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Navigation of FTL Guide

Sectors

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Sectors are the regions in which you travel through in Faster Than Light, spanning the interconnecting and aimless highway of beacons. These beacons are like navigational nodes, set into a network of lanes. You jump from one beacon to another, and nowhere in between. The faster than light drive technology can only operate in that way, but as to the specifics of why or how are not given in the context of the game. There are of course two likely theoretical ways the faster than light technology works, but it can’t be said as to which one it actually is, or if it really is either of them too.

Going the star wars-like route, using the faster than light drive enters the space cruiser into a hyperspace, another dimension that the laws of physics can be ignored. Ergo you can travel faster than the speed of light in this hyperspace, which isn’t normally possible without some kind of phenomenal technology outside of that hyper space. Your space cruiser travels from point A to point B because it needs some kind of guide, or you may end up jumping back out too close to something, or actually inside of something, like a star or a space station. It also doesn’t travel any further than that since the faster than light drive has a limited charge that only brings you so far in the hyper dimension.

The other possibility is the more stereotypical theory, in that the faster than light drive activates a wormhole, the entrance connecting to the beacon your space cruiser is at and the exit connecting to the beacon your space cruiser will be at. This is different than traveling through a hyperspace dimension where your space cruiser darts at an unfathomable speed, as a wormhole connects two vastly separated places.

Neither theory is by no means a full explanation of what it possibly could be, as the inner workings of actual faster than light travel are uncertain with many competing theories as it how it could be done. No matter how it is actually done, the sector expands like a broad map with over twenty beacons thrown across it. The network of these sectors can seem familiar, but generally where the beacons appear and in what patterns are random. This applies as well to what beacons connect where. You can easily, and commonly if you do not pay heed, jump to a beacon that connects to nothing further, and so you are forced to backtrack to choose another route that will not leave you stranded.

Every faster than light drive jump does consume fuel though, so you must make efficient use of your travel locations. Run too sour of luck, or take too many wrong turns, and your space cruiser will be liable to run out of fuel reserves and you will be literally left stranded. Your regular impulse engines work, which are what drive the space cruiser around outside of faster than light space travel, like in dog fights with other space cruisers. They won’t take you anywhere though, and the game rarely gives you the option to use them, but it can sometimes.

Without any fuel reserves, you have two options initially. One is to turn on your distress beacon, and the other is to not. Between those two, you must wait. Waiting is equivalent to the time lapse of a single faster than light drive jump, and so for every period of wait, the rebel forces will get closer to you just as they would when you were jumping to another beacon, except now you are not moving forward, keeping out of reach. After every period of wait, there is a chance for some kind of help to arrive, like a slug merchant that will gouge his prices extremely to take advantage of your helpless state, something like 50 scrap for 5 units of fuel. Rebels could also find you, even if you are outside of the red invasion zone, and attack you. Usually it is not good to be found by a rebel, but by defeating the rebel’s space cruiser that gives you an opportunity to salvage some fuel and continue on with your journey, to hopefully escape your fate by being lost in space.

Turning on your distress beacon increases the chances somebody will find you to help, but will also increase the chances something aggressive will too, who will have less than benevolent intentions. Either way, you’re not in a good situation for your survival and progress for scrap by getting stranded like that, and so it is something you should avoid at most, if not all costs. There aren’t any space cruisers that can be unlocked by getting stranded without fuel either.

Though each sector has over twenty beacons possible to jump to, you cannot possibly visit them all before getting caught by the rebel invasion fleet. Gradually they will cover the map, taking control over beacons they have passed in a bowed perimeter. For every jump that you take, as you hover your mouse over the prospective beacon, you can approximately see how far the rebel forces will reach. Early on in a sector you will not see the fleet, but after a few jumps, they will start to spread. There are a few methods you can use to delay their advance, but all of these involve random events.

Always your chosen space cruiser starts from some beacon that is pushed against the left edge of the map, whether you are just starting the game or have jumped into the next sector. That beacon is the one beacon that will never have any kind of an event on it, like encountering a hostile automatic drone or randomly discovering a weapon floating in space. This is your one potential reprieve which you can use to cooperate by repairing your systems, stopping any fires, and mending any hull breaches if you had to escape earlier.

Aside from being on the left most side of the map, that beacon can spawn anywhere from the top to the bottom of the map. From there, your space cruiser will faster than light drive jump beacon to beacon, visiting as many as you can without getting caught by the rebels, while proceeding towards the exit beacon. That exit beacon is always labeled on the map regardless of how far away it is from your ship. You can find the exit beacon at the right side of the map, while it won’t follow a rule of being pushed the farthest right of all beacons.

Hovering your mouse over one of those diamond shapes that are beacons will show you through dotted lines where that beacon will let you travel to. You can do this for beacons that you do not have immediate access to as well.

Through the course of a game instance, your space cruiser will travel across eight different sectors, the eighth being the Last Stand sector as this is where you face off against the boss of the rebel fleet – the rebel flagship. The last stand sector is unique in how it is setup, as there are turn based mechanics to determine where the rebel flagship jumps to, how long it takes for it to complete a jump, and how long until it defeats the federation base – defeating you by proxy and causing you to lose the game.

Among those eight different sectors, there are sector types. There are so many sector types that you can encounter that not all of them will be found in a single game instance, and what ones you and your crew will visit are further narrowed by which sector you choose in every fork in the road. Upon reaching the exit beacon of your map, by clicking the JUMP button the sector map will be brought up. Here you will see a network of lines, forming angularly forking pathways, that all eventually lead you to your final destination – the last stand. No matter how far you are in your game instance, you can see it at the end as a single red hostile sector where all paths converge on.

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The sector map is split in such a way in that for every sector jump that you will take, you will have two options to choose from as to where you will go. This gives you some control over the randomly generated content you will come across, as the sector types greatly influence what you can find in the actual sector. For example mantis sectors will have a greater prevalence of aggressive ships that are outfitted with crew teleporters, with the muscle of the mantis race acting as the boarding party. Sounds like something you would want to avoid, but between that and a sector like a civilian sector, you will find more hostile encounters and reap greater rewards in scrap, limited resources, and potential weapons and augmentations. The danger is just greater and the chances of your demise are also greater, but without those extra rewards you may not survive in the next sector, or if you do you may not survive the rebel flagship in the last stand.

While the arrangement of what sectors there are and where they are in the sector map is random, there are still sector types that are not. The sector map has three categorizations for the three types of sectors, while there are multiple sectors within each category. The first is civilian, which is symbolized by a bright green. Not to be confused with the sector with the same name, the Civilian Sector that has no direct association with any of the space faring races or militarized factions such as the rebel forces or the federation.

The second sector type is hostile, which is symbolized by a glaring red, and the third sector type is nebula, symbolized by a bright purple, matching the clouds. Across the sector map each of the sectors will be represented by one of these dots, and past the two sectors you have to choose from in immediate connection to your own, those sector type colors are the only information you are given as to what is potentially there. A civilian sector type could be any of the five potential sectors, and a hostile sector type could be any of the eight potential sectors, with the notable exclusion of the ninth sector - the last stand, as that can only spawn at the very end.

As you inch your way across the sector map, you will close off incremental routes, gradually diminishing the variability you have in options. You can try to set out an intended course early on to avoid a certain cluster of sector types, but often you will find yourself making a decision primarily just on the two sectors you have to choose from at each fork as they have a more accurate impact on your game instance, instead of the estimating guess you would have to make about prospective future sectors. The initial first two choices you make on the sector map will also have the greatest impact on where your course will lead you, with the affect diminishing by a minor degree the farther you go. When you hover your mouse over one of the sector icons, the sector map will dim the lighting on sectors you will no longer be able to reach. It is fairly logical as to what ones you will not be able to reach by your decisions as well, as anything that cannot be directly reached will not be an option, especially if it seems like it might only be a third option as there are only two options for every sector jump.

Sector Type – Civilian

Multiple sectors fall under the category of civilian. Those are the Civilian Sector, the Engi Controlled Sector, the Engi Homeworlds, the Zoltan Controlled Sector, and the Zoltan Homeworlds. Evidenced by the small number of civilian sectors, the galaxies of Faster Than Light are quite aggressive, but there are still those civilian sectors that are diplomatic with its majority inhabiting species loyal to the federation, even if not openly.

Sectors that fall under the civilian category will have a randomly organized placement of beacons that will consist of a greater quantity of shops, random treasure rewards, and more quests, while having less ship encounters by a larger variance. There are still ships to fight out there, but it is not as dangerous as an environment as either the hostile sectors or the nebula sectors are. Even the hidden crystal worlds have a more warlike presence despite the origins of the species, as the Crystalmen left their Rockmen brethren because of their belligerent nature.

Some beacons in civilian sectors can also be covered in nebula, and this can be as little as just a few or as many as several. Beacons covered in nebula will almost always be in connecting proximity to each other, showing that part of the sector is touched by a nebula but not sporadically so like blotches. Since nebula beacons found in civilian sector types are not covering the whole beacon map, they will delay the rebel invasion by the standard but influential rate.

The enemies you encounter in civilian sector types tend to be less virulent, with a thinner quantity of space ships with boarding parties. Usually people and ships you find in civilian sectors have been friendly towards the federation in the past, and so you are more likely to find those sympathetic to your cause.

  • Civilian Sector

The first sector you start every game instance in is called a Civilian Sector. You are greeted with the text, “Welcome to a new sector! Get to the exit beacon and jump to the next sector before the pursuing Rebels catch you!”. This essentially encompasses the goal and struggle as the captain of your mission in one concise sentence. Though this is the first sector you start in, you can find it further along in the game instance, but uncommonly do you immediately connect to a civilian sector after the first sector.

  • Engi Controller Sector and Engi Homeworlds

Though these two sectors are not the same, the kind of environment and enemies they spawn are similar. Engi sectors have a large majority of engi ships, while some are mantis they prey on the engi’s physical weakness and enslave them to work for them due to their mechanical and technical prowess. Engi ships that the player encounters typically use and favor drones of many sorts, like defense drones that will shoot down incoming missiles and combat drones that will dart around the player’s ship, as well as ion weaponry that pins down the regeneration of shields, making the player’s ship greatly vulnerable to weapons fire. Because of this, it is not too expected that engi ships will have high powered weaponry armed, and so their greatest threat is the conjoined forces of their drones and ion weaponry together.

A particularly well outfitted engi ship can dramatically damage the player’s ship, and yet on the other side of the scales, some engi ships are very well suited for away from keyboard skill leveling of the crew members. Some engi ships do not have enough firepower to break through the player’s shielding, should it be upgraded sufficiently, and so the engi ship will just repeatedly blast away its ion weapon, but the player’s shielding will regenerate quicker than the ion blast can strip it down. Over time with a crew member manning the shields their skill will be capped, but it will take such a long period of time that it is better for the player to do some other activity until the goal is achieved.

Multiple engi controlled sectors can be possible to travel to in a single game instance, although that is not as likely as just finding a different sector altogether, whereas the engi homeworlds are limited to only one per game instance because of its unique nature. As a benefit, there is a guaranteed quest to be in the engi homeworlds.

  • Zoltan Controller Sector and Zoltan Homeworlds

Though a part of the civilian sector type, the Zoltan controlled sector and the Zoltan homeworlds have a strictly bureaucratic military and the player usually happens to transgress upon their laws by being at the wrong place at the wrong time, and so they become entangled in some conflicts with them. The Zoltan ships that dominate the encounters the player finds in these sectors utilize specialized shielding called Zoltan shield. This is similar to the augmentation the player can have from the Zoltan Cruiser, except the Zoltan shield the enemies have seem to possess several points more worth of health. In most cases this is not much trouble, but the presence of the unique shield does prevent certain systems from working, like the crew teleporter from sending over the boarding party or the hacking drone from deploying, as the shield just blocks it all.

