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Researching Guide

Introduction

So you want to be a researcher, eh? Or at least learn some new stuff about research - Heh, it don't matter.

This guide is engineered towards being a career researcher (i.e. someone who is played as a primary character and evolves as such) rather than being a simple tradeskiller (i.e. someone who has their skill & implant rigged to do as many tradeskills at a decent level as humanly possible). As a result, repairing is not covered here - If someone wishes to add it into SynergyXR 's copy, feel free to.

Why research?

So what's the point of researchers? Well to be honest, they're just as important as constructors.

Both researchers and constructors are needed When it comes to making a quality weapon than the crap sold at your local A&W's store - A copy of the weapon is bought at the relevant shop (e.g. A&W's, HEW, Yakarama Psi Equipment...) and is taken to a researcher, who researches the weapon to make a blueprint of the weapon. That blueprint is then taken to a constructor, who with the parts will make a much better version of the weapon (depending on the constructor's skill of course ;)).

This symbiosis also occurs with the hunt for rare top-of-the-line items. These are made from tech parts which are looted from a number of high-powered mobs (e.g. Warbots). These are then taken to a researcher, who identifies the parts. Acquiring all the parts of a weapon and taking them all to a constructor allows the weapon to be made.

So in general, researchers, like constructors, are generally very valuable to whoever needs their services. However, without the pursuit of item parts, being a researcher is slightly easier :D

Tools of the Trade

So now we've described WHY you should be a researcher, it's time to talk about WHAT YOU NEED to be a decent researcher.

The following three things are the bare essentials of what you need:

Research Tool The less said about its slightly phallic shape the better. A research tool basically analyses an item and transfers the data to a datacube, but in non-roleplay terms this is the item that's essential for all researching - You cannot research without one, full stop.

Available at Cryton's Tools at varying "Tech Levels". A tool can only research items with a Tech Level (TL) equal to or less than the TL rating on the tool. The highest you can get is a TL150 research tool - Costing up to near a million credits, it is possible to research any researchable item in the game (as long as you have the skill ;))

Empty Datacubes Basically an empty hard drive, they're necessary for making blueprints of items. Fairly cheap to buy (compared to the other items). Note that these aren't needed when researching tech parts.

 

Research Substance If datacubes are the bread of research, this stuff is the butter. Also affectionately known as research lube, this is necessary to research any item above TL25. As the TL increases, more is used.

Naturally, there are also a few bonuses available via other methods (i.e. wiring yourself up like Johnny Mnemomic with implants or acting like a Kurt Cobain wannabe and jacking yourself with drugs). There are numerous implants that'll give you boosts in Intelligence so we'll just highlight the ones that give Research bonuses:

Advanced Nerves - A three-tier booster for your backbone, each gives bonuses to Intelligence, Research and Hacking. However, the Strength and Transport skills take a beating. All of them are drop-only however, so you'll either have to go hunting for one, hope someone gives you one or buy one yourself.
Special Science CPU - A high-level tech-part implant, this chip would give you all sorts of bonuses (Construction, Dexterity, Implant, Intelligence, Recycling, Repairng, Research) with no penalities. However with an INT of 84 required, you'll either need to be near your cap or wired with INT implants to be able to put it in. Get this implant from the BioTech Faction Database in HackNet.
T-Haven-CPU - This CPU is adds 10 to Recycle, Repair, Research, and Construction. With No Requirements, it's a low level Tradeskiller's Dream. Get it from the Fallen Angels Epic Run.
AREA MC5 Hawking Chip - And you thought the SS chip was hard enough to get! This chip, although requiring an INT of 95, gives exactly the same bonuses as the SS chip. What's the use of it then? Well imagine the bonuses of an SS chip AGAIN when both are in your head... This CPU is constructed from parts looted off the MC5 Base Commander in the MC5 Facility.
Researcher Machine Glove - Why can't any of these items be researchable?? :S While the implants above give decent research bonuses, this glove is the daddy of all the research bonuses - +15 to research, and some decent bonuses to Intelligence and Transport. It's also the easiest research implant to get, with parts fairly common and hence low-valued. However, there is a catch - All "**** Combat" skills take a staggering -100 point penalty when its worn so don't expect to fight well with it on (unless you want to fight with the killing ability of a hippy pushed into National Service). Luckily it's easy to put on and take off. It's available from the Fallen Angel's Faction Database in HackNet.

