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Navigation of FTL Guide

Lanius Cruiser

  • “Entice the Lanius with a valuable fleet, unlock 4 ships in addition to the Kestrel Cruiser to unlock this ship.”

The Lanius are a newly arriving race to the intergalactic civilization of Faster Than Light’s universe, bringing with them chaos and confusion. This metallic species devours mineral sources, and so structures that are crafted from space faring species are their prime target. Because of this, the Lanius can seem like an aggressive and war waging species, but they actually are not intentionally malicious. Some Lanius have gone through the effort of learning this intergalactic civilization’s language, as the player can meet one such Lanius through a random event only found in the Abandoned Sector.

Realistically a player can only encounter a Lanius by wandering through the Abandoned Sector, as that is where the Lanius have hit the hardest, but with the Lanius Cruiser, the player can finally call some of this race as their crew members.

Since the Lanius Cruiser was added to the game with the Advanced Edition update, and is also only accessible to be used while that content is enabled, it is outfitted with technologies and systems unique to the update. Usually only the third layout of space cruisers has systems like the hacking station, or even the clone bay, and so regardless of what layout is chosen for the Lanius Cruiser, it will have those systems. There is then somewhat less flexibility as to what systems the player can choose to install onto the layouts though, since some of those spots are already chosen or filled, but by selecting the Lanius Cruiser, it is a guaranteed choice instead of one that relies on chance and scrap resources to find and purchase a system.

The aesthetics of the Lanius Cruiser are pleasing to the eye, and its style is stark against that of any other space cruiser the player can helm or encounter in the whole span of the game. Blue glowing parts pierce through the smooth outer shell, suggesting points of power. Two pincers rear at its front, curving inwards at the base like can openers, despite how inelegant that sounds it is accurate to its appearance.

The whole ship is broad, with its prominent features trailing on its sides where blade-like wings stagger down, until there are two large tail wings. When helming the Lanius Cruiser, it gives the feeling of being markedly different, but compared to the Lanius space ships that the player encounters as hostiles and neutrals it is actually just larger, if one assumes that the space ship portrait of friendlies, hostiles, or neutrals of the UI is representing that ship’s actual size. It may not be, and so the Lanius Cruiser may be sized exactly the same as any other Lanius spacecraft that can be encountered.

There are a multitude of unique blue text events that the player can only have with a Lanius on board, many of which pertain to the Abandoned Sector. The most realistic way of having those blue text options is by choosing to helm either layout of the Lanius Cruiser, as the Lanius species is truly that elusive to recruit across the span of the several sectors.

Layout A Kruos

  • “The sharp knife-like structures make Lanius ships a sight to behold. This cruiser was adapted to support the other races of the Federation.”

By the sweeping, harsh design of the Kruos Lanius Cruiser, it is clear that this was wrought by a long since space faring species. It is unknown what kind of world the Lanius derived from, as their lives are spent in cycles, hibernating as their ships carry them across galaxies and nebulae while they are in wait for ample mineral sources that come about in the death throes of intergalactic civilization.

The coating has a lustrous steel sheen, the wings are jagged like crags, and windows and equipment glow blue into space. The Kruos Lanius Cruiser is the first dramatic shift into the esoteric technology brought in the Lanius’ wake, and so the build is reliant on said systems, with the unique oxygen draining mechanic of the inhabiting species.

The interior of this layout forms a blocky shape following the lines of the letter E, with the middle line being half the length of the other two. Most of the space cruiser’s equipment is gathered around the middle portions of the layout, like a thick and uneven corridor. An aspect many players can appreciate, there are six airlocks located in that vicinity as well. Two at the upper portion where the first line of the letter E is, another two in reflection of that at the bottom, and then two facing the exterior against the wall of the center part, located in the engines system.

  • Original Name: Kruos.
  • Beginning Crew: Two lanius, and one human. Though a mere two of the special race of Lanius may not seem enough, and there is not an option to ever have more from the hangar, they perform their function well. If the lone human is sequestered into the pilots deck, then the rest of the space cruiser’s interior can be safely drained of an air supply. This takes great advantage of the Lanius’ lack of need for oxygen. The oxygen system will need to still be powered, so that it can pump in air to the sole room the human pilot will be staying in.

This makes the rest of the layout a hostile environment for any other race that boards it, making this space cruiser very resistant to intruder attacks, as any enemy crew members that sneak on board will be taking high damage from the vacuum environment. Some care will have to be taken with the human pilot, as he or she will never be able to leave their compartment except in extenuating and brief circumstances. Should that human pilot at some point perish, once revived by the clone bay that is on the left side of the ship, he or she will be able to move quick enough to their designated pilots deck before significant harm is done.

The ideal outcome is that the pilot stays where he or she is, and is not harmed by intruders. This may involve intercepting any hostile intruders on board, as when they enter into an oxygen devoid environment, they will immediately head towards any place that actually has oxygen. This would be the pilots deck, and they will step inside unimpeded if the door system is not upgraded at all, or if no safeguarding Lanius crew members intercept them.

That may sound like a hassle, but the damage inflicted to any intruders is actually severe enough that two Lanius crew members can take on a four person boarding party and win. There are further benefits to an oxygen devoid environment too, since any fires that start will have a dramatically short life span with no air to feed off of to sustain themselves and propagate. This negates one of the primary hazards that can occur on the space cruiser, without requiring the fire suppression augmentation to reactively combat them with automatic fire extinguishers.

This strategy revolving around this unique makeup of crew and the Kruos Lanius Cruiser can be continued even when additional crew members are recruited along the course of a game instance, regardless of what race they are. The most ideal outcome would be to hire more Lanius crew members, but they are incredibly rare, even should the player find a shop beacon in the sole sector that Lanius can be found in - the Abandoned Sector. Should one actually be found, then all other intentions of purchase should be dropped in favor of hiring that precious Lanius. Only after should whatever the player was intending to purchase should be considered. This comes with the exclusion of the space cruiser’s HULL being in life threatening low levels, of five or less points. More if there will not be a shop beacon within a few jumps, or if the difficulty is set to hard.

Chances are a Lanius will not be found to hire, and so whatever crew member that is added to the space cruiser will have to be designed to and sequestered to one room that will have the regular presence of oxygen. Even though an oxygen devoid room will resist the spread of fire, and the occupant within will not be harmed by the persisting effects of a unrepaired hull breach, a crew member that is of any other race than Lanius will still be more suitable to the task of manning that system.

The reasons for this are two fold, mirroring each other. The first is that the crew member will perish roaming about the space cruiser and so that option, should it be selected, would be to entirely abandon this advantageous strategy for the Kruos Lanius Cruiser. The second is that the Lanius crew member, being likely only one of two, can actually roam around the oxygen devoid environment, repairing what needs to be and attacking any intruders, especially those that are mechanical. Boarding drones will not be harmed by a vacuum environment, evident even prior to the Advanced Edition update because when they board a space cruiser, they are literally punching through the HULL and ripping open a hull breach.

  • Starting Weapons: The chain burst laser, and the ion stunner. The more the chain burst unleashes laser volleys, the quicker its charge up time is. Eventually the chain burst laser will only need seven seconds to charge up for one volley, of which is worth two consecutive lasers that conflict one point each. It can be a weapon capable enough on its own to strip away shields and penetrate the ship beneath. Unlike most weapons that only fire at a set interval, establishing almost immediately a ceaseless and unchanging tug of war between the weapon and the targeted shields, the chain burst laser will be able to overcome shields that it cannot initially pierce through. Seven seconds of a charge up time is not the end all be all though, as that is slower than a single barrier layer can regenerate itself, but it can push down the barriers and damage the shield systems to prevent it from regenerating as many layers if it can eventually attack through by itself.

Combined with the ion stunner, the advantages of the chain burst laser will be able to go much farther, as the ion stunner inflicts both ionization and stunning that will leave afflicted crew members dazed and immobile. The ion stunner only releases one blast, for one point of ionization damage, and takes ten seconds to charge up to be able to, but it will stun those affected crew members for around five seconds. The ion stunner of course is not as strong as a regular ion weapon because its purpose is not dedicated solely to ionization, and is instead split between ionization and stunning. So the ion stunner is useful for what it does, and while there are other options out there for stunning crew members, the ion stunner is the most reliable and consistent one out of the bunch.

Together the chain burst laser and the ion stunner will be able to destroy shield systems, stopping them from being repaired by the dazed effect on crew members that often allows shield systems to be resuscitated from one barrier layer to two barrier layers.

Like most space cruiser armaments though, this combination of two weapons will not last the player for the whole span of the game, and should not be solely relied on for even into the middle reach of the game instance. The ion stunner may be given up in exchange for a dedicated ion weapon, while even against the rebel flagship the chain burst laser will find practical use because of its high damage to low charge up time ratio.

  • Starting Drones: There are none, as the Kruos Lanius Cruiser lacks a drone control system installed in the hangar. The Boarding Drone is a well matching drone schematic to acquire for this layout, should the player create a boarding party team with the Lanius crew members. Crew members of species other than the Lanius have difficulty joining Lanius when invading enemy space cruisers because of their oxygen draining effect, as that will harm them just as much as it harms the enemy crew. A boarding drone however will not be afflicted by this, and will actually open up a hull breach wherever it lands.

This serves to circumvent the sheer scarcity of Lanius to contribute to the boarding party, although it will need drone parts and power, it can still be resurrected in a similar manner as the Lanius will be when they perish and the clone bay, provided it is not damaged or unpowered, will ‘revive’ them.

