Best Strategies and Ships for the Different Difficulties


You all like the fighters. I tryed the bombers for 600 scrap but they die to fast. 1 or 2 little hits and they are gone. They never can deal damage cause they got shoot down very fast.

The only drones i use are repair and shield drones. But even on them the KI is sometimes bugged and they refuse to repair.

I whould like an option to put a shield on the fighters like in Battlestation first contact.


Tactically this is what works for me:

The more fighter bays the better.
Two on the lead ship, two each on of the wing-men.
Bolter Drones seem to be the best.
Max Ships Upgrade from 2 to 5, then Hull Damage Upgrade, leave Shield Damage Upgrade alone unless you have green to burn.
A cloud of 30 drones makes very quick work of any opposing ships and is also an excellent incoming missile screen.

Next, a Nuke Cannon or two, help the Nuke rounds get to through with Missile Turrets.
Do not buy Speed Upgrades for the Nuke Cannon, the Missile Turret and Nuke Cannon rounds move at the same speed.
Buy Burst Upgrades for the Missile Turret.
With luck the opposing ship's anti-missile point defense targets the three missiles and a few more nukes get through.

Buy cheap bolters to shoot down a few incoming missiles, swap them out with salvaged bolters or gatlings as opportunity allows, save the green for the drones and nukes.
Keep your best bolter/gatling pointed at the incoming missiles.
Shield Boosts in are okay, but they are useless for incoming missiles.

Mid-range is comfortable. Long range is okay but just takes a while longer. Short range is okay, but opens your ships to too much punishment.
Jump out/run if you are getting torn up. You'll get chased but the very first thing the pursuers get is a face full of nukes when they jump in, quickly followed by what remains of the drone cloud.


I still can't figure out how to use a distress beacon. What kind of ship does it attach to? I bought one of each ship and none of them would take the beacon.


Hi vivajeffvegas!

The distress beacon is sometimes found from enemy ships, they are essentially a distress beacon used by that specific race. You can activate it in the star map, there will be a green button next to the "travel to next sector" button. When you have a distress beacon in your inventory that button will be available there. If you don't have a distress beacon the button won't be visible.

Now, when you press the distress beacon button you will call out a "I'm in trouble here, help me!". But it is a call for the race you grabbed it from. This means enemies from nearby sectors will jump towards your sector to help their mate.

It is especially useful if you are at a Battlestation, you can then press the distress beacon, wait for 1 turn and they will attack. Because you are at a battlestation you will have a real advantage in the fight. Another good situation to use it in is when a sector has a lot of enemies in it and you need to jump there. You can activate the beacon and see that some of the enemy ships will jump towards you. Now jump to the sector and face less enemies!


I have had really good luck using the projectile cannon with the energy cannon. If you upgrade recharge time on the projectile cannon, it can do a ton of damage. Just warp in semi close to the enemy ships and they die in a few seconds. You don't even need fighters or missiles or nukes. As you get more ships just add more cannons. Add in some repair drones just so you don't ever need to return to a station.


in the early game I just build up point defense on one side of the ship. then make sure when i warp in i keep the enemy on that side of the ship. Even the ships that have forward facing guns can't seem to hit crap if your head on with the enemy. Just like pirate ships, broadside for the win.


A few strategies seem very strong to me:

With Carriers, two paths work very well:

Either way, max out fighters first (bolter drones or human fighters depending on starting money); then, you can either save up for a nuke, then buy gatlings (only on PORT side of the ship), then buy the rest nukes;

OR, buy port side gatlings without spending ANY money on turrets. Ever. Just use fighters to kill things from a distance and wait until you pick up strong weapons. You'll save tons of money which means higher scores, and you'll get up to 3 capital ships very quickly. When you find a stronger weapon, replace the ones you have. All your early upgrades go into fighter numbers, damage, or burst, then into gatling hull damage. Only when those are maxed out do you start upgrading your turrets at all. You'll have a fleet full of fun weapons like energy gatlings and flak cannons! It's also totally possible to have 3 large carriers with maxed out bolter drones and beat hard mode without ANY red weapon turrets.

With Armadas or Liberators, I find the best build is honestly nothing but projectile cannons, with recharge time maxed out. No other upgrades are necessary, and you don't even have to buy point defense or fighters! The projectiles will kill any missiles or rockets OR fighters in the way, and once you have 5+ cannons, shields will get whittled down fast enough. It's very safe and you will hardly take any damage!


The only non-carrier ships I would recommend are the Zephyr (early game) and the Armada (the very last ship you can unlock). The rest of the destroyers are not that powerful, and IMO kind of boring. I passed the game for the first time with a Zephyr (on easy).

The Zephyr has 3 mount points for heavy weapons, which is a lot early on. You can be quite powerful with a setup of 1 energy cannon and 2 projectile cannons. (The 1 energy cannon knocks out their shields, while the 2 particle cannons quickly wreck their hull because particle cannon is OP). These weapons are quite long range, too, so you can finish opponents at a safe distance. (You'll want to get the range upgrade for your energy cannon). As of the present release, upgrading the recharge time on the particle cannon is twice as powerful as getting the actual damage upgrade. Particle cannon upgrades are cheaper than upgrades for other large weapons, so you can get the most powerful, long-range guns really quickly.

With the Zephyr, you should be able to kick ass long enough until you make enough money to eventually buy a carrier, if you want one.


Here's what I do for my starting configuration.

It works for all difficulty it seems. I'll fill up all my main cannons with the Energy Cannon and max out their recharge time, which translate to 0.4s and spam the hell out of my enemies.

Small ships go down fast, larger ships go down slower but it does the job. I only upgrade the recharge time and once I get enough scraps, i fill the defense with either Gatling or Bolter.

I'll get 2 more Carrier or Destroyer and fill their main with Nukes or Missiles.

Attack strategy is to stay away from enemies battlestation or warp right in the middle of the ship's position.


I have some questions. The devs and in-game text seem to highly reccomend the flak cannon - however, its' stats, when I've found it, do not seem to outperform the particle cannon.

Likewise, the weapons I pick up from enemies do not seem better than what I can make myself. Often damage stats take an unacceptable hit, in exchange for inadequate increases to stats like range. Is this intended, that enemy weapons are best for scrap to fuel your own construction efforts? I would think that you'd want to feed the loot frenzy, if possible.

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