Elite Dangermouse

I’m getting the hang of this, I think. I’ve just cracked 1 million space credits in the virtual space bank through a combination of trading commodities and delivering cargo (my last job was transporting Imperial Slaves to a backwater colony, probably to do some hard labour in the highly profitable mining venture there. Hey, what do I care? They’re pixels not people!) So, in an effort to continue my low level tips for newbies, here we go again:

1. Docking computers are your friend. Finding obscure platforms on tiny stations or trying to land on a planet in the dark are massively annoying and potentially ship-threatening. You’ll lose a couple of tonnes of cargo, but using the computer is also quicker than doing it yourself. Docking is not so hard that you’ll ‘forget’ how to do it if you use the computer, it is just massively convenient.

2. Directional thrusters are REALLY useful in combat. I was terrible at keeping out of the sights of those pesky pirates, but a friend of mine mentioned that using the up/down/left/right thrusters allowed you to effectively maintain your distance and relative facing position to a given enemy. It works like a charm, especially on NPCs, and turned me from target practice to seemingly competent in one fell swoop.

3. If you can’t get the hang of shaking off interdiction attempts, slow down and submit to them straight away. The frame shift reset timer is dramatically quicker this way (I think 10 seconds rather than 40) allowing you to only require a mediocre shield or a little luck to get away.

4. The risk/reward ratio for trading sucks, especially with a small cargo bay. If you can, take missions instead. Not only will you get reputation gains for the people you work for, you limit the downside to the fine of the mission and any costs associated with buying your ship back. You are much more likely to be approached by raiders, but they are normally easily avoidable if you’re smart.

5. Rare trading is nice, but unless you invest serious time researching your route, it probably isn’t for most people. I was stuck with three tonnes of Karsuki Locusts in my hold for a good dozen trading trips before flogging them off. I made about 45k profit when I eventually sold them, but I have a feeling I would have done better trading normal goods instead.

6. I joined a faction – Aisling Duval, if you’re wondering – but I still have no clue what I’m supposed to be doing with that….

Until next time, keep on Space Truckin’.

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