The Ion Intruder schematic does serve a similar, but different enough function to the boarding drone schematic. Although it does break into the enemy space cruiser’s interior, it does not attack hostiles directly. It darts about the ship, ionizing and stunning random systems, in a more pernicious but haphazard way than the ion stunner armament. The problem with these attributes is that the ion intruder cannot be controlled as to where it will ionize, and so wherever it emits its ionization cloud, it will also stun friendlies such as the player’s own Lanius boarding crew. In general, the ion intruder does seem to be more appropriate for sneaking beneath the shields and ionizing systems, rather than working for anti-personnel combat.

Another useful drone schematic for this layout, although not offensive oriented, is the system repair drone. This android will be unaffected by the absence of oxygen in the interior of the space cruiser as well, and so will be able to sweep across the ship, repairing any damages it finds. In general it is a rather resilient piece of hardware, fine tuned to the task of fixing all the things that can possibly be broken. The player cannot control what it repairs first though, so if something is particularly pressing and it is already on its destination elsewhere, that task will just have to wait.

There is also the anti-personnel drone, should the Lanius be otherwise preoccupied with being a boarding party, or some other task that they cannot be quickly rerouted from. Although this drone schematic will only summon a single brawl ready android, with similar features and stats as the boarding drone, this drone is also unaffected from the absence of an air supply and will be able to defend the vulnerable organic inhabitants of the space cruiser from intruders. Its purpose is very specialized, but it does serve to diminish the weakness in the vacuum spreading strategy for the Kruos Lanius Cruiser.

  • Initial Resources: Sixteen fuel, a few missiles, and nine drone parts. Though this layout does not have a drone control system, it does have a hacking station, and when that deploys its hacking drone, it will use a drone part every time. Nine is as small as can be seen for space cruisers from the hangar when they actually have something that will be using drone parts, but the hacking station is not as demanding as a drone control system would be. The player will need to build up somewhat of a stockpile should they wish to add the drone control system to this layout during the game instance itself.

The drone parts used are applicable to be recovered by the drone recovery arm augmentation, but that is a rare find.

  • Starting Augmentations: The emergency respirators. Although this augmentation does not do a single thing for the Lanius crew members, there are after all only two of them on board the ship. For any other race, and for when the player is enacting the vacuum spreading strategy in their space cruiser’s interior, this augmentation helps to prolong the life of any crew member that is caught outside of their designated, air soaked room. This can happen when a hull breach occurs in their room, when some intruders manage to get inside, or even when they perish from missiles or some other source of harm and must make the trip from the clone bay to their safe area.

Specifically the emergency respirators reduce the damage over time received from oxygen deprivation by half, to races that actually receive damage from it.

  • Slot Limits: Four as the limit for the weapons control system, and two for the drone control system should it be installed at some point during actual gameplay. The low allowance of simultaneously equipped drone schematics on this layout’s drone control system has less of an impact because of the presence of the preinstalled hacking station, as that too uses drone parts in order to operate.

There are simply only so many drone parts the player can be using battle to battle, with the exclusion of the final battle against the rebel flagship, where there is no longer any need to preserve supplies except for the next phase where they may be needed to survive, particularly the heavy onslaughts from the rebel flagship’s super attacks of missile volleys or swarming combat and beam drones.

It is a welcome attribute of the Kruos Lanius Cruiser to have four simultaneously equipped armaments on the weapons control system, as on top of its unique aspects of Advanced Edition systems like the clone bay and the hacking station, and the presence of the Lanius crew members, the Kruos Lanius Cruiser is further able to be a hard hitting and versatility armed space cruiser.

Although the maximum allocable power limit for the weapons control can be met with two supremely high tier weapons, as they can each consume four energy slots each, not many weapons need such a power draw, nor are they that frequently found and affordable at the time even. Being able to equip a wider array of armaments lessens the need to have more absolutely high tier weapons, and also allows for supporting and supplementary weapons to be chosen, like the healing burst bomb to back up the boarding party should the reconstructive teleport augmentation not be in possession.

Not much is exemplary about the upgrade levels that the Kruos Lanius Cruiser start with, as most are as low as they can be with the exception of the weapons control. This layout does start out with the clone bay, which otherwise has to be purchased for fifty scrap to swap out the med bay at some point during a game instance for, and it does have the hacking station which has the price of eighty scrap.

Players should prioritize upgrading the door system to at least one level higher so as to protect the vacuum vulnerable crew members such as the human pilot from intruders that would seek to break into his or her oxygen rich room. It is most ideal to maximize the level of the door system, especially since it will not be put any further restrain on the reactor. And with the hacking station already there, it should not be neglected and should be upgraded to the maximum level eventually, although the priority need not be high, it would be best to accomplish prior to engaging with the rebel flagship. Any point prior to that and the player incrementally reaps the benefits of having a maximum tier hacking station.

The shields should be strong to protect all crew members from gunfire damage, as there is no med bay present to heal their wounds and they must rely on the passive micro cloning received from every FTL jump, so upgrading them should be on high priority alongside the reactor and the clone bay in order to raise the healing gained from every FTL jump.

Already having a strain on the limited resource of drone parts, it would only be wise to install it should the player come across some of the recommended drone schematics for this layout or some of the game changing drone schematics like the shield overcharger or the hull repair drone.

Pairing the mind control station with the two person team for the boarding crew will bolster its effectiveness, so that would mesh well with this layout’s build. The cloaking system will have diminished utility without the stealth weapons augmentation, as this layout has four slots for its weapons control and in all likelihood will be firing at more frequent intervals. The crew teleporter would be ideal if this space cruiser gains a couple more crew members so that the Lanius can act as the boarding party, inflicting additional damage by draining the air from the rooms they are brawling in.

The choices end up sliding towards the crew teleporter, with more of a player preference between the mind control station and the drone control system, if not just on game instance equipment and item luck. Granted should the player want to focus nearly exclusively on a boarding party and the mind control, then the second layout of the Lanius Cruiser would be a better matching choice.

Despite being a newly added vessel, the crew teleporter will not be found in one of the spacious rooms, but this matters relatively little if the boarding party’s role is assigned to the two Lanius a part of the crew.

  • Ways to unlock: The game’s description of this space cruiser accurately, if succinctly explains how to acquire it. Newcomer players will not stumble upon this space cruiser when first launching the game, but players that enjoyed Faster Than Light prior to the update most likely will already have it.

The requirement is that the player’s save file be in the possession of five or more space cruisers, including the Kestrel Cruiser which is automatically available from the very start.

Usually to unlock a space cruiser there is a unique series of random events that form a quest line to be completed, or the rebel flagship (and the game instance) must be defeated with a specific space cruiser. Presumably since this space cruiser was and is not a part of the core game it did not have a corresponding space cruiser to unlock it, and it might be considered unfair to require the crystal cruiser as that can only be found by a secret sector.

Layout B Shrike

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  • “The racial ability of the Lanius make them fearsome combatants in small quarters. Combine that with a Mind Control system and this ship is a force to be reckoned with.”

The ambiguous nature of the Lanius Cruiser is shirked off, taking on a menacing appearance with red and orange glowing ports and brown and red mechanical parts beneath the armored exterior. The coating shines like obsidian, with the dark purple hues of it. This would be a frightful thing to see if encountered on the battlefield, as it is so very alien compared to every other kind of space cruiser, even the Mantis Cruiser.

The interior follows a pattern like a gaping maw with one gargantuan tooth where the engines jut out from. Areas are more secluded from intrusion, but are made more distant from other parts of the ship because of this.

  • Original Name: The Shrike. May be named after a species of bird of the same name known for a butchering style of killing prey by impaling them on sharp objects like thorns.
  • Beginning Crew: Two Lanius, and one engi. The same strategy can be employed here with the Shrike Lanius Cruiser, as there are again two Lanius crew members, except the human is swapped out with the more fragile and futile at brawling engi. The engi’s remarkable abilities at repairing anything there can be will be put to waste except in his designated area, since he will suffocate should he venture outside. The alternative is to extremely upgrade the oxygen system so that the air supply can be rapidly replenished for quick acting repair, only to be drained once the repair is completed and the engi crew member is safely tucked away in his chosen room.

Since the engi is so adept at repairing anything, the pilots deck may be somewhat of a waste for him, but at the same time so would it be for a Lanius. There is little other choice but to sit the engi at the pilot’s seat, as the Lanius will be able to freely roam while the space cruiser will still have the ability to dodge incoming weapons fire. The engi neither would be able to fight off intruders, since they only inflict half the standard damage rating in brawling.

Even should the Lanius crew members not remain on board this space cruiser, the severe desaturation of oxygen across the space cruiser can still be applicable because of the emergency respirators augmentation. It is generally not a good idea for crew members to go wandering around in vacuumed areas, but this will make it a more feasible journey, while the Lanius crew members sent away can return quickly enough to deal with threats. This will of course have the effect of not being able to go on the offensive for a short while, but any intruders may be all but collapsed by the time the Lanius return, should they even need to.

  • Starting Weapons: The advanced flak, and nothing else. The Shrike Lanius Cruiser is armed with a customized version of the advanced flak, needing one less energy slot and taking a couple seconds less to fire each volley. This advanced flak also has a smaller aiming circle, so it will be consistently more accurate on the target area than the other flak weapons.

For dislodging three potential points of damage, in intervals of eight seconds, the advanced flak does have a high damage for its rapid frequency of fire. If it was perhaps twice as long of a charge up time, then it would only be a lower tier weapon. Throughout the whole span of a game instance, the advanced flak will be useful for stripping down shields for other weapons to damage the systems and HULL beneath. It only needs one energy slot, so it is hardly a strain to keep this thing running. And since you cannot find the advanced flak anywhere else in the game, this is a persuading factor in choosing to helm the Shrike Lanius Cruiser.