The Zoltan race is one of the most prized species to have as a crew member due to their latent energy, and so that is a compelling reason to visit these sectors, even the Zoltan homeworlds that can only spawn once in the game and is rarely if ever seen before the third consecutive sector. Shop beacons will have a greater chance to have a Zoltan willing to be recruited at a price, but it is by no means a guarantee. It can be often that when visiting a shop beacon and browsing the list of recruits, there is not a single Zoltan to choose from.

Sector Type - Hostile

Hostile sectors are where pirates and rebels are abound, while everybody wants a piece of somebody and merchants stray away from. These are the sectors you go to when you want a fight, when you want to reap all those rewards of scrap, fuel, missiles, drone parts, and sometimes even augments, weapons, and drone schematics when defeating an enemy. It has the greatest opportunity to yield as much loot as can be found compared to the other sectors, but at the cost of being much more dangerous and deadly. Taking on too much that the player can reasonably handle will skew their game instance in a downwards spiral, rather than spurring it on to higher heights by taking on multiple hostile sectors. There also won’t be as many quests here, or random treasure caches floating through space, just waiting for you to happen upon them.

Certain ships can only be unlocked by visiting some of these locations, and you can only access the hidden crystal worlds from the rock homeworlds, but that can also be said of the civilian sector type and the nebula sector type.

By design, hostile sectors are considered more advanced as the enemy ships generated are equipped with better systems and armaments. You have to be tough to survive a rough environment after all. Environmental hazards like the ion pulsar and beacons in close proximity to suns are present here.

  • Mantis Controlled Sector and Mantis Homeworlds

These two sectors are crawling with the praying mantis-like species that are merciless and brutal. Their scarlet coated ships are frequently outfitted with crew teleporters and med bays, making them both resistant to a boarding party and partially relentless with the assault of their own. This is where engi crew members are at their most vulnerable, as they cannot possibly outmatch a mantis, even two to one as one of those engi will surely perish at the mantis’ claws.

The rewards can be high however, and usually mantis ships are only manned with a couple or three crew members, putting them on the lower rung on crew quantity. Commonly two of them are mantis, and that also usually act as the boarding party, while there is a spare one that is an engi who mans the shields. It is also uncommon for the mantis ships to attempt to run away with the faster than light drive.

  • Rock Controlled Sector and Rock Homeworlds

The Rockmen like to keep to themselves, but are highly suspicious of outsides, and belligerent towards them because of that. Their ships, shaped like orange armadillos, are armed with hard hitting missiles, but are also sparsely manned by just a couple Rockmen. Sometimes they do have medical bays, but it is like a one in two kind of chance. As for their crew pathing, usually the way their ship’s layout forces a circuitous route because some rooms are not connected by hatch doors, despite that it is mostly a rectangle in shape; for comparison, the mantis ships is like a box-like crescent.

  • Rebel Controlled Sector and Rebel Stronghold

Aside from being ensnared by the rebel invasion line, and forced to fight off a battleship while feebly dealing with anti-ship batteries, these two sectors will have the greatest prevalence of rebel forces. There are also some unique events pertaining to the rebel stronghold, one that specifically allows the player to unlock the Federation Cruiser from the quest route.

Rebel ships are designed like the iconic plane for a spaceship, and are manned by on average three to four crew members. It is not uncommon for there to be a medical bay on board, while a crew teleporter will appear more regularly the farther along in the game instance the player is. Drone control systems are also frequent, so altogether rebel ships are quite advanced compared to the ships that usually only have the primary systems while sometimes having a drone control system. Their drones are more regularly offensive oriented, like combat drones and boarding drones, while also having some system repair drones and anti-personnel drones, making them fairly resistant compared to the standard encounter to the effects of both damaged systems and boarding parties.

  • Pirate Controlled Sector

If there was ever a place to find pirates, it would be this sector dedicated to them. Pirates are not exclusive to any species, and so neither is the make of their ships. Pirate ships are vessels pillaged and stolen from others, and so they are marked over with distinctive purple streaks and an octopus that is apparently the universal sign of a pirate. Slavers and intruders are commonly found here, and so it is wise to have at least one combat capable crew member, or else rely on the healing of the medical bay should there just be too many intruders on the player’s ship to be able to survive otherwise.

Sector Type - Nebula

Nebula sector types are completely swallowed by the masking purple clouds that interfere with sensors, rendering them useless. Nebula sectors do slow down the speed of the rebel fleet invasion, but not to a potent of a degree when visiting random nebulae in sectors that are not swallowed by the clouds. The reasoning here is that the rebels are alerted of the presence of the nebula, and are prepared for it, where as they are not for random nebula beacons that you visit.

In these kind of sectors it is easy to become lost in the clouds, hiding from potential hostile encounters, but it is also easy for your enemies to lose you as well as you have nothing to track them by. Sometimes having an upgraded sensor system can help you out, but not usually. Having a slug crew member is rather useful in this kind of sector, as they will give you blue text options more often here than other sectors for them, and in combat they will provide you sight of enemy life forms.

  • Uncharted Nebula, Slug Controlled Nebula, and Slug Home Nebula

Not too many sectors are submerged into the obscuring purple and green clouds of the nebulae, but these three are. Though they will still slow down the advancement of the rebel invasion’s line, it will not be as pronounced as when visiting a nebula covered beacon in a different sector type. Regardless it will still be of benefit to the player, and so if the player is intent on visiting as many beacons as possible, at least one visit to a nebula submerged sector would be ideal. However chances are high that the player will be met with a higher than usual number of beacons that are caught in environmental hazards, but certain ones like the close proximity to a sun will be less likely. To defend against the ion storms the player will be sure to encounter in these sectors, upgrading the reactor a couple levels higher than what is strictly necessary will bolster their ship’s abilities in properly dealing with it, and recruiting at least one Zoltan crew member will make a major difference as their energy exuding ability is not impeded by the presence of a ion storm.

All three of these sectors have a higher prevalence of the slug race and their ships, and the species tends to be manipulative and cunning to get and take what they want; as such, pirates are in greater number too. Fortunately for the player, the layout design for the slug ships are not that intelligently designed, and so usually their tiny ships that only have four to five rooms of corridors are sectioned off in areas, preventing their crew from repairing often integral systems like the oxygen system. It will take a while though for their air supply to drop.

The uncharted nebula does have a greater prevalence of humans than slugs though, but any that are the nonstandard species are more likely to be slugs. Shops encountered in the slug sectors also have hiked up prices, but the shops are almost twice as many in number, and so there will be a broader selection of wares to choose from.

Hidden Crystal Worlds

This elusive, long stashed away sector is of a type of its own, as it does not strictly belong in any of the three main categories. Here is the only place where the crystalmen will be found in number, and furthermore where they can actually be recruited. Yet because this sector is so difficult and inconsistent to get to, the most reliable method to actually having a Crystalmen crew member is to just helm the Crystal Cruiser from the hangar which has either two Crystalmen crew members or three depending on the layout selected.

The Crystalmen subspecies also has their own brand of weaponry technology, but the tier diversity amongst those weapons is slim, and so while the weaponry is fairly unique, it is nothing as extraordinary as the glaive beam is, or even the burst laser mark III is. Even so, it still is a physical projectile that has partial shield piercing, so it has its own niche for use.

Despite that the player must reach here by traveling through an ancient device, which can only be used by a Crystalmen who is recovered from the damaged stasis pod that was brought to the Zoltan research facility event, the rebel invasion still marches across the sector for reasons entirely unknown and unexplainable except for the sheer sake of game balance. It would teeter the delicate balance of this game if the player could visit every single beacon there is on the map of the hidden crystal worlds.

Abandoned Sector

Only added to the game with the Lanius, this sector was once the site of brutal conflict between the forces of the rebels and the federation, but now lays silent and derelict as if it became a wide sweeping grave across the solar systems. This would be because the Lanius have come upon this sector, with its large wealth of damaged spacefaring architecture for them to consume. Although the Lanius are not necessarily malicious like the mantis are, they still are protective over their food source, but will still be willing to listen to reason.

Unlike the Crystalmen, although the Lanius are an exceedingly rare race to find, some of them still can be recruited from shop beacons, just uncommonly so. More frequently it is that they can be recruited from events, specifically one mentioning the translator. By offering to purchase the translator in that event, at the fee of forty scrap, the player will actually be purchasing the services of the Lanius who has learned the galaxy’s language after spending an indeterminable amount of time in stasis.

The Last Stand

This is the last sector of every game, and as such it is unavoidable. The last stand will be the final selection on the sector map, no matter what path or paths the player took along their journey. It is here that traversing the beacon map changes. There is no exit to go to any longer, as the player has found their final destination. Instead a turn based system is put into place, with the primary goal being to fight the rebel flagship. It will be denoted on the beacon map how many turns it will take for the rebel flagship to destroy the federation base, the number of which changes after every phase encounter with the rebel flagship. The player is able to visit some beacons initially, but this will sharply decline once they have exhausted their couple or so beacon moves they have before they are forced to clash back to back with the rebel flagship until it is defeated.

The rebel flagship itself has three phases, and so that is translated into three separate fights. Though there are some beacons with repair nodes specifically for the federation, they can often be hard to get to, or quickly just be placed under control by the rebel forces, rendering them utterly useless to the player. Even should that turn limit not be in place, often beacons will have anti-ship batteries locking onto the player’s space cruiser, which can deal a significant amount of damage in a time that the HULL needs to be as high as it can be in order to weather the considerable attacks from the rebel flagship.

When trying to defeat the rebel flagship, it is a wise strategy to dispatch all of the rebel flagship’s crew but one, preferably one of the rebels that are standing isolated and locked in one of the laser rooms, as they cannot access the rest of the ship and so whatever damage is dealt to the systems over the course of the three battles cannot be repaired. Should all the crew members be dispatched, they will not return in subsequent phases, and the rebel flagship’s experimental, voiceless artificial intelligence will take over, granting the rebel flagship a passive automatic regeneration of system damage. The fight just becomes needlessly more difficult should the entire crew be dispatched, but if too many are around, they still present difficulties too as they resist the movement of the player’s boarding party should they have one.

The first phase of the rebel flagship lacks a special attack, but the second and third phases do. The second phase will deploy several drones all at once that will consist of a mixture of combat and beam drones for a few seconds. Though that does not seem much time, in short order those drones strip away the shields and tear into the HULL, inflicting several points of damage at a time. The most devastating are the beam drones, as they can inflict two points per slice of their burning beam. Strangely regardless if the rebel flagship’s drone control system is destroyed or not, this special attack will still come out periodically. It is not even lessened in frequency.

The rebel flagship’s special attacks are perhaps one of the most dangerous aspects of the boss fight, as it takes specific tactics in order to survive and surmount the waves of damage, even with the forewarning that an energy surge is happening on the rebel flagship. The cloaking system can be deployed to be able to evade the entirety of a special attack, but it will not have recovered from its cool down by the time the next special attack comes; however that does reduce the damage intake from the special attack by half, which is considerable. Another method is to rely on the shield overcharger drone that will gradually erect layers of super shielding like the Zoltan shielding. While this will not provide an unwavering resistance against the special attack of drones, it will grant a substantial buffer.

The third and final phase of the rebel flagship has a varying special ability. Either the rebel flagship will regenerate its Zoltan shield to full, requiring that the player break through it all over again, or it will blast several heavy laser shots, fully capable of shredding the player’s space cruiser to its if there is not a decent defense for it. The same tactics can be used against this special attack though, but most importantly a heavily upgraded shield system is needed, along with an engines system that should at least give thirty percent dodge rate.

