One of the things I’ve noticed the new guys struggling with is tying up all the sources of information available to you to build up a picture of whats going on in the system, similar to how a submarine commander must do, you cannot see your target but there are clues – local, dscan and the overview.
For instance in FW space, an FW pilot enters local, you get a glimpse of a bomber on dscan then a mission opens up in overview. You know exactly what has happened, warp to the mission as quickly as possible and murder the bomber.
There are a hundred other examples and from a quick dscan, and a glance at the other side of my screen I can roughly get an idea of what’s going on in system and basically whether it is worth hanging about or if it is time to move on.
Luckily this sort of awareness comes quite quickly, our new guys start off shouting out every damn contact they get on dscan, then rapidly start filtering them out, then narrowing them down until they get to the desired end point of just saying “2 frigates, small outpost, in warp” which is what we want (or ideally just “point”). At this stage they have become Bastards – quiet, efficient (but morally bankrupt) hunters.
My advice if you’re not quite at this stage yet is that it’s just practice, work on tying together all the info you have and noticing patterns, recurring ship and pilot names, behavoirs etc. It wont take long and it’s a good skill to have.