  • Starting Drones: None, as this layout does not have a drone control system installed.
  • Initial Resources: Sixteen fuel, with zero of drone parts and missile ammunition. Lacking any equipment that uses those limited resources, there just are not any. However without a strain on those limited resources in the early span of the game, should the player choose to install a hacking station or acquire a missile launcher, there should be a suitable stock built up of them.
  • Starting Augmentations: The emergency respirators that halve the damage over time received from races vulnerable to the harm from a complete lack of oxygen dispersed through a room. This augmentation will become more crucial should the Lanius boarding party actually be utilized, as they will no longer be on board the player’s space cruiser and so only other races will be left in the precarious but calculated environment. Should they need to plunge into vacuumed areas, then this will greatly diminish how much harm they intake. Even if a mistake is made anyway, the clone bay should be able to resurrect them at a skill penalty across the board.
  • Slot Limits: Four in the weapons control, and just two for the drone control should one be installed.
  • Systems: Level two shields (one barrier), level one engines, level one oxygen support, level one weapons control, level one pilots deck, level one door system, level one crew teleporter, level one med bay, and level one mind control. The reactor starts with eight energy slots.

This second layout concentrates on the other half of the newly introduced systems and tactics from the Advanced Edition update, as there is a combination of the crew teleporter and the mind control station present. None of them are upgraded at all, but that is the status quo for the Lanius Cruiser, and isn’t a reason enough to dissuade from choosing this build. The weapons control is of a drastically lower upgrade level than its twin in the Kruos Lanius Cruiser, but that would be because the Advanced Flak Gun requires so very little energy slots. This does soak up some scrap cost later on as well.

Regardless whether or not the player decides to enact the tactic to keep the interior of their space cruiser drained of oxygen, it will be important to upgrade the door system early on in order to protect the lower number of crew members on board the ship. Most likely the player will be using a boarding party build, with the two Lanius acting as the fighters, so there will just be the engi left alone. Engi, being a race that dishes out very little damage in a fight, is markedly vulnerable to any intruders. It is even possible by the time the intruders break down the door to the pilots deck the engi is stashed away in that they will have about a quarter of their health left. That would be a difficulty the engi could possibly surmount.

Upgrading the crew teleporter loses some benefit, as there is no longer as much of a compelling reason to recall and redeploy the boarding party with the clone bay on board, as opposed to the med bay. Recalling may become tantamount to forfeiting the exchange on the brawl route, as there is no way to recover a crew member’s health bar at the same node. There is only the passive regeneration given by the clone bay during the FTL drive jumps.

  • Room for Additional Systems: Unlike its sibling layout, the Kruos Lanius Cruiser, there is only one spot that allows for another system to be added. The addition of both the crew teleporter and the mind control station take up those slots, so much of the decision as to what to configure is already decided for the player upon choosing to helm the Shrike Lanius Cruiser. That is not necessarily a bad thing though, as already knowing what the space cruiser comes with diminishes potential variability in the specifications of a desired build.

There is also another thing that is spoken of less, which is that it helps to narrow down the number of decisions, which can make what can be decided upon easier and less likely to overwhelm. Sometimes when faced with too many decisions, variables, and options players can waver, become uncertain, or even forget their original intention. That is also presuming there even was one, some players will just be content with picking up whatever is the best that they can find, and so they cobble together a space cruiser build with often less than effective and frugal use of their scrap resource; and even over spending by purchasing a piece of equipment they end up inadvertently replacing in the sector after the next because of the rather haphazard way they arm their vessel.

The build is all but chosen for the player with the installed systems already a part of the Shrike Lanius Cruiser, with the exception of the selections for weapons and drones, should a drone control system be acquired. So with only one spot available for another system to be added, the choices are left to the cloaking system, the drone control system, and the hacking station. The Shrike Lanius Cruiser only has two drone schematic slots, so unless the player happens upon a highly valued drone schematic that complements the build of this layout, like the Boarding Drone schematic, then it would not be ideal to invest into the drone control system.

On the other hand, the hacking station will supplement and bolster the fighting potential of the boarding party, and therefor the ship as a whole, as there are a number of systems that can be hacked into to turn against their owners. The oxygen system for one, if hacked into, will rapidly drain the space cruiser of its air supply, a hazardous environment that does not concern the Lanius boarding party. Such a draining effect is actually facilitated by the presence of the Lanius, as they will naturally absorb the air into their metallic bodies. Another would be the med bay, for as useful as the Lanius’ species abilities are, they are still only two in number and can be overwhelmed by high numbers. Corridors can only accommodate two people inside them at once, and per side, so that is an incredibly common tactic to employ when commanding a two person boarding party.

However what frequently happens when engaging the enemy in that way, is that once they are of low enough health, they will hastily retreat to their med bay and simply be replaced by another hostile crew member who has not been in the heat of battle like the player’s own Lanius continue to be. Should the med bay be hacked into, there is no longer any rejuvenating haven to return to, and it will actually poison those that enter it, with the exclusion of the player’s own Lanius as their hacking station is after all in control of the med bay’s programming. It is even possible to fight while inside the med bay, so that enemy crew members that the Lanius are attacking will take substantially higher amounts of damage within a briefer period of time. Although that is only advisable when the hacking station is well upgraded, as the poisonous effect and the negation of its regenerating effects are only enacted when the hacking drone is operating. When the hacking drone is on a cooldown, the med bay will continue to work as normal, provided it is not damaged to orange or red. The presence of the Lanius inside the med bay would prevent crew members from repairing it though, which is a rather wanted outcome to ensure victory over that particular kind of scenario.

Again like the Kruos Lanius Cruiser, it is less than ideal to add the cloaking system to this layout’s build, as the multitude of weapons that will most likely be equipped to this vessel will frequently cut the cloaking duration short, unless the stealth weapons augmentation is acquired somewhere along the span of a game instance - a less than likely possibility.

  • Ways to unlock: Being the second layout of the Lanius Cruiser, the Shrike can only be acquired by completing two of the three achievements unique to this cruiser. So a player must already be in possession of the Lanius Cruiser to even begin progress on acquiring the Shrike. It is a rather common, but understandable misconception that these achievements can be acquired on any space cruiser, but that is absolutely not the case, and a player will have their time wasted by a futile endeavor of trying them on any space cruiser but the Lanius. Of course other space cruisers do have their own respective achievements, so there is always achievements to gain throughout the game, presuming said achievements have yet to be completed.

The first achievement is named “Advanced Mastery” and in order to fulfill its requirements, the player’s space cruiser must have three things active at once: the hacking station, the mind control station, and the backup battery. The backup battery is a subsystem that temporarily grants the reactor additional, highlighted energy slots that go beyond the maximum capacity of the reactor. Since the mind control station creates a similarly transient effect, it is a developer intended tactic to combine the backup battery and the mind control together so as to not further strain the reactor, should the player be cognizant enough to do so while also being in possession of the backup battery.

This achievement is far from challenging, and more so just has stipulations of acquiring the mind control station and the backup battery since the Kruos Lanius Cruiser starts from the hangar with the hacking station already. It may take a few times to get the timing synchronized between the three systems, and will almost assuredly require some well-placed pauses to activate the systems in the correct cascade. The hacking station will need to have a hacking drone actively disabling a system on an enemy ship for it to be included towards the stipulations of the “Advanced Mastery” achievement.

Most unmanned drones will not work for this achievement, as they lack any crew members on board to use the mind control station on, but some unmanned drones with the Advanced Edition content enabled for gameplay will be equipped with a mind control station, and actually aggressively use it on the player’s crew members, wherever they are. By using the player’s own mind control station on that hijacked crew member, the consuming brainwashing behavior will be cancelled out and will count towards the requirements for this achievement. Be warned however, when using the mind control station in that particular kind of scenario, it must be the last system out of the three to be activated as the interaction is like turning off a switch and so it is not a prolonged effect.

The second achievement for the Lanius Cruiser is named “Scrap Hoarder”, hailing to the metal hungry vendetta of the species, so of course they would want to hoard as much scrap as they can. A player is only going to make things excessively hard on themselves if they choose any difficulty but easy for this achievement, as the configured difficulty set for the game greatly magnifies the quantities of scrap received and rewarded from every opportunity, from starting the game with 30 scrap on easy to an utter zero on hard, to what can be salvaged from a blasted apart fallen vessel.

The requirement to complete the “Scrap Hoarder” achievement is that the player must come into the possession of six hundred scrap at one time. That is not a total throughout the span of a game instance, but a reached total at a single point. This forces the player to act in the exact opposite of what they usually do during a game instance, since the scrap resource is the currency universally used to purchase equipment from shop beacons and upgrade systems, even to recruit additional crew members.

It will take some time to acquire such a wealth of scrap. As tempting as it may be for the player to amass the whole lump of scrap from the very start of the game instance, such a driven course may just lead to their space cruiser’s demise as without any scrap spent to upgrade the systems of the ship, the space cruiser just will not be strong enough to overcome enemy encounters. And if the player has to FTL drive jump away from too many ships, the scrap they should be gaining will be lost, on top of the damage their space cruiser’s HULL would have received from such a hostile encounter anyway.

Though it may seem to shorter the time needed to accrue six hundred total scrap, the scrap recovery arm augmentation is not recommended, and actually will produce a deficit that cannot be feasibly covered through the span of a game instance, especially not one where the player is staving off upgrades in the hopes of amassing such a quantity of scrap. The cost of the augmentation is just too high to warrant the ten percent bonus to any found scrap.

Should it be a struggle to perform this achievement, with the sacrifice of the continuation of that specific game instance, the player could sell off all their equipment to a shop beacon to reach that needed six hundred scrap. That would include anything between weapons, drone schematics, augmentations, and whatever might be in the space cruiser’s cargo. Equipment and items only sell for half their sale value, but together that may amass to a hundred or more scrap, which could be enough to push the player up to or over the six hundred needed. It would be pragmatic to add up how much scrap will be given from selling everything off, because if the player does not reach that six hundred scrap total from selling it all, then they will be basically forfeiting the rest of the game instance and have to start all over again to be able to try for this achievement once more. A space cruiser without any weapons or drone schematics, with the exception of a boarding party and crew teleporter, is not going to be able to defeat any enemies. The only luck they could have would be the random event of finding scrap and weapons floating in space, a relatively uncommon occurrence.