Crahn Construct Skill Booster - Not drugs as such, but you still get a buzz. ;) You need a PPU monk to cast these 3-tier buffs on you, and you need your LE chip out, but when you do you receive a varying research bonus of up to +16. Almost enough to forget to wonder why researchers & recyclers are cast under constructors for the name of this spell :P

How to research?

So now you should know what you may need during your career as a researcher, but what about actually researching? Well, now it's time to go through how to research :)

Open the Processor (F7) and the Inventory (F2) windows. Drag your research tool onto the first box in the Processor window, then the item you're researching onto the second box in the Processor window. All you have to do now is click the Start button.

The time taken to research will depend on the Tech Level of the item - The higher the TL, the longer it will take to research. Your RES skill does not affect the time taken - Only the likelihood of a successful research.

Once the job is completed, one of three events will occur - A success, a fail or a critical fail. Each of these circumstances will be explained in the two sections below.

Blueprint Production

This is making blueprints from items by researching them, and will be your main job as a low-level researcher. The tool goes into the first box, the item to be researched in the second, and an empty datacube in the third.

For each research, any of the following can happen:

SUCCESS - A blueprint is completed and is available in the result box to put in your inventory. The datacube is used up.
FAIL - A blueprint isn't made, all the items stay in the processor window and you can press "Start" to start again
CRITICAL FAIL - Same as Fail, however the datacube is destroyed as well and a new datacube needs to be added. Luckily datacubes cost little each so this isn't a bad thing.

As your Research skill increases, the chances of successfully completing blueprints will increase as well as the number of items you can research. However, note that not every item in the game is researchable - For example, with exception of the drones, no tech-part item is researchable. For details on which are researchable and which aren't, check out the databases at SynergyXR .

Rare Part Researching

As you skill increases to over 100+, this job will gradually replace making blueprints as your main job. The tool goes into the first box again, the rare part to be researched in the second box. No datacube is needed for researching rares.

For each research, any of the following can happen:

SUCCESS - The tech part is identified and found in the results box.
FAIL - The part isn't identified, all the items stay in the processor window and you can press "Start" to start again
CRITICAL FAIL - Same as Fail, however the tech part is destroyed. This can be a little terrible to some, as the value of a rare part can be high for some people.

Tech parts comes in three flavours - Low-Tech (L), Tech (T) and Expensive (E). While they have fairly high Tech Levels, I'd advise having higher research skills before researching each - 90 for Low-Tech (20 RES above the TL of 70), 120 for Tech (30 RES above the TL of 90) and 150 for Expensive (40 RES above the TL of 110) if you don't want a fair share of critical fails.

Although you're likely to get less rare parts than blueprints in your career, researching tech parts give you damn good INT XP, so when choosing between the two at any time, you should concentrate on rare parts first.

Researcher's Career Start-Up Guide

Now we've talked about how you can research, how do you become a researcher? Grab a cuppa because this can get lengthy.

When you're creating a researcher, only two classes should be considered - Spy & PSI Monk. The reason is that each have the higher cap of 100 in Intelligence, and can also hold their own - Spies also have a 100-cap in Dexterity, and PSI Monks the same for Psi Powers. Alternatively, those caps can be used for other tradeable skills - Spies can use their DEX for repairing, and PSI Monks can use PPU spells to provide buffs and heals to others. A few implants that can help boost Intelligence require Dexterity however, so a spy might be SLIGHTLY more suitable than a monk.

Now it's time to choose your faction. This is essentially a matter of personal choice. However, here's some factions that might be useful for different reasons:
BioTech, CityAdmin, Diamond Real Estate, NExT, ProtoPharm, Tangent Tech - All are based in the city, where you'll find your main business especially in the start. Each is a good choice if you're starting out, but watch out about going into the factions of certain HQs (e.g. TT or BT runners going in each other's HQs)
Fallen Angels - A faction neutral to CityAdmin, and the role-playing factions natural choice (that and they have a kick-ass faction base ^^)
City Mercs - The other CA-neutral faction
Crahn Sect, Twilight Guardians - Not the best factions to be in as a researcher unfortunately, mainly as you'll likely be in the Plaza most of the time and you don't really want to worry about CA guards in Medicare and other places shooting you if you get too close. Still, if you love a good challenge/run feel free to be with either of these.

