate. I believe the max XP for novice missions is 79, the max for Inv 1-3 is 109, and the max for Inv 4 is 139. Personally, it is generally not practical to me to refresh for two minutes to get that last point or two of XP so I accept missions within 2 points of the max. Your max XP may be dependant on your skill in the weapon you have equipped. Unless you are quite skilled in a particular weapon, such as pistol, your best bet is to equip LLC. I believe LLC 2 is sufficient for providing max XP missions.
The BH XP cap for novice BH is 10,000. Even though Investigation 1 only requires 1,000, it’s highly recommended you reach the 10k cap first before training. You can get one more easy novice mission after you hit the cap, by accepting a novice mission when you are at 10k and then training Inv1 and Inv2. Since you still have the novice mission in your Datapad, finish it and enjoy your last novice mission and the last of the easy XP.
10,000 novice BH xp / 77-79xp = 127-130 missions * 10-15 min/mission = 21-33 hours.
6,000 Inv2 xp / 107-109xp = 56 missions * 30-60 min/mission = 28-56 hours.
18,000 Inv3 xp / 137-139xp = 130-132 * 30-60 min/mission = 65-132 hours.
Using these numbers, your grand total is between 114 and 221 hours of game play to complete the Investigation branch. There are going to be missions you will abort, either due to bugs (white marks, missing marks, location of marks, etc.), and there will be times when things just don’t go right. If you are focused, I figure 170 hours. At Inv 3, I shoot for 30-45 minutes. Once in a while I’ll get lucky and do missions in 20 minutes, but there are the buggy/aborted missions that will make up for this. 90% of the time spent is waiting for shuttles, waiting for droid results, or running to your mark. I would say I complete 85-90% of the missions I make an attempt to complete.
Cities I use for BH missions where the terminal and informants are in the same town:
Investigation 0 missions: Coronet, Tyrena
Investigation 2 missions: Kaadara, Dearic, Narmle
Investigation 3 missions: Kaadara, Dearic, Mos Eisley
Easy Missions (Investigation 0):
As has been stated many times, the best locations for Novice BHs to get BH XP are to go to Coronet or Tyrena on Corellia. You can open up the BH Terminal and walk a few steps to the informant while keeping the terminal open. After you arrange your windows correctly and put the informant in an easy to converse location on your screen, it is fairly easy to abort/accept missions until you get a mark in a location you like. The quickest missions are those where your mark is in the same town, which some people may choose to only attempt those missions. I was not super picky about my missions, so I was generally willing to accept missions with marks in other towns, or within 1 km of me. I kept track of the shuttle times so if the mark was in another town and the shuttle was here, I would shuttle. If I knew there would be a long wait for the shuttle, I would continue cycling through missions in hopes for something better, with the exception of Coronet and Tyrena. If my mark was in one of these towns, I would sometimes wait a bit for a shuttle. I recommend cloning in Coronet. The cloning facility in Tyrena is far away from the terminals.
Hard Missions (Investigation 1+):
Once you are past the novice stage the process to completing a mission gets more difficult. This is discussed in more detail in other threads, but here is my typical mission:
1. After jumping off the shuttle in Kaadara, I get my mission and talk to the informant.
2. I then proceed to the shuttle port and head to Theed.
3. I walk outside of Theed and use my Arakyd probe droid from my inventory.
4. I watch for the explosion and upload the bio-signature.
5. I head to the ticket collector at the Theed spaceport with a ticket to each possible destination and wait for the results.
6. I travel to the planet my mark is on.
7. Immediately after arriving to my mark’s planet, I send out a seeker droid.
8. I create my own waypoint at my marks original location.
9. Depending on circumstances, I may clone and then shuttle to a closer town before my seeker updates.
10. After I know my mark’s new location, I go after him. (Shuttle or respawning where I cloned may be necessary.)
11. If I am going to cut him off at an angle, I place a waypoint where I anticipate our paths crossing.
12. Upon meeting, I will bleed him and then perhaps allow him to take me out for a quick ride back to town.
13. I return to the closest terminal/informant setup, which is usually Kaadara again. J
Time Saving Tips (‘Hard BH Missions’):
Use cloning to your advantage. Cloning as it stands right now provides you a free ride back to town you cloned at. Not only will this spawning get you back close to a shuttle if you are far away from town, but it can be used to shuttle you to another town even when the shuttle isn’t there. The latter is more practical on the planets where there are only two to three towns or outposts. If I shuttle to a town and my mark is quite a distance away and I am uncertain which direction he is headed, I may choose to clone and hop on the shuttle quick to another town while I wait for the updated waypoint. If he happens to head in the town I was originally at, I have the option to spawn back there provided I can find a way to die. After I have met my mark I often times opt to let my mark kill me, and then get the last laugh as I watch him bleed to death. There is no weapon experience this way, but it is the fast way back to town.
