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Thu Jan 31, 2013, 07:51 PM


If you have a spare ten bucks around, allow me to point you in the direction of a simple little game called FTL: Faster Than Light.


That's their website. You can download the game through Steam for 9.99, and since I just bought it it's sure to be on sale soon.

It's pretty cool. You are a spaceship carrying a vital message through seven sectors, with the enemy always advancing behind you. You manage a crew and at least a dozen upgradeable ship systems, and if you don't manage them well, you die. The crew level up over time, and some aliens have specialties and, apparently, secret abilities (listed in the control menu, anyway). (Humans, declares the game, are common and uninteresting.)

Perhaps the most compelling aspect of it is that the game is in perpetual hardcore mode. There are no lives, no saves, and no second chances. For some reason that creates a real emotional roller coaster effect, with little triumphs and tragedies as you acquire a better weapon or lose an invaluable crew member to a treacherous new arrival. I have yet to beat the enemy flagship yet, after hours of really fun play.

Watch Day9 forget his day job and become lost--totally lost--in this game for hours, until his housemate tragically disturbs his chi:


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Arrow 21 replies Author Time Post
Reply OMG! FTL ITFS! (Original post)
sofa king Jan 2013 OP
Ohio Joe Jan 2013 #1
sofa king Feb 2013 #3
Ohio Joe Feb 2013 #4
ZombieHorde Feb 2013 #2
Evoman Feb 2013 #5
sofa king Feb 2013 #6
Evoman Feb 2013 #7
sofa king Feb 2013 #8
Evoman Feb 2013 #9
sofa king Feb 2013 #11
Evoman Feb 2013 #12
sofa king Feb 2013 #13
sofa king Feb 2013 #10
sofa king Feb 2013 #14
sofa king Feb 2013 #15
Evoman Mar 2013 #16
sofa king Jun 2013 #17
Riftaxe Jul 2013 #18
Aerows Jul 2013 #19
sofa king Jul 2013 #20
sofa king Aug 2013 #21

Response to sofa king (Original post)

Thu Jan 31, 2013, 11:14 PM

1. I fucking love that guy!

Awesome freakin review of the game and it makes me want to try it

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Response to Ohio Joe (Reply #1)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 02:51 AM

3. Day9 is pretty funny.

I've watched most of the tournaments he's broadcast over the past three years, which I think means I've listened to Day9 announce games more than I have heard Al Michaels announce football. He's improved an awful lot in a short time, too.

I've come so close to beating the boss, but I haven't quite got him yet. I've tried 28 times! Won't be long now, though, now that I have learned that I can teleport aboard enemy ships and kill their crews. That yields a lot more loot, and seems to be the key to defeating the final boss. This has got to be one of the funnest games I've ever played, and I'm sure I'll look forward to cracking it open for years to come.

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Response to sofa king (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 11:03 AM

4. This one was the first time I ever saw/heard of him

I think he is really good though, I'll definitely be looking up more though, I appreciate you bringing it here, Great stuff

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Response to sofa king (Original post)

Fri Feb 1, 2013, 10:55 PM

2. Steam keeps suggesting it to me. I may have to check it out sometime. nt

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Response to sofa king (Original post)

Sat Feb 2, 2013, 03:38 PM

5. Too late, already playing it.

Hard nut to crack. I've been playing on easy, and I still haven't reached the fleet. It's awfully addicting....think I played it 4 hours straight after I bought it.

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Response to Evoman (Reply #5)

Sat Feb 9, 2013, 10:58 AM

6. I still haven't won, either.

Of course, winning is hardly the point. For me, the game has played out like an endless series of Kobyashi Maru tests.

Rather than trying to win every time, I've focused on unlocking new ships and testing different builds. Here are some good tips I've either read about or learned the hard way:

* It's a really good idea to upgrade the medbay as soon as possible, because it provides a "blue" option in many of the random encounters you face. (The blue choice is always positive--or as positive as it can be--and is often the key in unlocking new ships, recruiting new members, preventing the loss of crew members, and avoiding negative effects in battle.)

* The teleporter similarly provides many "blue" options. I'm not sure about this, but once you have a teleporter, Rock and Mantis crewmembers seem to fall in your lap as well. A leveled-up two-Mantis away team can kill an enemy crew of four humans as long as the humans can't heal. A Rock-Mantis team is also highly useful, though the AI will wisely try to kill off the Mantis first and will do so if you don't evacuate him early or run him around.