Ultimately, the build of the player’s space cruiser is all meant to be able to overcome the rebel flagship, either by using their high tiered weapons to tear through its shielding and break apart the hull, or to make strategic use of their boarding party to take out system by system, debilitating the rebel flagship as a whole. It is important to fortify the space cruiser’s chosen built and its specialties, so that it can be up to the task, or else the player will suddenly fail at the hands of the rebel flagship, when otherwise the game did not seem capable of taking out the player’s space cruiser. The rebel flagship is the boss of the game, and so it is the hardest enemy to fight.

Random Events

There is a variability in what kind of beacons you find in a sector, like shops and nebula. There are also augments and information gained from random events that will update your beacon map with more information about the beacons present on your map. This just reveals what those beacons hold, if they fall within the perimeters, and doesn’t alter what was already there. Like a beacon that has a space cruiser in close proximity, signified by the yellow triangle bordered with white that takes the place of the diamond beacon, will have that space cruiser regardless whether you know before you visit it or not.

One of the main types of beacons that you can find are those that are covered in nebula. These kinds of beacons will disrupt your sensors, to the point that you will not even be able to see the interior of your space cruiser. Rooms that your crew members are not present in will be cast into darkness, only the walls of the rooms being visible and anything within being unknown. You will still be able to see the heath of your systems, from grey to red, but you will not know if there is a hull breach or a fire spreading. Being caught unawares is dangerous.

You can visually see that a beacon is in a nebula by the graphics on the map, as there will appear to be a thick purple cloud circling the beacon. Usually there is some colored dust spread on the background of the beacon map as well. The downsides to visiting a nebula shrouded beacon is offset by the benefit, as the rebel invasion that is searching for and tracking the player is slowed down by the interference and disruption the nebula causes. Jumping to a series of multiple nebula shrouded beacons will delay the rebel forces by at least a couple turns. This can amount to a substantial quantity of scrap that otherwise just would not be able to be obtained because the rebel invasion would be forcing the player to travel to the next sector, instead of getting caught and having to fight them off in a battle that its only reward is finding one unit of fuel, although multiple if the distress beacon is turned on and the player ran out of fuel.

However the delaying effect nebula covered beacons have is lessened while visiting a nebula type sector, as the rebel forces are expecting such interference. It still delays them, but not to such a severe effect, or else nebula sectors just would not be balanced compared to hostile and civilian sectors.

Aside from the variability in the environment of a beacon, one of the major features to Faster Than Light’s gameplay is the presence of random events, and what kind of rewards and risks they offer to the player’s game instance. Random events aren’t actually as dynamically formulated as finding one in general, or even encountering a hostile ship, so there is a list of them, their types, and what happens when you choose certain text options. Regardless of that database though, blue text options usually offer greater rewards, but tend to be more context sensitive so it is possible by choosing a blue text option the player may end up giving up one of their crew members to fulfill the requirements for a quest, or in exchange for some kind of augmentation.

What is considered to be a random event is anywhere from jumping onto a beacon and finding an explorable field of asteroids before the space cruiser, to negotiating with an angry rebel assault ship, and to even choosing to sacrifice a crew member to a slaver ship just to avoid a fight. It is fairly clear when a random event has occurred, as some dialog will appear in a pale orange window, pausing the game so the player is able to choose without hurry what options there are. Some beneficial choices are more obvious than others, such as is the case with the slaver ship. The chances of a player choosing to actually sacrifice a crew member to a slaver ship is drastically small, as the only benefit that could be seen here is to avoid a fight, and a player would only desire to avoid a fight if just a point or two more damage dealt to their space cruiser’s HULL will utterly destroy it, thereby ending that game instance. Usually the slaver random event doesn’t occur past the first initial three sectors though, so it is generally ideal just to opt to fight them instead.

Since there are over a hundred random events in the scope of the game, they will be categorized under general, race, nebula, distress signal, and out of fuel. Some random events can only occur in certain sectors, so that will be further denoted, and also marked on that relevant sector type as well. Most events do not have an actual name, and so they will be inferred by the major topic the in game text carries when first encountering that random event. They should also be recognizable by the in game text that is first presented, as that will almost always be identical, unless there are variations, which will be included if there are.

Furthermore only notable random events will be included in this guide, as some events have basic and clear outcomes with only two choices. And when an event is categorized under species or race, it typically is either heavily associated with a species, or there is a blue text option available if the player’s crew members has one of that race.

General Random Events

  • “A Federation encrypted signal is being broadcast from a nearby planet.”

This random event, should the agreeable options be selected, will progress into a quest of moderate length, requiring visitation to a few different beacons in order to complete it. Most of the time, it should be worth the effort. To begin with upon encountering this event, there will be two primary choices, which is either to send an away party to investigate the encrypted signal or to be suspicious of the signal being a trap and ignoring it. The second choice will end the event completely, and the game instance can proceed on without impediment. This is inadvisable, and so the first primary choice should be selected, to actually investigate the source of the encrypted signal that is hopefully from the Federation.

The following are outcomes from exactly that first primary choice. The first possibility is that a small clandestine federation outpost will be discovered, but their supplies are all but out and so they cannot spare any for the player’s cause as much as they would like to. But they have something else to offer, the location of a secret base that should have something laying around to help. This will place a quest marker on the player’s beacon map. The second possibility is similar to the first, except that the clandestine federation outpost does have some scrap to spare, which will amount to a moderate amount given and also the location of the secret federation base. However this time the federation base is under attack and they are in need of the player’s assistance, as the rebels are trying to crush them after discovering their once hidden location.

The third possibility is a grim one, as this time the clandestine federation outpost was found by someone else far before the player, notably the rebels, as it is an empty husk littered with traces of bloodstains. The encrypted signal emitter was automatically broadcasting, and so the player turns it off. A large cache of resources is discovered while investigating this tomb, awarding a large amount of both scrap and limited resources. The fourth possibility is that the encrypted signal really is just a trap set by the rebels, and a rebel battleship emerges from hiding and attacks while up to four intruders board the player’s ship, making it a difficult fight awarding only the standard loot from defeating an enemy, albeit a stronger one.

Should the coordinates be successfully received, specifically when the clandestine federation outpost is actually manned by living beings and the secret federation base is under attack, then upon arriving at the quest marked beacon the player is met with the following prompt: “You arrive in the sector to see a small outpost being bombarded by an automated drone. This must be the federation base you were told about!”

Though the player is forced into a battle before being able to speak with the Federation base in this outcome, the hostile ship is just an unmanned drone and be quick, easy work to get rid of. At the very least from the loot that this unmanned drone yields there will be a couple of units of fuel to recuperate what fuel was consumed to travel to the initial beacon where this clandestine outpost event started and where the quest marker led the player to. With the unmanned drone defeated, the wounded federation base will effusively thank the player with one of two possible outcomes. One where the federation base has a cluster of survivors, where one of them offers to join the crew while the rest need to be brought to the next station that can be found. A meager amount of scrap will be gained from this, along with a random weapon. The second and more lucrative outcome is that there will just be a lone survivor amongst the rubble of the station, as it took more damage in the attack than the other possibility, so he offers to join the player’s crew and a large amount of scrap is awarded along with some limited resources; furthermore around and up to seven points of HULL health will be repaired by what is left of the station’s drones.

Should the original outcome from the clandestine federation outpost not alert that the secret federation base is under attack, then when the player arrives at the secret federation base marked on the beacon map as a quest, then the player can uncover a number of different outcomes that each have their own specific description.

The first possible outcome comes with the following description of: “You find the planet at the indicated coordinates. Your initial scans show the planet to be barren and devoid of life, but you get a prompt reply when you broadcast on Federation frequencies. “Hello! So nice to see friends. We'll bring you up some supplies.” From this result, a large amount of scrap along with a drone schematic will be given.

Should the second possible outcome occur, the following description will be seen: “By following the directions given to you, you find a well-disguised outpost. You are welcomed by a friendly face who offers to assist you in your quest by joining your crew.” A small amount of scrap will be handed over from this, along with a few limited resources like some fuel. A crew member will also be added to the player’s crew.

For the third possible outcome, the player will find nothing at all, for little reason given other than perhaps the coordinates were incorrect. Without a blue text option offered or chosen here, the research will yield nothing at all of value. However if the player’s space cruiser has the sensors subsystem upgraded to the third tier, then a blue text option will be present to perform a thorough and in-depth scan of the area. Evidently the signal emitter here as malfunctioned, as there is a storage cache buried inside the rock of the moon the player is visiting. A moderate amount of scrap can be taken from this storage cache, along with a random weapon of middle tier quality in most cases. There is as well another blue text option, should the player’s space cruiser have the long-range scanners augmentation equipped, as it is a frequent candidate for investigating events that involve some form of scanning, despite that their actual function searches across solar systems away and not within the immediate vicinity. Should the long-range scanners blue text option be selected, then the player will find a moderate amount of scrap here, along with a random weapon of similar middle tier quality.

The fourth and final possible outcome is met with no further choices, and the following description: “After a quick search you discover the hidden Federation space-dock. They offer you some supplies in addition to fully repairing your ship.” As conveyed by the in game text, the player’s space cruiser is able to dock at the base and extensive repairs are able to be done. Should the HULL of the player’s space cruiser be in considerable disrepair, then as large as thirty five points of HULL health have been seen to be restored to the HULL along with some limited resources. There is no scrap to be found in this outcome, but it is not as if the player has any control over what kind of rewards they find at certain portions of events, and certainly not in this one either. The considerable amount of HULL health restored is higher in value than the other outcomes, as thirty five HULL health repaired comes to the total of 105 scrap. That is about as high value as a reward can get from an event, without including the value of a high tier weapon like the glaive beam or the burst laser mark III.

  • “You receive a hail from a station orbiting a nearby planet. “Captain, we are Federation Terraforming Team C12 and are in need of assistance. Do you have some time?” ”

To begin with, two options are presented when finding this Federation station. The first is to offer the player’s assistance, and the second is to decline with the excuse of not having the time. Nothing comes about from declining, so it would be better to accept their request for help. By choosing the first option, they will elaborate on what exactly they need assistance for, which is that their sensors are not potent enough to scan through the atmosphere for any life forms, as it would be fairly unlawful to terraform a planet with living beings on it. The first option is to try to scan the planet which can have two outcomes, either the sensors fail because they are no different than the terraformer’s, or you get lucky and succeed. Succeeding will reward similar things as using the blue text options, but chances are low that without choosing one of the blue text options it will not succeed.

To get access to the blue text options though, the player either needs the sensors subsystem upgraded to level two or higher or among their crew there must be at least a single Zoltan. If both of those blue text options are available, choosing either one will still automatically succeed in the scan.

Should the successful scan be achieved, then a few possibilities can come from this. No life will be found, and since the scientists of the station specialize in life support, they upgrade the player’s oxygen system by one level, regardless of what it previously was at, so this has a varying scrap value. The second possible outcome is that a single ship will be scanned to be on board the surface, although there is no other life detectable. The job is finished though, and the space station decides to contact the ship so that they can leave before the terraforming begins, but as it turns out it is a pirate ship and so the player is brought into the fray. This outcome will result in the standard loot from defeating a hostile ship.

Another, and third possible outcome is that only a rudimentary mold will be found to be present, and although this is not any form of sentient life, the player can choose to side with its protection and demand that the terraforming crew ceases their work. They beg for the player to look the other way, so a few options are present here. The player can accept the bridge, which usually amounts to an average of twenty scrap. The player can also offer to pay the terraforming crew to delay their work until the mold can be properly studied, and presumably saved, which will result in a loss of on average twenty scrap but the terraforming crew will at least upgrade the oxygen system by a level, so this result is like a more cost effective form of upgrading the oxygen system, just not at the player’s convenience. The third possible outcome from this part is that the player can threaten them to stop by brute force, by powering up the weapons to get the message across. They will get the hint, and the event will end from there.

