Out There…

Another report from the X universe. My ship was blown up by a mystery object – presumed to be a mine. Note to self – don’t go investigating unidentified objects! πŸ˜… That’s one of the differences between X4 and Elite – Your ship gets shot from under you and, unless you can get another ship that you own to come an pick you up, you float around in your spacesuit waiting for someone to shoot you or your oxygen to run out. There’s a bit of a ‘Major Tom’ about the whole situation and that didn’t end well! Elite uses an automated lifeboat facility to return you to a station where you will get given a free Sidewinder. In X4, I can just close the game and go back to the previous save – something you can’t easily do in Elite. Having realised that I could go back to where I was before disaster struck, I realised that I was going to have to make some ground rules. Whilst I can live with the Elite ‘lifeboat’ approach, I don’t think I would be happy picking up my X4 previous save after getting killed. So I’ve decided to treat a death as permanent and start a new game any time that it happens.

So here we go again. This second play through has started much the same as the first with the exception that the economy has been a bit less forgiving. I haven’t broken through the Cr1M barrier yet as crystals have been difficult to find. I have been taking some very easy contracts where passengers ask for a quick hop to another station. Here’s one of my passengers boarding…

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…These jobs earn Cr30-40K each time and generally don’t carry much risk. I’ve also been shooting down criminals close to stations which resulted in me reaching reputation level 10 with the Argon Federation. That brings some benefits though I’m unsure how to use them yet. We’re back to the game being a very steep learning curve.

I have made enough money to upgrade my ship with a better engine, pulse lazer and thrusters. I’ve also done the first of the ship upkeep tasks and hired a Captain. Here she is sitting in the hot seat…

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…One of the interesting things I’ve come across while learning this game is a consistent complaint that the pilots you can hire are very low skill – often only part of a 1-star – Anyone else costs silly money. That struck me as a bit odd – ok I don’t expect to get a 5-Star pilot but there must be a range of lower levels available and probably a variety of hire costs. I went hunting for my pilot amongst the Marines on a defence platform. My ship is a fighter, so it seemed sensible to look for a Marine with piloting skills. Walking away from where I was docked and exploring the open areas of the station I started finding Marines with 2-Star piloting skills. The first couple of these were going to cost around Cr450K to hire. Then I found this young lady hiding in a quiet corner with a sign-on fee of less than Cr150K. She also has good morale and boarding skills πŸ™‚ I should note that in my previous game before the incident with the mine, I had found another Captain the same way. I’m surprised that I haven’t read about this in any of the game tips – so maybe this is my first new player tip πŸ˜…

Anyway, I’m going to be out there, trying to build a life in this distant galaxy 😎

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