You have to drive 5 miles to find the target because some idiot started the mission 5 miles away from the objective.
You had to chase the target across the whole map because you failed to kill them in a timely manner.
You only get $5000 because we're talking about an anomalously unrewarding mission.
Really "Water The Vineyard" is about the only mission you could possibly be talking about and yeah that one doesn't feel very worthwhile (however the car in the mission sells for a lot and sort of makes up for this). So yes there are some missions which are overly long or underpaid and generally I think the repeat mission pay cut is completely stupid but with the standard pay structure most missions are decently rewarding. I will however admit that most missions are pretty simplistic.
Frankly I have NO idea how you can say gang-attacks are better for RP and money because they're plain terrible for both. The weapon pickups are the only decent reward from gang-attacks.
Holy. Spot on on what mission I had just finished haha! But there are many that are similar, usually to acquire a vehicle of some sort being driven by an NPC that you need to retrieve.
As far as "some idiot started the mission 5 miles away" - Think about that. If I'm 5 miles away, whether I go into the mission or travel to the location first (which I don't know where it is exactly keep in mind) I still have to travel the 5 miles. If I wait to start the mission and guess the general area it's in and take a plane or helicopter to the guessed vicinity, I'm likely back tracking to get the air vehicle and once I land I have to travel the rest of the way to the exact location so the time saved is a fraction at best. Clearly I'm the idiot here.
Failing to kill the target in time: If I enter the area of the the target and his bodyguards start shooting at me immediately, causing the target to flee in a vehicle, it makes it pretty difficult to kill the target in a timely manner unless I've played the mission before, know the terrain, the route and the fact that he's going to take off in a car (all of which I didn't know because I was doing the mission for the first time).
Gang attacks give 500RP each time and I pick up anywhere from $1600-$2300 on each. Using this http://i.imgur.com/RAJ0MW3.jpg you can easily do back to back nearby gang attacks collecting $2K and 500RP on each... 5 minutes tops for each one including travel time.
Frankly I have NO idea how you can say that $4500 and 1000RP in 10 minutes from 2 back to back gang attacks aren't better than a 30 minute tedious mission for the same reward.
You do not need to do every mission and you certainly don’t need to do every mission the moment it pops up. If you’re offered a mission 4000m or 6000m away you can leave it hanging, until you happen to be in the area on other business and only then start the mission. (Admittedly this strategy doesn’t really work for “Water the Vineyard” because it’s way out in the boonies and you have no reason to ever go there, but like I said it’s an anomaly)
If you want to spam missions you can use a free heli to get to your destination faster in FR, which won’t work after the mission starts. Yeah depending on the distance a heli might not be worth it... buuut helis spawn all over the place so you’re rarely more than a minute or 2 away from one. There are 1 or 2 missions where the job list start zone seems to take place a little while away from the actual mission, but it’s only about 500m. There is a glitch where you spawn at the mission giver’s house instead of your current location but I’ve only seen it on Trash Talks and it’s kinda random (doesn’t happen everytime). I think the 2nd team for Last Chopper out of LS and The Parking Garage can get weird spawns too. But still as a general rule minimizing the distance before you start a mission is a good idea. Additionally even if you’re only driving there and it’s the same delay whether on-mission or off-mission then driving prior to the mission start is still a courtesy to other players as you’re just spending your own time rather than spending everyone’s.
First time I did “Water the Vineyard” I got lit up by his bodyguards too... but I noticed the target started was running and prioritized him. He got into his car with a decent lead but I managed to catch up and kill him about 300m down the road. I’ll definitely agree that this particular mission is a pain, but how far away the guy gets is all about how much of a head start you give him. This isn’t me trying to be a badass – if the guy had managed to get away from me I would’ve accepted it as my own mistake and laughed about it.
I usually get about $1000-$1500 from gang attacks but maybe I’m missing some packages. But even with your numbers that’s only ~$27,000 /hr and 6,000 RP / hr which is just terrible. You can get more rep from one 90 second CR race even.
