During the holidays I donned the vacuumsuit and became CMDR Cactus once again in the gigantic galaxy of Elite: Dangerous.
This time around I was determined to get somewhere with Powerplay, and set out to earn merits with my power of choice, Zachary Hudson (I have no idea why I chose him so long ago, but whatever man, maybe I just have a soft spot for the Feds). I hopped on with /r/EliteHudson and found some undermining buddies, and went to work in multiple Empire faction controlled systems, making trips 200+ lightyears apart as we jumped from territory border to territory border, undermining sometimes 3 systems during an evening. I quickly reached 1500 merits and rank #4, and last night I reached 10,000 merits and rank #5, which is special because I will receive 50 million credits every week, as long as I make about 5,000 merits every cycle.
This is so much better than grinding for bounties because I'm accomplishing something in the galaxy and getting paid really well for it. By the end of the current cycle I'll have enough to fully outfit a Fer-De-Lance for combat, or I could wait another cycle and have enough for one badass Python, still deciding between the two.
It's still a combat grind for merits but a guaranteed 50mil a cycle is nice. I can supplement it with bounty hunting in Noatiaca as well and eventually reach a potential end-game with the ability to buy and upgrade any ship out there, which would be awesome. I have my eyes on a Federal Corvette.