MISSIONS: Basics – Understanding Mission Listings - #00004
Listing options and some advice
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The 'show reward choices' option selector can be quite helpful when concentrating on a certain goal while doing missions.
… is the default selection. It doesn't really show all benefits of a mission, but shows these from maximum to lowest impact. If, for example, a mission has +++++ REP, you will see this feature listed in a big endian way. If it provides only minor REP changes but materials or commodities, you'll see this feature listed before REP.
Useful whenever you've got no certain goal or for a quick overview.
… is completely redundant, as credits are listed first when using the default 'All choices' option.
… is fine to de-clutter the listing in case you're doing missions to collect engineers' materials.
… lists only the bonus commodities available on completion of a mission. This option doesn't currently make much sense as monetary mission reward almost always is the better choice in doing missions than selling bonus commodities. If you've got to 'source' some commodity it can be helpful to 'earn' these in another mission, though.
… shows you how much REP you can gain by doing a certain mission. The more 'plus' symbols, the better.
… provides information on INF changes by doing a mission. Influence is the standing of a minor faction inside a system. Doing maximum-plus-count missions for one minor faction increases this faction's influence in a system. This influence is provided by showing percentage. Impact on a mission depends on the current system state. Consult the Background Simulator articles, please.
Lots and lots of problems
Elite Dangerous' mission system is full of things that can create a lot of frustrations up to rage quit level. To avoid this unwanted effect, you need to be very careful in reading mission listings and mission descriptions before accepting a mission.
Most important thing to check – in the mission listing and overview – is your destination or the place to go when doing outgoing missions: the target system and its distance is always present with these mission types. If you're in a combat ship or a small vessel with a low total range, make sure you have a fuel scoop installed (check the Exploration article about fuel management). And you can reach your target.
Second most important thing to check is effectiveness: Does your given mission provide what you demand when put into relation of time invested? Example: Mining missions. These pay quite well, but they can be a real pain in terms of consumed time. Make sure you can reach your goal if you got a small ship or limited time. Nothing more frustrating than doing missions, then seeing them fail before completion, losing all revenue.
I strongly recommend to also read
Basics: Understanding Mission Types - #00005
Basics: Understanding Mission Texts - #00006