Newbie guide to get started
Ok first things first, I highly recommend updating the game to 1.4 because it will make the smaller Khaak ships captureable. Also there is an “All in one Bonus Package” available for download at http://www.egosoft.com/download/x2/bonus_en.php This download will add many extras to your game.
When you start a new game you have four difficulty levels. They will not affect the difficulty level of the game, only the starting difficulty. Select easy to start the game with a fully equipped Discoverer and about 5000 cr. The harder the difficulty level the less equipment your Discoverer will have and the less credits you will start with. On X-treme difficulty your Discoverer will not have any shields, weapons, or extensions and you start with only 100 cr. Also, Your Discoverer will fly very slow and with no SETA (Singularity Engine Time Accelerator) drive it will take a very long time get anywhere. So for a quick start pick easy.
After your conversation with Ban Danna and you are in your Discoverer, I recommend that you press “Esc” and scroll down to SETA Factor. Change this to 10x for a faster game play. Also, I like to disable the warp tunnel. So, at this point in the game you can go do what ever you want. Fly off and start capturing ships, start trading, or try some BBS (Bulletin Board) missions ect. If you think you’re a good enough pilot and want to go strait into capturing then skip down to capturing “option 1 Discoverer”. But if you want to listen to Ban Danna I will walk you through the first few missions to get you started.
Ban will ask you to fly through the south gate to Home of Light and report to Elena Kho at the Terracorp HQ because she has a job for you. When you get in your Discoverer the South Gate should be dead ahead in your cross hairs. So press “t” to target the gate and then press “u” to activate or deactivate autopilot. If you have a SETA drive you can press “j” to speed up your flight time. When you enter Home of Light press “u” to deactivate autopilot then press “.” for the sector map and find the Tarracorp HQ. If you are on Hard or X-treme you may not see the Tarracorp HQ yet. Fly toward the North West quadrant of Home of Light to find the Tarracorp HQ. Highlight it on the sector map and press “t” to target it. Now press “Delete” to exit all menus and you should still have the Tarracorp HQ targeted. Activate autopilot “u” and your ship will dock at the station. When docked at Tarracorp HQ you can fly your ship manually into a docking slip or simply press “Esc” to fully dock.
Go to the stations communications and speak to Elena Kho. Elena will give you a mission to deliver computer components to the Tarracorp Crystal Fab in Ore Belt.
After accepting the mission, Elena will lone you a slow transport ship and she will expect it back after the mission. You can use the “j” key for the SETA drive witch will make the trip seam faster. From Home of Light follow the following route (Home of Light) N, (Argon Prime) N, (Herron's Nebula) E, (The Hole) E. Now you should be in Atreus Clouds. Dock at the Royal Boron Trading station in the center of the sector and communicate with Saya Kho. After the nice sequences, you are back in space and have a very unfriendly Boron on board. Take him back to the Tarracorp HQ, easy right. Wrong, trouble lurks in the sector right before Home of Light; you will be attacked by pirates. But don’t worry right before your shield are nearly depleted, a Split Dragon will come to your rescue then quickly jump away.
Ok, at this point you can keep going with the main plot or start exploring the X Universe and making some money for a new and better ship and believe me you will need a better ship! There are several ways of making money and some are more profitable then others. Some examples are Trading, Piracy, Factory chain, BBS missions, Policing and my favorite, capturing. In this Guide I will cover Trading and Capturing. If you would like info on anything ells post a comment or question.
To make a profit by trading you of course buy cheap and sell high. Probably the best ware (product) for trading is Silicone. But you can trade anything you want. Silicone is an XL (eXtra Large) ware, so to start trading silicone you will need the Mercury that Elena gives you because it can carry XL cargo. Now, I would recommend upgrading your Mercury a bit. Wile docked at Tarracorp HQ go to “change ship” and change to your new/old Mercury then go to “trade with station” and buy a jumpdrive and about 100-200 energy cells. Then change back to your Discoverer and undock by pressing “Esc” twice. You are back in space now, so after you are clear from the station press “r” for the property menu and command your Mercury to “jump to sector” Argon Prime. After the jump, command it to dock at the Shipyard. There you can ether sell the ship or repair the hull. Now, wile your Mercury is flying to the shipyard use your Discoverer to start exploring the different sectors.
At this point it would be a good idea to find a trading system extension and a few navigation satellites for when you find a sector with silicone you can keep an eye on the stock level. To deploy a satellite press “f” wile in space and this shows you your freight bay. Select the satellites and press enter. You can launch more then one at a time but one is all you need, press enter again to launch one satellite.
As you Explore the various sectors check back on your Mercury from time to time, go to the Universe map “,” and find Argon Prime. Press enter to check on your Mercury. When it arrives at the shipyard you won’t see it in the sector map anymore. Select the shipyard and go to trade with station. Your Mercury should be right on top, Press left to sell the ship and right to repair the hull. To start trading repair your ship and it will be much faster. Now command your Mercury to dock at the Equipment Dock in Argon Prime. It will need shields or the nice new hull might get scratched up. At Equipment Docks and Trading Stations you can upgrade the max speed further. Also, you can upgrade the max steering and cargo space. Although, the cargo bay extensions will get very expensive very fast so watch your cash flow because you will still need money for trade runs. When the Merc is at the Equipment dock you should upgrade the speed to max and install a SETA drive, three 1MW shields, and a Trading system extension.
