The following is a guide on neural remapping. This content is adapted from a syllabus for a class that I teach at EVE University. I wrote the original syllabus in June 2010, but it has been updated by my fellow teachers in the UNI. My sincere thanks go to them for their revisions and improvements.
This guide was last updated on May 1, 2016.
New pilots in EVE Online start with only a few elementary skills. They realize quickly that in order to do more things effectively, they need to develop their skill sets – and thus, they are motivated to maximize the rate at which their skill training progresses.
One way to improve skill training rates is to assign higher values to the attributes of your character, and thus learn those skills that are affected by those attributes faster. EVE Online provides pilots with a limited ability to perform this re-assignment, called neural remapping.
Neural remapping is not complicated, but it often perplexes new players. Deciding exactly how to manage neural remaps is not very intuitive. This guide attempts to provide some useful advice for those new to EVE Online who are struggling with this game mechanic.
Every character has five attributes:
- Intelligence - the speed at which you process information
- Memory - how well you remember information
- Charisma - the degree to which you influence others
- Perception - your ability to understand the situation around you
- Willpower - the amount of stamina you have to reach a goal
To see your attribute scores, click on your Character sheet button on the NeoCom, then click on Attributes.
Although this sounds like a construct rich with role-playing possibilities, in truth, your character’s attributes only do one thing: they determine the speed at which a character can train skills. The rate at which you learn a particular skill is set by one primary and one secondary attribute. The formula for the speed of skill training (in skill points per minute) is:
(SkillPointsNeeded - CurrentSkillPoints) / (PrimaryAttribute + (SecondaryAttribute / 2))
The key fact to understand about this formula is that your assigned score for a skill's primary attribute will affect training time twice as much as your score for a secondary attribute.
Different types of skills are associated with specific primary and secondary attributes, as follows:
- Armor : Intelligence, Memory
- Corp Management : Memory, Charisma
- Drones : Memory, Perception
- Electronic Systems : Intelligence, Memory
- Engineering : Intelligence, Memory - with two exceptions: Weapons Upgrades and Advanced Weapons Upgrades, which both use Perception, Willpower
- Gunnery : Perception, Willpower - with one exception: Doomsday Operation, which uses Willpower, Intelligence
- Leadership : Charisma, Willpower
- Missiles : Perception, Willpower
- Navigation : Intelligence, Perception - with the exceptions of Cynosaural Field Theory and Jump Portal Generation, which both use Intelligence, Memory
- Neural Enhancement : Intelligence, Memory - except for Informorph Psychology, Advanced Informorph Psychology and Informorph Synchronizing, which all use Charisma, Willpower
- Planet Management : Intelligence, Memory - except for Command Center Upgrades and Interplanetary Consolidation, which use Charisma, Intelligence
- Production : Memory, Intelligence - except for any Advanced Ship Production skill and Outpost Construction, which all use Intelligence, Memory
- Resource Processing : Memory, Intelligence - except for Astrogeology and Salvaging, which use Intelligence, Memory
- Rigging : Intelligence, Memory
- Scanning : Intelligence, Memory
- Science : Intelligence, Memory - except for Research Project Management, which uses Memory, Charisma
- Shields : Intelligence, Memory
- Social : Charisma, Intelligence
- Spaceship Command : Tech I and Tech III ship command skills use Perception, Willpower, and all Tech II ship command skills use Willpower, Perception
- Targeting : Intelligence, Memory
- Subsystems : Intelligence, Memory / Perception, Willpower
- Trade : Willpower, Charisma / Charisma, Memory / Charisma, Willpower
You can optimize the speed of your skill training by adjusting your attributes - this is done through neural remapping.
There are two types of remap: 'normal' remaps and 'bonus' remaps. A normal remap is granted once a year, 365 days after you used your last normal remap. Bonus remaps can be used at any time but you have a limited supply. If you have both normal and bonus remaps available then the normal will be used first.
You get a normal remap and two bonus remaps after you first establish a character, for three starter remaps.
Note: when CCP discontinued Learning skills, they gave all current players a free bonus remap. CCP also allowed players to choose a bonus remap as their 2011 Christmas gift.
To conduct a neural remap, start your EVE client, and select your Character Sheet on the NeoCom. Then select the Attributes window. This window will show your current Attribute scores, and also tell you if a remap is available - if you do have one available, you'll see a button that says "Remap Now". If you do not have a remap available, you'll see the date of your last remap, and a button that says "Attributes Overview". By clicking the "Remap Now" button, you will be given the Attribute remapping screen. Click "Save Changes" to confirm your remap, or "Cancel" if you decide not to remap at this time.
If you do not have a remap available yet, the Attributes screen will tell you when your next remap will be open to you.
Each attribute starts with 17 base points. You can add up to five more points with various implants. You also have an additional 14 points that you can allocate between the five attributes - up to a maximum of 10 additional points for any individual attribute. This means that any given attribute can have a maximum value of 32 if the best implants available are used, and if you are willing to severely limit the values of your remaining attributes.
The default distribution of attribute points for a new character is 20 to all attributes except Charisma, which gets 19 - not including any improvement from Attribute Enhancer implants.
Here are some guidelines for allocating points to your attributes:
- Memory and Intelligence are very important for industrialists, and for training essential ship fitting and tanking skills, as well as drone skills.
- Perception and Willpower are very important for combat pilots, since they help you train ship command, gunnery, missile and other more advanced ship piloting skills.
- Charisma is important for traders and mission-runners, and anyone who's training their Leadership skills for fleet command.
- Given these factors, most new pilots begin with high attribute scores for Memory and Intelligence initially, to focus training on essential fitting and tanking skills. They then use their first remap to emphasize Perception and Willpower, to focus training on advanced ship command and combat skills. They can then use future remaps to establish a more balanced distribution, depending on future training and career plans.
- An alternative strategy is to emphasize Memory and Perception, which means you'll have at least one high attribute for nearly every skill category. This is not as efficient as the previous more focused strategy, and therefore, training will be relatively longer, but it requires fewer remaps.
The most efficient way to plan your neural remaps is to use EveMon's "Optimize Attributes" feature. Establish a training plan of at least one year in length (it's easier than it sounds), then click on the "Optimize Attributes" option on the plan menu. By selecting optimization for the first year of your plan, it will provide recommendations that reduce your plan's overall training time. It will even show the amount of time that the remap will save over your current attribute settings.
A Caution about Skill Injectors
Another way to accelerate skill point accumulation is to simply buy them in the market. Skill trading, introduced in early 2016, allows players to extract skill points from a character and sell them to other characters in the form of "Skill Injectors".
This can be a very expensive proposition, as Skill Injectors fetch a premium price on the market. They are also more valuable for newer players than for veterans, since the proportion of skill points that can be absorbed is limited by the number of skill points already in that character. For relatively novice characters, skill injectors allow players to "catch up" quickly with veterans, but at a steep price.
Use caution when using skill injectors. Skill points simply open up more possibilities - they do not equate to mastery of game mechanics. Expertise can only be developed through experience and practice. Just because you can inject enough skill points to be able to fly a battleship does note mean that you can fly that ship well. Skill injectors can be a handy tool, but they can also lull new players into a false sense of confidence. Take heed of this advice: capsuleer, know thyself.
Fly safe! o7