Use Theed’s Spaceport as your primary launch point! Theed’s spaceport is unique in that it allows you to travel from it whenever you please. Why is this significant? Because many times your Arakyd probe droid will not have the results back to you until the shuttle has already left. Kaadara is a very convenient place to get BH missions because of the availability of informants. My timing is usually that I can arrive in Kaadara after completing my previous mission, get my BH mission, talk to my informant, and shuttle to Theed before the shuttle departs again. Once in Theed, I can call down my Arakyd probe droid and get the planet my mark is on. (Depending on the timing, it may be possible to use the Arakyd before shuttling to Theed, but if the shuttle is missed a wait is guaranteed.) If the mark is on Naboo or one of the planets Naboo can shuttle to, then I have a head start on my first shuttle ride. Even if I need to hop to Corellia for a layover, the short time I save by being there when the shuttle arrives sometimes makes a difference, especially when taking an addition shuttle once on planet. Theed does not need to be used for every mission, however, many of my missions involve Theed. One other practical use of using your Arakyd in Theed is you do have a few minutes during the wait where if you have any heeling needing done, (on my server anyway) Theed seems to be a good location for entertainment and the medic center is also close by.
Buy tickets in advance! Many times I am forced to use Corellia as a go between my mark’s planet and mission terminals. Buying tickets in advance saves the jog to and from the ticket terminal in the spaceports. This time savings can be valuable, especially depending on the timing of the shuttles from one planet to the next. I try to keep in my inventory the following tickets: Coronet>Kaadara, Kaadara>Theed, Theed>Kaadara, Theed>Coronet, Theed>Mos Eisley, Theed>(Rori), Coronet>Dearic, Coronet>(other planets). I buy multiple tickets of the popular routes I take, which are basically the first 4 routes I listed. Where I did not list a specific port to travel to, as in the case of Rori and the other planets from Coronet, it is more or less up to you to decide, as I do not yet know the optimal location to go to for each planet. Narmle is good when doing Inv2 missions, because of the terminal/informant setup there, but after completing Inv3, I went for the Rebel outpost due to close cloning facility. I average 20+ tickets in my inventory at any one time, but it is nice to be able to do 2 hops in a short time, or stand at the ticket collector in Theed and be able to take off as soon as I know where to go. Occasionally, this can mean a 10 minute savings here and there.
Watch shuttle times! I haven’t quite figured out exactly how each shuttles schedule works in relation to the others. Maybe someone else has studied this or maybe it’s just random. J Generally I have found on my server, that Coronet and Kaadara, as well as several others have fairly close departure times, give or take a minute. Then there are some where there is a very short window after your arrival from another location before the shuttle at your current location leaves. In other cases, some shuttles are completely out of sync with the rest. It may not be totally predictable in relation to other cities every night, however, if I’m planning on doing several missions in a night, I keep an eye on the times Kaadara’s shuttle is there, and also the shuttle I may be using next. If you arrive on your mark’s planet and the shuttle isn’t there, then ask your friendly ticket collector when the next shuttle will be. Sometimes this can be useful information for how quickly you need to return after you have finished your mark. If the shuttle is there already, then remember the shuttle runs in a 15-minute cycle, therefore should be there again in 15 minutes. I don’t memorize the bus schedule every night, but In general, keeping tabs on shuttle times can be helpful.
Use burst run! Burst run can reduce the time it takes to get to your mark. That much is obvious. However, burst run can also sometimes mean the difference between making or missing a shuttle. Don’t be afraid to use it after completing a mission if you have it, even if it is just to move faster in town, for example, from the cloning center to the shuttle. If it is likely 10 minutes will pass before you need it again, there is no harm in using it, and possibly 10 minutes to gain.
Endor and Lok:
Most planets do not present too much of a problem of determining where your mark is going and are make it fairly easy to reach your mark. Marks on Endor and Lok tend to wander around and don’t always head towards cities right away. I have done Lok missions and I recommend aborting them if you find your mark is on Lok. I have done several Endor missions. The marks still head in strange directions, however I have started doing these missions again. If you’re feeling lucky, I recommend going to Endor, sending out a seeker to update his location, and if it appears you can catch him without much difficulty, pursue it. Otherwise abort and save yourself the trouble. My biggest problem with Endor is that, at least on my server, there does not appear to be much life on it, outside of the outposts and a few other locations. Therefore, if you end up far away from an outpost, unless you make sure to allow your mark to kill you, you may be in for a long walk back. My worst mission ever was walking 7.5km or so only to see my mission abort because my mark was over water. I then had to walk 5km to find the nearest lifeform that could kill me. Painful indeed. J
Taking out your mark:
I am not going to discuss in detail the best way to take out marks. This is discussed elsewhere. However, as it relates to optimizing time, there are a few things to consider.