* Taking ships by coup de main is definitely the best option in most cases. If you can kill the enemy crew without destroying the ship, you snake the highest possible scrap and fuel rewards, and sometimes new drones and weapons. It is also the key to unlocking at least two ships (Stealth and Mantis). It's nice to be able to play without worrying about fuel, and regular bum-rushing ensures that.

* In later sectors, teleporting in to an undamaged ship is a one-way ticket. The game's AI will happily micro its injured crewmembers back to its own medbay, and circulate them in and out of the battle zone at least as well as I can. The trick is to blow up the medbay, then teleport in on top of the crew as they attempt to fix it. Oh, and be sure to de-target the medbay once your guys are aboard. That is how my two Yellow-level Mantis boarders, Jackie and Sammo, met their end last night, just before the last sector. In fact, it's a good idea to minimize the damage you inflict with your weapons while you have boarders away--they'll die with everyone else if you blow up the enemy ship when they are aboard.

* Missiles are what always get me in the end. It is my understanding that the Defense Drone Mk II can handle everything including the boss, but I have yet to acquire one.

* Beams without shield penetrating power, like the fire beam, are almost useless in later sectors. Later enemies are just too good at restoring their shields. If you focus all your weapons on shield suppression so that you can use the beams, the enemy's full broadside will crush your own ship in two or three volleys. Invading the shield room is also usually suicidal because the injured enemy will use medbay micro against you. So I find it is better to use my own weapons against their weapons, drones, and medbay.

* One of the very best weapons in the game is the Burst Laser Mk II, which comes stock with your very first ship, The Kestrel. Get a second one and you can shoot your way to the end--but they won't beat the Boss by themselves.

Anyway, I'm still loving this game. Lots and lots of fun.

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Response to sofa king (Reply #6)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 06:59 AM

7. The weirdist thing is....I really dont mind dying. At all.

Sometimes, when some Mantises come in and kill all my crew except one or two, I actually prefer it. Next fight, I'll go half ass or try something new. Sometimes, experimenting works...most time it kills you. My main tactic is to usually target shields with missiles, and weapons with lasers, and just let em go at it in fights. Usually works pretty good....keeps there shields offline, and the constant damage to their weapons keeps them from hurting me at all.

The thing that always gets me...and when my tactics backfire, is those damn transporting bugs. Anyway to stop em? Not enough time to target the transporters before they are ruining my puny humans from the inside.

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Response to Evoman (Reply #7)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 06:02 AM

8. Mantises can be a pain.

The first thing to do is upgrade your door subsystems to the second level. That slows them down a little.

You can also soften them up a little by venting any convenient outside doors you have near them. Neither your guys nor theirs seem to take any damage until they are in complete vacuum (red stripe tiles). Their behavior changes when in vacuum; they seem to aim for the first occupied room instead of their usual favorites. If you can snooker them into the medbay, especially an upgraded one, you can either kill them or force them to zap out, but they can still kill severely wounded crew who wander in.

Once, on a Kestrel, I managed to entice two Mantises into the medbay by evacuating their room and then opening all connecting doors to the medbay, while still leaving the outside doors open. Rather than break in on my pilot, they ran for the open room with air still in it., on the far end of the ship.

There are also a couple of weapons which allow you to target your own ship, but I don't remember what they are. The best way to whack 'em is to have two of your own. Once they level up, they saw through lesser Mantises like lesser Mantises saw through humans.

I have also managed to die trying some or all of the things above, which I agree is part of the fun.

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Response to sofa king (Reply #8)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 11:23 AM

9. How long does it take to level up guys?

No matter how much they fix or pilot or whatever, my guys don't seem to get anywhere. I'm almost at the fleet, and they'll still suck. I usually try to compensate by getting more crew, but I may be spending too much salvage on them. I love the random encounters when Ill get a pair of free robot guys. Can never seem to get mantis though.

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Response to Evoman (Reply #9)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 06:06 PM

11. You can "grind" them.

In the first two or three sectors, it is not uncommon to run into a Mantis Scout, either Mantis or Pirate, which usually runs with a single-shot laser and a beam weapon that can't penetrate a single shield. If you have only one shield, they'll execute a nasty one-two punch where the laser drops the shields and then the beam burns up multiple rooms.

