Fighting Hints

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This page is guaranteed to be spoiler free. It is safe for you to read this page even if you have not completed playing The Ur-Quan Masters. Links you follow from this page do not share this guarantee unless they also include this text.


  • Having trouble fighting a certain species? Practice against them in Super Melee using just the ships you have on hand.
  • There are no perfect ships and useless ships. Every ship has its advantages and disadvantages, and if you learn them well, you will be a good fighter. That said, there are generally weak ships, and ships which are almost unable to beat certain ships in one fight.
  • Try to diversify your Fleet. A new kind of ship could prove priceless against races you could not combat beforehand. If you are unfamiliar with a ship of a new ally, test it in Super Melee.
  • Raw firepower does not decide everything. The Chmmr Avatar, the Ur-Quan Kzer-Za Dreadnought and the Ur-Quan Kohr-Ah Marauder have the most firepower in the game, but there are lots of ways to defeat them with other ships with less firepower.
  • Use the planet's gravity well. Slow ships can use it to accelerate beyond their maximum velocity using the Gravity Whip maneuver. Luring a fast ship near the planet can make it easier to hit. The Chmmr Avatar can force the enemy ship to collide with the planet with its special ability.
  • Notice how in mid-range combat your two ships tend to be directly opposite each other? Hmmm...
  • Know where the planet is. Nothing is worse than being in a close range fight and smacking into the planet.
  • An alternative to consider is to focus on building up your Precursor flagship and acquiring advanced technology for it as soon as the opportunity arises. An upgraded flagship is more than a match for any other ship in the game. Try to balance this with progressing the storyline since technically the game is "timed."

Tactics Against Specific Ships

  • Check the starship descriptions to learn about each ship's weapons, special abilities, and tactical advantages and disadvantages.
  • The Slylandro Probe will usually back off if you point your guns at it. In the game a Spathi will beat a Slylandro every time with BUTT rockets - if you allow it to chase you. Strangely this doesn't usually work in Melee.
  • Use the Supox Blade's strafe mode to defeat the Ilwrath Avenger's cloak.

Artificial Intelligence Issues

  • The computer opponent is very predictable.
  • The computer is very quick and accurate at close range. Keep at standoff range until you get better.
  • The computer will lead its shots: if you're moving in a straight line and with constant speed, the computer won't aim at you, but instead at the place where you will be when the projectile gets there. To counter this, change speed and/or course frequently.

Full-Game Only

  • Don't forget about your emergency warp escape. Escort vessels can be recalled from battle by pressing the ESC key with no fuel cost, though they will be suspended for the remainder of the melee. Doing so with your flagship will evacuate your entire fleet, but will use 5 fuel units. (Note: This will function for the flagship if fuel is not available.)
  • A ship is vulnerable for about six seconds when it is preparing to escape combat, but it is not affected by gravity. Flying very close to the planet before initiating a warp escape will usually keep you out of trouble, as the intense gravity well is hard to navigate for most ships and some projectiles.
  • If you are overwhelmed while facing multiple ships (or worse, infinite ships), you can take advantage of the musical delay after destroying one of your enemy's ships with your flagship. As the enemy ship explodes, quickly hit the ESC key. (Warning: There is still some risk that the next ship will appear very close to you and will be able to inflict damage.)
  • Max out the turning jets and thrusters on your Precursor vessel ASAP.
  • Put a rear-firing gun on your Precursor vessel. Now you can fire while having the option to run away.
  • Don't bother initially with the side or off-center firing guns (at least, until you have the ATS installed). They just drain power.
  • Combat salvage doesn't use Storage Bay space. Bounty hunters needn't buy them.
  • VUX Intruders can't use their point-blank hyperspace trick against your Precursor fleet. Collecting bounties on these guys is like shooting fish (squids?) in a barrel.
  • While in HyperSpace, the Slylandro Probe can be outrun with enough thrusters, avoiding encounters. But don't expect to run from every probe; you still need to be able to destroy this type.