Spices may slow you down if you are waiting for the downer to subside when you’re ready for your next mark. This more of an issue with novice missions and probably is not so much when doing Investigation 2 or above. If spices will help increase your efficiency then use them. I have occasionally used Muon Gold if my mind happened to be way down when I’m ready, but for the most part I avoid spices.
I group with my rock beetle most of the time I take out a mark, mostly just for the 25% xp bonus for being grouped and for the companionship. I rarely use it when taking out my mark unless I get into trouble, my mark has high resistance to my weapons, or I just need to take out the mark ASAP to make good time.
Other skill points:
As you know, if you are planning on mastering Bounty Hunter, you get only 33 extra skill points to spend on other professions. I have found Novice Medic a skill I do not think I can live without. With some decent Stimpack B’s that have a heal factor of 300+, medic really comes in handy. Plus, occasionally you may need to heal wounds if you forget or don’t have time to clone. Good Medpack B’s can heal over 100 a shot and are worth the investment. Being able to take care of yourself can be a time saver.
On the subject of skill points, it doesn’t hurt to leave a couple weapon skill boxes to complete while you’re pursuing Investigation. You’ll likely be able to work on one or more boxes from taking out marks. Also, if you’re waiting for a shuttle and you need something to do, hunt around town a little. It’s not much XP but it gives you something to do and adds up.
Investigation XP the quick way (not recommended):
I just noticed a complete thread with a detailed write-up on this, but since I already wrote these paragraphs I will include them anyway as it is worth an explanation. Currently there is a quick way to getting BH XP and that is by jamming the uplink terminal in a base, which when done will award 1000 XP. If you are declared member of your faction, and you enter a base of the opposite faction and there is an uplink terminal, you have the option to jam the terminal on the radial menu (if you are not currently being attacked and if you have Inv2). You are then presented with a small puzzle, which takes a short amount of time to complete. Upon doing so you are awarded the 1000 BH XP. Jamming the uplink terminal is the first step in taking over any base, and the XP is awarded even if the rest of the steps are not completed. I believe uplink terminals can only be jammed once per day, but perhaps less now, at least on NPC bases.
At the time of this writing, I have heard there may be some buggy issues preventing this from working correctly anyway, especially on the NPC bases. Currently, NPC bases default to Rebel control at each server reset, therefore, even if this was ‘working’ only Imps could take advantage of this, as I am sure many did. Therefore the only practical means Rebels have is to jam a player-controlled Imperial base. Please note that there is only a 2-hour window per day (supposedly starting with when the base was constructed) where terminals appear in player-controlled bases. There is also currently a bug that allows the admin of the base to pick up the terminals in their base, even in a covert state, which would prevent any type of take over until the next day. FYI, I have jammed two uplink terminals myself as a rebel. While it was a nice bonus that saved me some hours of missions, I would not recommend this method as a primary source of BH XP. Many of you may not even get the opportunity to use this method anyway. While I am not opposed to the idea of awarding some XP for this type of action, I anticipate that later patches will address the issues that exist right now.
At the time of this writing, I have completed Investigation III and have about 5500 XP left to go before achieving Investigation IV. Though Bounty Hunter was not my initial profession of choice, after trying out Smuggler and Commando which are/were broken at the time, and dabbling in Armorsmith, Creature Handler, and Pistoleer, it seemed best that Bounty Hunter was suited for me. I am not much of a PVPer and enjoy soloing. My currently skills are BH 3/0/3/3, Medic 1/0/0/0, Pistoleer 0/1/4/3. I plan on having Master BH within a week, which means I will likely drop some of the Pistoleer skills since I find novice medic to be worth the points. While I appreciate the fact that Master Bounty Hunter is difficult to achieve, I enjoy finding the little tricks to accomplishing my goals efficiently. I am sure there are things I left out, but partly because I did not feel the need to include everything that has been discussed before, and partly because I wanted to get this up before my tips become obsolete. Plus I’d like to get back to the game. J I may add more ideas or put together a more comprehensive guide at some point, however if someone else would like to incorporate this information into another guide, I am not opposed to that. If someone wishes to do so or feels this would be suitable information for a website guide, feel free to send me a personal message. I hope this guide is beneficial to you and doesn’t get buried in all the chatter. Good luck!