Once the “Scrap Hoarder” achievement is acquired, there is no harm in using up all of the six hundred scrap, as the save file now has the achievement stored within it. Chances are that game instance will not be managing so well though, and should the player best the rebel flagship in the end, the score will not be that decent.

The third and final achievement for the Lanius Cruiser is called “Loss of Cabin Pressure”. Like the first achievement “Advanced Mastery”, this serves to show and teach the player the oxygen drain strategy where most of the space cruiser is as much of a vacuum as space, nearly anyway. The requirement to fulfill the “Loss of Cabin Pressure” achievement is that the Lanius Cruiser must have twenty or less percent oxygen circulating throughout the interior, so that is a eighty percent loss of air supply, for the whole duration of the game with no fluctuations above that twenty percent level until the player’s space cruiser reaches the eighth and final sector - the last stand. Such an environment will not bother the Lanius crew members one bit, but the human that starts out with the Kruos Lanius Cruiser will need to be secluded to one room, and that is it.

The air supply must be continually pumped into the space cruiser’s interior in order to maintain regular and safe levels, where instances that the oxygen system is unpowered or damaged will immediately produce a loss of air supply. Clearly the air supply is rapidly being used, to the point that the space cruiser cannot be considered sealed under normal terms, but generally people need a continuous air supply anyway and the game presents the use of air mechanic much more quickly than in reality.

So in order to allow the human pilot’s room to have the presence of a safe air supply, the oxygen system must be turned on, while the rest of the space cruiser must have their hatch doors opened with no interruptions or separations. The air locks must be opened to drain the oxygen from the ship, as now there is nothing impeding that funneling with the hatch doors turned down. So long as the hatch doors on the human pilot’s room are closed, and the oxygen system remains on and active, the air supply will continue to replenish inside the human pilot’s room while the rest of the space cruiser will be a literal vacuum.

It does not matter how many of the airlocks are opened, but opening all six will more rapidly drain the entire space cruiser of air. The tracking for the achievement only starts after the player’s first FTL drive jump, so all preparations must be done at the starting beacon of the game instance. There also appears to be a glitch present in the game as of April 2014 that toggles this achievement an automatic failure if the player saves and quits, and then resumes the game later. So to be able to get this achievement, the game instance must be completed in one swoop. There is no consequence to just pausing the game, and resuming again hours later, but the act of literally closing it will prevent it from being able to be completed.

By draining the whole space cruiser but a couple select rooms of oxygen, any damage to the oxygen system greatly magnifies the repercussions and potential lethality. For you see, the room the human pilot is occupying may have to begin with safe and standard levels of air supply, there is a higher than regular demand on the oxygen replenishment from the system because there is not any air circulating throughout the rest of the space cruiser. With just one room filled with air, there is only six percent oxygen present in the whole of the space cruiser. Normally this would represent basically negative levels that begin to harm crew members across the ship over time, with the crossing grey streaks graphic appearing in suffocating rooms, but in this case it is signifying the amount that single room adds to the whole.

Since each room roughly holds 6.25% of the space cruiser’s total oxygen, the player can have at most three rooms with a safe air supply and not exceed the limit of 20% oxygen. The gauge should read as 19% in that instance of three isolated rooms.

The most feasible achievements out of those three would be the first achievement, the “Advanced Mastery”, and the second achievement, the “Loss of Cabin Pressure”. Those two achievements follow along actions that the player likely would be taking anyway, and so they do not disrupt regular gameplay too much, whereas the second achievement “Scrap Hoarder” requires substantial commitment and perseverance.

Crystal Cruiser

  • “Travel to an unknown sector of the galaxy to find this powerful vessel.”

This space cruiser is a bulky, blocky mass that looks like it was grown out of the side of a lumpy blue quartz based asteroid, perhaps partially melted and re-solidified by skirting too close by a sun on its wayward journey through the hidden sectors of the crystal worlds.

Lumps protrude like the rise of hills out of spots on the space cruiser where the layout itself is buried in. Only a species such as the Crystalmen could fashion a functioning and formidable spacecraft out of this resilient and resistant material. Their very technology is based on this rare type of crystal, and it almost looks like this species themselves were grown out of the crystal itself, as they share a likeness to its hue and construction.

The Crystal Cruiser is a hard to find secret in the Faster Than Light game, that can only be uncovered by following a quest line in a precise and particular order, that involves a fair amount of dice rolling in order to successfully find just the right events in the necessary order. It can take several game instances just to find the hibernating Crystalman needed to begin the first steps of the quest line.

As narrow of a chance as it is to unlock the Crystal Cruiser, it offers a unique build and style for gameplay with its crystal based weapons that are partially shield piercing projectiles, and the once isolated Crystalmen crew members that operate the vessel. Crystalmen are perhaps just as rare as the Lanius race is, but can realistically be recruited from shop beacons should the player manage to sneak into the crystal hidden worlds, an option that is all but not there for the Lanius species. They are also one of the only races that have a triggerable racial ability, giving the player control over another tactic to use in the game.

Layout A Bravais

  • “This powerful vessel is powered by the secret technologies of the lost Crystalline Beings.”

It is conceivable that those traveling in space who look upon this space cruiser through just the window of their viewing deck may be under the impression that the Bravais Crystal Cruiser is just a drifting mass of crystal, slowly going its way through the expanse of space. It is lumpy and misshapen, really not seeming to be shaped by intentional design, rather than the aimlessness of nature.

Fortunately the law of aerodynamics doesn’t hold much in the reaches of space, so the clunky shape of the Bravais Crystal Cruiser is curious, a bit odd, and perhaps unsightly. For as lumpy as it is, the coating looks carved into flat planes like a refined gemstone, giving the sky blue coloring of the crystal darkened recesses like slate. Disappointingly the floor plans of the interior layout are no more ordered than the shape of the whole space cruiser. It is not exactly that there are corridors unfurling everywhere, but the floor plan is like a stretched out U with growth-like pieces straying off in some areas.

It is actually quite a walk from one end to the other, so much so it is a nuisance to regularly do so, and still takes so much time that hazardous situations can worsen far too much if they had just been able to be addressed sooner by a crew member in closer proximity. The weapons control is the most isolated system out of them all, with only the med bay bringing it into relevance and familiarity with the rest of the space cruiser. At least there are airlocks evenly spaced across the layout, with two being on the left side, two in the narrow corridor in the middle that connects the whole ship together, and two facing the right side adjacent to the med bay. The smart placement of the airlocks works to lessen the strain of the excessive spread of the layout when dealing with dangers like roaring fire or thieving intruders.

  • Original Name: Bravais, likely named after the late French physicist Auguste Bravais who specialized in the field of crystallography.
  • Beginning Crew: Two Crystalmen, and two humans. It wouldn’t make sense for there to be humans on board this vessel, if not for the fact that this Crystal Cruiser was offered to the federation. All space cruisers found in the hangar are a part of the federation after all.

Those two Crystalmen are one of the compelling reasons to choose this space cruiser and layout from the hangar, although they are not without their weaknesses. These Crystalmen crew members move at a slower speed than the average, but not as sluggish as the Rockmen crew members.

Despite that these Crystalmen crew members just are not as slow as the slowest moving race, this still does put them at quite the disadvantage when ambling across their ship. By default the game does place one Crystalman crew member inside the weapons control, located all the way over to the far right, the very farthest point of the ship. That may sound like something to be quickly reversed, but it is not all that bad as that Crystalman is just one corridor and one chamber from the med bay, and the weapons control room is often a point of interest for gunfire from enemy space cruisers.

Regardless that concern could be disregarded by swapping that crystal crew member with one of the humans, such as the one in the engines, but the heart of the problem reveals itself, as once again the crystal crew member is just too far from something to either get what he needs, or what needs to be done. Being injured will be a piercing vulnerability for that Crystalman crew member who is stashed away back at the engines, and he is neither going to be suitable for defending the space cruiser from intruders back there. It would be better for him to man a system a little closer to everything else, but there just is not a system located on the right side that needs it, so there he stays in the weapons control room, making the best out of an annoying situation.

Should a passage need to be blocked, or a room fortified to prevent access, each of those Crystalmen crew members can fulfill that duty with their special ability that locks down a room. It works to keep both people in, and out, and so by putting a Crystalmen crew member in a chamber or corridor that leads to elsewhere on the ship, and prevents access for that side, and activating their ability, it will stop those intruders for a decent span of time of being able to proceed. Fighting off intruders may not even be necessary with such a well-timed tactic, if the vicinity is completely drained of oxygen.

On the offensive side of things, these Crystalmen crew members are going to be excellent at brawling in a boarding party, as with tactical timing of their lockdown special ability they will be able to prevent any combatants from retreating or leaving. This becomes most useful when an enemy crew member is low on health, and will soon to be running away from the room to heal up in the med bay. Normally that would result in the outcome of having to fight the same enemy twice, requiring a brief retreat in order to heal up the player’s own boarding party, making the strife take literally twice as long with no additional gain, not even to the boarding party’s brawling skill since they did not defeat an enemy; although they may have had the time to be able to destroy a bar of health or two of a system they were in the same room of.

The worst possible outcome in that scenario is that the crew teleporter is still on its ionized cooldown, and so the boarding party is not able to be safely recalled to the player’s ship, and since they are essentially fighting an impossible enemy, they fall to the enemy crew’s hands. Such a thing is usually avoided by being cautious and avoiding being overwhelmed by larger numbers, or having a sufficiently upgraded crew teleporter to reduce the cooldown that is enacted from every teleportation, be it sending or recalling. A player unaware of this potential, undesired outcome, typically avoids it when there is no solution to dealing with the med bay. If the med bay cannot be disabled in some way, such as damaging it with a missile or a hacking drone turning it against the crew, then without an alternative and swift tactic the enemy crew members of that space cruiser just cannot be defeated.

