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Navigation of FTL Guide

Equipment

Your space cruiser is highly customizable in Faster Than Light, from equipped weapons, drone schematics, and augmentations to installed systems and recruited crew members.

You choose what to arm your space cruiser with, but what you can find in stock from shop beacons and what you salvage either from destroyed ships, floating through space, or through some other random event drastically limits and changes your options.

In a game instance you could find the glaive beam twice, but prior to the several times you have played the game, you were not even aware of the weapon’s existence since it is that rare. This formula applies to most things, as it is unlikely you will find more than a fifth of the potential items you can equip to your space cruiser in a given game instance, even if you visit every single possible shop beacon you can find, and have at least a few occurrences where you discover a random augmentation or drone schematic floating in space or from some other random event.

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By default weapons and drone schematics are placed in their perspective systems, viewable by your UI and from under the equipment tab in the ship button menu. Augmentations go in their own place on your ship, in a storage area seen from the equipment tab that has a limit of three spots. If you either lack the associated system, or all the spots are filled, those weapons and drone schematics will be automatically placed into the cargo hold which has four spaces. Any overflowing augmentations cannot be placed in the cargo though, the game will prompt you to choose between the new augmentation you have and the ones you already have if you are rewarded with an augmentation through a random event. The left over one will be discarded when you faster than light drive jump away. When visiting a shop beacon you cannot purchase additional augmentations prior to making a spot. Through the shop you can sell one of your equipped augmentations though, though of course for less scrap than the market price.

Weapons

The things that make your ship pew pew. Weapons are equipped to your weapons control system that can have a possible two to four slots. The weapons control system also has a maximum of eight allottable energy slots, so the amount of weapons you can equip can exceed the maximum capacity of power support to your weapons control system.

There are seven types to weapons, which are the following…

Missiles

There is a large arsenal to pick from of missile launchers in the game, as there are many editions of them and they are the second most common type of weapon to find in stock at a shop. Missiles are unique and integral in that they can pierce through shield barriers, that which normally rebuffs weapons fire to guard the space cruiser’s systems and HULL. That means that there is no defense based protection against missiles, and that missiles are used strategically to weaken offensive and defensive properties of a space cruiser, typically so that other weapons can discharge their volleys to directly damage the space cruiser. Thus missile launchers are support in nature, their purpose being to injure systems to debilitate aspects of the enemy space cruiser. Either to protect your own space cruiser by diminishing the enemy space cruiser’s weapons fire or to allow your other weapons to join in without being warded off by the barriers.

All space cruisers have the chance to evade any kind of weapons fire, which includes missiles as well. So it cannot be guaranteed that a missile will indeed hit its intended target, and as you proceed further along your game instance where enemies encountered become incrementally more advanced, they will dodge missiles at an increasing rate, similar to how your own space cruiser can advance in that way.

Though missile launchers have an incredible forte in the ability to pierce through every barrier, except the zoltan shield that absorbs all damage up until a set threshold of several points, they have a slower rate of fire compared to the other weapon types and use up a limited resource for every discharge. So the use of your missile launcher is very finite, and using up your reserves can either be costly to replenish, or just infeasible due to limited stock from shop beacons and the sheer cost that is too much for your wallet of the scrap currency to cover.

There are as well drones that can shoot down missiles, specifically designed for them in fact, that are the only otherwise defense against missiles. These are uncommon to encounter, however one phase of the rebel flagship is armed with a few of these, so relying on just one missile launcher will not be enough to break through the rebel flagship’s shielding if that was your intended strategy. You would have to otherwise brute force your way through with multiple missile launchers firing off at once, or use some other method to damage the drone control system that powers those patrolling defense drones. Most types of weapons do not have a possibility of making a hull breach like the missile launchers do, and even then it is just a small chance to happen, almost like dodging but much less.

Not all space cruiser builds and strategies require the use of missile launchers, so they are not considered so essential that they do not change your gameplay at all. It is really more unconventional to not use a missile launcher, as the standard tactics are to combine laser weapons with the explosive force of a missile launcher or two to back them up.

  • Leto Missiles
    • “Outdated but still effective missile.”

The leto missiles cannot be purchased as you can only find them pre-equipped on space cruisers in the hangar, so these leto missiles are literally the bottom of the barrel for missile launchers. Obviously they are better than not having a missile launcher at all, or a weapon at all, but best to swap these out for something else as soon as possible.

Their only use is the trait that all missile launchers have of being able to pierce through barriers to damage systems beneath, a trait nearly nothing else has. Each missile sent off will inflict one damage to the struck space cruiser’s HULL, and one damage to the affected system if one was targeted. Since it has the lowest damage rating of all missile launchers, it only takes nine seconds to charge up completely and requires a mere one energy slot of power.

You can find the leto missile launcher on the second layout of the federation cruiser and the first layout of the zoltan cruiser.

  • Artemis Missiles
    • “Standard missile launcher on most Federation ships.”

Now this missile launcher is what sets the bar for missiles. Not supremely powerful, but useful enough to do exactly what a missile launcher does without seeming like it is duct tapped together, the glue already losing its adhesiveness.

Should you find it in stock at shop beacon, it will cost 38 scrap to acquire. The version you can buy from a shop beacon is different, and admittedly inferior to the one that some space cruisers are equipped with at the hangar. The purchasable one has the same damage rating, and possible outbreak of fire and tearing of hull, of one missile for two damage inflicted. The discrepancy is in the charge up time and the energy needed. The purchasable artemis missile launcher needs two energy slots and eleven seconds to fully charge up, as opposed to only one energy slot and ten seconds to fully charge. The difference between them is little for the charge up time, but the energy requirement is rather substantial.

If you are looking to find a superior missile launcher, then this would not be of much concern to you, but would dissuade you from purchasing the artemis missile launcher at all if you are generally looking for something superior unless your space cruiser is really strapped for better fire power. Sometimes you cannot put off weapon upgrades when your space cruiser just does not have enough to tangle with regular enemy encounters.

The rock cruiser and the kestrel cruiser are the space cruisers that come equipped in the hangar with the artemis missile launcher.

  • Hermes Missile
    • “Standard but powerful missile.”

The hermes missile launcher is of a higher tier, as the missile shot inflicts three damage as opposed to the standard set by the artemis missile launcher of two. Three damage is enough to black out most systems on board an enemy space cruiser, most particularly the shields systems depending on how far along you are in the game instance, as the shields systems are one of the systems that can absorb the most damage because of how many levels there are to it, being as two levels are needed just to form one barrier. Most space cruisers are not as heavily upgraded as yours is, but the shields systems is somewhere that they are pushed along to keep pace with you, or even to stay ahead of you.

The hermes missile launcher, like the artemis missile launcher, has a low possibility of resulting in an outbreak of fire or a tear in the hull, while it requires three energy slots to use and takes fourteen seconds to charge up for use. Not exactly energy efficient for its upgrade in power, it still is a viable missile launcher to use throughout your game, but if you can find something more advanced you should as the hermes missile launcher really takes up too much energy for its output of damage however better it is from the artemis missile launcher and the leto missile launcher.

Finding the hermes missile launcher in stock at a shop beacon, it will cost 45 scrap to acquire. Not much more than the artemis missile launcher, but that is indicative of its energy inefficient quality.

  • Breach Missile
    • “These missiles are designed to cause maximum destruction to ship hull armor.”

This breach missile launcher competes for the top spot for the most advanced, hardest hitting missile launcher in the entire game. Despite that echelon, it has a price tag of 65 scrap. That is highest amongst all the missile launchers and yet it still is less than that of other weapons. It is not as if missile launchers are inferior to other types of weaponry, but it is true that they cannot be used with a wanton nature due to their usage being linked to the limited resource of missile parts.

The breach missile will shoot one missile that, if it hits, will inflict four damage, with the standard small chance of a fire outbreak and a minor opportunity of a hull breach. Like the hermes missile launcher, the breach missile launcher needs three energy slots to use, but takes a stretch of twenty two seconds to charge up to be ready. Though the breach missile launcher is much more energy efficient than the hermes missile launcher, the time it takes to charge up is almost double. That results in a significantly reduced total damage potential, and when the breach missile launcher misses, it is much more noticeable and has a harsher impact on that round of weapon fire volleys.

The breach missile launcher will slice away at enemy ship’s hulls, and would be particularly devastating against the rebel flagship if not for its defense drones in one of its phases, but the difference between three and four inflicted damage for a system is not so grand as two to three as most systems will be completely blacked out into unoperating red by just three damage. Despite those shortcomings though, it can still be considered one of the most superior missile launchers, just a very slow firing one.

The largest difference perhaps for the breach missile launcher is its high chance for opening up a hull breach in the enemy space cruiser. This will make the affected room hazardous to the enemy crew, as a vacuum will be rapidly present, and will also slow the time it takes for the enemy crew to even begin repairing the system as they must tend to the hull breach before the smoking system.

  • Hull Missile
    • “High hull damage plus a decent breach chance.”

There is usually this kind of variant for a weapon type. The hull missile launcher specializes in destruction to rooms located on a space cruiser that do not have a system or subsystem occupying them, essentially hallways and ‘living spaces’ if you were to look that deeply at it. After all your crew does actually need a place to sleep, eat, and maybe even something for recreation, but you do not see that through the view point of the game itself as that isn’t the focus nor the style of Faster Than Light.

With the price tag of 65 scrap, at a glance assumption you would think this would be equivalent if not superior to the breach missile launcher. This is not the case for direct damage, but the charge up time is seventeen seconds compared to twenty two. The hull missile launcher inflicts two raw damage per missile, but doubles that damage when striking a systemless room.

So it requires an extra stipulation to only output equivalent raw damage to the breach missile launcher, and without the added chance of a breach. Such is the cost to not be able to target and cripple systems, the one primary utility in the missile type weapon class, leaving only the sheer ability to circumvent shields to directly damage the HULL. This would be like considering to take down an enemy space cruiser with just the hull missile, which would take a few shots. That is three missiles per fight, relying on a sluggishly charging weapon, while you burn away your missile part reserves. That is something you could not keep up for long. It’s only redeeming quality is the low power requirement of two energy slots for its damage bracket.