The most ideal outcome, should the mold be discovered on the planet’s surface, is to just accept the bribe, unless the player particularly desires an upgrade to their oxygen system even at the loss of around twenty scrap.

The federation terraforming crew event can be found in either the civilian sector, or the last stand, but it is uncommon to find this even at all at the last stand sector because of constraining mechanics that influence the type of beacons towards different, more wartime-like events.

  • “Scans reveal a large asteroid field nearby. Short-range scanners may discover useful materials while we wait for the FTL to recharge.”

It would appear from the premise of this event about the mineral rich asteroid field that upon zoning into a beacon that has neither event nor a hostile ship, the spool of the faster than light drive does not charge as instantaneously as it acts to the player. The button to jump to another beacon is usually already available once the text is confirmed past describing the area around the beacon, vacant or not.

To begin with, there are three main choices to choose from, with the third only appearing as a blue text option should the player have the uncommon scrap recovery arm augmentation. The first choice presented is to explore the asteroid field, the most direct course of action. This can result in varied outcomes, of which almost all are generally beneficial in nature. The first possible outcome is that nothing at all will happen, as the exploration yields nothing of interest. The second possible outcome is that scanning over the asteroid field reveals asteroids with useful mineral compositions that are sufficient enough to extract some fuel from them, although it is curious how it can be refined, if it even needs to be at all for the faster than light drive. The third possible outcome is that among the scattered asteroids, there will be the remains of a space ship lodged inside of an asteroid, and that it still has some missile ammunition left. From this particular find, the player will be able to scavenge both some scrap and missiles. Another outcome is that there can be a mining site long since abandoned hidden amongst the floating rocks. Since the machinery is advanced in the mining site, they used drones, and so the drone parts they have lying around can be taken along with some moderate scrap too.

There are two additional possible outcomes by choosing to explore the asteroid field, which are less beneficial than the previous outcomes. It is possible and probable by exploring the asteroid field, the pilot will have difficulty navigating the dangerous environment and a few asteroids will crash against the HULL, causing it to take around five points of damage. There is nothing that can be done about this to prevent it, aside from not choosing to explore the asteroid field at all. Another possible outcome is that there will be a pirate ship hiding amongst the cover of the free floating, pockmarked boulders, and will attack. Should the player be victorious in this encounter, then the regular loot from defeating a space cruiser will be found. Those are all the possible outcomes that can happen from exploring the asteroid field, and although they do take their fair share of risk by getting struck by the careening rocks, it has a great number of chances to find some scrap and resources to aid in the player’s journey.

The second main choice is to just wait for the faster than light drive to charge, and then jump onward, forgetting all about the asteroid field. Unless the space cruiser’s HULL health is fifty percent or lower, then the risk there is to exploring the asteroid field is more than worth it, unless the player does have access to the third main choice, which is a blue text option. By using the scrap recovery arm, the player can extract a huge amount of scrap from the asteroid field.

However it is unlikely a player is going to be in the possession of a scrap recovery arm augmentation because of its poor rate of return, requiring around two hundred and fifty scrap to even begin to make a return on investment from its initial cost from a merchant. Happening upon this blue text event with the scrap recovery arm does recoup the cost, but it is fairly unreliable to find this event despite how many sectors it can appear in. The sectors that the dormant asteroid field can be found in are the following: the civilian sector, the pirate controlled sector, the slug controlled nebula, the slug home nebula, the engi controlled sector, the engi homeworlds, the Zoltan controlled sector, and the Zoltan homeworlds.

  • There can be a few different descriptions for this particular event, as shown below…
    • “Hello,” your communicator opens a hail from a nearby ship. “Our weapon systems are malfunctioning and we're too afraid of pirates to travel home unassisted. Can you escort us?”
    • “After a short time you receive a message, “Hello. I hope it's not a bother, but I'm looking for an escort to a nearby system. This region is quite dangerous and our ship is not well-armed.”
    • “There is a single ship at this beacon. They hail you, “We could really use some help. Our FTL navigation system is shot. Can you help us get to a nearby station where they can patch us up?”

Those are all the premises offered for this individual event involving a lost vessel needing someone to guide them across the sector, for the various reasons described. There are two plain options here, either to accept their plea for help or deny them, leaving them essentially stranded and probably to their doom at the hands of the rebel fleet invasion. Even if the player does not actually plan on going through with this quest, there is little reason to deny them, as upon accepting their request for help they will hand over a few units of fuel. A quest marker will be added to the player’s beacon map at the same sector, however if the player is too close to the sector exit, this quest marker will be placed at whatever sector the player jumps to next. Regardless of where exactly the quest marker appears, it will require at least a few jumps to reach.

Upon visiting this quest marked beacon, there is a chance for four different possible outcomes, with no choices for the player to choose from. The first possible outcome is that the player will be ambushed by a rebel ship, as this was all an elaborate trap setup by the ship that had asked for help. Regular loot will be found from defeating this lone rebel ship, and little else will be heard of the ship you were supposed to be guiding. The second possible outcome is that the ship the player was escorting jumps nearby, and hand over a reward that yields a large amount of scrap and some limited resources like fuel and missile ammunition. The third possible outcome is similar to the second in that the ship actually did need the help, but offers a different kind of payment as thanks, as the escorted ship will mend up to five points of health to the player’s HULL and are willing to sell some wares too. That is only the equivalent of fifteen scrap though, so this is not a considerable reward, but finding a shop is always a welcome opportunity, especially one that at least gives some resources instead of being a net loss.

The final and fourth possibility is again the escort ship jumps in nearby, but instead express that they work at a nearby power plant, and so will improve the player’s space cruiser’s reactor by one energy slot. Since there is no control over the outcome, there is little point in debating which one is most valuable, but it would be the first, followed by the fourth in terms of scrap value.

This escort the ship event can be found in any of the sectors that are the following: the civilian sector, the pirate controlled sector, the rock controlled sector, the rock homeworlds, the engi controlled sector, and the engi homeworlds. It is a fairly common event, enough to see every other game instance at least, provided a substantial amount of beacons are visited through the course of the gameplay.

  • “You come across an asteroid mining colony. They message you immediately, saying, “Greetings. Our supplies of mining explosives have run out ever since the Rebels blockaded this system. Do you have any extra explosives?”

There are four options here, one of them being a blue text selection. The choices are either to offer five missiles, fifteen missiles, decline, or offer to launch a missile by way of the blue text. To be able to choose this blue text option, the player must have a missile weapon equipped prior to jumping to the beacon on their space cruiser. However an uncustomary outcome occurs when choosing to use the missile weapon blue text, as they will decline, and the player will be free to choose the rest of the options.

Declining results in no outcome, and essentially opts the player out of engaging in the event. Choosing either to give five missiles or fifteen will result in a few varied rewards, some of which are worth the substantial loss of missile ammunition, contrary to what the initial impression may feel like. Offering five missiles may either grant a total of ten points of HULL health repaired, an upgrade to the reactor, or an upwards of twenty five scrap. Whereas offering fifteen missiles will either grant fifteen points of hull health repaired and one upgrade worth to the reactor, or a random augmentation will be received which will not include from the list of the supremely rare ones, or even five points of HULL health repaired as well as up to forty scrap.

As can be seen, the rewards are across the board with this event, and while some rolls of the dice will not be as favorable as others, so long as the player’s space cruiser does not dramatically rely on the stock of missile ammunition, it should be an ideal choice to offer this asteroid mining colony some missiles.

The mining colony event can occur in a multitude of sectors, which are: the civilian sector, the mantis controlled sector, the rock controlled sector, the rock homeworlds, uncharted nebula, slug home nebula, and finally the abandoned sector.

  • “You arrive to find a number of ships convening around a station. You tune into their unencrypted communication channel and overhear half of their conversation. It seems that they need to take possession of an enemy ship intact.”

The player will be presented with an array of options, reaching up to five, if the player’s space cruiser meets the requirements for all three of the blue text options. It is uncommon for an event to have such a selection of blue text options, but two of them are limited to a specific one each, so it is unlikely there will ever be that many choices available in the usual game instance.

The first option is to offer the player’s services, in which they will respond that the player’s ship is not properly equipped, and as such this option should not be chosen if it can be avoided as it forfeits any gains that could be seen from this event. The second option is to leave them alone, which usually ends the event right there. Sometimes the ships speaking to each other will become enraged at this, and will actually attack the player by sending intruders over. This is unlikely to happen though, because if this option is chosen, then the player probably does not have any of the three blue text choices available.

The third option is the first blue text option, which requires that a crew teleporter is equipped on the player’s space cruiser. By offering to board their ship, they will agree to accept the help, and transmit a set of coordinates that the player will have to reach on the beacon map of that sector. Proceeding onto the next sector will forfeit any continuance of that event, and the rewards that could be gained.

The fourth option is the second blue text selection that requires a fire bomb to be equipped to the player’s space cruiser, and the fifth option which is the third blue text choice requires that the player has the biological beam equipped on their space cruiser. The outcomes for these two options are nearly identical to that of the first blue text option that uses the crew teleporter, where the player’s space cruiser will fulfill the requirements to proceed along with this event.

By following the coordinates and arriving at the marked beacon, the player will be met with this text: “You find the ship that you were asked to capture intact. You're not sure why, but they stressed that it's of great importance that you kill the crew WITHOUT destroying the ship.”

It is clear that the ship must be saved, while the crew that has taken it must be eradicated, so it makes sense why those three options were the only applicable options as they all involve ways to wipe out the crew without destroying the actual ship. Their reasons for wanting the ship not destroyed are for more than just the value of the ship itself, because if the player actually destroys the space cruiser, it will erupt in a chain of explosions that will send the player’s space cruiser flying out of control, nearly crashing to the surface of a nearby planet. If those actions were taken, fifteen points of damage will be dealt to the space cruiser’s HULL.

If the player wipes out the crew without destroying the space cruiser, then once the battle is over the merchant that brokered this deal will shortly arrive, thank the player, and hand over some scrap with a weapon that has a good chance of being a high tier weapon. Although this communication channel event does need two steps to fulfill it, along with some equipped or systems on board the space cruiser, it does give a good reward with little risk involved other than altering the path that is taken across the beacon map just to arrive at the coordinates.

  • “Not too far from the beacon, you detect a destroyed cargo ship with its cargo scattered nearby, intact.”

There are a few options when presented with this event, two of which are blue text options. The first one is to bring the destroyed cargo ship aboard, which can result in a few different outcomes. The first being that a pirate ship emerges from hiding and attacks, and at the same exact time the crate your crew pulled in flies open, pirates tumbling out. A heavily armed pirate vessel attacks the player’s space cruiser, while an overwhelming total of six intruders invade. That is about as many as can realistically appear. The second possibility is that the crate is actually filled with military supplies, and the player will receive some fuel, missile ammunition, and a moderate amount of scrap. The third possibility is that the cargo didn’t have much of anything of use aside from clothing and consumer goods, and so the player only finds a minor amount of scrap within the crate.