But if you show up with two shields, the Mantis can never penetrate to your systems or hull, so you can toy with him forever, and level up your crew while doing so.

All crew members level up in the following ways (I can't find the original article where I read this, so it's speculative):

Pilot and Engine: Gain a point per shot evaded. Maybe 20 to level up? L1/L2/L3 5%/7.5%/10% evade bonus if at controls.
Shields: Gain a point for every shield re-started. Takes a lot to level up, maybe 40-60. 5%/10%/15% faster shield restart
Weapons: Gain a point for every shield dropped, system disabled, and ship kill (I think). Also lots, maybe 40-60. 5%/10%/15% faster weapon charge.
Repair: Gain a point for every system repaired. 10-20, I think, to level up.
Combat: Gain a point for every kill. Pretty sure 10 kills to level up.

Level 1: White icon
Level 2: Green icon
Level 3: Yellow icon
(Please forgive my confusion here. I made some mistakes on the first edit.)

With the Kestrel A, you have to leave your weapons hot but untargeted, as the Burst Laser Mark II will quickly tear apart the Mantis ship. But your three crew can man the Pilot, Engine, and Shield rooms and level up. Once they reach Level 3 (A yellow icon and two Xs over the head of your system power level meter), be sure to have them rotate to new positions.

If you have unlocked the Kestrel B with four crewmembers and four basic lasers, you can man all four positions, unpower all but one laser, and level up all four positions at the same time. The enemy always keeps someone in the shield room, so a single basic laser can never out-pace the restart of their shields (enemy crewmembers may also level up--their weapons seem to fire faster later on in a grind session, which in turn levels up your shield-guy faster).

Your pilot and engine-personorthing will evade more shots if the engines have more power, so in the rare instances when you're flush early on and looking to power-level your crew, consider dropping a point or two on the engines.

Some tips:

* Mantises have double attack speed in hand-to-hand combat, but repair at only half speed. Mantises make great away teams, then, but even though they are fast they suck at repairing and putting out fires. Getting a teleporter seems to attract random events and slavers that give Mantis crewmembers, and they seem to show up for hire at stores more often, but that's just a guess.

* Engis, on the other hand, do half damage in combat, but repair at double speed. They're best left on your own ship. It's actually better to have other species man systems so that the Engi is free to double up on the repairs in any manned system room. Engis can still act as a damage-sink in combat, but they are the second-worst next to the Zoltan.

* Zoltans are awesome to have on systems, but they have only 70 hp, die in seconds in combat, and can even by killed by multiple hits on the same room. They provide one power point to any room they're in. It's a bad idea to have a Zoltan as pilot, as his power-point goes unused by the ship. So when grinding, you may wish to leave the Zoltan out of the pilot's room. On rare occasions, with an eight-person crew, I've had the luxury of being able to unpower the Medbay and make a Zoltan the McCoy of the ship. It's best to make them expert in the system closest to the Medbay.

* Rocks have 150 hp and might actually be the best combat units, because once they're leveled up two of them are almost impossible to stop. But they are painfully slow and not easily recirculated back to the ship and over to the medbay on the Kestrel A. On that ship, however, a Rock makes a great engine-man who can jump next door to the teleporter, and also be there to fix the O2 room. Rocks are immune to fire and so can be transported into burning medbays on enemy ships, with hilarious results (they can still suffocate, though), and also make an excellent repair chief for the back-end of your Kestrel.

* Slugs are just as unremarkable as humans except that they provide a number of "blue" options in random events, light up darkened rooms adjacent to the one it is in, and telepathically know the location of enemies regardless of the status of your sensors. Despite the example I give in a post below, the Slug is probably best kept manning a system at home.

* It's worth grinding-up Engis and Mantises, too, as they can fill in vacant slots while the primaries are healing, and away teams can't be used easily against automated ships, so they'd better get good at repairs or something else, too.

* It is a terrible idea to try to level up your repair skills by taking damage. You'll take plenty of that along the way no matter what.

* Only one point is awarded per event, so if you have a Zoltan in the shield room purely for the power and a human at the actual controls, only the human gets the point. Similarly, Mantises seem to get most of the kills in combat because of their higher attack speed. But the AI is pretty smart and has a habit of beaming in on your weakest and loneliest crewmembers, so don't be surprised if you see a Zoltan or Engi combat expert on your crew some day.