So the hull missile launcher is the type of missile launcher you should avoid, as just because it has a high price tag doesn’t mean it is worth the scrap.

  • Pegasus Missile
    • “Creative missile design allows for two projectiles for the cost of one!”

This is the best missile launcher you can find in the game, even those you cannot purchase. Set at the price of 60 scrap, it is well worth the sum. The pegasus missile launcher discharges two missiles at once, while only costing you just one missile part. Each missile inflicts two damage, so that is a potential four damage. You cannot split up where the missiles will blast off at, so the volley will be concentrated on the target you choose. It is also possible one of those shot missiles will miss, and the other won’t, effectively halving your damage output for that volley.

The reverse is true as well though, that for a missile launcher that deploys only one missile, the entire output of damage is lost when that missile misses. So on average, you should be getting more consistent and even damage output by using the pegasus missile launcher since it blasts off two at once. This is potentially double the chance for an outbreak of fire and a hull breach, as each missile retains the possibility of both environmental disasters at a low frequency.

The pegasus missile launcher needs three energy slots to maintain, and takes twenty seconds to charge up. If you are going to be using a missile launcher in your space cruiser build, then this is the one to ultimately aim for. It also does very well in the fight against the rebel flagship, as the defense drones will have a harder time shooting both missiles down as opposed to just one.

  • Swarm
    • “If given time to prepare, the ‘Swarm’ launcher can replicate multiple warheads.”

This is the sole new addition to the missile launcher variety from the Advanced Edition update. The swarm is different than that of other missile launchers in that it can charge up multiple shots to fire simultaneously, as per your discretion as the player. It can charge up from one to three missiles. It gains a readied missile every seven seconds, but for every time you discharge the swarm missile launcher, it will consume only one missile part. So the limited resource used anywhere between one discharge to three simultaneous discharges will only use one missile part, and so it is clearly most economical to allow the swarm to fully charge up to three.

However when auto-fire is enabled, the swarm will automatically fire a missile once it has charged up just one missile at seven seconds, and so that would be the least economical, even though the most frequent rate of fire.

Admittedly the swarm missile launcher just seems to be a creation made in relation to the other weapons added from the Advanced Edition update, and so it doesn’t stand out on its own. Everything those weapons do, which is charging up multiple shots to be released all at once, the swarm does to a weaker degree. It can only charge up three shots, which is actually a lot for a missile launcher, but each missile only inflicts one puny point of damage. That is as bad as the leto missile launcher, the weakest missile launcher in the whole game.

Worse is that the swarm cannot directly target just one room, instead it has a circle in place of its standard crosshair reticle. So it will fire in a general area, rather than a precise one such as the room containing the enemy’s shield system.

The swarm missile launcher would really only be decent at brute forcing your way through a defense drone protected enemy ship, as three at once should overwhelm just one drone, but it will be a slow whittling away at only one damage per missile.

Lasers

Lasers have the most widely spread lineup of all the weapon types in the game, as lasers contain three weapon subtypes: burst lasers, heavy lasers, and charger lasers. Lasers are the standard of a space cruiser’s armaments, and thus will be the most frequently fired. Shield systems are essentially in existence to defend against lasers, as one barrier that is up will absorb one point of damage from a laser, no matter what subtype it is. There are a fair few lasers that seem to be cobbled together with rusted parts under some stripped, half melted screws, but there are also lasers that are both incredibly potent in damage and highly versatile. These are the weapons that your space cruiser relies on to fight its way across the sectors, but if you are stuck with one too feeble, it will not be enough to break through the enemy’s shields that continually replenish, making a tug of war between your weapons and the enemy’s shields.

  • Basic Laser
    • “Very weak laser.”

True as the game’s mouse over description, this is indeed a weak laser. It is so pitiful that it cannot be bought, similar to the leto missile launcher. Perhaps the only exemplary thing about it is the low power requirement to use it, as it only needs one energy slot. You could easily add this on to your arsenal to bolster your firepower just a little bit if you have the spare energy slot for the time being.

Despite being considered a burst laser subtype, the basic laser blasts one shot per charge which inflicts one damage, with just a small chance of causing a fire. It takes ten seconds to charge up. So the basic laser is a weak but quick weapon, that absolutely is not strong enough on its own to break through any shields. Fortunately when your space cruiser is equipped from the hangar with it, the space cruiser has multiple strapped on, making the tandem volley a concentrated blast like from a regular burst laser. That kind of synergy is quickly lost though when you start to upgrade your space cruiser’s weapons, and so you just end up getting rid of them all anyway, one by one. The basic laser definitely is not a weapon you want to stick with past the early stages of gameplay.

  • Dual Laser
    • “Basic weak dual lasers. Often used by transport ships that can’t afford better.”

Now the dual lasers are closer to the true burst laser subtype in that the dual laser blasts two shots at once, each inflicting a single point of damage should they connect. The dual lasers take ten seconds to charge up, and only one energy slot to use, so in just about every way the dual lasers are superior to the basic laser. As such, the dual lasers are more prevalently found equipped on space cruisers in the hangar, and can be also purchased from a shop beacon’s stock at twenty five scrap.

Having such a low power requirement, so long as you are not desperate for a little bit of scrap to be able to afford something you want or need from a shop beacon, the dual laser is actually useful to keep around so long as that slot in the weapons control is not being used by something else. Two damage for one energy slot is actually rather decent, especially since it can strip down or partially strip down shields for your harder hitting weapons to strike past.

  • Burst Laser Mark I
    • “This simple burst laser isn’t flashy but it gets the job done.”

There are multiple editions of the burst laser subtype, and this is the first one. Unfortunately it is actually inferior to the dual laser by a small margin, but most of the time you are going to see the burst laser mark I armed on enemy space cruisers as opposed to the dual laser, regardless you won’t be noticing too much of a difference on your end in such a situation anyway.

The burst laser mark I blasts two shots in tandem, each inflicting a single point of damage with a minor chance of causing a fire. The distinction between the burst laser mark I and the dual lasers, as even their models are almost identical, is that the burst laser mark I needs two energy slots to use as opposed to just one for the dual lasers, and takes eleven seconds to charge up as opposed to ten. Unfortunately the burst laser mark I is more commonly found in stock at shop beacons, in comparison to the dual laser. Nonetheless, there are much better burst lasers out there past the dual lasers.

Should you find the burst laser mark I in stock at a shop beacon, it will cost fifty scrap to purchase. A steep price for not that great of a laser weapon.

  • Burst Laser Mark II
    • “Slightly improved version of the burst laser that fires more shots per charge.”

Clearly burst lasers are highly valued, as the burst laser mark II costs eighty scrap to purchase from a shop beacon. Three total damage for a weapon is rather high though, and for one that does not consume any limited resources too. The burst laser mark II blasts three shots in short succession, each inflicting a single point of damage each and altogether possessing a small chance to cause a fire at the targeted room, occupied by a system or not. The burst laser mark II is a more significant upgrade as it only needs two energy slots for the three total damage it has to offer, and takes just twelve seconds to charge up. Lasers are generally much quicker than missile launchers, and yet that typically comes at the price of having a higher scrap cost to acquire and a greater drain on energy to sustain. The burst laser mark II skirts these guidelines.

You can actually find the burst laser mark II equipped on two space cruisers from the hangar, the kestrel cruiser and the federation cruiser.

  • Burst Laser Mark III
    • “Powerful burst laser that fires off an impressive barrage.”

This is the most coveted, most prized burst laser in the game. Unlike the variations on the missile launcher, the burst laser mark III is without a doubt the most superior burst laser, unless you need a weapon that requires very little energy, and in that case you would not be looking for the best of the best, simply because those kinds of weapons necessitate a higher energy draw or else it just would not be balanced. A higher scrap cost to purchase is not enough to offset that for gameplay balance.

This is the weapon you look for when you are running an offensive build reliant on the weapons control system. And even though you are hoping to find it, you may not throughout an entire game instance as the burst laser mark III is rather uncommon to find. And should you find it, you may not even have enough scrap to purchase it, as it runs between ninety five scrap and one hundred and ten scrap. It seems the farther you go in a game instance, the higher the price gets inched up on this prized burst laser.

The burst laser mark III fires five total shots in quick succession per charge, each laser inflicting a single point of damage. Five shots per charge is about as high as you can get for any weapon in the game, and this weapon alone is enough to break through any shielding you find on any enemy space cruisers, even that of the rebel flagship with its notoriously high defenses. Timing another weapon with the burst laser mark III will attack the enemy space cruiser’s HULL directly, without any buffering from the shied barriers to reduce it.

The burst laser mark III does have its price though, beyond the cost just to purchase it. It requires a hefty four energy slots to use, totaling half of the potential power output of the weapons control system, leaving only four remaining energy slots to fuel any other weapons that you have. The burst laser mark III is more than strong enough to warrant such a great amount of energy needed though. The time it takes to charge up is higher than average for a burst laser weapon, being nineteen seconds, but that is still a good speed for efficiency.

  • Heavy Pierce Laser Mark 1
    • “Heavy lasers can wreak more havoc than their smaller, burst laser counterparts. This modified version pierces one shield.”

Pretty much a remake of the Heavy Laser Mark I, this heavy laser comes equipped on the second layout of the rock cruiser, the Shivan, and cannot be found elsewhere. Heavy lasers are high powered versions of lasers that specialize in stronger, singular blasts, as opposed to multiple weaker ones of the burst laser counterpart. The weakness inlaid into the heavy laser subtype is that while each blast is stronger than a burst laser’s, their blasts do not pierce through multiple barriers equivalent to their damage. So two damage will only take down one shield, unlike the behavior of beam weaponry.