By choosing the second option to leave the crate alone, thinking it is suspicious, nothing will come about from this event and it will end there. However there are two more blue text options, should the player be in possession of the requirements. The first blue text option is to use the advanced sensors, which requires a sensors subsystem upgraded to level two or beyond. This option will choose to perform an advanced scan on the cargo, which can turn up a couple of different outcomes. The first being that there is actually scrap and resources inside the cargo, and the player reaps those rewards, the other being that the advanced scanners actually detect some life forms who are notably armed, such as the pirates that would emerge and attack should the cargo be investigated without the advanced sensors. From there the player can choose to destroy the crates, thereby preventing the intruders from swarming the player’s ship, even though the pirate ship will still emerge from space and attack, this time with a vengeance. The other option is to just leave the crate alone and elect to jump away, avoiding conflict altogether, but forfeiting any profit that could be made by defeating the pirate ship that will surely emerge should the crates be fired upon.

The other blue text option is to use the long range scanners, which requires the forenamed augmentation that allows the player to read additional information about connecting beacons on the map. Strangely the outcome is quite a bit different here, with no conflict possibly occurring. Instead the player either finds some missiles, fuel and a decent amount of scrap, or else just finds a large chunk of scrap.

Considering this focuses on pirates, this event only appears to occur in the pirate controlled sector.

  • ”You recognize the ship as a well-known slave trader. He hails you and offers you “laborers” for cheap.””

Not all the slavers out there are out to threaten you for your crew members, as they clearly want to turn a profit at some point. This pirate slaver that approaches the player’s space cruiser will offer to sell them recruits, which are obviously slaves. The first option presented is to purchase a slave and free them to fight for your crew, running a cost of anywhere between thirty five scrap to sixty scrap, and the player will receive a crew member of a random race. The second option is to attack the slaver scum, and the player will engage with the enemy ship, resulting in the standard scrap reward with a couple of possibilities. The ship can possibly surrender and they will offer one of their slaves, accepting this will result in receiving a single random crew member, and refusing will inevitably result in the enemy ship’s destruction where a large amount of scrap and resources will be earned; however at the loss of many lives. Should however the enemy crew be wiped out by the player’s boarding party, or some other weapon that can harm crew members like the bio-beam, then a few possibilities can happen.

The first being that the player is able to find some slaves in the cargo hold, and choose one of them to work for the crew, this can be a mantis, a rockman, or an engi. The other possibility is that the slaves did not survive the fighting, but while striping the ship of its resources, a slave falls out of a compartment coughing and offers to join the player’s crew. The last possibility is that upon scanning the ship, there are no life signs found, and the player gets a large amount of scrap and resources.

The third main option is just to ignore the slaver ship, and continue on, which will end the event with no reward. The fourth main option is a blue text choice that needs the crew teleporter to be installed on the player’s space cruiser which is upgraded to level two or higher. The crew will teleport covertly onto the enemy ship and release some of the slaves. A fight will inevitably break out however between the player and the slavers, no matter if a slave is successfully recovered or not. Most of the time that will be the case, but it is possible that the coordinates for the crew teleporter were very off, and the player’s crew appeared nowhere near the cargo hold.

This event can occur in most sectors, which are: the civilian sector, the pirate controlled sector, the slug controlled nebula, the slug home nebula, the rock controlled sector, the rock homeworlds, the Zoltan controlled sector, and the Zoltan homeworlds.

  • This event has any of the following initial descriptions…
    • You find a small space station that appears to abandoned.
    • You arrive to find what appears to be a colonized moon, however scans show it has been abandoned. You also detect an abandoned space station near the Beacon.
    • This area shows signs of a battle some time ago. There are scattered remains of ships but one station appears to be intact.

Regardless of what the initial description of this abandoned space station event is, the options to choose from will always be the same. To begin with there are two choices to be made, the first is to move in to examine the station. The second is to stay near the beacon, and ignore the event that has spawned. From there the player will be free to continue on as normal for their game instance, incurring no additional loot, so it is inadvisable to ignore the event.

Should the first option be chosen to examine the station, a few outcomes can come about. It is possible that the station is nothing but an empty shell, and so nothing at all will be found of worth nor interest. The second possibility is that while long since abandoned, there is a small amount of useful materials, so the player will scavenge a small amount of scrap as a reward. The third possibility is that the space station is partially destroyed, but it still has some useful materials, so it will result in the same amount of small scrap to be found as the second possibility.

The fourth possibility requires that the player has a clone bay installed on their space cruiser. The station found is warped by chaos, but there is a partially functioning clone bay. By using the player’s own functioning clone bay, they are able to search for an intact DNA bank, and a few possibilities can come from this. Someone may have been in queue to be cloned, and so the player’s own clone bay may resurrect them, which will add a crew member to the player’s crew. The second possibility is that, as he is thoroughly confused, he just cannot calm down and goes berserk, attacking the player’s crew. An intruder will spawn on board, and he must be defeated before the player can safely proceed from this beacon.

Should the player not choose the blue text option with the clone bay, or just not have a clone bay installed on their space cruiser, then the machinery can be scrapped as a second option there and a small amount of scrap will be found.

Finally there are two more possibilities that when examining the station, the player’s space cruiser will dock with it, and pirates will flood out of the doors while a pirate ship emerges from space. A fight will occur from this, granting standard rewards once the ship is defeated and the two pirates that boarded the player’s space cruiser are also gotten rid of. The other possibility to do with docking at the space station is that four intruders will beam on board, while anti-ship batteries will fire from the nearby planetary defense system, presumably some vestige from what the space station once was when it was operating and fine. That is about as worse of an outcome as there can be, so it can actually be fairly risky just to examine the station as there is little control over what happens or what course of action is taken to investigate the derelict space station. The most beneficial reward is seemingly the recruitment of a crew member should the player have a clone bay, and that possibility occurs over all the other ones, so with the looming anti-ship batteries that can tear several points of damage into the player’s space cruiser’s HULL, this event altogether may just not be worth it unless the player is okay with taking a hard gamble.

This derelict space station event can be found in either the civilian sector, or the mantis controlled sector, and has yet to be seen in any other sector but those two.

  • This event can present itself with either of the two descriptions, depending if the beacon is covered in a nebula or not…
    • You have stumbled into the aftermath of what seems to have been a brutal exchange between several ships. Wreckage drifts by your screens, and you can still see the remains of the dying ships sparking and breaking apart. It's hard to determine who the combatants were without closer investigation.
    • What at first seems to be a simple nebula is actually filled with a good amount of debris from a brutal exchange between several ships. Wreckage drifts by your screens and tumbles into the depths of the nebula to be lost to sight. It's hard to determine who the combatants were without closer investigation.

Despite the disparity of the location between the two descriptions, the options to choose from are nearly identical, if not entirely. The initial two choices will be blue text options should the player meet the requirements to be able to use them, but only one or the other will be present depending on which one the player meets the qualifications for. This will either be the second upgrade level of the sensors, or the third upgrade level. The first blue text option uses the level two upgrade of the sensors. By scanning the battlefield, a moderate amount of scrap can be salvaged from the wreckage. With the second blue text option, which uses the highest upgrade level of the sensors, either a large amount of scrap can be found, or a small amount of scrap can be found along with a random weapon. Clearly the second blue text option is superior, but there usually is not much of a reason to upgrade it that high.

There are only two remaining options, both of which are not blue text options. The third option, and the first to be a regular choice, is to investigate the battlefield. Most of the time nothing will be found of merit, and the player’s ship will prepare to jump, resulting in nothing happening. Sometimes a moderate amount of scrap can be found from the wreckage, and other times the player will encounter hostile ships of various races. The ships that can be encountered are a mantis ship, a Zoltan ship, a rebel ship, and a slug ship. However upon noticing the player’s space cruiser, the slug ship will jump away. All other encounters will result in a fight, granting standard loot.

The final choice is to ignore the wreckage and move on, which will end the event with no risk at all. Considering that there is not much harm possible to happen to the player’s ship, that choice should not be taken, and preferably one of the blue text options should be. If not available, then simply investigating the battlefield is enough. Chances are high nothing will be found, but at least there is the possibility that a fight will occur.

This wreckage event can spawn in a number of sectors, which are: the civilian sector, the engi homeworlds, the pirate controlled sector, the slug controlled nebula, the mantis controlled sector, and least likely of all the last stand. Despite how scripted and orchestrated the last stand sector is with its own persistent mechanics, events like this can still appear there, and considering the aftermath of the wreckage it still does make sense to be there.

Nebula Events

  • “You jump into a sector of the nebula beset by a plasma storm. An automated rebel scout stationed at the beacon moves in to attack.”

This is one of those random events that has a couple of blue text options, but they only use they have is allowing the player to escape any kind of encounter. It is of unlikely circumstances that the player would want to do this, as they have nothing to gain but maintaining the status quo by running away from the enemy, since defeating a hostile ship is the primary way to advance in Faster Than Light by the loot found. The regular choice here is just to prepare the fight, and so it will continue on like any regular battle, except there will be a plasma storm severely crippling the space cruiser’s reactor and its ability to output sufficient energy to power the ship.

The two blue text options mentioned are either to use the engines to out run the enemy, which needs at least a tier six engine systems, and it still has a chance to fail anyway, resulting in the same exact outcome as the first non-blue text choice. The plasma storm is still raging too, so there is no use in getting out of the area, as would probably merit the use of this blue text option if the game had implemented that instead. The other blue text option is to use the system’s cloaking to escape, should the player’s space cruiser be equipped with a cloaking system. Though that blue text option will not fail, it still is not advisable unless the player’s space cruiser will be unable to defend itself, or attack, while only partially powered in the plasma storm.

  • “You jump into the middle of a plasma storm. Multiple recently incapacitated ships loom in the shadows, briefly illuminated by the lightning.”

The hazy atmosphere of the lightning arcing clouds of the nebula might as well be an asteroid field for what the player can possibly find within. There are some risks involved though, so should the player not wish to have a chance of losing a crew member or taking a few hits to the HULL, then the second main option should be chosen to ignore the environment and wait for the faster than light drive to spin up in order to jump away safely.

Choosing to manually search the wreckage, both for survivors and any kind of useful salvage, can have various outcomes. One possibility is that while navigating the wreckage with caution, some debris still smashes against the ship, inflicting a few points of damage to the hull. Despite that incident, the player can still harvest some scrap and resources, actually yielding a large amount of scrap with some limited resources like drone parts. Another possibility is that the player will find a single space cruiser, miraculously untouched, with an unconscious survivor on board, also surprisingly in good health. The player will be able to bring back that random species crew member, and take some minor scrap and limited resources for themselves.

Yet another possibility, the third in the list, is that some of the player’s crew is off searching the wreckage in person, connected to a tether to the space cruiser. As trope-like as it comes, some ships crash together and the tether connecting the crew member to their space cruiser is snapped and he is lost in the endless clouds. From this the player will lose a single crew member, but will still be able to take a small amount of scrap and some limited resources. However if the player’s space cruiser does have the clone bay installed and powered, the lost crew member will be able to recovered from the medical device, as clearly he perishes amongst the lightning sparking clouds.

An additional possible outcome is that a drone schematic will be found amongst the junk, and coming with that rare find is a moderate amount of scrap too. For once no harm happens. And the final possible outcome is that most of the debris is found to be useless, even for the low degree of quality that is needed to be considered scrap, but despite what seems to be slim pickings, the player is still able to find a weapon that can be used by their space cruiser along with a moderate amount of scrap.

Those are all possible outcomes from the main choice to just see what there is around. There is a blue text option available however should the player have a pilot who has mastered the skill to carefully explore the debris amongst the swirling, sparking clouds. With this blue text option, there is no risk for harm to the space cruiser’s HULL, nor an accident loss of a crew member, so if it is available it should be chosen above anything else. The first possibility from carefully piloting the debris is that a random crew member will be found, along with a small amount of scrap and some limited resources, similar to the one that happens with the regular choice of finding a lone intact ship. Otherwise there are two more outcomes that can either yield a moderate amount of scrap, or a low amount of scrap, the first having a drone schematic and the second having a weapon. It is also possible to occur that nothing at all will be found, but at least nothing negative can happen either.