When you find a silicone mine go in to the sector map and select it. Then go to station details, you should see a stock level represented by a bar. The fuller the bar the higher the stock and the cheaper the product. If you have the trading system extension installed in your current ship it will tell you the selling price for products and buying price for resources. If the station is low on products don’t buy!
When you do find some cheap silicone that you want to buy you will need your Mercury to carry it. So, assuming your Mercury has a jump drive and energy cell to make the jump command your Mercury to jump to the sector with the cheep silicone and dock at the mine. As your Mercury is flying to the silicone mine start looking for a buyer. Crystal fabs, Computer plants, chip plants, and some weapon forges all need silicone for resources. Simply find one that is low on silicone and it will offer a nice profit. When you’re Mercury gets to the silicone mine buy as much as you can. Then sell it for big bucks.
Continue trading until you have enough money for a Nova L at the argon shipyard or Warf. The L size ship will come with max shields and max weapons. The 25 MW shields are very hard to get in the beginning of the game, so don’t buy a Nova S or M because you can’t get 25 MW shields and that would defeat the purpose of buying a more powerful ship. The Nova is my favorite M3 class ship because it has a rear turret and overall good weapons and shields. From here skip to Capturing Option 2 Nova L.
Option 1 Discoverer
So, you think you’re a real pilot, Hugh. Well now, if you chose an easy game your Disco will have max weapons and max shields. If you chose anything harder you really need to do some fancy flying or you should first get max weapons and max shields. Now, from Argon Prime fly through the East gate to The Wall then South to Presidents End and finally East to Elena’s Fortune. This is the first of many Pirate sectors and you should start look for a lone Pirate Mandalay or if your feeling really cocky look for a Pirate Bayamon. To capture a ship you first need to take out the enemy shields and then bring the hull strength down to 85% or lower. Use strafe drive to avoid enemy fire. When the enemy ship is targeted you can press “i” for the ships details (hull strength ect). After the hull is blow 85% back off and stay out of the line of fire so that the enemy can recharge shields a little. Then attack again just bringing the shields down. Try not to do too much more hull damage. You will need to fix the ship afterwards or you can sell it, but the more damage it has the less it is worth. Eventually you will get a pirate to bail out of his ship. If you get a Mandalay then fix it up and buy a Alpha PSG (Phased Shockwave Generator). Now capture a Bayamon and then an Orinoco. With a Bayamon or Orinoco you can move on to capturing Khaak ships. That is where the real money is. Use Ione D and PSG together for a great capture probability.
Option 2 Nova L
Ok, now you will need some specialized guns to start capturing affectively. At argon equipment docks you can buy the mass driver, this gun is good but it requires you to carry ammunition for it to fire. IRE (Impulse Ray Emitter) is good for miner hull damage after the shields are down. PAC (Particle Accelerator Cannon) is also good for miner hull damage. But the gun you will find most affective is the Ione Disrupter. This gun will take out the shield of an enemy ship very fast and will not do any hull damage. The Ione D is also very unpredictable. It will spread out to hit any and all ship that is in firing rang, weather it’s a friend or foe. Be careful when using the Ione D because friendly fire will lower your reputation with what ever race you accidentally shoot. If your reputation with a race drops too low they will not let you dock at any of there stations.
Now for a list of what you will need for Capturing. First The Ione Disrupter is a must. Buy two from Boron Equipment Docks if you have the money. You will also need a low power weapon for hull damage, use the IRE, PAC, or Mass driver. Also, the transporter device is very handy for striping a ship of any weapons, shields, or extensions that were not damaged in your attack. After striping a ship send it to any Shipyard for scrap.
To install the proper weapons. Go to your ships weapons and install one or two Ione D in the main front weapon slots. Now add a few IRE’s or PAC’s to the remaning slots. For the rear turret install an IRE or Mass driver and go to your ships command consol and scroll down until you see the turret command. You will need Fight command software to give the turret a command. Now give your turret the command for missal defense.
Ok, now you’re ready for capturing, Fly to pirate space and find a pirate ship that is away from any main traffic lanes so that you don’t have to worry about friendly fire, but be careful with your selection because some Pirate ship are more powerful then others. When you find a target begin firing with Ione Disrupters to lower the shields. When the shields are down you can start on the hull. The Hull needs to be blow 85% or the Pirate will not ball. So, after you get the hull down below 85% back off and let the Pirate recharge his/her shields to about 30 or 40%. Then start your assault again just lowering the shields and maybe tap on the hull a little more with a very low yield weapon like an IRE. Continue this attack and rest each time taking a little more hull off. About 30% will ball out and leave you there ship, but the other 70% will never ball and go down with the ship.
I got my first capital ship (M2 class Titon) by cap Khaak M3/M5 and selling the weapons. I was in a Teladi osprey with beta PSG (Phase Shockwave Generator) for the main guns and beta IRE’s in all turrets. I set advanced satellites in lots of sectors to scan for Khaak clusters. When I would find one I would jump to the sector and follow the cluster. Then when I got close I would slow to 0 and give them about 4-5 bursts with the 2 beta PSG. 4 out of 5 times I will cap 2 or 3 M5's and 1 or 2 will have the alpha Kyon to transport onboard. Then I focus my attention on the BIG M3 and try to cap it with the attack and rest method, plus I aim low or high so that my turrets are firing as well. The trick is to make the Khaak pilot think you’re going for the kill, and he should bail. Sometimes I'll cap more M5 when shooting at the M3.
Khaak Weapons: M5 Alpha Kyon = 800,000+ cr. M3 Beta Kyon = 1,600,000+ cr.