In the end, it's all based on personal preference - Pick which you believe is the best option: the Bureaucrats (BT, CA, DRE, NEXT, PP, TT), the Technocrats (FA), the Revoluticrats (TG, CS) or the Mercenacrats (CM).

Next stop is to pick your job - This will only affect your starting skill levels & equipment (the job picked has no lasting effect after creation ;)). For spies, your best choice is naturally the Scientist - A TL30 research tool will be in your starter kit which will save you a couple of grand in expenses at the start. The PSI Monks unfortunately have no such luck. The alternative for them is to pick a job based on whether you're going to be an APU or PPU so you can get the most spells - APUs will fall in love with Privateers due to their (relatively) wide arsenal while PPUs will be suited to being Field Medics.

Now that you have your job, you now have to decide on your skills. Here's the recommended set-up for each of the two classes:

SPY - Scientist
INT (78 points): Pretty obvious - Put as many as you can in research. If you're going to be a ranged fighter (i.e. Pistol or Rifle), put as many into Weapon Lore as is advised for P-C/R-C below and the rest into RES. If you're going to be a droner, put enough in Willpower to be able to pilot an SR-1 Scout Drone (which needs 6 WPW) and the rest in RES. If you're not planning to go into combat, put all 78 points into RES to give yourself a kick-ass start.
STR (10 points): Considering the spy's low STR cap, there's not much (but not no) point to invest in Heavy or Melee Combat. Your points should go into Transport & Resist Force equally if you're going to be fighting, or all into Transport if you're gonna be pacifist (slash wimp :P)
CON (20 points): Another fairly low cap, but not as much as STR. If you're gonna be a pacifist, put half of your points into Endurance. If you're gonna be a fighter, put that half into Body Health instead. Either way, but the other half in Athletics.
DEX (40 points): This is easily the most flexible skill of the five, so you will have to pay attention.
If you're going to be using pistols, put 10 points in P-C. Once you manage to get one, you'll be able to use the ground-floor-standard Lazar Gun, and after your first level up in DEX, you'll be able to use an Unarmed Pinfire Nailgun (which is slightly better).
If you're going to be using rifles, put 12 in R-C. You can then use the Lazar Rifle (evidently the rifle version of the Lazar Gun), and after two levels up you'll be able to use a Standard Street Model Rifle (again, slightly better)
If you're going to be a droner, put 12 in Remote Control. Like above, you'll then be able to use a Basic Lightweight Attack Drone and then after 2 DEX levels an SR-1 Scout Drone.
Whatever you choose, what points you have left should go into all of the following: Recycle to clone your own ammo (5-7 should be enough) and Agility to speed up your movements - By fighting, you can usually afford much better repairing and you can usually protect yourself in the wastelands by picking off low-level mobs and avoiding the high-level ones (that, and it isn't uncommon to find someone in your clan or faction going the places you want to and catching a lift.)

If you're forgetting about combat altogether, then you've got a few choices - Repair to be able to repair people's items (which is another good-paying job), Recycle to clone ammo & parts (though as neither a fighter or a constructor, won't be that useful), or Agility if neither catch your eye.

Told ya that DEX is a little too flexible :P

PSI (2 points): Don't expect to be able to cast anything at all with two points. What you can do with them though is use them to work towards your first spells.

If you're going to be using aggressive spells, then put those two points in either MST or APU - They require 2 and 5 points respectively for a Crahn Energy Bolt, the entry-level APU spell.

If you're going to be going down the Passive path (recommended for a Researcher), shove them into either MST or PPU - While you can use a Crahn ParaShock Bolt fairly quickly, the first spell that'll be of use to you will be Heal which needs two extra PSI levels and 3 & 7 points in MST and PPU respectively.

