Resource Gathering Hints
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- Keep a log of the systems you have visited. If a resource-rich planet is too hostile to land on now, you may be able to return to them later better prepared.
- The planets are displayed in different colors. If you figure out what they mean, you can potentially save some time scouting. Unfortunately, the colors are only partially reliable, as rich worlds and poor worlds of every color exist. Also, planetary orbit paths display the general temperature of the planet.
- Many planets have satellites which you can land on. Most of these are Gas Giants, such as the planet Jupiter, which you cannot land on. However do not assume all planets with satellites are Gas Giants. Some are not, which means you can land on them as well as their satellites.
- Different star systems have different overall temperatures. Generally, the higher the star temperature, the bigger the mineral deposits will be on its planets. Look for hotter star systems, but be aware of the increased risks involved. Planets orbiting giant or super-giant stars may prove to be too hot to safely explore with a Planet Lander.
- Talk to Commander Hayes about resource gathering.
- Do not waste time and fuel on gathering common or corrosive minerals. They provide the least amount of RUs.
- Collect biological data by shooting alien life on planets. They are there for a reason. The Flagship can hold an unlimited amount of biological data. You do not need Storage Bays for biological data.
- Make sure mineral quality and quantity is worth the fuel cost, especially for planets with high gravity. When you choose to dispatch a Planet Lander, the amount of fuel the trip will consume is displayed. You can decide not to make the trip by hitting the usual canceling button. While exploring for mineral resources, you will find many planets that only have a few tiny deposits of Commons or Corrosives, the two least valuable resources. It is recommended that these are left unharvested. UQM is completable without collecting every resource on every planet.
- Fuel is expensive. It is more efficient to collect every worthwhile resource within a system in one trip than to go back twice. If the Flagship runs out of Storage Bay space and worthwhile minerals remain in the system, consider dumping some of your least valuable mineral cargo.
- Fuel is valuable. Some aliens will accept other items in exchange for fuel, which you can sell back to the Earth Starbase for huge returns in resource units. This is an alternative to collecting expensive minerals for fuel.
Random Hostile Encounters
- The Ilwrath Avenger will prove to be a very risky fight. One mistake and you face serious damage or destruction.
- Always be prepared to fight a Slylandro Probe. You will have no choice but to fight any you encounter.
- Develop your skills at destroying Ilwrath and Slylandro ships. Practice against them and others in Super Melee.
- Within a star system, alien ships often move about from planet to planet. It is possible to take resources from these planets while completely avoiding any and all hostile ships.
- You can gather resource units easily if you encounter a race which is a poor match for your ships. Within an alien species' sphere of influence you will often find a large number of their ships in encompassed star systems. You can gain a considerable amount of resource units by destroying them in battle and salvaging the ship debris. Combat salvage does not require a Storage Bay, therefore success at resource collecting using this method is limited only by your combat skill and crew complement.
Reconfiguring the Flagship
- You will not lose RUs while exchanging ships and modules for others at the Earth Starbase. Therefore it is cost-effective to rework your flagship and fleet to suit whatever task you are planning. Take the time to experiment with different configurations.
- If friendly aliens give you ships you do not handle well in battle, you may sell them. However, once sold, these ships cannot be repurchased unless you currently have an alliance with that alien species.
- Always keep a couple of fleet combat ship positions open when visiting alien species so you can receive ships as gifts.
- If you are resource collecting, bring extra Planet Landers and as many Storage Bays as you can afford. Remember to bring about 15 extra units of fuel per Storage Bay since every planet landing costs fuel. Pack an extra Crew Pod because planet landings are hazardous.
- Remember that a lander costs 500 RU. When you lose one, you will also lose all of the cargo on board that lander.
- Depending on which alien species you are hunting, the best "Bounty Hunter" configuration might be an unarmed Flagship with extra crew pods supporting a fleet of combat ships particularly suited to your chosen prey.
- Some regions of space are safe from space combat. Therefore you can optimize your Flagship for massive resource collection in order to collect every valuable mineral resource within that region. This is potentially better than wasting fuel on several trips to and from Earth with a Flagship always configured for battle.
Improving the Flagship
- Early in the game, technological advances may prove more useful than knowledge about your enemies by improving your resource-gathering and combat capabilities. Seek out races willing to trade technologies or items with you.
- Invest in Antimatter Thrusters. Thrusters directly affect the speed of your Flagship in all areas of the game, including combat, travel within star systems, and HyperSpace. Maximum thrust can get you from system to system (and away from enemies!) much faster. The number of thrusters does not affect fuel consumption.
- Turning Jets are not as important as thrusters, but they make navigating and avoiding enemies easier. Turning Jets also save valuable game time by reorienting your ship in HyperSpace faster.
- Remember that time passes very quickly outside of star systems, in HyperSpace. Know where you want to go and use the autopilot to get there efficiently.