* You can "pull" a crewmember to a higher level faster at either pilot or engines by placing a better qualified person at the other control. For example, an L1 rookie goes into the engine room, while a L3 pilot is at the controls. The ship has a 15% extra evasion chance, rather than a 10% chance if both are L1, so the rookie will level up faster than if he were paired with another rookie. If you start both out at no experience it will take them a long time to get to L1, but considerably less for both to reach L2 because their bonuses benefit each other and increase the rate of evasions once they have leveled up once.

When grinding a crew, you might want to find the auto-pause option and disable that, so that the game will run in the background while you're doing something else. Once I went to bed while grinding, which is how a backup pilot managed to score a record 1799 piloted evasions. (It didn't help him, he and his crew failed the following morning.)

You can fall into a grinding scenario in later levels as well. Enemy ships seem to have a finite number of missiles, just as you do. If you deploy a defense drone and shoot all the missiles down, sometimes the enemy is left with only beam weapons or lasers that can't burn through all of your shields. This is a great opportunity to grind up replacements and new arrivals, which you will certainly have random crew losses seem to unfairly pick among your highest-level crew (especially the combat experts).

Leveling up crew makes major contributions to your overall survivability, so it's worth doing if you have the patience.

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Response to sofa king (Reply #11)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 07:10 PM

12. WOW. Thanks for the info. Had no idea is was so complex.

I've been playing simpler, lol.

Quick question....doesn't the rebel fleet get closer if you grind? Or do they just move as you warp?

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Response to Evoman (Reply #12)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 03:15 PM

13. I don't think the rebel fleet moves.

I'm not exactly certain about that, but I have never been overtaken by them while grinding.

One of the reasons why I love this game is because it is designed to be frequently paused (spacebar), which I do often. Then I get to run through everything I have in my toolbox: power allocation, crew positioning, target priority, damage control, and so on. After a while, I got better at being able to pull a rabbit out of my hat in really tight battles because rather than fighting them out in realtime, I paused, sometimes several times in a second, in order to stay alive.

The game can be played like an RTS, without pausing, but there is no way I could keep up.

Another really fascinating part of the game is that it is possible to fight one's way all the way to the boss with a configuration that cannot win against the boss, or has a very low chance of winning, because the boss uses things you haven't seen yet like drone swarms and missile barrages. There are so many ways to die, some of them truly infuriating, like forgetting to re-power the oxygen supply and suffocating your own crew, which I have done. Those darkly humorous lessons are definitely a huge part of the game.

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Response to sofa king (Original post)

Fri Feb 15, 2013, 04:08 PM

10. Yes We Did!

Finally. First the mission stats:

Ship: Kestrel Model A

Ships defeated: 38
Beacons explored: 100
Scrap collected: 2114
Crew hired: 7

Augments at Flagship:
Scrap Recovery Arm
Long-range scanners

Weapons at Flagship:
Burst Laser Mark II
Burst Laser Mark II
Glaive Beam
Artemis Missile

Drones at Flagship:
Defense Drone Mark I
Hull Repair Drone

The Federation scout DemUnderground departed with its crew of three, Pilot Obama, Engine Specialist Carter, and Weapons/Shields Specialist Clinton. Early in the first sector, President Obama made the controversial decision to forego an early medbay upgrade and instead bumped up the shields to L2 at the earliest opportunity.

This immediately paid off when a pirate armed only with a basic laser and a beam weapon unwisely engaged. The crew spent approximately one hour practicing evasion and shield restarts, resulting in each President being fully upgraded to L2 in their primary fields, L2 in a secondary system, and L1 in a third system before dispatching the pirate with the Burst Laser. With these skills, the crew of the DemUnderground always evaded more shots, powered up their weapons first, and restored power to shields better than all enemies.

The Burst Laser Mark II installed at the outset proved more than capable of dealing with all early opponents, and permitted the DemUnderground to explore approximately 85% of the beacons in the first two sectors. Also in the first two sectors, the DemUnderground acquired a teleporter and a Scrap Recovery Arm, which allowed it to upgrade most of its systems early.