PSI MONK - Privateer/Field Medic
INT (40 points): While the bad news is that you don't have as much INT at the start as spies, your use of PSI Powers means that you don't have to worry about Weapon Lore or Willpower :) You would want to put in a few points in PSI Use to boost your range and rate of fire, but the rest should go straight into research :)
STR (2 points): With a low cap on strength, don't even think about putting any in Melee or Heavy Combat. If you're going to be a PPU Monk, put those two points into Transport - Chances are that unless you're going to be hired as an in-the-field PPU, you're unlikely to face much combat. If you're going to be an APU or an in-the-field PPU, the protection from Force & Piercing damage that Resist Force gives could be of some use, so feel free to either put both points in FOR or one in each of FOR & TRA - Your choice.
CON (10 points): Almost exactly the same info as the Spies; if you're not going to be in the field, put half of your points into Endurance. If you're gonna be kicking arse, put that half into Body Health instead. Either way, but the other half in Athletics.
DEX (20 points): Luckily Monks don't have to worry about Remote Control or Pistol, Rifle and Tech Combat so they can be disregarded. As can Recycle as you're unlikely to have anything worth recycling, and Repair as the cap will mean you're not going to get one of the highest skills in REP. Best bet is to put all 20 points in Agility to give you a spring in your step at the start.
PSI (68 points): The skill that Monk Researchers should be watching (well, after Intelligence of course ^^) For PPUs, put 30 points in PPU and 15 MST - This'll stop you worrying about having enough points in each stats for spells up to ParaShock Bolt (12 PSI). For APUs, put 35 in APU and 17 in MST - With a few more levels in PSI, this will allow you to use the Holy Fireball at 14 PSI. For both, put the rest of your points in Psi Power (PPW) to get a decent PSI pool for your spells.

Course, if you're already experienced in the game you should have a better grasp of planning your training in advance - In which case, feel free to take the advice here and use it to plan ahead.

Now that your new researcher character is made, it's time to actually start in the world of Neocron. Go through the works at MC5 - There's enough starter guides, in-game help and message boards that they don't need to be repeated here ;)

Once you're at your apartment, it's time to head out. If you are a part of the City Mercs, Fallen Angels, or Twilight Guardian you now have two choices - You can either stay around your faction's base (Military Base/Tech Haven/Canyon) and use the hunting areas inside each, or you can head into the city. FA members may wish to head into the city anyway, as the more XP-rewarding mobs in the Cores (Tech Haven's hunting areas) are only accessible via hacking some of the doors inside - So unless you know a hacker who's likely to be on the same times as you, best to head into the city.

NOTE - If you selected any of the other factions, you'll start somewhere inside the city and hence both options are the same ;) Skip the next two paragraphs and make your way into the Plaza.

Sadly, most of your business will be in the city so it's best to head to the city as early as possible to get used to the place ASAP. The easiest way to get there is to catch a lift - If you know someone already playing Neocron, getting one should hopefully be a breeze. If not, there's usually a few people in each faction willing to help out new players. Course, if you're a fighting researcher then you should hopefully be able to get across to Neocron. Basic strategy is to watch your surroundings for mobs and avoid them if you can. If you can't, find the safest way across and run like hell. Only other thing is important - When you reach the entrance to Neocron, DO NOT HAVE A WEAPON OUT. Otherwise, the STORM bots at the entrance gate will take you out fast and it's frustrating to go across numberous sectors and then get shot at near the end only to start at the beginning again.

Okay, so you've made it to Neocron? Congratulations - You've learnt more about surviving in the wastelands than most pro-CA newbies will :P The first stop in Neocron will be the Outzone station for Neocron's subway - Walk through the station up to the end, where you will be able to board a subway car. Take it to the third stop along the line, aka the Plaza station, and get off and head out of the station.

Welcome to the Plaza - The researcher's main place of business. The first thing you should do is get to a Gene-Replicator and activate it. The places I'd recommend is either one of the two near the Medicare in Plaza-1 (unless you're an enemy of CityAdmin, i.e. Crahn Sect or Twilight Guardian) or the one on Rontrade Walk in Plaza-2. Should you die at any time, you'll then be able to use that GR to clone there instead (Yeah, you may not die at all - But do you really want to risk going all the way back to your HQ halfway across the wastelands and have to come back? ;))

Now that you are in the city, what do you do? The first thing would be to work to get a better research tool - Especially for PSI Monks and non-Scientist Spies (Technically as a Scientist you could do straight into working, but as you have little points in RES and are limited to ressing items less than TL30, you're not going to be getting a lot of jobs you can do well at the moment). Course, for that you need cash - And to get cash, you need to research. Catch 22, eh? *game show buzzer* Wrong!

