Buying "items" here means that you donate points towards a breakthrough in a field of science. Once the "items" are out of stock, the breakthrough has been achieved and a new story or event appears that introduces it (people that have donated for a breakthrough are the first ones asked to join it).
Completing Illegal research  will give Essence Eaters something new to experiment with.
- Countries do not create illegal research breakthroughs, so it is usually done by a Union or organization (like the Heirs of the Eophrims)
- The group tolerates or works with Essence Eaters
- The group has skilled [hidden] scientists
- They collect [hidden] or allow their members to do so