The heavy pierce laser mark I has a different behavior than that of the other heavy laser subtypes, in that it has the ability to pierce through one bubble of a barrier before its blast will impact. So by itself, it can entirely negate two bubbles worth of barriers, or it can tear through one bubble of a barrier to explode upon the enemy space cruiser’s hull for two damage.

As a consequence of this customized upgrade to the quality of a heavy laser, the heavy pierce laser mark I needs two energy slots to power for just two damage. Really this is not that much of an upgrade at all, as it is roughly equivalent to a burst laser that just shoots two quickly consecutive lasers for one damage each. The heavy pierce laser mark I is a weapon that looks decent at a glance, but actually doesn’t perform its role that well at all. It does well enough for the early portions of the game, but it is something you should sell off to a shop beacon once you have a couple of stronger weapons installed. On top of taking two energy slots, the heavy pierce laser mark I needs ten seconds to charge up to be able to fire. What would be considered the upgrade is the heavy pierce laser mark I’s ability to pierce through one bubble of a barrier, where the two points of damage then come into effect afterwards. This does allow you to rely on the heavy pierce laser mark I more significantly than you would otherwise, as you can pierce through two bubbles of barriers to damage the enemy space cruiser’s HULL for one point of damage beneath. This is a rather necessary characteristic for a weapon on the shivan layout of the rock cruiser since it is only otherwise equipped with a fire bomb, and doesn’t have drones or a crew teleporter.

  • Heavy Laser Mark I
    • “Heavy lasers can wreak more havoc than their smaller, burst laser counterparts.

Able to be purchased from a shop beacon at fifty five scrap, the heavy laser mark I is the first true form of the heavy laser subtype weapon. It needs one energy slot to power, takes nine seconds to charge up to be able to fire, and fires a single glowing ball that deals two damage. Unlike the burst laser subtype, the heavy laser subtype has a chance to break open a hull breach in the affected area, as well as a small chance for an outbreak of fire.

The heavy laser mark I has a good energy to damage ratio, but since it only has one blast it cannot harm enemy space cruiser’s that have one barrier worth of shielding by itself. That one barrier will just absorb the single blast from the heavy laser mark I. So this is not a weapon to be relied upon solo, and your space cruiser should be furnished with additional armaments. Since the heavy laser mark I requires so little energy, you can keep it around for a while to bolster your ship’s fire power until you need that extra weapons control slot, or simply have hit the limit of eight energy slots for your weapons control system, since it cannot be upgraded further than that.

  • Heavy Laser Mark II
    • “This heavy laser fires two shots quick in succession, each dealing two damage.”

This is a hard hitting heavy laser that costs only seventy five scrap to purchase from a shop beacon, should you find it in stock, for a total of four damage possible inflicted. The heavy laser mark II shoots two blasts of green glowing spheres for two damage each, so together that would be four. That is enough to strip down two barriers worth of shielding, but the heavy laser mark II - as well as most of the heavy laser subtype - are put to better use when the shields are already taken down by some other weapon. The heavy laser subtype loses some of its utility when a shield absorbs its damage, unless you really have no other recourse for direct offense, since one damage is enough to take down a shield. What is really relevant for a shield barrier is coming into contact with some kind of laser, just one single shot is what it will absorb, regardless of how much damage inflicted it would be. So the extra damage a heavy laser brings is lost when it is absorbed by a shield.

Just like the other heavy lasers, the heavy laser mark II will have a chance of causing a fire or breaking open a breach in the hull. It does take thirteen seconds to charge up for one volley, and needs three power to use. That energy requirement is not high for its damage output, but for the number of shots it is only decent. That is just the nature of the heavy laser subtype though.

This is the kind of heavy laser that you would keep throughout the duration of your game instance, and even aim for. But like all heavy lasers, it is best to rely on a different weapon to strip down the shields so that your heavy laser can attack the hull directly, dealing the most possible damage there and having a high chance of causing a fire or opening a breach into the hull.

  • Hull Smasher Laser
    • “Fires two shots that deal one damage to rooms with a system or subsystem and double damage to rooms without either.”

Somewhat common to find in stock, if the weapon tab spawns at a shop beacon, the hull smasher laser has a price tag of sixty five scrap. That is high for its utility, as the hull smasher laser inflicts a base damage of one against rooms that have a system or subsystem inside, where as it will inflict the standard two damage rating of the heavy laser subtype. It does at least shoot two separate blasts, so it is more suitable for taking down some shields if you have nothing else.

The hull smasher laser needs two energy slots to use, and takes fourteen seconds to charge up to be able to fire. It does have a possible four damage if you target system occupied rooms, and will deal the most damage to the hull there, but you will not be able to debilitate any systems the enemy space cruiser has, nor take advantage of a possible hull breach inside of a system occupied room that prevents repair of the system until it is dealt with. It is tremendously effectively against an automated drone though, but obviously still inferior to the heavy laser mark II.

  • Hull Smasher Laser Mark II
    • “Designed to maximize hull damage.”

If you are going to get a weapon specialized in hull damage, then the hull smasher laser mark II is the one to get. It costs just seventy five scrap at the shop beacon, which is about as high as the heavy laser subtype can get. The hull smasher laser mark II sends out three blasts in quick succession, each having a base damage of one, but if targeting a room without a system or subsystem each blast will inflict double damage. So that is a possible total of six damage if none of the blasts miss, of which each one has their own independent calculation for the enemy’s evasion.

The hull smasher laser mark II takes three energy slots total, which is economical for its total damage output, and it takes fifteen seconds to charge up to be able to fire. Chances are if you get your hands on this heavy laser, you are going to stick with it. It does what it does well, and other weapon types do not compare as great to it as say the hull missile launcher does. With three shots per volley, it has one of the highest chances for opening up a breach or causing a fire, as that is three separate chances for those hazards since the heavy laser subtype has both those properties. That is of course excluding any weapons that particularly specialize in either causing a fire or opening a breach, as those have high chances to cause those, as opposed to just a low chance per blast in the case of the hull smasher laser mark II.

  • Chain Burst Laser
    • “This dual shot laser decreases in cooldown the more it fires. After three volleys it only takes seven seconds to charge.”

Essentially a part of a new laser subtype introduced with the Advanced Edition update, the chain burst laser acts similar to a revving engine in that the more the weapon fires, the shorter time it takes to be ready to fire another volley. Of course this incremental revving up resets after every faster than light drive jump, so it is not in a permanent state of spinning if persistently powered.

The chain burst laser needs two energy slots to power, and initially takes sixteen seconds to charge up to be able to fire its first volley. For every discharge of the chain burst laser, the charge up time will be reduced by three seconds. Eventually the chain burst laser will only need seven seconds total to be able to fire, so it reaches its limit after three discharges. Each blast has a small chance of fire, fairly normal for a laser type weapon, and its price is set at sixty five scrap should you find it in a shop beacon.

Clearly the chain burst laser flourishes in battles that are longer than the average three to five weapon volleys, as the longer the battle goes on, the more effective the chain burst laser is for damage and frequency. In the beginning of a battle, it could possibly not be able to strip down a shield, but later on it may be enough to take it out by dealing more damage. Sometimes you can get to the point where your weapons can actually harm the shield system’s health directly, but does not inflict so much that it disables them long enough before the enemy crew can repair it. It isn’t uncommon in hostile encounters where there are enemy crew aboard in great number, and so they have an annoyingly substantial speed of repair. Having a raising rate of fire with the chain burst laser could be enough to outpace their repair speed in such a scenario, and the weapon just by itself as well. Pairing the chain burst laser in a longer than average fight with another weapon has exponentially more benefits as well.

Each discharge of the chain burst laser dishes out two quickly consecutive blasts, each inflicting a single point of damage, so despite the unique properties of the chain burst laser, it is not that strong of a weapon by itself. It can have good utility when paired with other weapons, particularly in the later stretches of a game instance.

  • Chain Vulcan
    • “This laser weapon takes a long time to warm up. Each time it fires it decreases the cooldown, eventually able to take down any amount of shields.”

The chain vulcan is basically the next tier version of the chain burst laser, and at a glance at its statistics it could be mistakenly underestimated. The game’s description of the weapon is quite true, in that eventually the chain vulcan just about releases a constant stream of lasers that can outpace the rate of regeneration of shield barriers. That is the kind of mechanic that has been always absent from the armaments your space cruiser can have. Weapons and shields usually act out a tug of war, a constant exchange where either a certain threshold is met or not in order to overwhelm the barriers of the shield to affect the space cruiser within. That is essentially the basis of what feels like a turn based system a part of Faster Than Light, even though it does not literally take on the form of one.

The chain vulcan is not as overpowered as you think, as it has multiple offsetting weights against its sheer strength that puts it in league with the burst laser mark III. It needs four energy slots to use, the maximum any weapon can consume. It has a price tag of ninety five scrap, right on tier with the burst laser mark III, so it is rather justifiable. Furthermore it only shoots one laser at a time, which inflicts only one damage. So it is easy to see how it could be mistakenly underestimated and overlooked.

Initially the chain vulcan takes roughly eleven seconds to charge up and to be able to fire. For every discharge of the chain vulcan, the charge up time needed will be reduced by two seconds. The chain vulcan has an incredibly high limit as to how many times it will lower, finally stopping at five discharges, resulting in a charge up time of one second. And that is the sheer strength of the chain vulcan, the ability to overcome any barriers as it overcomes their regeneration rate.

Because of that vicious rate of fire the chain vulcan is capable of, fights that normally would only take a few rounds would still be viable to be dealt with by the chain vulcan, as eventually the chain vulcan is going to outpace the shielding anyway. It becomes a matter of eventuality, and all your ship has to do is endure the in between. This becomes more of a concern when the enemy space cruiser is outfitted with missile launchers, as no matter how upgraded your shields systems are, they are not going to rebuff a shot missile. That would end up resulting in heavy damage to your HULL, but would be greatly mitigated by a high evasion rate and a cloaking system, perhaps entirely negated by the presence of a defense drone whose sole purpose to shoot down incoming missiles. The point is that by having a chain vulcan the entire build and upgrade path of your space cruiser can change to accommodate its strength, all over just one weapon because of its unique capabilities. So a chain vulcan is well worth the investment and accommodation, especially against the rebel flagship, as eventually it will be torn to pieces - a prospect very few weapons can claim to.