To get some cash, there's three ways of doing things - Hunting, courier deliveries and faction researching

Hunting

Hunting is simple - Wack something with something large and/or sharp (preferably both). Need I explain further? :P

If you're a PPU or a pacifist (i.e. pure repairer/recycler/driver), you can still get a hell of a start by fighting - Call it "relaxation of morals caused by necessity for survival" if you need to ;)

In practically all jobs in spy & PSI Monks, you should have got a Stilleto - This is all you need, course you can always ask around for a better quality Stilleto (But don't pay for one - You won't need one for that long). This also applies to a pistol/rifle user/droner as well, as chances are you won't have such a weapon as you went Scientist (sorry ^^). Luckily all you need to use a Stilleto is some strength (that you'll already have) and the brain cell that makes you realise that you can stab with it =) APUs will be the most fortunate at this stage, as they'll have a few spells to cause some pain instead >D

Now, head into the Plaza-1 sector and look for the manhole between the Cryton & Yakahama stores - That is one entrance into the city sewers. There are a few of them in many sectors across the city - Via Rosso-3 and Plaza-4 to name some - and they're your ticket into getting some cash & XP.

Head down into the sewers and look around. If you're like me, you'd probably think this place is a little dark - Until you hit F11 and set the Gamma Correction a little higher =) Have an explore around your immediately area around - You won't be attacked by the mobs on this level (unless you go down the ladder to below the grate, whereas you'll get the full attention of plants). Make a note of mobs' names and what they look like.

Now the big question - What to hunt? Your best bet are the spiders - They're easy to track, easy to kill, and shouldn't be able to do considerable damage to you (unless you go AFK). Move the stilletto from your inventory to the top-most spot of your quickbelt (those boxes to the right of the screen), press "1" to equip the Stiletto and stab away with the LMB. Afterwards, right-click on the spider's corpse to see what's inside - Most players won't be interested in the contents of spiders but ranged fighters may want to take some chitin or limbs for ammo later (I'll explain later ;)).

Only hunt the Small Spiders and Spiders - The Giant Poisonous Spiders will be a little tough for your Stilleto at the moment. If you want, you can also try to take on roaches (although they're hard to get close to and for some reason can go through walls oO) and maybe Sewer Flies & Bees (if you really want to get kung-fu and try to slice them in mid-air ^^). After you think you've gotten used to them, head back up to the surface using the ladder you came up from (If you need help getting back, you may want to check Marsfreak's Sewer Maps at NeoTerm). Congrats - You've survived your first trip into the sewers :) Now to properly make your cash :)

Check your balance and it would have gone up a bit. The reason is because every time you take out a mob, you get a reward (higher their rank, more cash you get). However, there's another way to get more cash - Missions. These can give a lot of cash and XP in the start. To get a mission, head towards Cryton's and use the CityCom on the far wall outside the store (you think I wouldn't plan a place without everything nearby ;)). Set the faction to your own (or any of the city factions you're allied to if you're FA/CM/TG) and the difficulty to Very Easy. Look on the board for "Quickjob: Kill SMALL SPIDER". Accept such a mission, go down into the sewers, and kill five Small Spiders (it has to be Small Spiders for such a mission - regular Spiders don't count). Congrats - You've got an extra 400 credits in your bank, and the faction you did it for thinks a little better of you. :)

Get a mission, go down, kill, go up and repeat - If done fairly quickly, you can get a couple of grand fairly quickly (which as a pistol/rifle user, droner, or PSI Monk can use on your weapons). As you start to level in INT, CON, STR and DEX/PSI, feel free to carry on to Small Sewer Rats when you've had enough of spiders (Be warned though - They have a hell of a bite at your level, but most have pieces of meat you can eat to get health, and also very good junk items for recycling). Once they're no problem to you, you can head below the grate and take on the plants - They aren't a pushover, and some are poisonous, but they're good in terms of rewards & XP, and many leave behind Loss of Memory (LoM) pills that sell for a couple of hundred each at Medicare or Tyler's Biochem.