It is a gamble as to what outcome will come from searching the expanse of rolling clouds, but the hazard is low, unless the player’s crew is two or shorter on crew members. The plasma storm with wrecked ships looming in the distance event can be found in a few sectors, specifically the following: the civilian sector, the pirate controlled sector, the rebel controlled sector, the uncharted nebula, and the Zoltan controlled sector. Although there are a few ships floating around here, long range scanners still will not detect the presence of a ship here, as usually that indicates a hostile encounter, or at least a ship that is operational with life signs and communication signals.

  • “A black market weapons trader spins you a tale of the dangers of the nebula before pushing his wares.”

There are four options for this black market dealer, the first being to ignore the ship, in which nothing will happen and the player will be electing to not participate in the event with no consequences occurred. The second option here is to fight the pirate ship, which will give the standard rewards of any kind of battle scaled to the difficulty and reward scaling of that sector, mostly depending on how far this event was encountered in a game instance. For example it would offer more rewards if the player encountered this the third sector in, as opposed to the first sector in.

The third option is to purchase the unknown weapon, which is quite the gamble. The price here is forty five scrap, and that is a fixed number no matter how far in this event is encountered. In return, a random weapon will be received, giving very variable results. It could be as lackluster as a dual laser, or as great (but highly improbable) as a glaive beam. The other possibly when electing to purchase the weapon, is that the player will lose the forty five scrap, and actually receive nothing in return, as the black market trader will be essentially scamming the player out of their hard earned scrap. There are then two choices presented if that negative outcome happens, which is to either attack the pirate ship and receive standard rewards, with no recovery of that forty five scrap lost, or to simply do nothing by “learning a valuable lesson”. It is pointless not to attack the black market trader’s ship in an effort to recover some of the scrap lost if that outcome occurs, so it would be wise to do so.

Finally the fourth option is a blue text choice, only available when the player has the mind control system installed on their space cruiser. What upgrade level the mind control station is does not matter, as any level will be eligible for this event. The blue text option will be to convince the black market dealer to make it a better deal. He will be forced to describe the weapon, revealing what it actually is to the player, and will temporarily lower the price but the mind control effect will disappear and it will be placed back to the price of forty five scrap. At least now the player will be aware of what precisely they are purchasing, and so will be able to discern if the forty five scrap is actually worth the deal. It is also possible that a weapon could cost more from this black market dealer and still be worth it, because of the rarity of encountering the types of weapons that the player exactly wants. If the weapon is not to the player’s preferences, then there is an option to decline, which will disengage from the event entirely. The other possibility from mind controlling the black market dealer is that he will admit it was all a clever lie and that they planned to attack the player’s space cruiser. The mind control effect will wear off again, and this time the only outcome is to fight.

The black market weapons trader event can occur in the civilian sector, uncharted nebula, slug controlled nebula, and the slug home nebula, while always at a beacon that is covered in a nebula.

  • “A heavily damaged Federation ship is hiding in the nebula at this beacon. Before you have time to make contact with them, they fade into the nebula.”

A couple options are presented to the player upon meeting this event at a nebula covered beacon. Two more will also be available as blue text options should the player’s space cruiser meet the requirements of either possessing a crew teleporter on board or the long range scanners augmentation.

The first option is to attempt to follow the Federation ship through the nebula and try to help them. A few outcomes can come from this, the first being that the search is simply hopeless through the dense clouds of the nebula and the space cruiser’s sensors are not powerful enough to scan through them. Nothing will happen from the first outcome, whereas the second outcome is similar as the player cannot find the Federation ship through the murk of the nebula and instead bump into a rebel fighter they were likely hiding from. A fight will ensue from this, granting the standard loot from a battle. The third and least likely possibility is that the player will actually get lucky and find the Federation ship floating a short ways into the nebula. Their ship is all but a pile of rubble though, so they jump ship and join the player’s crew. This results in just one crew member added to the player’s, despite that it seems like there should be more than just one living being on board.

The second main option is just to do nothing by maintaining position, which will end the event from there. There is little point in choosing this option, unless the player’s space cruiser is on its last legs of a couple points of health, as encountering any kind of battle may destroy their ship and end their game instance. Otherwise the first option should be pursued in hopes of either finding a battle or gaining another crew member, but only if the blue text options are not present to be chosen for the player.

The first blue text option, which is technically the third main option, will use the crew teleporter to lock onto the life signs of the Federation ship through the interference of the nebula. This will be successful with no chance of failure, and one of that ship’s crew will readily join the player’s crew while a moderate amount of scrap will be discovered and taken.

The second blue text option, which is technically the fourth main option, is to overclock the long range scanners and try to track the Federation ship through the dense clouds. Two possibilities can happen from this. Either the player will find the Federation ship, except it has been long since abandoned, and a moderate amount of scrap can be salvaged from the wreckage. The second possibility is that the player will actually find some crew on board the wreckage, and one of them will join the player’s crew as a random race.

The federation ship floating through the nebula event can be found in most sectors that can have nebula covered beacons, and will not appear at a beacon that does not have a nebula, even should it fall under one of the possible sectors, since it requires the nebula for the premise of the event. The sectors this event can be found in are the civilian sector, the pirate controlled sector, the slug controlled nebula, the slug home nebula, the rebel stronghold, and the uncharted nebula. It is statistically more likely to encounter this event in sectors that are entirely submerged in nebula, as there will be more beacons in total that are covered in nebula, and so there are more opportunities to encounter this event. The rewards for the federation ship floating through the nebula event aren’t that stellar though, so it should not be a compelling reason by itself to choose one of those sectors.

Species Random Events

  • “You arrive at a Zoltan research facility. They say they are researching genetic distortion due to stasis sleep and prolonged FTL travel. They ask if your crew has the time to undergo a few scans.”

A seemingly unimportant event to find at a glance, but that is very much not the case for the Zoltan research facility as it is the 2nd step of the quest that will unlock the Crystal Cruiser, and if not that, then it is part of the way to be able to access the hidden crystal worlds, the most elusive sector in the game and so the least frequently visited.

There are a few choices presented to the player upon receiving this prompt. The first is to participate in this study, which results in a few outcomes. The first outcome is that the study goes as normal, the scientists hand out some small cakes and hand over some scrap as thanks for the crew’s service. The second possible outcome is that a pirate ship zips onto the radar and pirates board the ship, while in the background the Zoltan cry that they are being held hostage. Defeating the pirates will continue the event, as the Zoltan scientists will thank the player and give a drone schematic and a small amount of scrap.

There is also the choice to decline, but aside from the possible hostile ship, there is little reason to do so as the scientists are as harmless as they seem, and contrary to how the many random events play out throughout the game not everything is out to get the player.

There are a couple of blue text options as well. Should the player have a medical bay upgraded to the third level, then the player can hand over the med bay records. Sadly this will not work as well with the clone bay. Apparently the Zoltan scientists are interested in the crew’s health from faster than light travel, and so hand over a random drone schematic along with some scrap and limited resources.

The other blue text option requires that the player have acquired the damaged stasis pod augmentation from the dense asteroid field event. If the player does have that in their augmentation cargo, then the option to ask if the Zoltan scientists can fix it will be present. They figure out how to use it, and actually are able to revive the crystalline being frozen in stasis inside. From this the Crystalmen crew member named Ruwen will join the player’s crew, and the player will be one step closer to reaching the hidden crystal worlds from the ancient device event.

The Zoltan research facility event can only be found in the following sectors: the engi controlled sector, the engi homeworlds, the Zoltan controlled sector, and the Zoltan homeworlds.

  • “The Engi are awaiting you at the beacon, with their weapons on-line! They explain a computer virus that is wanted for hostile acts against the Engi (multiple counts of binary scrambling, nano-dissolution, and variable interference) is aboard your vessel.”

This engi virus event turns out to be much more from a guess from what is initially presented. The engi claim and demand that they must destroy the player’s ship in order to prevent the virus from escaping, as if conventional methods of destroying bits of code just were not enough to handle a virus of this magnitude. As it turns out that does seem to be the case to a degree, but regardless this is not in the player’s best interest, so there are several options to choose from; some of which are blue text choices that have requirements from varied areas. It is an easy guess to make that most of the blue text choices will be superior to the regular ones, but a blue text choice is not always going to be available to the player.

The first option is to ask the engi to hold off while the player’s crew tries to purge the system code. The crew struggles to do this successfully, crippling the shields and engines in the process, but the virus does get cornered in the weapons system. However before anything more can be done on the crews’ part, the engi grow restless and begin their assault, deeming the risk just too great. The player will be forced to fight the engi ship while their engines and shields are limited to just half their normal power and capacity, making this a precarious and tough encounter. Though there is technically two potential outcomes from how the player defeats the engi vessel, either by destroying the ship or by wiping out the crew, the engi virus will still travel over to either the wreckage of the ship or to the lifeless engi vessel. Though the danger has truly yet to be seen by this virus, the player’s mission is too vital to risk anymore entanglement with it, and so the captain decides to press on. From this a moderate amount of scrap will be gained, and the systems will be returned to their normal, full powered state.

The second choice when confronted by these engi uncharacteristically bent on violence for their logic based species, is to just fight them without bothering with the virus at all. With this option the shields and engines will not be crippled, and so it will be a smoother fight to go through. The rewards are similar to the first option however, yielding the standard loot from defeating an enemy by either destroying the ship or decimating the crew.

The rest of the options there are to be taken when initially confronted by the engi with violence are blue text choices. The first presented requires that there be at least one crew member on the player’s crew that is of the engi species, and by choosing this action, the engi crew member will attempt to negotiate with the hostile engi ship. Suddenly this seems like a very bad decision to make, but it won’t be eventually, as the engi crew member suddenly dissolves into particles of nanites. Detecting this act of savagery, the engi ship begins their onslaught. Even should there be a clone bay on board the player’s ship, it will not be able to resurrect them, as the virus’ presence has reached that far as to disable the function of the clone bay for specifically that crew member. The player will have to fight off the engi ship, and upon victory the player will receive regular loot for the conflict.

However, as the captain prepares to jump away, spontaneously the lost engi crew member reforms out of the air; however he is not quite the same. The engi was taken as a host, and now the virus has a physical body to use as its own. Mysteriously he wishes to travel with the player, and the text suggests that he has learned an incredible amount from the time it spent on the player’s ship. The engi crew member will be renamed to Virus, and will have every single skill in the game maxed out, so he will be a jack of all trades. Any role the Virus engi is placed in will excel at, with the exclusion of brawling as he still has a damage penalty to combat. This would be the most ideal and desirable outcome from the choices that can be made, and so should the player actually be in possession of an engi crew member, then there should be no hesitation in sacrificing them for the greatly powered engi named Virus.

The second blue text option requires that the player have a Lanius crew member on board. There is no variable outcome from this, as the Lanius crew member will literally digest the terminal the virus has infected, and the virus will be unceremoniously eradicated despite its prevalence across the player’s ship in other possible outcomes. This resolution is sufficient for the engi ship that demanded to destroy the player’s ship, and so they gratefully send over some scrap so that the terminal can be repaired along with an augmentation that otherwise can only be found on board the engi cruiser.

The third blue text option, which would be the fifth in total, is to use the player’s hacking system should they have one on board their vessel. This certainly contains a more sophisticated method of engaging the virus on its own plane, by hacking the player’s own ship to attempt to isolate and quarantine the virus. Eventually it is trapped in a useless, and unnamed subsystem, transmitting a slew of terrified insults at the captain, until it is jettisoned from the ship and blasted apart with lasers in space. This constitutes as deleting the virus, so the engi are thankful in this scenario as well, and hand over a minor amount of scrap along with the drone reactor booster augmentation. This results in a similar reward as to the blue text option that uses the Lanius crew member, but does not yield as much scrap.