However by having at least one Crystalman in the player’s boarding party, they are able to prevent the enemy crew members from running away by locking down the hatch doors with the wild spread of crystal growths, and that gives them both a tactical advantage and value other races cannot claim to, not even the Lanius race.

  • Starting Weapons: The crystal burst mark I, and the heavy crystal mark I. Both of these are projectile weapons that shoot fragments of crystal, functioning a lot like missiles since they can inflict hull breaches and have a partially shield piercing property. They behave mostly like lasers though, continually able to discharge the fragment to attack the enemy space cruiser. The crystal burst mark I fires two fragments of crystal, each inflicting one damage, every fifteen seconds. It needs two slots of energy to keep running. The heavy crystal mark I shoots instead one large fragment of crystal that can inflict two damage, every thirteen seconds.

These two crystal weapons share the same partially shielding property of being able to slip past a single layer of barrier, and no more than that. Because of this, the crystal burst mark I is technically superior to that of the heavy crystal mark I, since it can cut through more layers of barrier than the other. The first shot of the crystal burst mark I will take down the second shield, and then the third shot will strike the HULL if there is not a third layer of a barrier. Unfortunately since the heavy crystal mark I cannot affect a ship with two layers of barriers or more, since it fires in more rapid succession than the crystal burst mark I, the two weapons will need to be timed together to be able to take on that kind of superior shielding. What little advantage the heavy crystal mark I had over the crystal burst mark I is lost by sacrificing the full use of its shorter charge up period, but at least the heavy crystal mark I still only needs one energy slot to power.

Together these two weapons can take on more than they should seem to be able to, but they’ll do best when paired with another burst laser of middle tier quality, or a missile launcher like the pegasus missile that fires two missiles for the cost of one ammunition. Anything that is a projectile as well will also help to protect the crystal weapons from being shot down from a patrolling defense drone, by sheer quantity of too many projectiles hurtling at the space cruiser the defense drone is protecting, as those drones can only shoot down so many objects at once.

An ion weapon would be the best choice though, if it strong enough or rapid enough in order to knock out the drone control system on the enemy space cruiser to disable the defense drone. That can be less reliable though, particularly if it the ion weapon is not top tier. Generally the more layers of barriers that the enemy space cruiser will have, the incrementally less likely the ion weapon is going to be able to shut down the shields and then disable the drone control system for any decent length of time. However if that span of time in which the drone control system of the enemy space cruiser is ionized is not an unbroken continuity, then the player can time the discharges of their weapon crystals when the defense drone is actually enabled, but this might have the effect of reducing the total damage output of the crystal weapons since they cannot fire as frequently. Still that is better than the alternative which is inflicting only half of the typical damage of the crystal weapons, or worse none at all, because of a defense drone blasting the fragments of crystal spinning through space down.

Because of how the pairing of these two crystal weapons tend to overwhelm enemy space cruisers in the early portions of game instances, their capabilities can be overestimated for later gameplay, placing the player and their space cruiser on a precarious knife’s edge where their equipment just is not up to par with what it needs to be in order to dispatch enemies while taking minimal points of damage. Higher tier weapons will need to be added, and despite the crystalline theme of the space cruiser, the higher tier crystal weapons that exist in the game will not be feasibly accessed as they can only be purchased in the crystal hidden worlds, and even then it is only a chance for the shop beacons to have them in stock, so altogether it becomes a minimal opportunity. Even so they are not that much better than what the Bravais Crystal Cruiser already has equipped.

  • Starting Drones: There are no drone schematics to begin with on the Bravais Crystal Cruiser, as there is no drone controls system preinstalled. There are some drone schematics that perform exceptionally well in this space cruiser’s build however, such as the anti-combat drone that will ionize enemy defense drones, thereby preventing them from shooting down any of the crystal fragment projectiles of the crystal weapons.
  • Initial Resources: Sixteen fuel, zero missiles, and zero drone parts. Though the Bravais Crystal Cruiser is specialized and tuned for physical projectiles, none of those consist of missile launchers, and so the layout simply has no need for missile ammunition in the early portions of the game. That of course changes should the player acquire a missile launcher, but by then some stock should be accumulated to be able to sustain it. Regardless the Bravais Crystal Cruiser will not be able to be heavily spec’d for a combination of missile launchers until later in the game, unless the player is rather fortunate with some missile ammunition drops and perhaps manages to find random event that awards a higher cache for ammunition.
  • Starting Augmentations: The crystal vengeance is an augmentation scarcely seen elsewhere, and in all likelihood the player never will come into possession of it unless they choose to play a game instance with the Crystal Cruiser. Either of the two layouts do have this augmentation, so this is a solid aspect when playing this space cruiser.

The crystal vengeance augmentation interlaces a reactively and passively occurring defense mechanism where in every one strike out of ten, a piece of crystal will break off and ricochet at the enemy space cruiser, as if the HULL of the space cruiser constructed out of purely crystal is splintering just a little bit. This only has a chance of happening if the HULL of the crystal cruiser is struck directly, and so altogether that is a ten percent chance that the space cruiser will retaliate against damaged inflicted to itself.

This piece of crystal is much like the fragments discharged from the crystal weapons, and so it acts like any regular physical projectile with the special property of one point of partial shield piercing, although with only one point of damage. The piece of crystal does have a chance of causing a breach in the struck space cruiser as well, should it actually impact upon the space cruiser’s HULL, however that also is at only a minor chance of ten percent. It ends up being rather astronomical odds that any of those fragments released by the crystal vengeance augmentation will ever result in a hull breach, as from the total amount of hits received on the player’s space cruiser, there is only a one percent chance altogether that a hull breach will ever be inflicted on the enemy space cruiser.

Generally the crystal vengeance augmentation is not a contributing reason by its own merits to choose the Bravais Crystal Cruiser, or the other layout either, as it has such a minor chance of putting up some use that it can only be seen as a sporadic and uncommon benefit with little contributing effect. What this augmentation may be in disguise is a heap of forty scrap, as this item can be sold off to a shop beacon for such an amount, which is quite the boon early on in a game instance and especially so on higher difficulties, like hard mode that initiates the game with absolutely no scrap at all.

Unfortunately the crystal vengeance can present some hazards to the player’s boarding party, should a piece break off and smash into the enemy ship while the boarding party has invaded it. Such a fragment could potentially collide with the same room the boarding party is presently in, and ergo deal a chunk of damage to their health bars. If their health is particularly low, like forty percent or below, they may perish from the incidental friendly fire. Generally such a string of events is highly improbable to occur, but even so it is still possible, and so further detracts from the benefits from having this augmentation at all in conjunction with a crew teleporter and a boarding party of two or more crew members.

  • Slot Limits: The weapons control on board the ship can take up to four different spots for equipped weapons, and the drone control system should it be installed can only handle two spots for plugged in drone schematics. As such, the Crystal Cruiser is ill suited to a suite of drone schematics that offer the player flexibility and multipurpose at the same beacon during conflict, as the player cannot swap out equipped drone schematics in the heat of battle. This does not prevent the Crystal Cruiser from still using some especially useful drone schematics though, such as the shield overcharger or the hull repair drone, but that will come at the cost of choosing the drone control system over some other supplementary installed system.
  • Systems: Level two shields (one barrier), level two engines, level one oxygen, level three weapons control, level one med bay, level one pilots deck, level one sensors, and level one door system. The reactor begins the game with eight energy slots. Some of that allocable power can be transferred from the med bay and the engines with little detriment to the attributes of the space cruiser, although if the player sacrifices some power from the engines the dodge rate will be lowered by five percent or so.

The oxygen system can also be depowered for a short while, if the player properly balances the quantity of air circulating throughout the space cruiser. A valid and solid strategy when precariously low on sufficient power is to depower the oxygen system in order to get another weapon up and running, and then power it up again once the battle is won and over, so that the oxygen can be replenished to one hundred percent until the space cruiser jumps to the next beacon, where the process is begun again. This is an act of depleting the air reserves and carefully replenishing them once the battle is over, or else depowering that spare weapon to stop the oxygen levels from dropping too low if the battle is just dragging on too long to be safe.

The door subsystem will be in need of upgrading, but then the shields system will also be in dire need of it as the Bravais Crystal Cruiser is far from an evasive ship. There are at least a sufficient number of crew to have one available to be able to man the engines though, so that the evasion rate is quite a big higher in the beginning parts of game instances. Any decent damage inflicted to the weapons control will also knock out the crystal weapons, severely crippling the Bravais Crystal Cruiser’s ability to dish out damage capable of striking down most enemies, as the major source of damage over time derives from the crystal weapon needing two energy slots, as the other just is not as well suited to taking out shields nor cutting through them to effect the ship beneath.

  • Room for Additional Systems: Unfurnished with any unconventional and unnecessary systems, the Bravais Crystal Cruiser has three available spots for more systems to be installed during the course of gameplay. The choices thusly are: the drone control system, the hacking station, the mind control station, the cloaking system, and the crew teleporter. While the player is free to install the clone bay at whatever point, it merely takes the place of the med bay, and does not consume one of those possible spots for more systems. The backup battery is also a subsystem, and so it is free to be installed without detriment to the space for more systems too.

While the drone control system will be useful, as it truthfully almost always is if the space cruiser is without it initially in the hangar, the Bravais Crystal Cruiser will diminish its versatility by only having two available slots. Therefor it is only worth getting if the player can get their hands on sufficiently valuable and/or rare drone schematics, preferably earlier on; however such a luxury is not consistently present for the player, due to the randomness of the generated items and encountered content in way of random events and enemies.