Eventually, you should get around ten thousand - Head to the nearby Cryton store for a TL-55 Research Tool (or save up another eight thousand for a TL-75 tool at the Yo's store in Plaza-2 instead - your choice). Do it a bit more to get a couple more grand saved up, and you should be ready for research missions.

Courier Deliveries

Alternatively, as a pacifist there's another way to make cash - Courier runs. These are going between two or three places delivering a package.

I could make a long-winded guide about this, but there's already a guide that explains it better than I could - BradSTL's Courier Guide again at NeoTerm. However, there are a ones thing has to be noted - If you're an FA, CM or TG runner, you'll need to watch out on certain jobs - The jobs are always done to the faction's allies, so there's always the chance that a job will take you into the HQ of a faction of which you're an enemy. In those cases, just cancel the mission - Having a small penalty taken off your account is better than having your head shot clean off by a plasma cannon.

Other than that, just follow the guide on how to be a courier. Getting the cash will be slower, but you'll train all your skills equally. Once you get enough, grab yourself a new research tool (just read the last paragraph of Hunting for that :P).

Faction Researching

This is where you'll start to research properly - By taking research jobs for factions.

If you've been following the guide, you should have a TL55/75 research tool handy as well as some cash saved up. The only other thing you need now are datacubes which can be bought from Cryton's (you may want to get ten or so).

Go to your faction's (or an ally faction's) HQ and check the CityCom there for Very Easy missions and look for those a "Research Job" mission. You'll be told to go to a HR director in the HQ (which is why I said to check the CityCom inside the HQ ^^). He'll tell you an item to research - You'll then need to get the item & research it to make three blueprints of the item.

This is pretty simple to get but it can cost a bit - You may get lucky and find someone with the item or a BP of it, who may allow you to research it to get three BPs from it. However, unless you know someone already in NC this'll be a little unlikely, so chances are you'll need to go to the local stores to buy one. My recommendation would be to look for them in the Yo's stores in Plaza-1 or Outzone station - The condition and stats of an item do not affect research. What you need to research an item is a copy of the item, no matter how crappy it is - And as Yo's selling fairly crappy items for discount prices... :)

Once you have the three blueprints made, take them to the next place in your Mission window (usually to an employee in the faction's HQ), who'll give you three empty datacubes back and your reward. Do this a bit, and you can get a lot in XP and cash.

Now you're probably wondering why I said get ten when you only need three? Simple - Reason is that once you've researched an item, you don't need to keep it for research. Simple make another copy of the blueprint and THEN ditch the item (usually by selling it). A blueprint can be researched to make another copy, is stackable with identical copies and weighs a damn sight less than most items do. On top of that, once you have a spare BP of the item you can get back some of it's cost back. Just remember not to get rid of the blueprint itself, either in a mission or inventory arranging ;)

Research jobs are available at all difficulties (from Very Easy to Very Hard) and rely on you having a copy of the item to research (either a BP or the item itself) and the skill to make more BPs of it. The items asked for vary based on the difficulty of the mission and which faction it's for - Harder missions will cost a damn sight more than easier ones, and some factions require drop-only items to be researched (e.g. Easier Fallen Angels missions are prone to asking for Balance-Advancer 1 implants).

Currently there isn't a guide which lists all of these, so I guess it's something to try :) If you know for certain what is asked for in missions in each level & faction, feel free to contact me with the info :)

What next?

You've made it from MC5 to Neocron, you've made some starter cash in the sewers (or from deliveries), and now you've got research missions sorted. Congratulations - You've learned the beginnings of a researcher and are now on your way to becoming something big in the city :) Now the big question - What is next?

By this time, you should have a decent enough RES skill and research tool to start doing jobs for others. Unfortunately, you'll still be a long way from commanding high prices as your jobs are likely to be low-TL. However, you'll be wanting to factor in something new - Research substance. Used to research items with a Tech Level over 25, you're gonna start needing to grab this stuff when you can. The stuff can be gained from Cryton's like the empty datacubes in 20-unit Packs and 200-unit Big Packs - When you can afford them, always get the big packs - They'll work out to be cheaper per unit and you'll be burning through the big packs damn fast to even think about regular packs.