President Obama noted a rare opportunity to jump through seven civilian sectors, allowing the DemUnderground it to stay within friendly territory for the entirety of the mission, no doubt assisted by the sterling diplomatic skills of the crew. This allowed the DemUnderground to visit numerous stores along the way, while hiring a highly capable two-Mantis away team, but not before both Presidents Carter and Clinton leveled themselves up in hand-to-hand combat skills (President Clinton leveled up in every category: Piloting: L2, Engines: L1; Weapons: L2; Shields, L2, Repair: L1; Combat: L1.)

Eventually, a friendly Zoltan was hired to permanently man the shields, though the occasional expertise of Presidents Carter and Clinton were sometimes required while the fragile Zoltan healed himself. The two-Mantis away team kept the scrap rolling in, 50-70 per ship sacked. In Sector 6, friendly Zoltans provided a Glaive Beam, which allowed the DemUnderground to saw through all automated opposition and all but the most powerful Rebel ships. Once weapons were fully maxed, six laser bursts and up to 20 hull damage from the Glaive beam made destroying ships easy. Critical late-game acquisitions were a cloaking system and a hull repair drone.

Tragedy struck in Sector 7 when two random and unforeseen incidents resulted in the death of both Mantises. The hasty acquisition of a Slug crewmember left only this one rookie available for roving repairs and as an away team in the final battles.

Knowing that the final boss would likely damage the Glaive Beam and keep it unpowered for most of the fight, missiles were carefully husbanded and the Artemis missile system had no less than 46 missiles to fire in the three boss battles. Over half of them were used in the battles to come.

The first battle with the flagship went quite well. The Defense Drone Mk. I handled incoming missiles while the weapons focused on the enemy's rocket weapon, set fire to it and breached the hull, resulting in the death of the crewmember assigned to it. The Flagship's ion weapon did not go down as easily, but once that weapon's crewman was severely injured, President Obama assigned the rookie Slug to teleport in, kill the crewman, and manually destroy that weapon. When the flagship fired its spread of rockets and lasers, President Obama deftly paused and engaged the ship's cloaking system. Eventually, time was found to power up the mighty Glaive beam, ripping through four rooms and killing three enemy crewmen who were desperately trying to keep the shields online.

The second battle did not go nearly as well. Massive swarms of drones and missiles quickly damaged the cloaking controls, and the DemUnderground took twenty-tine out of a possible thirty points of hull damage. With five hit-points left, President Obama himself left the controls to repair the nearby drone system, as the DemUnderground floated helplessly in space, while Presidents Carter and Clinton heroically restored the cloaking system just in time to hide from another power surge. The Slug was again teleported into one of the now empty weapons rooms and eventually disabled the Flagship's rockets. The DemUnderground was aflame from stem to stern when President Obama restored drone control and made the critical decision to start popping off hull repair drones instead of defense drones. In the meantime, the Artemis missiles again pounded the enemy shield room until only four enemy crewmembers remained when it jumped out. No less than nine more hull repair drones were required to restore the DemUnderground to full hull integrity, leaving it with fewer than ten drone parts going into the final battle.

The third battle was complicated by an unforeseen event. While waiting for the enemy Flagship to complete its jump to an adjoining sector, a Rebel cruiser moved into attack range and deployed an away team onto the DemUnderground. Rather than fight this insignificant enemy, President Obama jumped away with two boarders trying to break through the DemUnderground's maxed blast doors. Then, on arrival in the Flagship's sector, two more boarders teleported into the Medbay.

Doubting President Clinton's ability to connect with the enemy weapons, President Obama dispatched the Slug into one of the weapons rooms while the Artemis pounded the other. Presidents Carter and Clinton, retaining their combat skills from the early sectors, evacuated the room the two non-Flagship interlopers were trapped in while heading to the medbay to take out the other two. About the time the two in the Medbay died, the other two intruders burst in, choking and nearly dead. Once dispatched, Presidents Carter and Clinton ran to the engine and weapons rooms, greatly improving the evasion and weapon charging of the DemUnderground.

Now, with only two crew members left and one highly damaged weapon (the Slug was still trapped aboard the Flagship in a dead weapon room), the Flagship proved difficult, but not entirely possible to deal with. Every minute or so it would either fire a massive burst of lasers, which could be dodged by cloaking, or it would deploy a ten-shot Zoltan shield. The two Burst Lasers and the Glaive Beam eventually managed to cut through the Zoltan shield, and once it did, the Glaive provided one final ripping blow that killed the enemy crew and destroyed the ship in the same shot, so that the enemy AI never took over the Rebel flagship.