Should the player’s hacking system actually be upgraded a single level, there is then the option to enact improved hacking to reprogram the virus, a seemingly more amicable solution at a glance. The hacker attempts to increase the benevolence of the virus effectively, and apparently it makes a dramatic change for character and repairs the player’s ship for up to fifteen points of HULL health, along with upgrading the reactor a single level. This apparently counts for deleting the virus too, as the engi express their gratitude for this, and hand over just the drone reactor booster augmentation.

The engi virus event can only be found in the engi controlled sector and the engi homeworlds.

  • “Inside this nebula you detect a rogue planet drifting through space, on its surface a huge monolith visible at this distance even to the naked eye. A Zoltan elder hails you from the planet. “Through luck or intent, you have discovered the Great Eye. Look into its depths and receive your just deserts.”

The great eye has quite the strange premise, but references heavily the space odyssey from its prompt and some of its outcomes. The player is faced with two choices, either to pull the ship in closer to get a look, or to leave and disregard visiting one of the wonders of the galaxy. Unless the player has two or less crew members, then it would be a wise choice to take a look at the great eye. It is after all possible that a crew member can be lost from the dangers of the mysterious and elusive great eye.

There are a few outcomes that can happen by peering at the great eye, none of which prompt the player for any further decisions to make. With an apparent effort to bring the ship into orbit, as it struggles with how damaged the HULL is, scrap will suddenly appear inside the ship’s cargo and the HULL will be miraculously repaired. Another possible outcome is that an alien voice will speak to the captain, remarking about the grand battles they have fought but how much they have suffered in losses, and an advanced piece of regenerative technology will appear from thin air in the cargo, which will be the healing burst weapon. Yet another possible outcome is a random pattern of colors will flash by, and suddenly one of the crew will rapidly revert in age, eventually disappearing into nothing. This is all described through the game’s text of course, as little is actually animated for random events. Even should the player have a clone bay in this instance, the crew member will still be unable to be returned, as it is as if they were deleted from existence.

It is also possible nothing at all will happen when in the closer presence of the great eye monolith, and the Zoltan elder claims that this must mean the captain has no future, and so he attacks with an armed ship. This will yield the regular loot earned from battle. One would think that the Zoltan elder’s ship would be heavily armed, or at least advanced in some way because of the esoteric place he resides at, but apparently the only thing strange about this place is just the great eye monolith and not the Zoltan elder himself.

The great eye monolith event can only spawn in either the Zoltan controlled sector, or the Zoltan homeworlds, and while only in a beacon that is submerged in a nebula.

  • “You come to a quiet part of Zoltan space and encounter an ancient Zoltan wise man who has managed to harness the power of a spatial rift, but seems to have been driven completely mad by the power. “Choose your doom,” he demands. This is all part of a day's work.”

It is quite curious as to how this Zoltan wise man came to master his powers, but the player will never know. Presented to the player are three choices that each have a type of ship to fight. The first option is a mantis, which will hurtle a mantis ship through a wormhole. The second is a slug ship, and the third is a Rockmen ship, all sent through wormholes. Each type of ship has their own types of fighting styles representative of commonly encountered enemies of that species, and so it is up to the player’s preferences as to what kind they will fight. Rock ships usually are armed with physical projectiles like missiles, slugs tend to have hacking stations and mind control stations, while mantis almost always have a boarding party with some lasers.

Similar to how the loot system regularly works, by dispatching the entire enemy crew on these ships the rewards will be higher, granting initially a moderate quantity of scrap instead of a small quantity of scrap if the player destroys the ship itself. After that has been awarded, the Zoltan wise man will enter a rage and just implode on himself, hurtling salvage everywhere that the player can collect for a large quantity of scrap along with some limited resources.

  • “Something strikes you as odd about a moon in the distance.”

Something is indeed odd about this moon found only in the Zoltan controlled sector, and not even the Zoltan homeworlds either. There are a few options to choose from, the first being to check it out. This has two main outcomes with some variations, which are either that the moon can be explored in some way, either by blasting through the thin surface or that there are some cave systems detected by the scans. So either the player can elect to punch a hole through the surface with the use of a single missile ammunition, or the player can decide to back out, suddenly disinterested. It would be wise to proceed even with there being some chance that nothing at all will be found, as a single missile ammunition is of little consequence with the frequency that they can be found from standard battles, even if the player’s space cruiser has a build that heavily expends missile ammunition at a regular, even rapid rate.

There are a total of three seen outcomes from detonating the missile. The detonation could fail, and the surface of the moon is not broken through. The second is that the extensive cave network is in truth a hidden base, but all those that had been huddled up inside recently perished in a wave of a mantis attack. Zoltan being a scientific species, those within were researching some kind of branch of weaponry, and the player picks one at random from the stock that seems to be of good quality. From this particular outcome a moderate amount of scrap is found, along with a random weapon that has higher odds at being of the medium or high tier. The other outcome from exploding the missiles on the surface of the moon is that there will indeed be a massive network of caves, but without much time, the player can only scrounge up a moderate quantity of scrap.

Deciding to check it out could also reveal that there is little of interest, and so it is just time to move on to the next beacon, which will end the event there. Another possibility is that no detonation is necessary to find something of value, as an entrance to the cave system is discovered, and so the player takes for themselves a moderate amount of scrap along with a random weapon of decent quality.

There is however a blue text choice here, should the player fulfill the requirements, although it is rather specific being that it must be the drone schematic of a boarding drone, and it must be equipped upon discovering this strange moon event. This blue text option will deploy the boarding drone to investigate the surface, doing so will consume a single drone part unit. Although there shouldn’t really be that much of a difference in the outcomes from using a drone to using a missile, as it is not as if the missile detonation harms any of the Zoltan within the hidden base, but there is quite the difference.

Furthermore there is only one possible outcome, with no chances of failure, rendering the blue text option superior here above the other choices, as is usually the case if a blue text option is ever available and present. From this a Zoltan scientist will be discovered, all by himself still diligently hard at work, and the player will recruit a Zoltan crew member to their side. This is quite the boon, as the Zoltan race is rare and high valued for their special ability to provide an energy slot of power to whatever system they are immediately adjacent to while being entirely independent of the reactor. Ion storms that drain power from the reactor do not even diminish the energy slot the Zoltan crew member provides.

  • “You detect and retrieve an escape pod floating nearby. You consider returning it to space when you learn it's Mantis.”

The prospect of gaining a Mantis crew member to your team is rather enticing, but there are risks involved that should be considered. Most the time players will choose to open it anyway, provided that they do not have two or less crew members, as losing one of those two will be far more detrimental to their game instance compared to losing one crew member a part of a crew that is four or stronger in number.

The first option is to merely jettison the pod, expelling it into space without bothering to open it and see what is inside. This will end the event, taking no risks at all, but not possibly gaining any rewards either. The second option is to pry it open, which can have a few outcomes. The first is that the Mantis within is in a frenzied and rage filled state, he severs the first person he sees completely in half, and so it must be killed before it can take anyone else out. From this outcome one crew member will be lost, which is the risk to the mantis escape pod event. However if the player’s space cruiser does have a clone bay, then that fallen crew member will be resurrected from the clone bay, and no harm will be done in the end; although the mantis will still be dealt with just like before. The second outcome is that the mantis inside revels in the crews’ presence, considering them like a messenger from god, and demands to join them. From this the player will gain a single mantis crew member. The other, last outcome is that instead of whoever is inside being a mantis, it is instead a human. He was a survivor of mantis captivity, a rare thing indeed. Once he calms down, he will join the player’s crew.

This mantis escape pod event can be found in either the mantis controlled sector, or the mantis homeworlds, and has not been seen in any other sector in the game.

  • “As you jump in, you immediately see an impressive Slug pirate ship with “The Black Raven” painted on one side. They hail you, “Greetingsss. I am the dreaded pirate, Captain Nights. You mussst be full of fear, no? You have heard of me… no?””

To begin with there will only be one option to choose from, which is to say no, the player has not heard of the black raven. In response he will say that he has heard of the player, and challenges the player. There are three options here. The first is to accept his challenge and fight the black raven, the second is to decline, in which the outcome is the same as the first and the player will be forced to fight the black raven. The third option is a blue text choice that requires a slug crew member be on board the player’s space cruiser for it to be available. This blue text choice will be to engage in a duel of the minds, in which the player’s slug crew member will telepathically fight the captain nights, who is also of the slug species.

Either the player’s slug crew member will come out victorious or not. If he does not, the captain nights will shake off the attack, and two slug hostiles will board the player’s ship while the player is forced to fight the black raven ship. If the player’s slug crew member does come out victorious, then a large amount of scrap will be rewarded, alongside a random weapon.

Should that single outcome not occur, where the blue text option completely succeeds, the player will be forced to fight the black raven ship that the captain nights helms. Once the player has emerged as the victor, some more text choices will present themselves. The choices are to either accept his surrender, in which he will transfer over some goods that will yield a large amount of scrap along with a random weapon, or otherwise ignore his plea and attack. From there if the player destroys the ship, a moderate amount of scrap will be salvaged along with some resources. If the player wipes out the crew of the black raven, then a large amount of scrap will be found along with some resources . Therefor a superior reward is granted when actually accepting his surrender, unlike what is the usual where space cruisers typically offer paltry rewards in exchange for their lives, so it would be good to take note of this black raven event to choose the better outcome, especially if the blue text option fails.

The black raven event can happen only in the slug controlled nebula, and the slug home nebula, which is appropriate considering that it is applicable for a blue text choice requiring a slug crew member.

  • “You notice an Engi colony hiding on the other side of a nearby moon. It turns out they're excavating an equipment cache from the Federation-Mantis War, and they suggest it might be used to lure the pursuing rebel fleet.”

A fairly outcome event to find, there are two options to choose from here. The first is to booby trap the cache, sure that the rebel invasion will find it when the engi put a distress signal on it. This will cost two units of missile ammunition, but will delay the rebel invasion for two turns, making it worth the small investment.

The second option is to secure the cache for yourself by urging the engi to complete their excavations. From this the player will find a moderate amount of scrap, along with a drone schematic. It could be any of the drone schematics in the game though, but out of those two extra turns for the first option one of them may be a beacon that has absolutely nothing at it, neither a random event, a shop, or a battle. So it is a gamble between which would be better, as the first option has the possibility of being better, but the second option has a guarantee of giving a drone schematic, even if it is something common like a combat drone mark I.

This event can only occur in either the engi controlled sector or the engi homeworlds, since it does involve an engi colony.

  • “You find a disabled rock transport floating near the beacon. You consider stripping it of useful parts but are uncertain why it's there in the first place.”

There are three options for this disabled rock transport event, the third being a blue text choice. The first is to strip the ship that can have two outcomes. One is that a small amount of scrap and some resources like missiles can be found, the other is that a rock patrol ship will jump in and name you pirates. The player will be forced to fight the rock patrol ship, which will give the same amount of low scrap and some resources along with the standard rewards of beating a space cruiser.

The second option is to just leave the wreckage alone, and either nothing can happen, or that rock patrol ship will jump in and still blame the destruction at the hands of the player. This time the player will be forced to fight the ship, but will not receive any extra scrap other than the standard amount received from defeating a ship.

The third option is a blue text choice only available if the player has a slug crew member. The slug crew member will keep a lookout for any life forms and ships while looting the ship, but in the end this hardly matters, as it will only prevent a fight from happening between the player and the rock patrol ship, lowering the rewards possible.