Once you can, start thinking about improving your skills via implants - Most easily available from Cryton's, they can give a considerable boost to your RES skill and especially your Intelligence (especially useful for putting in other RES+ implants ^^). Refer to the Tools of the Trade for RES implants and SynergyXR 's implant database for INT implants.

Of course, there is one bit of advice I can give that'll be the potentially most helpful piece of advice I can give - Join a clan. A well-off helpful clan can help you out with implants, items, advice, all the tradeskill services...and especially work to research and train your Intelligence on.

"How to find a clan?", I hear you say? The best advice - Look around. The easiest way is to look around on the Clan Recruit chat channel via the HyperCom window and the ncrunner.clan recruitment forum via a CityCom terminal. Another is to ask around on the in-game Faction channel - Activate it like the Clan Recruit chat, and you'll be able to take part in chats within your own faction (a great way to find out about clans in your faction). Yet another is to look around on the official Neocron forum and on Neocron fan sites like SynergyXR and Neocron.org - Members of high-profile clans can't help being around such sites ^^ Lastly, look around the web sites of clans - SynergyXR is once again another example, but there's also others around such as the SSC (okay, so I am a little biased - PK me :P)

Once you find someone recruiting for their clan, they should tell you the rest on how to enter, about the clan etc. The key point for this however is that although you'll have to be the same faction as a clan to join that clan, you don't have to be that faction from the beginning. Most clans will help you move to their faction, including helping you get the sympathy for that faction as well as the 300k transfer fee.

The best circumstance you can get is to join a clan with a dedicated clan researcher (e.g. a Head Researcher, Main Researcher etc). This member will usually know more about researching than anyone else in the clan. ^^ Get to know them a little more and find out more information from the researcher - They should be able to teach you how to train, how to handle certain situations etc. To cut the crap - Act as their apprentice :) Chances are within a short while, you'll learn the tricks that they use and will soon be up to their level. This is a plus for the clan as well as you, as there's one thing better for a clan than a great researcher - Two great researchers! ^^

Now, I've pretty led you as far as I can about being a researcher. The only other thing I can say - Have fun with learning researching. Once you're confident of your services, start to get more & more jobs until you can make research work for you. If you need assistance on how to handle that, feel free to check out Making Cash out of the Trade next or learn it yourself :) One thing I do recommend though - Check out the Tricks of the Trade for insider tactics. You've good if you have the skills, but you're great if you have the knowledge as well :)

Making Cash Out of the Trade

By now, you should have done quite a few different research jobs and have a firm grasp on research. Congrats - At this time, you are a fully-fledged researcher :)

Before, you basically got what you could get to res at your skills. Now that you have some great RES skills, it is perhaps time to consider putting in some structured pricing. This helps the clients, as they'll know how much they're expected to pay.

At the bare minimum, take these expenses into consideration when pricing:
- Datacubes (though a lot bring their own)
- Research Substance (the big expense - although the more prepared clients will bring their own)
NEVER CHARGE LOWER THAN THE COST OF THE EXPENSES FOR THAT JOB - You'll be at a damn sight better level than that and should charge above it. How much however is up to you.

Also, remember to make some profit out of it (how much depends on how large the job is - For a 5 BP job of TL60 items, you may get a couple of thousand, whereas a 100 BP job of a TL100 spell could net you a couple of hundred thousand). The reason isn't greed but so it can be used for improving your own skills - Remember that you can use that cash to getting implants and drugs to up your research abilities in the future.

On a related point, be a client's "favourite researcher" - By that, I mean treat your clients with respect, be friendly and social with them, and generally add your own touch & personality to the jobs. As you befriend your clients, they'll be more likely to come back to you again & again - Especially if you offer them small "regular's discounts". The reason for both of these points is simple - Never underestimate how good a regular customer will be to you, especially in terms of generosity. The more generous ones will be accepting and encouraging if you're charging a few more so you can work towards getting the high six-digit cash needed for a TL150 research tool or an Special Science CPU.

In the end though, the trick of pricing is to be sensible & mature about it - There's always gonna be the tight-fisted gits, and there's always gonna be the great clients that are generous with credits. The trick here is to get a price that's suitable for the majority in between these two - Once you've set some guidelines, you can then decide whether you're gonna be flexible or stick to it.