  • Laser Charger (S)
    • “This laser weapon can charge two times, giving it an extra projectile.”

The laser charger is like another subtype of laser weapons that were added to the game from the Advanced Edition update, in that they are like a reversed mirror of the chain burst laser and the chain vulcan as they are able to charge up multiple shots to be released at once per your discretion as the player. This allows you to try to overwhelm the enemy’s shielding with a concentrated blast, or to make a heavy hitting attack, rather than one that is spread out along a continuous thread that might not otherwise achieved desired results.

The S in the laser charger’s in game description is just shorthand for small, so it will be referenced as that. The small laser charger needs two energy slots to maintain, and takes six seconds to build up a blast charge. Putting the small laser charger on auto-fire, or rather your whole weapons control system on auto-fire, will cause your small laser charger to immediately fire when it has only one charge, thereby ignoring its unique mechanic and treating it like a regular laser weapon. However the small laser charger is truly just a weak version of its weapon subtype, as it can only hold two blast charges total, and each blast the small laser charger can unleash only inflicts one point of damage, even if it has the standard small chance of fire. It is not even that economical on energy usage for its damage output, and requires additional overhead and maintenance by the player by turning off auto fire to gain the small laser charger’s intended utility.

The price is rather high too for the tier of the small laser charger, set at fifty five scrap. This is the kind of weapon you are better off turning away from should you be presented it in stock at a shop beacon, and instead save your scrap for something else if you do not have the pressing need of acquiring another weapon.

  • Laser Charger (L)
    • “This laser weapon can charge multiple times, giving it additional projectiles.”

The large laser charger is the fully fledged version of the small laser charger, coming with a price tag of seventy scrap from a shop beacon. While it is not a top tier laser, evidenced by its medium high price, it is still a strong weapon capable of negating any shielding out there, while not necessarily able to strike the actual ship if there are four barriers. The large laser charger is able to hold up to four blasts, and takes five seconds to build up a single charge, so that is a total of twenty seconds to get the maximum of four. Like the small laser charger, having auto-fire enabled will cause the large laser charger to prematurely fire, dramatically reducing its unique potential. Being able to fire one blast, which inflicts a single point of damage and still has a chance of causing a fire, every five seconds is actually rather frequent by itself.

The large laser charger does take three energy slots to maintain, making it about average for energy efficiency. You can tell how many charges it has depending on how many of the ovals beneath the lettering of the weapon’s name are filled, rather than empty. It is a decently strong weapon, able to be relied upon as your main weapon with some support, but you will find yourself struggling a little in the later one third of the game instance.

Beams

The beam weapon type is capable of inflicting the most amount of damage out of all of them, and even lower tier beam weapons can still dish out high numbers. Beam weapons cut a bright red line across the enemy ship, long enough to cross through multiple rooms. This line cannot be bent into an angle or curved into an arc, so you are restricted in that way as to what the beam can come into contact with. Depending on the length of the beam’s swath, it can cut through as few as just two and as many as five separate rooms, as each room the red beam comes into contact with will receive the beam’s damage rating.

Some beams do not even cause direct damage to the hull, and instead pose tremendous damage to enemy crew by inciting fires or harming them directly. As useful as beams are they tend to be rare, while higher tier beams are like finding a treasure casket buried in an errant asteroid that broke apart after smashing into the wing of a ship. Beam weapons do have a weakness though, as all things must be balanced, or else there would be much less challenge, and probably a lot less entertaining. Faster Than Light is a strategy game after all. Beam weapons cannot disperse barriers like lasers can, and so while they can partially pierce barriers at times, they will never at any point bring a barrier down. In that way beam weapons are standalone in their function, as they cannot assist in the blast volleys to take down shields. They can of course debilitate systems, so long as the beam’s damage can pierce through the barrier enough to come into contact with the hull with any remaining damage. Regardless of what the outcome is, such as if your beam weapon only has one damage and cannot pierce through two barriers of shields or there aren’t any shields up at all since it is an automated drone, the animation will remain the same. You will see a red glowing beam, trailing tongues of fire, as it cuts a swath across the enemy ship in the determined path by your clicks.

Targeting a ship with a beam is much different than any other weapon, as you must determine the starting point of the beam’s swath and the end point. Enabling auto-fire will also keep whatever selection you make reusable, so it will stay there until you attempt to select another pair of coordinates for the beam swath, until you turn off auto-fire, or until the enemy ship is destroyed. After activating your beam weapon, click a spot on the ship where you want the beam’s swath to first start.

You will notice by moving your mouse around that rooms highlighted in yellow will be what the beam’s swath can and will target. The swath will swivel on the axis point of where you first clicked to be the beginning of the beam. Try clicking just on the edge of a room to maximize how many rooms your beam’s swath will be able to come into contact with. It does not matter how much of a room a beam’s swath comes into contact with, just so long as it touches it at some point, as the damage will be the same whether your beam touched just a speck or if it crossed through the whole width of the room. Going by the image above, you can see that by angling it after beginning it from the edge of a room, the beam will be able to come into contact with four rooms, as opposed to just two or three. Some ship layouts will not allow for even as many as four sometimes, but in that particular rebel ship you can target more than just the four showed.

In that image the beam’s swath is a much more close fit, but as optimized as it can get as it will cut into five separate rooms. With a beam weapon such as the glaive beam, that would be more than enough to defeat an enemy space cruiser in just one attack. There is not any other type of weapon that can claim such an outcome, and there is even an achievement for that as well on the stealth cruiser.

  • Mini Beam
    • “Extremely cheap beam weapon.”

Fifty scrap really isn’t that cheap for a weapon, but it somewhat is for a beam weapon as they are on a higher price bracket in general. The mini beam is the lowest tier beam weapon, and yet it still can deal high amounts of damage, provided the enemy space cruiser’s barriers are down. Each room the mini beam comes into contact with will inflict one damage to the room, and to the hull. These numbers do not add up, as they are separate quantities, yet are essentially the same thing as damage to the hull and system damage coincide.

The mini beam is a weapon that will inflict a few damage, so long as you have another weapon firing in tandem that will strip down the enemy space cruiser’s shields. Otherwise when your mini beam fires it will do pretty much nothing. It is found equipped in the hangar for a couple space cruisers, but should be replaced for a higher tier beam weapon when possible.

The mini beam takes twelve seconds to charge up, and has a little over half the maximum beam swath length, barely capable of touching on three rooms, let alone anything more than that. Fortunately the mini mean only takes one energy slot, so it does fairly well for its damage, it just cannot take down any shields which is standard for any beam weapon.

  • Pike Beam
    • “Can cut across entire ships, assuming there’s no shield to stop it.”

The pike beam is the next step above the mini beam, coming at the cost of sixty scrap to purchase, it inflicts one damage per room its’ beam swath touches. Now that is not any more than the mini beam can inflict, but the pike beam has pretty much double the length of its beam swath. That effectively doubles its potential damage output, a characteristic uncommonly seen in any other weapon type. It of course cannot partially pierce through any barriers as well, since it only inflicts one damage per touch of a room.

The pike beam needs two energy slots to use, and has on the low side of a charge time for a beam weapon, taking sixteen seconds to be able to unleash its beam. If you are keen on having a beam weapon early on, the pike beam is a decent choice, but since it cannot partially pierce through any barriers, it is extremely reliant on your other weapons to be useful. It does come equipped on the noether though, the second layout of the zoltan cruiser.

  • Halberd Beam
    • “Slow but reliably powerful standard beam weapon.”

The in game description is none too accurate of the halberd beam’s stats. It only takes one second more to charge up to be able to fire compared to the pike beam, so that would be seventeen seconds. And it has a strong boost as well, inflicting two damage per room that it touches down on. That enables the halberd beam to be the first beam weapon to be able to partially pierce through shields, albeit only space cruisers with one bubble of a barrier up. It is possible to damage the shields systems from there, but you may end up giving up some potential hull damage in your straining effort to include the shields systems in the beam’s swath.

The halberd beam is heavy handed on its power consumption, as it needs three energy slots, but for its possible damage output that is rather good. Should you find the halberd beam for sale at a shop beacon, it will cost seventy scrap.

If the halberd beam does have a bubble of a barrier in the way of its attack, then that barrier will reduce its damage by one. Logically if there is another, then the next bubble of a barrier reduces it by one too, but that results in zero damage inflicted to the enemy space cruiser’s hull and systems, so that is just about a miss as would be for lasers and missiles. Beam weapons actually cannot miss a ship, so that is one of their paramount traits.

For its higher damage though, it cannot reach as far as the pike beam, as that was essentially one of the pike beam’s specialties, even though higher tier beam weapons are comparable to the pike beam’s length.

  • Hull Beam
    • “This beam is most powerful when targeting large, empty sections of hull.”

There usually is one variant of a hull specialized weapon for every type, and the hull beam is it. Unfortunately this is like a step back from the halberd beam, as the hull beam will inflict one damage for a room occupied by a system, but will inflict two damage (double as what the game considers) to a room that is empty. The presence of crew members do not prevent the double damage triggering on each cut of the hull beam.

When attacking with the hull beam, it can have the sporadic effect of partially piercing through the barrier, and other times being completed negated by the presence of the barrier, in the scenario when the enemy ship only has one barrier bubble up. Altogether it seems like too much of a hassle and frustration for too weak of a weapon, unless it happens to fall into your lap by way of a random event, such as finding it floating through space or being offered it when a ship surrenders to you.