The top earning missions right now:
Mixed Up With Coke : ~$153,000 / hr (on halved rewards, but requires set up)
Coveted : ~$132,000 / hr standard, ~$168,000 / hr glitch
I’d say that doing random standard missions for the first time is somewhat competitive with these numbers too.. but its limited on how much you can earn total before you exhaust all the missions and start getting the halved payouts (you get about $800,000 accross all the missions, and halved payouts make a lot of missions not worthwhile at all). People may complain about farming but IMO it’s fair to talk about farming missions when we’re talking about farming gang attacks
You can also beat your numbers with survivals (maybe ~$51,000 / hr, after ammo costs and assuming victory) and races if you win enough (between maybe ~$20,000 / hr and ~$70,000 / hr depending on win rate, which race and number of racers.. but they’re really good for RP too). Constant good placements on DMs/TDMs would also give you way more, but low placements give you basically nothing. Selling vehicles to LSC is an easy 9k every 48 mins (actually you can sell 2 vehicles if you have multiple characters, and some mission cars like the one in Water the Vineyard sell for the tune of $19,000. Also even without trying to do any glitches you can end up with duplicates of your friends vehicles which can be sold for $100,000.) Bounties can be good money for very little work too, but they’re random and some are way more trouble than they’re worth. Arms Crates can give you up to $5000 or $15000 worth of ammo if you have high-level weapons that are exhausted, in addition to the actual contents of the crate (maybe averages at $1000 and 1000 RP). You can get good money from some high-priority vehicles too ($15,000+) but others suck (~$5000) and they can be a lot of work in aggressive servers (5 min easy work in a lax server, 15min battle in a tough one. Oh and I’d also say that the standard Simeon exports aren’t worth it except at the high end). A good armoured truck can hold around $12,000 but the contents are random and so are the spawns, but still they’re a great sources of money if they repeatedly spawn (can get $50,000 in about 10 mins but you’re limited on how long they keep spawning). Actually your numbers don’t seem much better than doing store robberies and I’d probably prefer to do store robberies as they’e more spammable IMO.
Additionally I also find it REALLY easy to die on gang attacks. On missions the AI is absurdly passive a lot of the time, so if you don’t expose yourself you’ll never die (additionally for many missions all the enemies are standing way out in the open at the start too, so with a good alpha strike you can wipe out half of them before they can even do anything). On survivals the AI is absurdly aggressive, so if you play defensive they’ll rush forwards into your firing line and get mowed down easily. On gang attacks you get a few guys who play really defensive.. then when you push up and kill them a bunch of aggressive enemies spawn all around you (additionally gang attack enemies might have levelled guns, these days when I do gang attacks some enemies have miniguns which I’m pretty certain they didn’t have before).
Also playing with a gang attack with a friend immediately halves your earnings. Playing a mission with a friend doesn’t effect your money and just gives you +20% or +30% rep. And you can get another +50% rep for hard mode which doesn’t seem to change all that much. Additionally dying on a mission costs you ~$5, dying on a gang attack costs you $500 (however yes failing a mission wastes time, but gang attacks are impossible to fail).
The only missions I’d say should take 30mins (without repeated failures anyway) are Docks to Stocks, Docks to Stocks II and American Exports.
If you like playing gang attacks but the numbers you’re presenting just don’t make them seem like a viable income line, at least compared to what I’m used to. IMO the advantage of gang attacks is they take like 2 mins if you pop up next to one, so you can do them whilst waiting on other people or just as a quick distraction whilst maining something else. That and they’re a good way to get a hold of a Combat MG. Still the map of gang attacks is useful (hadn't seen that before) and I might try to do them all, but it'll be for the sake of completion not for efficiency.
For missions faults I’d say
- Mission length/difficulty is wildly inconsistent and bears little relation to mission payout.
- Some missions are horribly underpaid compared to others
- Many missions are blatant copy-pastes of each other and can seem overly simplistic
They were however one of the best sources of income prior to 1.04 and even on 1.04 or 1.05 there are some missions which are worth grinding (but after 1.04 casually repeating missions doesn’t seem worthwhile).