If you want an example, my pricing structure is available here. I usually stick to it with an iron fist, but even I'm partial to being overpaid. ^^ Anyone who doesn't like the price I charge, I either give them the option to reduce the number of blueprints/rare parts researched or to cancel the job altogether. I do not haggle my prices AT ALL, as it's my personal MO that if a person won't pay what I intentionally set as low prices, then they're not worth using research substance on.

However, the prices I set are only an example. Look around and see what other researchers are charging. Ask ressers in your clan and faction, check the ncrunner.services forum at CityCom stations for topics advertising researching, and look on the official Neocron forums for other researchers. Most researchers will be happy to help you out, if only to compare their prices with yours ;)

Tricks of the Trade

A researcher isn't a great researcher without a few tricks up his/her sleeve ;) Here's some of those tricks & shortcuts that a number of researchers like to use:

- To speed up blueprint production, forget about dragging datacubes into the third box of your processor window - Simply drag your research tool and item into the first two boxes and hit start. The datacube will automatically be added.
- Once you have researched an item and got a blueprint of it, you don't have to have that item any more to be able to make blueprint copies - Simply research a blueprint of the item instead. Be warned that although a blueprint is TL30, ressing a BP will be almost the same as ressing the item (i.e. RS used, time taken...), but this allows you to make up a blueprint library and stockpile blueprints for say research jobs.
- Researchers making BP copies of jobs aren't unheard of (I'm guilty of doing it myself ^^). If you wish to start your own blueprint library, all you need to do is make one more BP than asked for and then trade all but that last BP to your client. Bingo - You know have a copy of that BP and can make as many copies as you want :)
- If you're wanting to buy guns or other researchable items to make BPs out of them, always look for them in Yo's stores first - They'll be cheaper, and the condition of the guns won't affect the ability to research them.
- Some places are more expensive than others...which means that other places are cheaper as well =D For a research tool or empty datacubes, head to the Outzone station into the last room (the one with the City Exit). The left shopkeeper in the central shop on the balcony above will sell datacubes for a little over half the price of those in Cryton's in the Plaza. Likewise, for research substance you get discount research substance at Yo's in Plaza-2 (just jump off the bridge between Rontrade Walk and the Skycenter). The condition on each of these items do not affect their performance, so there's no good reason not to get them.
- If you're a big fan of high-level RES implants and teleport via GRs a lot, then you may wish to carry a few INT-boosting drugs with you (like my favourite, Blue Fairy). The reason is that if you rely on some implants' INT bonuses to be able to use others, the Synaptic Impairment may stop them being activated even after the SI is gone. In which case, a dose of Blue Fairy will usually kick-start them up :)
- If you're handling MC5 parts, make sure that there's no E parts in your inventory already. The reason is that MC5 parts look like Es in the inventory, so if they're mixed good luck seperating them again.

End-Game

By now, you should have a firm grasp of researching (most likely more than I have :)). Keep working on researching until you reach the INT cap, and then work on the other skills to make your researcher as strong across the board as it can be. After that, do what you want to - You should know what you want to do at this stage, and I can't tell you that even if you don't.

Good luck in the future Researcher - And I'll hopefully see you again in the Dome of York :)

Blue

Note from the Author

This guide was written by Blue Star specifically for SynergyXR. However, this will also be made available at GameFAQs, RPGexpert and of course Blue's own site, Blue Star Researching.

Anyone else who wishes to host this guide on their site is asked to contact Blue Star at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it In practically all cases, I will allow it - But it's a case of making sure I know where it ends up for changes, etc :)

About the Author

Blue Star currently plays on the Uranus server as part of the Fallen Angels, and is the Main Clan Researcher of the Shattered Star Confederation, a multi-game clan that has a division in Neocron.

Blue Star has a personality of a classic mercenary - A product of its players many years & MMOG experiences, its characteristic of emotionlessness (amongst others) give Blue the reputation of being an "Icy Bitch" - Which she revels in. However, she always has a soft spot for researching - Especially long or challenging jobs.

Blue Star can usually be found in the Rocco's Seafood restaurant on the Rontrade Walk in the Plaza, Sector 2, or in Tech Haven. Other than that, she'll usually be wherever a job takes her.


 
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Last updated Mon 23 Oct 2017 06:00 (GMT)

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