Presidents Obama, Clinton, and Carter were the first and only crew to succeed in defeating the enemy Flagship, unique among ninety tries by other, less fortunate crews. It could not have come at a more opportune time, as the Great Girlfriend who controls the ultimate fate of the FTL universe and all who dabble in it expressed her concern that FTL might be becoming an unhealthy obsession for a certain someone playing it.

However, the victory unlocked a new Federation Cruiser, so it is entirely possible that FTL will not remain dormant for long....

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Response to sofa king (Original post)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:01 PM

14. Still one of the funnest games ever.

I've managed to assert some control over my compulsion to play this game. I think a big part of what makes it so enjoyable is how difficult it is. The statistics I have accrued are enlightening and a little sad:

Total ships defeated: 1630
Total beacons explored: 4266
Total scrap collected: 73148
Total crew hired: 688
Total games played: 130
Total victories: 5

There are some interesting commonalities among the five games I won. Each of the five victories came with a different ship or ship type, but ALL of them were armed with the Burst Laser Mk II by the time I got to the boss. All of them had a crew teleporter. Four out of five of them had a scrap recovery arm, which allowed me to max out the ship's most important systems before the last sector. Three of them had cloaking. Three of them had long-range scanners. All of the victories were in easy mode. (I still have not made it to Sector 8 on normal.)

At least 650 of the crewmembers I hired died--the VAST majority of them in non-combat random events. The game is ruthless and not very random about which of your crew dies in those events. I think the order goes something like
1) your most experienced crewmember, particularly the one who has leveled up more than once;
2) your Zoltan (reduces power bonus);
3) your Rock or Mantis (reduces combat bonuses);
4) your Engi (reduces repair bonuses);
5) whomever is in your engine room at the time (reduces evasion).

In one game I hired fifteen crewmembers, including the original three, meaning that I had to first acquire and then nearly replace an entire eight-person crew.

It is impossible to escape crew loss in many of the random events, but there are at least three ways to mitigate the losses somewhat:

1) Upgrade your medbay to level 2 as soon as possible. This gives you a blue option to use the medbay to heal your crewmember instead of losing him.
2) Acquire long-range scanners, and avoid beacons that do not have ships in them. This augment is inexpensive and very useful all the way to the end of the game.
3) Have as many aliens on your crew as possible; often one of them provides you with a blue option to avoid the worst consequences.

It seems particularly important to avoid vacant sectors just after the acquisition of a crewmember. This may just be confirmation bias, but I swear that many, many times I have picked up a shitty human crewmember, and then lost a much more important crewmember in the very next jump. It seems like the pilot somehow survives most random events.

Tonight I am going to test this theory by doing the following:

* When I acquire a new human crewmember, I will place him in the engine room.
* Then I will move my Zoltan to the pilot's seat for the next jump, and put my next most important person in that room with him. (It's a terrible idea to have a Zoltan pilot because their power bonus is not added to the ship's supply, so he'll have to run out quick in any combat situation. Having a second person in the room means there is no loss of evasion during movement.)
* I will move everyone else into an empty, non-system room so that none of them are in actual control of a system besides the Zoltan and the new human.
* My hypothesis is that the Zoltan will be skipped as the victim and someone less important will be taken instead, hopefully the common and uninteresting new human.

I like this game so much I'm thinking about making some tutorial videos of it.

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Response to sofa king (Reply #14)

Wed Feb 27, 2013, 02:45 PM

15. Non-Results:

In the very next game I started, I made sure to use the Red-tail, which has a Zoltan and a Mantis. On my very first jump I ran into a slaver ship that gave me another human.

So I moved my crew accordingly, and jumped into a combat situation instead of a random event. But other strange things happened after that. I kept acquiring crewmembers, kept moving the Zoltan to the pilot's seat, and kept putting my shittiest guy on engines, and kept removing crew from systems before jumping.

By the end of Sector 1 I had a seven-man crew, and picked up the eighth on my first jump in Sector 2. No random crew losses at all.

So right now my guys are grinding up against an underpowered pirate, and eventually I will move out with a full and highly trained crew. I can also avoid or evade many random events because I do not need anymore crew, and therefore can take all low-risk options from now on.