The hull beam is at least efficient for its power usage, as it only needs two energy slots to use, and actually has a lower time needed to charge up - fourteen seconds. The length of the beam is longer as well than the halberd beam by a decent margin, but still falls short of the length of the pike beam. It does have a shared price with some other beam weapons, of seventy scrap.

  • Glaive Beam
    • “One of the most powerful weapons of war ever created. Known to take out some ships in a single blast.”

This is the beam weapon all others aspire to be, and the one you constantly look out for if you at all want to fit a beam weapon into your space cruiser’s arsenal. There is no stronger beam weapon than the glaive beam, and as such it is a dramatically rare find. It is even once in a blue moon to see it awarded from a random event…

For every single room that the glaive beam comes into contact with, the glaive beam will inflict three damage. Since the glaive beam has a broad swath, comparable to the pike beam, it can reach a possible five separate rooms. Thus the glaive beam is capable of destroying a space cruiser in one single attack, sometimes even when the enemy space cruiser has a shield up.

Since each touch of the glaive beam deals three damage, the glaive beam can partially pierce through two layers of barriers and still deal damage to the hull of the space cruiser beneath. Three bubbles of barriers in total will completely negate the glaive beam however, and so that is what offsets the tremendous firepower of the glaive beam. Having another weapon or two that can strip down the enemy shields is well worth the outcome of allowing your glaive beam to rip the enemy space cruiser apart with no shields baring its way.

The glaive beam does take a total of four energy slots to use though, the highest any weapon can have, but that is evidence of its high tier. It also takes twenty five seconds to charge up, which is the longest for any of the beam weapon types. Should you be lucky enough to find the glaive beam in stock at a store, it will cost ninety five scrap to take. The sheer rarity and the strength of the glaive beam is enough to warrant selling off any valuables you have on board your space cruiser, even sacrificing other weapons should you truly need to. It is uncommon for such drastic lengths to be worth it, but it is for this weapon.

  • Fire Beam
    • “This terrifying beam does no physical damage but ignites fires.”

The fire beam is as the name suggests, a beam that spews fire. The fire beam has no ability whatsoever to partially pierce through shielding, as it does not inflict any direct damage to the hull. It only unleashes a stream of clustering fires where it is not blocked by a shield. It is not guaranteed for every spot where the fire beam touches for a fire to be released, and instead has a high chance. Usually when the fire beam is not impeded for its entire swath, you will see at least a couple clusters of fire, which will propagate and spread into more as is the nature of that environmental hazard.

The fire beam needs two energy slots to use, and has a twenty second charge up time to be able to fire. The beam swath is decently high though, so it has a greater opportunity of spreading fires.

The practicality of the fire beam is questionable and uncertain, as it requires an additional weapon to break down the barriers so that the fire beam can take an actual effect, and should your space cruiser be capable of that, why wouldn’t your space cruiser be equipped with a weapon that is capable of dealing actual damage instead. Sometimes the fire beam is just what you end up with by a random event, so perhaps the existence of the fire beam in the game is to at least add some variability and customizability to the available weapon selection there is. It also serves to further reduce the chances you are going to see another beam weapon in its spot on a shelf at a shop beacon.

It will harm enemy crew members more than it will systems, but should it spread out of control on an enemy space cruiser, it will be rather devastating. Regardless, it is more likely to dispatch the whole of the enemy crew, rather than destroy the space cruiser itself from hull damage. Such a path of victory does garner a higher reward yield though.

  • Anti-Bio Beam
    • “This terrifying beam does no physical damage, but rips through organic material, dealing heavy damage to crew members.”

Though the fire beam could deal dramatic amounts of damage to crew members, it was a hybrid between anti-system and anti-crew weaponry. The anti-bio beam is the weapon that is completely devoted to attacking crew members, to the degree that it does not inflict any damage whatsoever to shields or the hull of the space cruiser itself.

Explained further on the slug cruiser page as the slug cruiser comes equipped with the anti-bio beam in the hangar, the anti-bio beams inflicts thirty damage for every crew member it comes into contact with. Because of the beam weaponry’s inability to bend at an angle, or even curve, what crew members you can strike with the anti-bio beam can be somewhat limited, often you are restricted to just hitting a couple of crew members in just one swath. And for sixty damage, it will take multiple passes to defeat a crew member with the anti-bio beam alone. It is also something to be further cautious about, as the anti-bio beam can harm your own crew members as well if they are on board the enemy ship.

With the anti-bio beam, you can feasibly dispatch the crew without having to board the enemy ship with your own. It will take some time to strike them all though, for twice each, and won’t be possible if they have a med bay on board unless you disable it through a hacking drone or damage it to the point of being unable to operate.

The anti-bio beam needs two energy slots to use, and takes sixteen seconds to charge up. The beam’s swath is high in length, giving you as much opportunity to be able to hit multiple crew members while still withholding to the line restriction of beam weaponry. The anti-bio beam is rather rare to find, but should you it will cost fifty scrap.

Ions

The highly prized ion weapons are distinctive by their iconic look, of a slotted and crooked mechanical arm, usually with a bluish metal slashed over with white or yellow. Iron weapons expel balls of slowly moving energy, similar to heavy lasers, that cause a specialized debuff effect. Ion weapons do not actually inflict direct damage, and instead whatever comes into contact with an ion blast will be temporarily disabled. This kind of debuffing effect is called ion damage. Depending on the ion damage rating of the ion weapon, the temporary disabling of the affected system will last longer.

Generally ion weapons have a damage rating between one and four, but just because an ion weapon has a low damage rating does not make it weak. It could have a low charge up time, but beside that, the temporary disabling effect from ion weapons is very potent against shields. Regardless of what kind of system you target with an ion weapon, the barriers of the shields system will be affected first, and will pretty much behave as if you directly targeted them anyway if any barriers were up at the time the blast of energy came into contact with the ship.

Ion damage temporarily disables systems by forcefully draining the system or subsystem of energy and locking it from receiving anymore. This causes a countdown that surrounds the system’s icon, a wheel with multiple blocks that disappear as time passes and the duration is closer to its end. That animation is something you only see on your own ionized systems, should they be successfully struck by ion damage. On an enemy space cruiser, the system or subsystem affected by ionization will blink blue (as opposed to the regular green) and the ion damage rating will appear overhead, such as one or four. There is not a graphical indicator as to precisely when the ionization will cease, but you can get a fair estimation and regardless an immediate signal when the blinking cyan disappears and the regular bright green returns.

Ionization of a system or subsystem may sound equivalent to actually damaging it with a regular weapon, forcing it into red to be unable to function. The difference is that ionization cannot be repaired as a broken system or subsystem can be. It even stops any crew members from manning the system or subsystem as well.

The other difference, a keen one at that, is that ion damage does not need to break through the present barriers to be able to affect systems contained within. Instead by coming into contact with the barriers, it ionizes the shield systems even if the shield systems wasn’t the one targeted. That force you are constantly fighting against in order to debilitate and damage the other ship simply isn’t there for an ion weapon. But your ion weapon cannot inflict direct damage, so you must rely on laser and missile weapons to be able to inflict damage, or just combat drones. The ion weapon will be able to tear down shields so that your weapons can actually damage the enemy ship, or else debilitate and disable certain systems to facilitate victory, even something as small as preserving the health of your HULL by ionizing their weapons control system.

Ion weapons are rapidly firing, so they can realistically and consistently keep a system pinned down with its depowering effect, so long as it can outpace the recovery of the shield systems. If it cannot, then it will merely keep the shield systems pinned down and disabled. Perhaps not your desired result, but that makes the enemy space cruiser sharply vulnerable.

  • Ion Blast
    • “Ion weapons can disable systems without hull damage.”

Even the lowest tier ion weapon is still very useful. The ion blast comes with a meager price tag of thirty scrap, making it underpriced for its efficacy. The ion blast needs just one energy slot to use, and has a short charge up time for eight seconds. Ion weapons usually have shorter than average charge up times compared to the rest, strengthening their ability to keep systems and shields ionized.

Each shot the ion blast expels inflicts only one ion damage, but the rate of fire is frequent enough to keep shields at least partially pinned down, tipping the tide of the battle more in your favor. It only takes up one spot and just one energy slot, so surely that is a better addition to your arsenal than something as puny as the basic lasers.

  • Ion Blast Mark II
    • “Ion weapons can disable systems without hull damage.”

The upper tier version of the ion blast, the ion blast mark II comes with a cost of eighty scrap, double that of its previous incarnation. And for good reason. At a glance, this may not seem so, but the ion blast mark II is actually one of the best, if not absolutely the best ion weapon in the entire game.

The reason is not its ion damage rating, which is just one point worth, but actually its charge time. The ion blast mark II only takes four seconds to charge a shot ready. Provided the ion blast mark II does not miss once, of which ships can dodge ion blasts just like they can any other form of projectile damage, it will completely overwhelm any shielding an enemy space cruiser hides behind, rendering them sharply vulnerable to your weaponry damage. It literally fires frequent enough to do just that, provided you do target the shield systems and only that.

On enemy space cruisers with less than four barriers worth of shields, you can actually target another system with the ion blast mark II and completely keep the shields suppressed while also shutting down whatever you are targeting. This would work for one barrier to two barrier worth of shields, while it starts to become intermittent the further you go beyond that.

The consequence to such a tremendously useful ion weapon is the energy cost, aside from the sheer price tag anyway. The ion blast mark II needs three energy slots to maintain, just one under the maximum any weapons consume, so it is a strain on your reactor to fuel this while also supporting your primary weapons that actually do inflict destructive damage to defeat hostiles.

Surprisingly, in a similar situation to the glaive beam with the stealth cruiser, the ion blast mark II does come equipped on the torus, the engi cruiser. That type of space cruiser specializes in ion based tactics, with the support of drones.

  • Heavy Ion
    • “Ion weapons can disable systems without causing hull damage.”