The cloaking system will only be put to fully fledged use if the player is able to acquire the stealth weapons augmentation that prevents any discharged weapons from cutting the duration of the cloak short. Usually this detriment is not as severe, but the Bravais Crystal Cruiser has four spots for armed weapons, and already has two to begin with. It can be managed though with careful timing, but it will be likely to cut down the potential damage output the weapons armed have to offer should such an accommodation be made for the cloak.

The crew teleporter would be a wise decision, as the Crystalmen crew members are well adapted and suited for brawling on an enemy ship with their lockdown ability and their higher than average health. Utilizing their talents to a great degree does require some finesse though, and a consistent application of attention and maintenance to execute well. For players that are not paying attention only to their game, and are multitasking while doing something else, employing such a careful strategy likely is not ideal. To add even more qualms with an otherwise very useful system to add to the ship, the second layout of the Crystal Cruiser comes equipped with a four person crew teleporter. This would mean that provided the player’s save file does actually have the Carnelian Crystal Cruiser unlocked, the player would be better off just choosing that space cruiser if they want to be able to do brawling, with the trade off of the other specifications of the Carnelian Crystal Cruiser of course.

The hacking station will work well with this cruiser, since it can support both a boarding party and the high powered, frequently firing weapons that are assailing the enemy ship. Without a drone control system, there is no draining source on the limited resource of drone parts, and so any drone parts that the Bravais Crystal Cruiser salvages from vanquishing enemies and mining asteroids will be dedicated to just the hacking station. This system does complement this cruiser better, even though the layout was a part of the game years before the Advanced Edition was ever released.

Finally there is the mind control station, which if greatly upgraded will debilitate the enemy space cruiser from within to a certain and finite degree, limited by the length of the mind hijacking effect and what race the crew member being taken over is, along with some other minor variables like the quantity of crew members on board, if even any at all. Obviously when there are no crew members on board an enemy space cruiser, in the case of an unmanned drone or the rebel flagship the second or third phase in, the mind control station has just about no benefit to the player no matter how upgraded it is. Its only purpose in that specific scenario would be to protect against any mind controlling attempts on the player’s own crew members, of which both automatic drones and the rebel flagship can use it (presuming the Advanced Edition content is enabled, in which the player would not be able to use the mind control station anyway if it were not).

The mind control station does pair up best with a boarding party, but is not necessary by a long shot should the player be wielding one during their game instance, or intending to do so. So as usual, the mind control station does fall short of other options available to the player, but it does have a redeeming quality not seen otherwise, it is up to the player to determine if that aspect is enough to warrant its use. The tactic requires a crew teleporter, and therefor some semblance of a boarding party, to be able to realistically, if even actually use. The Crystalmen crew members are able to lockdown rooms with their special ability, preventing anyone from exiting or entering the room it is triggered in. Usually this will lock any enemy crew members in with the crystal crew member, and only with luck and perhaps skilled strategy will the crystal crew member actually be alone in that room, able to prey on the system within without interruption or hindrance. Should there be an enemy crew member inside, hijacking him or her with the mind control will reverse their side, and allow them to work alongside the player’s crystal crew member.

This could have a couple of outcomes, where if there is another enemy crew member located inside the room, and trapped with them, then that now sole enemy crew member can be bested by both the mind controlled crew member and the crystal crew member, turning a face off that would overwhelm the crystal crew member if he had to fight the both of them by himself. This does have the result of being able to separate the enemy crew to a more prevalent and effective degree, that while possible with a couple crystal crew members, would take more finesse and fortune, and just would not be able to handle as much. The other possible outcome is that the enemy crew member who is hijacked by the mind control is the only other person inside the lock downed room with the crystal crew member, and so together they are able to damage the system within so severely it will be destroyed to its fullest effect. The mind control station, if it is upgraded to the second or third level, will also add a damage rating boost to the controlled crew member’s attack rounds.

Good additional system combinations to use in the Bravais Crystal Cruiser would be the mind control station, the crew teleporter, and the hacking station, or the drone control system, the cloaking system, and the crew teleporter. The hacking station and the drone control system can be swapped out with each other with little outside variance, disregarding the literal mechanics of each system. Though the second layout of the Crystal Cruiser does plainly have a superior crew teleporter, with three spots for additional systems, there is little reason not to acquire a crew teleporter for the Bravais when it makes such a dramatic difference when the player can use the crystal crew members as melee combatants.

  • Ways to unlock: This space cruiser has the position of being the most difficult and arduous to unlock out of all space cruisers in the whole of the game of Faster Than Light. While there are again two paths to be able to unlock the Crystal Cruiser, neither one of them are simple feats, and are much more requirement intensive than what is and was needed for the other space cruisers that can be found in the Federation’s hangar. It takes a dedicated and patient player to pull off such an achievement. As well, having such high requirements to be able to unlock the Crystal Cruiser may suggest a beefed up space cruiser, the Crystal Cruiser is still balanced fairly against the other space cruisers the game has to offer, even though they require so much less to be able to unlock.

The first path to unlock the Crystal Cruiser is the canonical one, where the player pursues the steps that the actual captain of the Faster Than Light game would walk, discovering the secrets of the long lost crystalline race. Being an intricate quest line, there is a fair amount of randomly generated content where the player must be able to find certain beacons in specific sectors at key points in the pacing of the quest line. It begins with finding the Damaged Stasis Pod, that appears as an augmentation in the player’s space cruiser’s augmentation hold. The damaged stasis pod can be found in a number of sectors, unlike the following steps of the quest line. It can possibly appear in the pirate controlled sector, the rock controlled sector or homeworlds, and the engi controlled sector or homeworlds. That does seem like a long selection of places in which you can find this needed item, but the required specific beacon is uncommonly found nonetheless. This may be the greatest hurdle in the span of the quest line.

Fortunately the beacon that the damaged stasis pod can be found at will be labeled as being in distress on the beacon map, should the player’s ship come within connecting proximity for such information to be displayed. This can significantly narrow down the possible beacons it could be at, as instead the player just needs to essentially navigate across the beacon map, trying to get as many beacons within information vicinity as possible to able to determine if they are in distress or not. Any beacons that are in distress, and are of the aforementioned sectors, should be visited until the player can manage to find the random event that can grant the damaged stasis pod.

Be warned that should this random event be encountered, the player is not guaranteed the damaged stasis pod, even should the correct options be chosen as there is a flat chance of half and half that it will be successfully retrieved. However should the player’s space cruiser have the rock plating augmentation, one such item that comes equipped from the hangar with the Rock Cruiser, there will be a significantly higher chance to successfully recover the damaged stasis pod where it drifts in space, lodged into an asteroid. Actually encountering this random event will begin a text prompt where the player must choose to search the asteroid field, and reach for the stasis pod instead of the weapons cache. Even choosing the stasis pod may still result in failure as explained, but should that misfortunate occur, there is still the possibility of finding this random event at a beacon further along in the game instance, in any of the sectors it can possibly be found in and even in the same sector the player encountered it already in. There is also no limit as to how many damaged stasis pods the player’s space cruiser can hold, aside from the literal quantity limit put onto the augmentation slots, so multiple of the stasis pod can be held unlike regular augmentations.

Once this damaged stasis pod is brought into the space cruiser’s hold, the next step in the quest line can be begun. The goal for this step is to find the Zoltan research facility, located at beacons in the Zoltan controlled sectors and homeworlds, as well as the engi controlled sectors and homeworlds. The Zoltan species are close allies to the engi race, and so it makes sense as to why their scientist would feel safe researching in territory uncontrolled by their race.

The beacon these Zoltan scientists can be found at will not be distinguished as a distress beacon, as frankly they are not in distress - most of the time anyway. Usually the Zoltan scientists will ask the player to undergo some trite and harmless tests, and will offer some hard cakes and some scrap as a reward in return for the wealth of information of a crew traversing across space through a motley of sectors. With the damaged stasis pod in the player’s possession, a previously unseen before blue text option will appear below acquiescing to their research tests. Through that option, the player will request to repair the damaged stasis pod, and from it the Crystalman in cryostasis will emerge, thanking the captain and the crew. He will offer to reveal the location of his long lost race, so that they can join forces with the Federation.

With the update, there should now be a quest beacon in the rock homeworlds. While this may seem simple, this is the third hoop the player must jump through while dealing with the randomly generating network of connecting sectors, hoping to be lucky enough that just the right ones appear in the needed order with some leeway to be able to actually complete this quest line. Proceed too far through the game instance, and sooner than most will realize the player will have arrived at the last stand, no longer able to proceed on the Crystal Cruiser’s quest line. Since the progress on the Crystal Cruiser’s quest line is not saved from game instance to game instance, should such an inadvertent failure a occur the whole quest will need to be done over again, from the beginning. Those same hoops will have to be passed through, until eventually the player can finally reach the quest marker in the rock homeworlds and activate the device to pass through into the hidden crystal worlds.

Accomplishing that won’t be enough just yet to unlock the Crystal Cruiser. From there the player must reach the next quest marker placed on the beacon map in the hidden crystal worlds. That very last stage will not be as difficult or as time intensive as the rest of the parts of the quest, as an additional sector does not need to be visited, and there are no dice rolls at being able to get the right item.

There is one possible way to circumvent the severe requirements for this quest line, that likely goes around what the game developers originally intended. Technically what you need to proceed through the ancient device, and find it to begin with, is a crew member that is of the Crystalmen race. With the third layout of the Rock Cruiser a Crystalmen crew member is on board the vessel from the hangar.