The disabled rock transport event can only happen in the rock controlled sector, and the rock homeworlds, despite that it can use a slug crew member for a blue text option.

Distress Signal Events

  • “You locate the source of the distress call, a nearby human mining colony. An unknown disease has spread virulently among the workers. They are trying to set up a quarantine to mitigate the spread of the disease but lack any enforcement and a riot seems likely.”

Being met with this distress signal event is perhaps one of the most common ones, and yet is highly notorious for killing off crew, but perhaps not as badly as the event when alien spiders attack, sounding like the premise of a bad movie. There is for once little point in assisting these poor people, as there are few outcomes that result in something positive at all, and most just take away a crew member, should the blue text options not be selected.

The first choice is to send in your crew to control the crowds, but the infected grab weapons and force the player’s crew back. They cannot do anything more, and so it is wise to quickly leave. Nothing happens from this fortunately. However the other possible outcome is that while trying to take control over the crowds, thereby exposing the crew to the infection that has caused this quarantine, one of them does indeed become infected. Leaving would only doom the rest of the crew to his fate, and so the valiant crew member decides to stay behind in order to work on a cure.

Whatever eventually comes about from this is never known, which is hardly surprising in the least. The player will lose a random crew member, but will gain a moderate quantity of scrap and some limited resources like drone parts in exchange. This is hardly any recompense for the loss of a crew member, especially if this happens later on in a game instance as by that point a crew member will have at least a skill point in their specialized talent. At least if this does happen, crew members that can be recruited from shops will sometimes have skill points spread around, but not at all to the player’s choosing as it is completely random, even haphazardly so. Even should the player have a clone bay, it is strictly against Federation law (even should the player desire to ignore and overrule this in light of the dire circumstances) to clone an already living person, so they will be lost no matter what. This is one of the few circumstances and events in the game where a crew member who is lost while the clone bay is powered and operation that the player will actually lose the crew member.

The second main choice is to just ignore their request for help and proceed onwards, which is advisable for once, but only if the player does not have access to any of the several blue text options. The first blue text choice is to send in the player’s rock crew, should there be one amidst the crew members. This will prevent the riot successfully, as the Rockman is both more than strong enough to contain the riot and is immune to the human borne disease. From this action taken the player will receive a moderate quantity of scrap along with some limited resources. Should the player instead have an engi amongst their crew, they can send them in too as the second blue text option. This too will result in nearly identical rewards.

There is however a third, and greater, blue text option, which has two equipment requirements, one after the other. The first is to have an advanced medical bay, being at least level two or higher. The player can actually fabricate a cure for this virulent disease and hand it over to the colony. This action alone will yield a moderate amount of scrap and some limited resources, thereby gaining the same amount the player would by any other blue text option, but if the player also has the engi med-bot dispersal augmentation only available from the engi cruiser or the quest associated with it to unlock it, they can use that augmentation to swiftly disperse the cure amongst the colony in a matter of mere minutes. From this action taken there will be a large amount of scrap given, along with a random weapon, thus being the most valuable reward for this event but with the greatest requirements to be able to perform.

This rioting quarantine colony event is so prevalent because of the several sectors that it can be found in, which are the following: the pirate controlled sector, the civilian sector, the mantis controlled sector, the mantis homeworlds, the rock controlled sector, the rock homeworlds, the uncharted nebula sector, the slug controlled nebula, and finally the slug homeworlds. Being a distress signal event, it can only be found at beacons that are marked on the beacon map with a distress signal, narrowing the sheer amount of beacons it can possibly be present at; despite that, it is still fairly common to discover.

  • “It appears the distress beacon is coming from the surface of a nearby moon. Your sensors are picking up a single life form.”

This event has two major branches that greatly deviate from each other. The first possibility is that the player will find a colony that has recently been attacked, and by exploring the devastation, a survivor will be found. From here there are two choices, which is to either invite him to join the player’s crew, or to return him home to his family. There isn’t any risk to the player and their crew should this survivor be recruited, but what this survivor named Charlie will be skilled in can be any single training out of the six skills in the game. He can have one point in either weapons control, shields, piloting, engines, combat, or repair.

Should the player choose to return this man to his family, then it will trigger a reward that is a subset of its own event. The family can either be very wealthy, rewarding the player with a large amount of scrap, or the family may be of modest means, awarding just a moderate amount of scrap, or instead they will repair damage to the space cruiser’s HULL for ten points. Depending on the player’s needs in that point of the game instance, either choice for this half of the survivor event is desired. If the player’s crew is low on members, then the first option should be chosen, even though there is no control over what skill he is trained in, and if the player’s crew is high on members, then the second option should be chosen with the hope of receiving a large amount of scrap in return.

More commonly though there will not be a moon colony found, and instead the player will find a man living alone in a cave. He has evidently been there for many years, from the look of him and the state of his wrecked space cruiser. Nobody knows what his mental state is really like after all that time stranded alone, with little chance he would ever reach civilization again.

The first choice here is to bring him back to the player’s ship, and a number of things can happen. The survivor can turn violent, and kill one of the crew members. If a clone bay is installed, then that fallen crew member will be returned by the clone bay. The survivor could instead immensely improve, and the player will receive a crew member named Charlie. The third possible outcome is that he is terrified by being ‘trapped’ in space, and explodes a hole in the space cruiser with a device. He will perish in the explosion, the space cruiser will take a few points of damage to its HULL, and one of the systems will be damaged for a point or two. Finally the fourth possibility is that the survivor simply falls ill, and dies if he does not get some help. If the medical bay is upgraded on the player’s space cruiser, then he can be saved, admitting he had not eaten for days. A similar outcome happens if the clone bay is upgraded, as he will step out of the pod, admitting his amazement that he thought he had been just dying on some space shuttle and that technology astonishingly has changed. Those two blue text options will also award the player with the crew member named Charlie.

The second choice at this point is to leave the madman by himself, not taking the risk, and the event will end from that. Finally there are then the blue text options, requiring either an upgraded medical bay, an upgraded clone bay, or a slug crew member. The blue text options needing the medical bay and the clone bay upgraded to level two or higher will recover the survivor from the damage done to him from being alone and on his own for so long. The choice with the medical bay will just guarantee that the player will receive the crew member named Charlie with no complications, whereas the choice involving the clone bay will give the player the best reward out of all possibilities. Should the man be cloned in this option, he will be revived with all skills pushed to the maximum, making him equivalent of the engi named Virus.

The third blue text choice requiring a slug crew member just lets the player check whether or not the man is mentally sound or not, and if brought aboard that he will hurt anyone or not. Either the slug crew member will found he isn’t, recommend to leave him behind, or state that he is fine.

Out of Fuel Events

Stranded in the emptiness of space, with no one to call out to for help, being stuck without fuel is a highly precarious situation for the player to find themselves in. Their mission calls for haste, while they also have the rebel invasion chasing after them. Every turn that passes where the player is stranded and unable to proceed onwards plummets the chances of survival more and more. However by turning on the distress beacon, someone out there may come to the player’s aid, but it is more a question of who along with their motives, rather than if anyone really will. As such, there are some random events associated with this unique circumstance.

  • “A mobile Slugman fuel depot enters scanning range. “My prices are fair, but I ask one thing - do not insult me with negotiation!” you check out his price list.”

Without any fuel for the player’s faster than light drive, it is not like they have much choice for a selection of prices. However what this merchant offers is as extreme as it comes. The player can either, should they really have that much of scrap to waste, purchase a meager five units of fuel for fifty scrap or purchase ten units of fuel for a staggering ninety five scrap. The slug merchant even has the audacity to claim that the ten units of fuel for ninety five scrap is the best deal, in all caps. He will actually be visibly shocked should the player purchase the units of fuel for these exorbitant prices.

Against this slug merchant’s warnings, the player can try to negotiate with him. He becomes absolutely furious by the request for negotiations, and lashes out in attack with weapons firing. The player will be forced to fight the ship, but by winning the battle, the player is able to take some fuel and scrap from the slug merchant’s ship without having to pay the hefty price.

While out of fuel, this event has only been seen in the mantis controlled sector, the Zoltan homeworlds, the rebel controlled sector, and the engi controlled sector.

  • “As you await either salvation or death, your attention is drawn to a sea of debris drifting past the starboard view port. The chunks gliding by grow bigger in size until the stern of a Rock frigate, gutted in some distant war, comes into view.”

What else are you going to do, wait until an automatic drone armed to the teeth zips by and starts blasting into the ship’s hull? Not likely, so the second option to simply let the lifeless rock frigate drift by should be disregarded. The first option is to send an away team to investigate the wreckage, some fuel could be on board after all. Commanding the team to report can have a few outcomes. The first possible is that a moderate amount of scrap and missiles are found, but no fuel at all, which isn’t good for the player’s problem at present. The second possibility is that the computer on board the rock frigate has mapping of the sector, and so the player’s space cruiser is able to download it, revealing details of every beacon of that sector while also gaining some fuel from the rock frigate’s reserves. The third possibility is that the fuel cell was drifting by in space as the team was going in, so a medium amount of fuel can be found from that. The fourth possibility is that something goes very wrong, and the team is taken hostage by a lone survivor of the rock frigate who has gone insane and demands scrap in exchange for the team’s lives.

Being faced with this fourth possible outcome brings up two choices, either to pay the ransom which can go as high as forty scrap in some cases, or outrightly refuse and leave the crew member who was taken hostage behind. Even should the player have a clone bay running on their space cruiser, should the crew member be left behind they still will not be resurrected by the clone bay for inexplicable reasons. It would seem unlikely that crew member could survive on that rock frigate wreckage for the remaining span of the game instance, but random events do not hold continuity past their script, so it makes sense in that way why that crew member never would be returned, even though they should eventually perish there, either by the hands of the insane rockman or by running out of oxygen.

  • “Although your lack of fuel cells prevents you from jumping, you can still use your impulse engines. Will you spend some time exploring the nearby system?”

The proposition is hardly one fraught with danger and perilousness, so the choice to explore the nearby area with the regular impulse engines is a simple one to make. A few things could happen from this action, the first being that no single ship responds to hails, and nothing else was found of merit. The second possibility is that there is a tucked away outpost for local travelers only, so they have little use for faster than light drives. As such, they have a meager stock of fuel cells that are needed for faster than light travel, and so the price is exorbitant. The player could refuse to make a trade here, but they will be brought back to square one where they are just stranded all over again. As such, there are three text options for purchasing fuel. Twenty scrap can be traded for five fuel, ten scrap for two, and five scrap for one. Twenty scrap for five is the best deal, but it still is quite a deal worse than purchasing from an actual shop beacon. Purchasing only one fuel cell runs the extreme risk of just getting stranded at the next beacon if a ship or random event isn’t encountered that yields some fuel, so it is wise to either purchase two fuel cells, or just bite the bullet and take the high cost of twenty scrap for five fuel cells.

Fortunately there is another possibility from the main choice of exploring the area, which is that there is a small asteroid field that can be scanned. The player can choose to ignore this too, but it would not be wise to do so, as there is nothing to gain from inaction in this circumstance. Exploring the asteroid field could bring up nothing of worth, but the scans could also reveal mineral compositions that can be extracted for fuel which is just what the player’s space cruiser and its crew needs in this scenario. The final possibility in the asteroid field is that there is a pirate ship hiding amongst the free floating boulders, and leaps out and attacks. This will bring about a fight, and will yield standard rewards, but will most likely give the player a couple units of scrap which will be enough to spin up the faster than light drive and jump away to the next beacon, where hopefully the player will not become stranded all over again by a string of bad luck where they cannot find anything but the emptiness of space around them, and nothing to take fuel from.

Navigation of FTL Guide


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