For whatever reason, the in game description of most of the ion weapons are identical, as if their function wasn’t obvious after the first time. The heavy ion takes on a different style than its brethren, by focusing on harder hitting blasts with a gentler charge up time. The heavy ion discharges just one blast, but for two ion damage. This makes a more dramatic effect every time the blast connects with its target, but makes for much more interruptions in the continuation of the ionization on the system or subsystem. Thirteen seconds between blast discharges is too long to keep a system completely pinned down, but then not all ion weapons can be as great as the ion blast mark II.

It is more energy efficient than its superior however, needing two energy slots to use, and its cost is relatively low at only forty five scrap. While the heavy ion is not the best ion weapon there is in the game, you cannot be too picky when it comes to selecting one because of their rarity. The heavy ion will work just fine for its purpose, but its effect will not be as pronounced as the ion blast mark II. It does come equipped on the second layout of the engi cruiser, the vortex, as that layout does not rely as predominantly on ionization.

  • Ion Stunner
    • “Ion weapons can cause system damage without causing hull damage. This ion weapon stuns crew inside the room for five seconds.”

As if we didn’t already know how ion weapons worked, the repetition of the in same exact in game description pretty much for the fourth time AND from an update does get excessive. World depth is lacking here.

The ion stunner is a different take on ionization which traditionally disables systems and subsystems that are targeted. Instead the ion stunner dazes crew members caught in its blast radius, while also disabling the system or subsystem in the targeted room. There is no limit as to how many crew members the ion stunner can affect in a room, they just have to be in the targeted room. So that could be anywhere from one to four crew members as no room is capable of holding more people than that, except in the case of a brawl in which that would be eight total crew members on opposing sides.

When a system is ionized, crew members cannot man it nor reduce the time it takes for the ionization damage to recover, but while dazed by the ion stunner they cannot be sent elsewhere to attack intruders or to repair anything else. They cannot even defend themselves, so if a fire or breach is located in the room, they will be susceptible to the damage over time inflicted.

Since the ion stunner is not a missile, and is not reliant on a limited resource, you can hassle the enemy crew to your heart’s desire and severely hamper the enemy ship’s ability to bolster the properties of systems on board and the enemy crew’s ability to manage any hazards on board.

The ion stunner needs just one energy slot to use, so it is hardly much of a sacrifice to include it within your equipped armaments on your space cruiser. It also has a charge up time of ten seconds, so it makes its ionization frequency decent. It is by no means an equivalent for pure ionization with the other standard ion weapons, as those do not have their abilities split between two effects as the ion stunner is, which is between dazing enemy crew and disabling systems.

Should the ion stunner be found at a shop beacon, and likely you will not find another ion weapon alongside it at the same tab, it will cost thirty five scrap. This is low for its usefulness, but that is a common thread amongst ion weaponry.

  • Ion Charger
    • “This ion weapon can charge multiple times, giving it additional projectiles.”

The ion charger is a weapon in similar vein to the laser charger, in that it can slowly build up multiple blasts to be unleashed at once per your discretion. Because of that, it is counterproductive to have the auto fire feature enabled while you have the ion charger equipped and powered.

The ion charger needs six seconds per built up blast, and can hold a maximum of three. Each of the blasts the ion charger can unleash will inflict one ion damage, and since ion damage stacks from however much you inflict, there is no detriment to releasing them all at once. Blasting the same system again with the same amount of ion damage will just reset the countdown timer of ionization on the affected system.

The ion charger needs two energy slots to use, so it is rather economical for its power. Should you not built up any blasts, it will function like a lesser version of the ion blast mark II, as that has an equivalent stat of damage and a four second charge up time. It is not ideal to utilize the ion charger in this way however, as it is capable of brute forcing through shields and dramatically shutting down systems for longer periods of time, while also offering some flexibility to shoot a blast or two early in case you need to keep the system pinned down before it powers up again.

If the ion charger is found at a shop beacon on one of its tabs of merchandise, it will have the price of fifty scrap.

  • Chain Ion
    • “This weapon’s ion damage increases each time it fires to a maximum of four.”

The chain ion functions a lot like the chain vulcan, the laser weapon, in that the more the chain ion fires, the higher its ion damage becomes. The chain ion starts out fairly weak in battle, of which its cumulating stats reset after every faster than light drive jump. After every consecutive blast, the ion damage rating on the chain ion increases by one point, until it reaches the limit of four damage. Four ion damage is incredibly potent, and will utterly obliterate the presence of any level of shield systems, even that on the rebel flagship once you have broken past the zoltan shield.

The downside to the chain ion, aside from its slowly accumulating ion damage rating, is the long charge up time it takes to unleash every blast. It needs fourteen seconds before it can discharge an ion blast, which is fairly long for ion weapons, but not really anything but average compared to anything else. It does need three energy slots as well, which is the highest any ion weapon ever takes.

The cost is not high though, as it has a price tag of fifty five scrap.

Bombs

Bombs are almost like a subtype of missile launchers, as they too are concussive blasts that use up the limited resource of missile parts. Although they do not rocket across space like missile launchers do, they still do pierce through shields since they teleport onto the enemy space cruiser. If not for that, they probably could not be considered bombs.

And unlike missile launchers, defense drones cannot shoot down teleporting bombs, so a ship’s only defenses against a bomb is its evasion rate as it is possible for a bomb to miss its projected destination and appear drifting in space, only to explode harmlessly. There is another way for a bomb to miss as well, but it is more like a variable than a valid defense. Any kind of crossfire that strikes the bomb before it is able to detonate on board the ship will also cause it explode harmlessly, so if your dual laser is targeting the same room your bomb is teleporting into, and the laser happens to shoot as the bomb appears inside, it will destroy the bomb harmlessly. The dual laser will of course still inflict the damage it was going to, but the bomb will behave just as if it had mistakenly teleported into space.

The zoltan shield augmentation will also prevent bombs from teleporting directly on board the ship, but generally bombs will inflict damage to the zoltan shield’s health bar instead, so they are not regarded useless in that situation.

Bombs perhaps greatest distinction from missile launchers is that bombs do not incur damage to the ship’s HULL, or else realistically they would not serve a function any different than a missile launcher would. Bombs specialize in enfeebling and buffing tactics, spreading fires and breaking open breaches, even inflicting ion damage, or on the polar opposite, healing friendly targets.

Bombs tend to be useful in a similar way that ion weapons are, except their attributes are more multifarious, granting the player flexibility in order to take down a hostile ship piece by piece. Bombs after all are a sure way to circumvent barriers when missile launchers fail in the face of defense drones, an occurrence that can always happen against the rebel flagship if the player does not have multiple missile launchers and burst laser weapons in order to overwhelm the defense drones, so that at least some missiles can get by, and even then that is of reduced effect.

  • Small Bomb
    • “Self-teleporting explosive that damages systems and crew but not the hull. Can target your own ship.”

As low tier as the small bomb is, it is surprisingly useful for its dual nature enfeeblement. Should the small bomb successfully explode inside of a room containing both a system and a crew member, the small bomb will damage the system for two points and harm the crew member for thirty health points. Regardless of the degree that the room is packed with crew members, the thirty damage will remain the same between one to four crew members present. Additionally the small bomb does have a chance to cause a fire, which would further harm both the crew members and the system.

The counterbalance to the small bomb’s utility is that it needs a missile part, just like all bombs do, and so you cannot unleash it with no regard to your limited resource reserves.

The small bomb does take thirteen seconds to charge up to be able to self-teleport, but needs just one energy slot to activate and use. Bombs tend to be higher priced, so the small bomb has a cost of fifty five scrap if found at a shop beacon.

  • Fire Bomb
    • “Self-teleporting explosive designed to damage crew members and light fires. Can target your own ship.”

Unlike the fire beam, which is designed to slash across the ship leaving probable fires in its wake, the fire bomb if teleported on top of enemy crew will harm them for thirty points of damage to their health bars. So the fire bomb is still an actual explosive, with the heightened chance of starting clusters of fire. Compared to the small bomb, you are essentially trading the heightened chance for fires in exchange for two system damage. Putting it in that light, it has to come down to the preference of the player. The small bomb also has a chance to cause fires too, but it is of a much lesser degree. At the same time, the player is not faced with such a plain choice between too similar items, as it would be uncommon if not rare to find both a fire bomb and a small bomb in stock on a tab of a shop beacon.

The fire bomb needs two energy slots to use, and has a charge up time of fifteen seconds until it can be self-teleported. It also has a cost of fifty five scrap at a shop beacon.

  • Ion Bomb
    • “Self-teleporting explosive that uses ion damage to disable systems. Can target your own ship.”

A Frankenstein mixture between a self-teleporting bomb and an ion weapon, the ion bomb upon successfully delivery to a room that contains a system or subsystem will explode, dealing four points of ion damage. That is a rather high number for ionization, and will knock out the affected system for quite a while. In that way it is superior to an equivalent ion weapon, but it uses missile ammunition so you cannot use it without restriction like you could an actual ion weapon.

The ion bomb also has a minor chance to stun crew members located in the room, dazing them for a short while. Those crew members could not man the systems, or repair the ionization away anyway, but they won’t be able to do anything else while they’re dazed.

The ion bomb requires very little power, as it needs one energy slot while equipped and enabled. It does have a higher charge up time though, of twenty one seconds. Should the ion bomb be found in a shop, it will have the price of sixty five scrap.

The ion bomb does have a unique approach to ionization in that it does not have to work through the shields in order to deliver the ion damage, and so should the player desire to explicitly target just one system or subsystem without having the barriers interfere, the ion bomb is just the sort of weapon that would serve that precise purpose, even if it does need missile ammunition.

  • Healing Burst
    • “Self-teleporting healing unit that instantly heals all friendly crew in the room. Can target your own ship.”

There is a function of the bomb type weapon that is seldom used, which is that bombs can target your own ship aside from just the enemy ship. Most of the time, there would be no reason at all to do such a thing, as that would only inflict harm upon your space cruiser’s systems and crew members. Other times you have nearly no choice as it is an act of desperation to attack intruders in your space cruiser, even if it comes at the cost of disabling some of your systems or spreading a fire. After all the player does lose the game instance if all of their crew members perish, and the space cruiser that is being helmed lacks a powered or augmented clone bay.