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Response to sofa king (Original post)

Sat Mar 2, 2013, 07:17 AM

16. Just gifted this to one of my friends on Steam

It was on his wishlist. Finally, somebody else in RL that gets the shit beat out of them by this nightmare of a game.

I've been playing it quite a bit more....though, admittedly, not as often as Binding of Isaac, my other favourite rogue-like.

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Response to sofa king (Original post)

Mon Jun 10, 2013, 12:22 PM

17. Update.

FTL is still often buzzing along in the background somewhere. The statistics I generated, in retrospect, are a little bit scary, though in my defense I was almost always doing something else at the same time:

Session Records:

Most ships defeated: 212
Most beacons explored: 108
Most scrap collected: 3011
Most crew hired: 17

Crew Records:

Most repairs: 71
Most combat kills: 203
Most piloted evasions: 2124
Most jumps survived: 279
Most skill masteries: 10


Total ships defeated: 4190
Total beacons explored: 8963
Total scrap collected: 167019
Total crew hired: 1433

Total games played: 252
Total victories: 32

There is a Save + Continue feature to the game, so it's not uncommon for a single run to play out over days or even a week or two. I spent about a month, or so it feels like, trying to unlock the Crystal Cruiser, then another month trying to figure out how to unlock the B-version of that ship. My rule was that no matter what I was aiming to beat the boss every time, so if the Crystal-ship lottery didn't pan out, there was still a point to the exercise. (Almost all of my victories came after my 100th loss, while going after the Crystals.)

Once you have the B-version, with its four-critter teleporter and a three-Crystal crew, the game becomes different in many ways. If you teleport into a Rebel ship's weapons room and wall it off, the Rebels decide to try to break down the wall rather than teleport over to your own ship. With a Mantis is the fourth away-team guy, you can de-fang almost any enemy ship before they can do damage to you. That allows the Crystal-B to go backwards through already overrun sectors, wrecking Rebel ships, getting one fuel for it, and moving on to the next, allowing one to run up ridiculous scores.

Still not bored with it. Still one of the funnest games ever. I'll probably be playing it off and on for the rest of my life.

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Response to sofa king (Reply #17)

Thu Jul 4, 2013, 03:39 PM

18. FTL is $2.49

at GOG today, not sure how long it will be. It is a fun little indie game (might want to mod to disable the armada until you get the hang of it tho).

Definitely a beer and pretzels title

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Response to sofa king (Original post)

Fri Jul 5, 2013, 03:23 PM

19. That looks like fun!


Wow, I want that.

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Response to sofa king (Original post)

Tue Jul 9, 2013, 01:23 PM

20. How about FTL FPS?

Some folks are reportedly using Garry's Mod to create a Source II based first person co-op version of FTL. It's called "Final Frontier."


Apparently the basic game mechanics are largely unchanged. Your character still has to man stations, put out fires, heal ones self, and fight, in addition to the usual power-juggling and systems management. Systems still get a bonus when manned.

Each room has a pressure and temperature which must be maintained at safe levels, or the character will be damaged.

I assume that the various alien races will be represented. I further assume, since it looks like the models will be coming from the Valve grab-bag, that the Mantises will be some version of those goddamned sand fleas from Half Life II, which I dearly hated even when I controlled them. I suppose Engis might be able to be cobbled together from Vortigaunts, but I have no idea what they'll do for slugs, rockmen, and crystal entities.

What I don't see yet is a HUD of the entire ship and its status, which probably should be displayed as a map in the corner of the player's screen. Just a matter of personal taste, perhaps. Otherwise, I think this is a really, really cool implementation of an already very cool game.

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Response to sofa king (Original post)

Tue Aug 27, 2013, 04:01 AM

21. I just had the luckiest run ever!

And better than that, I streamed it. I think that Twitch will save the video for a couple of days.

I'm pretty sure that I more or less accidentally hit all of the scenarios needed to get the crystal guy, unlock the hidden level, and unlock the ship--except that I had already unlocked it, so I just got some loot.

Here is the unedited stream--the first game is a failed rage-quit, but since I restarted I don't know where that ends and the ridiculously lucky one begins. Hopefully tomorrow night I can cut it down into Youtube-sized bites.


It's a very rough cut, with low resolution and bad sound, and I don't recommend you waste four and a half hours watching all of it. But it's there if you want to see it.

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