That third layout was added to the game with the Advanced Edition update, and so the Crystal Cruiser was in the game prior to said update. Should the player have unlocked that third layout, it is possible to use that lone Crystalman crew member to access the ancient device located in the rock homeworlds. The problem with this is that there will not be a quest marker on the beacon map detonating where the ancient device is, and so the player must find it by sheer luck through this method. Regardless this could be preferable, as it is likely to be less time intensive as it should require far less do overs with game instances by just needing to reach the rock homeworlds and little else.

The true second path to unlocking the Crystal Cruiser is the beating the rebel flagship method. With other space cruiser, this requires just beating the rebel flagship on any difficulty with a specific space cruiser, typically the one that would be prior in a full hangar list. With the Crystal Cruiser, the player needs to beat the rebel flagship with the first and second layout of every single space cruiser in the game, with the sole exception of the Lanius Cruiser. Once again, the Lanius Cruiser was content added to the game after the Crystal Cruiser, and so naturally it would not be included in the stipulations of unlocking the Crystal Cruiser through this beat the boss several times method. Usually the second path to unlocking a space cruiser is actually the more realistically feasible one, but in this instance it certainly is not, as the player must have completed two out of three achievements for every space cruiser to be able to even unlock the second layout of them, and then additionally beat the rebel flagship with that second layout. It is very possible, playing through the game multiple times with the many variations there are to playstyle builds, and winning. However it is not much of a challenge if the game is routinely set to easy, and may just become more route than even the first path may be for unlocking the Crystal Cruiser.

If this second path is something the player would already be intending to accomplish, and is content with waiting until it is finished in order to acquire the Crystal Cruiser, then this would be a suitable path to take. Otherwise the first path of following the quest line successfully would be best.

Layout B Carnelian

  • “Their unique racial ability makes the Crystal beings very adept at ship boarding. This ship was designed for such raiding parties.”

The growth-like crystalline formations that constitute the shell and body of the second layout of the Crystal Cruiser, the Carnelian, has shifted into a blood red and lustrous hue, as if it has been corrupted by an otherworldly and perhaps demonic influence. Nonetheless, the sheen is glossy compared to dull of the Bravais, and shades of orange are present in the long cuts that shape its haphazard body.

The interior of the Carnelian Crystal Cruiser appears to have been reversed in a mirror of the Bravais, as now there is a long and winding tunnel pathing up to the top and right of the Carnelian’s body where the cloaking system ends up all by itself. The pilots deck is similarly segmented off in another long corridor, guarded just by the door subsystem. Much of the bulk of the Carnelian’s layout is located in the back half where the four person crew teleporter takes the stage, surrounded on all sides by primary systems like the shields and the oxygen support. Although it is starkly foreign compared to the Bravais’ layout, and much of any other layout present on other space cruisers, it can be easily adjusted to and has its share of advantages that facilitate quick drainage of oxygen to snuff out fires and impede intruders from running rampant across the ship.

This is the variant of the Crystal Cruiser that specializes in unconventional warfare with a crew teleporter and a cloaking system, and should be only chosen by players who have an appetite for challenge. The reasons why will quickly be elaborated in the details of the Carnelian.

  • Original Name: Carnelian.
  • Beginning Crew: Three Crystalmen, and no one else. This is as many Crystalmen crew members the player can start out with from the hangar, and likely as many as ever will be held in employment simultaneously due to how very difficult it is to be able to recruit this species during the actual gameplay. Their talents will not be put to waste in this layout with the four person crew teleporter, but the boarding party that they will march as will certainly benefit from another crew member to bring them up to four. Similarly the player will benefit from having a crew member dedicated to remaining on the space cruiser, as is a similar tactic utilized with the Lanius Cruiser, but not one with such a dire and strict environment.

A crew member of the engi race would be suitable to handling the space cruiser all by himself, staying in the pilots deck while the Crystalmen are invading the enemy space cruiser, but should any repairs be needed across the layout, the dodge rate of the Carnelian Crystal Cruiser will be dropped to an absolute zero if there is no auto pilot. So it will be ideal to have at least two crew members on board the vessel at all times, while the four person boarding party is regularly deployed.

Unlike the normal, the player can hardly sacrifice on the numbers of the boarding party because of this layout’s extreme reliance on the crew teleporter from the very beginning of the game, so it is vital to maintain a boarding party with as high numbers as possible without literally abandoning the ship.

  • Starting Weapons: Much like the all too familiar Mantis Cruiser, the Carnelian Crystal Cruiser actually has no armed weaponry. There is a weapons control system, but it is set at the paltry level of one and will need an extra helping of scrap to bring it over the weakened threshold it is at. Getting weapons on this space cruiser will be like running up a long, high hill, and so will take quite the carrying momentum to bring it through.
  • Starting Drones: As the layout lacks a drone control system, it also does not have any drone schematics from the hangar. There are a number that suit this build and layout well though, such as the boarding drone and the system repair drone.

Having to dedicate so much of the ship’s crew members to be the muscle of the boarding party, there are not going to be many, if any crew members left to take care of the actual space cruiser. Even though the space cruiser is not capable of fighting on its own in the beginning stretches of the game, that vessel is still undergoing siege from the enemy space cruiser, and should it be destroyed your crew members have nowhere to go back to, and no way to proceed forward in their mission, so the game is lost. With a system repair drone around, it can be deployed to maintenance the space cruiser as needed without requiring a crew member to babysit it, or even do its job for it. It can also survive hazards crew members are susceptible to damage from, like fire and vacuums, making it well adapted to extinguishing fires and repairing hull breaches even should there be spare crew members around.

The boarding drone will just buff up the boarding party even more, and reduce the risk of losing any of them to the intense brawling they will have to do. The Crystalmen crew members that consist of a large portion of the boarding party are far from being easily replaceable, and so the addition of the boarding drone to make loosing even just one of them much less likely is of a high benefit.

Otherwise certain defensive drone schematics will work well when the cloaking is not able to be activated to strategically evade a barrage of attacks. There are more than just defense drones that shoot down incoming physical projectiles, namely blasted missiles, such as the anti-combat drone that ionizes any offensive drones targeting the player’s space cruiser, and the shield overcharger.

The shield overcharger schematic is actually a remarkably formidable and sturdy source of defense, enough to be on near equal footing with an upgraded cloaking system, so long as the player’s space cruiser is not under too sluggish, heavy hitting weaponry. The reason being that the more layers of super shielding the shield overcharger has to erect and apply, the longer it takes for the drone to fabricate another layer. With the layers being frequently stripped away, the shield overcharger drone is able to establish the barriers at the most frequent that it can, so it actually has a lower efficiency if the shield overcharger tries to establish a multitude of layers over the player’s space cruiser rather than continually putting up just one to two between weapons fire intervals.

  • Initial Resources: Sixteen fuel, zero drone parts, and zero missiles. That is exactly the same as the first layout of the Crystal Cruiser, except for starkly different reasons as to the utter void of limited resources beside that of the bare necessity of fuel. Lacking armed weapons and a drone control system to even hold drone schematics, there just is no need for the Carnelian to have either drone parts or missiles, but at least the space cruiser will gradually build up a stock while the player’s boarding parties take out enemy crew after enemy crew, reaping substantial rewards from being able to pick enemy space cruisers clean with nobody to resist or stop them.

One will find that by defeating hostiles from the beginning stages of the game with a boarding party, the accumulating total of scrap in the player’s stock will come to be a considerably larger sum versus the typical means of combat, as besting the enemy space cruiser by wiping out their crew generally gives greater scrap yields. However there may be a downside to this, in that some limited resources can be less frequently rewarded for a rather ambiguous reason, unable to be rationalized by either mechanic nor logic. Not that the player would be using those limited resources in the course of regular battle by teleporting the brawn of the boarding party over. The lesser rewards towards those limited resources will only matter if the player ever does end up arming the Carnelian with more than a missile launcher, or makes pressing use of drone schematics in every hostile encounter or so. While it may seem to be less frequent that missile parts and drone parts will be awarded, it should still be enough to handle a parsimonious drain later on.

  • Starting Augmentations: Just like the first layout, the crystal vengeance is also equipped from the hangar on board the Carnelian. The stray hazard it can pose is of more concern with the greatly numbered boarding party the player will be using in the Carnelian’s build, where it is possible that a piece of crystal will break off and collide with the enemy ship while the boarding party is attacking there, and into the same room, harming them as much as it would be the space cruiser and the enemy crew.

For as hard to unlock as the Crystal Cruiser is, and for as rare and divergent as the crystalline technology is, one would think that the augmentation that is bundled with the Crystal Cruiser would be more formidable and unique. Although there are not any other augmentations that perform a similar function as to the crystal vengeance, it is a rather lackluster augmentation, and the player would be better off selling it off to a shop beacon for a hefty sum of forty scrap, the benefit of which increases the higher the difficulty is scaled for that individual game instance.

  • Slot Limits: Should a drone control system be installed into the Carnelian, then there will only be two drone schematic spots to be equipped at the same time. The space cruiser can hold drone schematics in its cargo though, so it is a standard device to swap certain drone schematics in and out of the drone control system from the cargo, to serve their purpose as needed. However this is not as flexible or versatile as another space cruiser with four, even three spots for drone schematics to be equipped at the same time, as the player cannot swap in and out drone schematics during any kind of hazard.

The spots for the weapons control is set to four, the highest there is in the game, so should the Carnelian actually be outfitted with weaponry, it can pump out great amounts of damage.

  • Systems: Level two shields (one barrier), level two engines, level one oxygen, level one weapons, level one med bay, level one crew teleporter, level one cloaking system, level one pilots deck, level one sensors, and finally level one door subsystem. Though there is quite the spread of systems on board this vessel, most of them are at the bare minimum, making this layout even more of a challenge to perform well in the early parts of game instances.