The healing burst bomb is one of the only bombs that can target your own ship without causing some sort of destructive mayhem on board, or even just introducing a lurching limp to some of the crew members. The healing burst is essentially a portable, teleporting injection of hyper healing, like a super concentrated stay in the med bay. Wherever your crew members are, the healing burst can teleport on top of them and heal them to complete full health.

The only limitation, aside from the standard ones of the charge up time and the limited resource of missile parts, is that only crew members who are stationary in the targeted room of the healing burst will receive the regenerative effects. This can be somewhat problematic when your crew members are spread across multiple rooms when acting as a boarding party on the enemy space cruiser, but that is just something to manage for a device so supremely useful.

The healing burst can be made somewhat redundant by other items though, specifically the reconstructive teleporter augmentation that heals crew members to full upon any kind of teleportation. There is one thing the healing burst is not tied down to though, unlike the reconstructive teleporter augmentation, is that the healing burst can regenerate the health of your crew members absolutely wherever they are. With the reconstructive teleporter augmentation, the player needs to literally teleport them on and off ship, and cannot teleport them from one room to another on the player’s own space cruiser as that just is not a function the teleporter itself can perform. With the healing burst, the crew members need not be shuffled anywhere aside from huddling together if there are too many of them.

There is also the limitation in the frequency of the healing burst. The healing burst needs eighteen seconds to charge up to be able to be used, and that can be too long in a period of intense brawling where just one second could mean the difference between your crew member surviving or not.

There is a space cruiser layout that relies on the healing burst in order to keep your crew members alive, at the cost of having no med bay or clone bay at all. Surprisingly that layout was not added from the Advanced Edition update either, as it is the second layout of the slug cruiser. It is a testament to the healing burst’s strength that it can be feasibly done, and that it actually embellishes the boarding party build without even a med bay. It does make for some interesting gameplay with such altered mechanics.

The healing burst needs one energy slot of power, so it is hardly a strain on the equipped and active armaments on a space cruiser. It neither has much of a cost too, as its price is forty scrap at a shop beacon.

  • Breach Bomb Mark I
    • “Self-teleporting explosive designed to damage systems and causes a breach. Can target your own ship.”

A player would probably only want to target their own ship to witness a more melodramatic end to their game instance, as giving up on a game through the menu is abrupt and succinct. At the same time, ripping open a breach in the hull is not a probable cause of blasting the player’s space cruiser to burning bits. There is always sitting the last standing crew members in the same chamber as the hull breach though…

The breach bomb mark I is the lower tier version of the breach style bombs. It has a high chance for ripping open a hull breach, while it deals one damage to a system in the same room it explodes in and harms any crew members in the vicinity for thirty points of damage to their health. Causing a breach will significantly delay any crew members from repairing the system itself, so that will prolong the dysfunction of the debilitated system, granting a greater debuff upon the enemy space cruiser than what two system damage alone would achieve. The issue with this is that the breach bomb mark I does not have a guaranteed chance of causing a hull breach, so it is a hit or miss kind of scenario as to the effectiveness of the breach bomb mark I, while under the further variable of literally missing the space cruiser and exploding pointlessly in space.

The breach bomb mark I is parsimonious with its power draw, needing one energy slot to be able to use, while it has a brief stint of nine seconds needed to charge up to deploy. If not for the dependency on the limited resource of missile parts, then the breach bomb mark I would pull far ahead of its standing. As it is, the breach bomb mark I is a decent weapon, but the player would pass over in favor of something with a greater impact for every missile ammunition.

  • Breach Bomb Mark II
    • “Slower than Mark I but breaches and does more damage to systems. Can target your own ship.”

Despite being specialized for ripping open breaches in a ship’s hull, the breach bomb mark II is the highest tier bomb. There is basically no self-teleporting bomb that has stronger total effects than the breach bomb mark II. Upon exploding in a room with a system or subsystem and at least one crew member present, it will damage that system or subsystem for three points and harm the crew member or crew members for forty five points. Three points is more than enough to completely take out most systems and subsystems in the game, while rarely will a shields system be left standing with a single barrier, such as if it has four barriers worth of upgrade levels; regardless of that particular instance, the shields system should be shown as orange or red.

The breach bomb mark II further has the chance to result in a fire, but it is of a slim occurrence. Every time it explodes, it has a rather high chance of causing a hull breach. It needs two energy slots for power, so it hardly needs much to have the substantial effects that it does. Seventeen seconds is how long it needs to charge up, which is fairly average for its weapon type. So all of these traits together puts the breach bomb mark II on the highest tier of all the weapons in this type.

The breach bomb mark II is essentially what the player selects out of the bin in a vacuum setting if the space cruiser’s build accommodates or uses a self-teleporting bomb, with the exclusion of the specifically self-beneficial bombs like the healing burst and the repair burst. It has attributes from each facet of what offensive bombs have, and has them in the most potent form, so while they do use the missile ammunition, this weapon excels at debilitating a specific system while taking any crew members’ health in the vicinity to either nearly a half or a third of their total (depending on what race they are, as Rockmen have 150 and humans have 100 for an example).

  • Repair Burst
    • “Self-teleporting unit that floods a room with nanobots that are capable of repairing all system damage.”

Added from the Advanced Edition update, the repair burst is the mechanical equivalent of the healing burst, in that if you target a system occupied room with it, upon explosion the repair burst will release a cloud of nanobots that will automatically and instantly repair your system to full. The repair burst is capable of mending any upgrade level of a system, from one to the maximum of eight, making it especially useful in dire situations where your shields are totaled from a volley of overwhelming attacks.

This kind of scenario usually happens when you are not prepared for it, because of whatever happened simply was too much for your space cruiser and your crew to handle. It also could have happened when the player lets their guard down and underestimated what the enemy ship could do to their own. The player does after all go through several encounters, and the seemingly assured victory becomes route and so the caution against something going wrong is overlooked.

The detriment really to the repair burst is that it is not just an ability of the space cruiser it is on board on, and instead it has to be equipped and powered to that ship’s weapons control system. It is also prudent to prime the repair burst so that it is available immediately when a system is damaged sufficiently to warrant the use of the repair burst.

The repair burst needs fourteen seconds to charge up, so provided the player primes it before it is needed, when disaster blasts the system to pieces the repair burst can be immediately deployed with little loss to the space cruiser’s defenses, just with a likely deficient for the space cruiser’s HULL. The repair burst only requires one energy slot to activate and charge up, so it is as little of a strain on the reactor and weapons controls system as it can be. The weapon has a minor cost of forty scrap, so where the scrap could otherwise be spent may not outrightly prevent such a situation where some of the space cruiser’s systems are severely damaged.

  • Stun Bomb

Since the dazed status effect was added with the update, the stun bomb specializes in it. Like the ion stunner, the stun bomb delivers a point of ion damage to a system or subsystem along with the dazed debuff onto crew members caught in the explosive’s vicinity of a room. Crew members caught by the stun bomb’s unique blast will be left dazed, unable to do anything but stand there, for around fifteen seconds.

Considering that the stun bomb needs the missile ammunition, it can be easily passed over without a second thought. It does have the benefit of skipping past any barriers, unlike what would be the case with the ion stunner, but there is a small subset of situations in which the stun bomb would really be that useful. While it helps to knock out the crew members temporarily, is it worth burning away the player’s missile ammunition just so they cannot man the systems? Maybe deal with a fire for a little while? It can cause the crew members to fall to some hazard, but that is unlikely to happen too. The player could also time the detonation of the stun bomb to occur before teleporting over their boarding party, but that likely will only caught half of the enemy crew, if that.

Flak

Most weapons in Faster Than Light are precisely firing instruments with a heavy leaning on intergalactic level technology. It is after all a tumultuous journey through space. Most fiction placed in such an environment makes things seem clean and scientific, rather than grungy and cobbled together. Such sophistication may seem necessary to survive the environs of space, and travel across it in a timely manner that doesn’t take generation ships.

The flak weapon is a different take on the style of weaponry in the game, where a giant gun catapults a hodgepodge of such poor quality materials it cannot even be used as scrap, which is just chunks and heaps of misshapen metal anyway. Aiming at just one room isn’t possible, as the reticle is replaced by a wide red shaded circle that conveys the general area the discharged debris will fly haphazardly at. Flak weapons specialize in unleashing an attack consisting of many pieces, that the damage scales anywhere between a few to several, often enough to strip down shields and batter the space cruiser’s hull with the remaining pieces of the barrage. A player can try to aim at a system to try to take it down, but more than a couple hits to that specific system will not be likely. Flak weapons are useful in surmounting shields to attack the space cruiser beneath, which isn’t something many weapon types can claim to, and do an excellent job of overwhelming defense drones that can shoot down pieces of the debris but not all of them, a scenario that missile launchers fall prey to.

Though flak weapons use physical debris, there is no limited resource associated with it, and so the amount of volleys the player can discharge from their flak weapon is only limited by the span of the battle.

Because of the flak weapon type’s high potential for damage, it can be considered mechanically similar to the beam weapon type, even though they deliver such high scales of damage in very different ways. Interestingly they behave on opposite sides of the field in relation to the shields, as the flak weapon is excellent for crushing down barriers, whereas the most impeding force for a beam weapon’s tremendous damage is the barriers themselves.

  • Flak Gun Mark I
    • “Fires a blast of debris across a random area doing up to three damage. Good at taking down shields but hard to aim.”

Usually flak weapons take a long time to charge up, and no wonder with the amount of debris they blast out, but the flak gun mark I only needs ten seconds to fire a volley of trash-like metal. Unlike missile launchers, flak weapons have a chance to cause fires instead of hull breaches, and the flak gun mark I has a minor chance to cause that spreading hazard.