With an exclusive reliance from the start of the game on the crew teleporter, it needs to be upgraded to level two as soon as possible, with level three short to follow. The cloaking system and the door subsystem are also on high priority, as the space cruiser will have next to no one on board to maintain it, so keeping it from harm as much as is feasible is integral. The door subsystem will protect any lone crew member on board from being overwhelmed from intruders, at least long enough to recall the boarding party back to deal with them before they slaughter the fragile pilot.

Usually it is not that pressing to upgrade the medical bay for a space cruiser, even for a build that relies on its boarding party, but it is fairly irregular that a space cruiser will have no means of defense but that of the might and tenacity of the boarding party. So it will be vital to upgrade the medical bay to level two or three, to minimize the amount of time that is necessary to fully recover a crew member, and to further facilitate as many crew members as possible to be healed in a short time frame. The other crew members that come to be on board the Carnelian can quickly be forgotten in the wake of the boarding party’s needs, and yet should they be injured, they will need to be recovered too. Ignoring them during the course of a battle can be risky, as it is possible they will end up falling if they happen to get harmed a little bit more.

It would be more ideal to swap out the medical bay for the clone bay, and any upgrades put into the medical bay will automatically be transitioned to the clone bay with no loss in scrap at all. The crystal crewmembers cannot be replaced with fighters of their own species, and could only have another race in their stead, because of their sheer unavailability to be realistically, if even possibly acquired in the standard path of gameplay.

A great deal of scrap will be needed to push the weapons control to an acceptable level for the whole span of the gameplay, but that initial high cost will pale in comparison to what the weapons control will need in total to be truly formidable of sustaining eight simultaneous energy slots. For as many weapon slots as there is, it is better that the armaments be more versatile than numerous due to the cloaking system on board the Carnelian. Of course if the stealth weapons augmentation is acquired, then that does not need to be taken into consideration and it can freely be up to the player’s preference. In terms of this prospect, numerous would be considered as many weapons as possible that would be firing in short succession of each other, if not tandem, for as much damage as possible.

Generally that does sound to be the best course of action, the most aggressive offense being the sturdiest offense, but with a cloaking system it will shred the invisibility and the protection of it to scraps. That is the merit to the versatility route, where it acts as a compromise to the cloaking system’s inherent dislike of weapons fire by choosing two primary, high tier weapons, and then selecting two that have alternate purposes like the healing burst and the breach bomb. By having those alternate purpose weapons equipped, they are able to be primed and ready to be used at any time. They can even be powered up so that as soon as they are needed, they can be deployed instantly. Of course this will have a constant drain of energy on the reactor, but that would offer the highest versatility. Such a method would need the auto fire feature disabled, so that the alternate weapons are not firing as frequently as they can, as that would be like a lesser effective version of the numerous weaponry choice.

  • Room for Additional Systems: Having both the crew teleporter and the cloaking system, that leaves only one spot for another system to be installed into the Carnelian layout. Though a player does not have as much freedom as to what precisely gets put into this layout, having both the crew teleporter and the cloaking system saves a considerable amount of scrap, and removes the variable of randomness in order to obtain those two systems should the player be intending to incorporate them into their space cruiser’s build.

The remaining spot can be taken up by the drone control system, the hacking station, or the mind control station. The original choice before the update would just be the drone control system, resulting in the default limit of eight systems, as the game used to just not have as many as it does now. Installing the mind control station is going to offer the greatest realm of supremacy for brawling, as any opponents the boarding party faces can be turned against their allies, strengthening the effectiveness of the player’s boarding party, but it will magnify the Carnelian’s weakness against space cruisers that lack any crew members. Eventually the Carnelian would and should be equipped with actual armaments in the weapons control, but the mind control station still is not going to be helping in such a scenario, and neither would be the boarding party themselves too much, most particularly in the case of an automatic drone.

The drone control system has similar guidelines as the Bravais Crystal Cruiser does, in that it should really only be acquired if particularly useful drone schematics can be gotten as well, as there isn’t much point to a drone control system with only two slots if they have ill matching schematics for the build; and the Carnelian’s build is a very specific one that does not accommodate much deviance.

The hacking station on the other hand offers a good quality of both sides, where it will support the boarding party and also offer offense and defense against unmanned space cruisers. It will be able to counter just about any system, with varying effectiveness, depending on the upgrade tier of the hacking station and what kind of system it is, as some cannot be hacked and reversed as long as others.

The choices do lean towards the hacking station, but shift towards the drone control system if formidable drone schematics can be acquired.

  • Ways to unlock: Par for the course, two out of three achievements are needed to be completed in order to unlock the second layout of the Crystal Cruiser, and only those that are unique to the cruiser. It can be any two of those three achievements, just so long as that criteria is met. Some are easier than others, and similarly some are less tedious too.

The first achievement is named “Sweet Revenge”. Its requirement constitutes one of the most compelling reasons not to sell off the crystal vengeance augmentation, but also presents one of the least likely achievements to acquire by influence on the player’s part. An enemy space cruiser must be defeated by only a fragment of crystal that breaks off like shrapnel from the crystal vengeance augmentation in order to earn the “Sweet Revenge” achievement.

It is possible, but unlikely, that by shearing away the HULL of the enemy’s space cruiser and leaving it at just one point, that eventually if damaged enough, a fragment will break off from an attack when the crystal vengeance activates and strike the enemy ship, defeating it. The player’s space cruiser is likely to take substantial amounts of damage from this method though, and in that would all but be forfeiting the viability and future of that game instance. This is one of those achievements that a player hopes for, but if that player wants to keep their sanity, shouldn’t really expect it to happen. As such this is already on the lowest rung of the three.

The second achievement for the Crystal Cruiser is named “No Escape”. The means to earn this achievement warrants the title, as a Crystalmen crew member must trap four enemy crew members total in just one fully sized room, either on board the player’s own vessel or the enemy’s. This may seem easier to perform than it really is, as when boarding an enemy’s space cruiser, only a couple - and seldom three - enemy crew members will chase after the intruder, the player’s own crew member. Usually the pilot will stay where he is, unless another crew member falls in battle and he must take their place, basically if the situation is dire indeed. Otherwise the pilot will only leave the pilots deck if the engines are knocked out to the point the space cruiser can no longer dart around to evade, or that the pilots deck itself is damaged into the broken red.

It just seems to get needlessly complicated, and so while the circumstances are less frequent than just blatantly boarding an enemy vessel, the random event where there are intruders on board the player’s vessel is much more suitable for the “No Escape” achievement. Specifically this is the random event where there is no enemy space cruiser to fight, but from somewhere in space, a squadron of four fighters invade the player’s space cruiser and attempt to sow disarray. Actually succeeding in their mission would merely entail slaughtering the player’s crew members as a whole, of whom have nowhere to go but their own space cruiser, but the player’s crew members are in their home territory and have their own medical bay to rely on, something usually enemy crew members retreat to restore their health to be able to fight another brawl all over again.

So typically these random intruder events are easily dealt with so long as the number of the player’s crew members is not too thin, below two, or else the player’s crew members weren’t just recently severely harmed from battle and have yet to restore their health properly, such as escaping from a beacon where the battle was just too much to handle. Because of their numbers though, being the required four for the “No Escape” achievement, they will willingly gather in the same area if the room accommodates the space.

They will aggressively chase after the player’s crew members, so by gathering them in a fully spaced room like the shields or the weapons control, four of them will enter inside so long as they have not yet fallen in battle. Wait until they have all properly entered the room, as being in the process of stepping through a hatch door will not be applicable for this achievement, and activate one of the Crystalmen’s special ability to lock them all in the room. This should shortly bring up the icon of the achievement being fulfilled, and while the player’s crew members will have a tough fight being stuck in the same room with a direct one versus one battle without any healing, they should come out on top and the player’s game instance can proceed along as normal without having to sacrifice it like the player would have to with the first achievement, “Sweet Revenge”. The outcome will not be as favorable if there are three or less crew members to fight the set of four intruders however.

The third achievement is called “Clash of the Titans”. It is named such because it conveys a struggle and strife wedged between the Crystalmen and the Rockmen, whom an indeterminable amount of centuries ago turned away from each other. In this instance, the Crystal Cruiser is rebelling against what the Rockmen have become, which is pirates and brutish fighters, everything which the Crystalmen did not want to become as they disliked the belligerent nature of the Rockmen. At least that is what seems to be the perceived story behind that.

To earn the “Clash of the Titans” achievement, the player needs to destroy fifteen different Rockmen designed ships with the Crystal Cruiser in a single game instance. The requirement of it all being accomplished in just one game instance is what makes this achievement more tedious than necessary. However it would have just been a matter of time, while playing as the Bravais Crystal Cruiser excessively, in order to gradually mop up all those kills, even if the count was set to fifty or a hundred.

For “Clash of the Titans” any kind of rock based cruiser will work, including pirates. Rock cruisers are rather characteristic, looking like carapace covered snails with a tapered end and a broad and rounded head, usually coated in earthish orange or mottled with purple if branded as pirates and brigands. The strategy with this achievement is to try to pursue as many hostile sectors on the sector map as possible, represented by the red circles as opposed to the green of civilian or the purple of nebulae. By keeping the player’s route capable of connecting to as many hostile sectors as possible, the chances of finding Rockmen sectors is as high as can be, as any one of those hostile sectors on the map could be either a Rockmen controlled sector or Rockmen homeworlds. It is also possible to find Rockmen ships in the pirate controlled sector, but clearly would not be as prevalent as they would be in either the Rockmen controlled sector or the Rockmen homeworlds.

It may take some time, but at least the player has a degree of control by way of choices through the game instance, as opposed to the first achievement “Sweet Revenge”. So the most feasible two out of three achievements is the “Clash of the Titans” and the “No Escape”. Once the two of those have been earned, the Carnelian Crystal Cruiser will finally be unlocked for the player as soon as they get that second one, no matter what happens in their game instance after that.

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