The flak gun mark I lets loose three chunks of debris for every volley, with small pieces of harmless bits. Each one of those chunks will inflict a single point of damage, provided they do not miss. Some parts of the volleys released from flak guns have a tendency to miss their target, but this may just be a matter of perception, as the flak gun releases so many chunks at once that it would be natural to see at least some miss.

The flak gun mark I needs two slots of energy, putting it on the evidently lowest quality and capable tier of the flak gun weapon type. The presence of this adds more to the variability of what kind of flak weapons the player finds, and admittedly makes the higher tier ones that much more uncommon to find - not that there are more than a few editions of the flak gun type. Should the flak gun mark I be found in stock at a shop beacon, it will cost sixty five scrap.

Since it only shoots three chunks of damaging debris, the flak gun mark I should be passed over in favor of something stronger out of the lineup of flak guns, or else put to better use by upgrading some parts of the ship, as sixty five scrap is no small number for the player’s currency.

  • Flak Gun Mark II
    • “Fires a blast of debris across a random area doing up to seven damage. Good at taking down shields but hard to aim.”

With so few other editions of the flak gun type to compete against, the flak gun mark II is the highest tier of them all, and is really the model of what a flak weapon is, with a minor exclusion of the flak artillery system equipped on the federation cruiser. The flak gun mark II catapults seven chunks of misshapen debris in the generalized area of the placed circular reticle. In total, the flak gun mark II can inflict seven damage, as hard hitting as a beam unimpeded by barriers would be, except it can demolish barriers in its path.

With each colliding piece of debris, there is a minor chance to cause a fire, so a speckling of fire could bloom on the targeted ship in just one volley. The flak gun mark II does need three energy slots to power, and requires twenty one seconds to charge up to be able to release a volley.

Perhaps if the flak gun weapon type was originally in the game to begin with, there would be a more varied list of flak guns with specializations in hull breaches and fires, but there are not, so the flak gun mark II is as strong as it will get. The federation cruiser does have the flak artillery on its third layout, but that is a system rather than a weapon and is unable to be fired by the volition of the player. For sale at a shop beacon, the flak gun mark II will cost eighty five scrap, among the highest priced weapons there are in the game.

  • Advanced Flak Gun
    • “Fires a blast of debris across a random area doing up to three damage. Good at taking down shields but hard to aim.”

This is a remake of the Flak Gun Mark I as it has near identical stats, but is only found equipped on the Shrike, the second layout of the Lanius Cruiser.

The advanced flak gun needs only one energy slot to activate and run, while it requires eight seconds to charge up until it can release a volley of debris. By all rights, the advanced flak gun is probably what the flak gun mark I should have been, as the advanced flak gun needs only a little bit of power in order to attack with three points of damage. Normally that would be high for such a low powered weapon, but this is a flak gun, so that is appropriate.

The advanced flak gun fires frequently enough and requires so little energy that it is actually worthwhile to keep equipped on the space cruiser throughout the game instance, even on higher difficulties. The normal enlarged general area the debris will impact has a smaller circumference, so the advanced flak gun will be more consistently accurate on the intended area.

Crystal

The race of crystalmen have an isolated branch of technology all to themselves, and so it is only natural that they would have their own weapon type as well. Crystal weapons are physical projectiles that eject - as you may have guessed - slivers of crystal. The stuff apparently grows everywhere, and at the press of a button too. In any other place, it may just be considered an infestation, but apparently the Crystalmen have a handle on things - and so does the player if they get their hands on a crystal men, as lucky and rare as that would be without just choosing the crystal space cruiser from the hangar.

Most crystal weapons have some kind of partial shield piercing, a little like beam weapons when they have a higher damage rating her touchdown of the swath than the quantity of barriers., in that for every projectile of a fragment of crystal there will be at least one point value that offers shield piercing and does not diminish the crystal’s damage rating by itself. This shield piercing value is independent from the crystal fragment’s base damage, and so should be considered separate when estimating how well a crystal weapon will break down a shield.

Since crystal weapons do eject physical projectiles, they are susceptible to the same defenses and measures missiles, flak debris, and boarding drones are, so defense drones will shoot them down. Crystal weapons sometimes fire multiple fragments at once, so they have a greater chance at overwhelming patrolling defense drones than the missile launcher weapon type.

As crystal weapons are so rare to find, there is not enough availability to the player for them to be considered a tangible option amongst the selection of items the player’s space cruiser can use. Even should the player actively try to find the crystal sector, the chain of random events necessary to reach such a secret place are uncommon in themselves and can be difficult to complete with the right choices to proceed to the clandestine race of Crystalmen.

  • Crystal Lockdown Bomb
    • “Self-teleporting explosive that does no damage but creates a dense wall preventing movement in or out of the room. Can target your own ship.”

Technically a self-teleporting bomb, the crystal lockdown bomb is categorized under the crystal weapons because its effects are purely crystal based and have nothing to do with the typical explosions of bombs. Despite its crystal based attributes, it can actually be found in regular shops at the price of sixty scrap and also from random event rewards, just not commonly.

The crystal lockdown bomb is a weaponized version of the crystalmen’s special racial ability where they can coat the walls and hatch doors of a room, locking everybody inside and preventing anyone from getting inside without having to break it down, which takes awhile to achieve. When locking down a room with a Crystalman, he has to be inside of the room to trigger his ability on that specific room, or else he will just crystalline whatever room he is standing in. The crystal lockdown bomb is able to explode on any room, from the player’s own to the enemy’s.

The crystal lockdown bomb needs fifteen seconds to be able to fire, and only requires one energy slot to maintain and use. This weapon can be useful, but the situations in which it is limited. It is more advisable just to acquire a Crystalmen crew member than to use this specific weapon, however that essentially means the player needs to choose the crystal cruiser from the hangar, which consequently has the result of losing a plethora of other options that come from all the other space cruisers that can possibly be chosen.

  • Crystal Burst Mark I
    • “Modified projectile weapon that fires shield piercing crystals.”

This weapon comes pre-armed on the bravais layout of the crystal cruiser. The crystal burst mark I shoots two crystal fragments for one damage each, while each fragment has the additional property of one shield piercing. To elaborate one crystal projectile will pierce through one layer of a barrier, and then bring down the next barrier it hits. The second projectile the crystal burst mark I shoots in just one volley will then come into contact with the hull if the space cruiser had only two barriers total. In that scenario, one bubble of a barrier will be left up, while the space cruiser’s hull will be damaged for one point. An inelegant solution to attacking a ship, but a useful one as the crystal burst mark I can damage shield systems more rapidly than their near counterpart burst lasers.

The crystal burst mark I needs two energy slots of power, and fifteen seconds to charge up to be able to fire. These are fairly average stats for a weapon of this caliber. Because of the unique partial shield piercing the crystal burst laser mark I, and the possible sentimental attachment to such a rare weapon, a player may likely go through the whole stretch of a game instance with this weapon still equipped and still put to use. It can be sacrificed in cases where the player becomes extraordinarily flush with high tiered weapons, and has no room to allow for a medium tier weapon such as the crystal burst mark I.

  • Crystal Burst Mark II
    • “Modified projectile weapon that fires shield piercing crystals.”

Unfortunately the crystal weapons are yet another weapon subtype that almost all share an exact in game description, for reasons unknown but suspected anyway. Considering that crystal weapons are incredibly rare, and they in themselves are unique, this is probably why they share identical descriptions, aside from some laziness on the game developer’s part.

The crystal burst mark II is the high tier version of its predecessor, offering only a minor improvement, much to possible disappointment. This one fires three shots, each inflicting one damage each, while each projectile has the native partial shield piercing properties to crystal weapons. Each projectile also has a small possibility to open a hull breach, and should all three hit, it is likely there will be one hull breach.

The crystal burst mark II needs three energy slots from the reactor, so it is rather top heavy for the amount of damage it can dish out, but it does excel at cutting through shielding in a way that burst lasers are not. This weapon also takes seventeen seconds to charge up, which is just a little bit longer than its predecessor.

  • Heavy Crystal Mark I
    • “Modified projectile weapon that fires shield piercing crystals.”

The heavy crystal weapons are analogous to the heavy lasers, as suggested by their titles. The heavy crystal mark I shoots just one crystal fragment that can inflict two damage, while it still has the special property of partial shield piercing. Since each projectile’s damage rating is not carried over with barriers, the heavy crystal mark I can only push down one barrier, but will have the unique result of breaking down the barrier that is beneath the first layer. Such a result really doesn’t effect anything but another crystal weapon, as that crystal weapon that follows the heavy crystal mark I will pierce through the first layer and hit the HULL. That trait is unfortunately what holds the heavy crystal mark I back, in that it cannot break down as many shields as its burst crystal counterparts. It does require very little energy though, only one slot from the reactor, and has a shorter charge up period of thirteen seconds.

Because of its shortcomings, the player should likely swap this out for a weapon that is higher tiered, even one that is not a crystal weapon since those are not easily acquired from a shop due to their exclusivity to the hidden crystal sector.

  • Heavy Crystal Mark II
    • “Modified projectile weapon that fires shield piercing crystals.”

This heavy crystal weapon is hard hitting indeed, as the one fragment it shoots out inflicts four damage. That is as destructive as any single projectile can be, be that a ball of energy from a heavy laser or an exploding missile. And like all crystal weapons, that one large fragment has a partial shield piercing attribute of one point, so it is better to fire this weapon after all the other ones have released their volleys in an attempt to sneak the heavy crystal mark II’s fragment past any barriers to damage the hull and targeted system severely. Four points is enough to take out most systems, if not all.

This such a hard hitting weapon that the player can realistically use it all the way to end game against the rebel flagship, so long as it is utilized strategically. Firing it foremost essentially wastes its potential, which will require timing on the player’s part for when their weapons are fired, and a disabling of the auto fire feature.

However this can be rather susceptible to a single defense drone, as all its damage is concentrated in just one crystal fragment.

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