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- Ion frigates.
- Salvage everything you can. You can retire some salvaged ships for RUs, and others are very useful for bolstering the strength of your fleet.
- Ships are generally strongest in the front, and weakest around the engines. Whenever you can, try to encircle the enemy and even hit them in the rear when possible. Make sure to watch your ships' sixes as well.
- Scouts are tiny and weak, but if you put them on Evasive tactics in X formation, very little will be able to hit them and they will make fantastic diversions.
- Never put your capital ships in formation. They'll move far too slowly. You should always put your strike craft (fighters, corvettes) in X formation when moving, Claw when attacking a single target, and Sphere in a major battle. These formations maximize damage and make them harder to hit than Delta/Broad/Wall.
- Enemy capital ships will often attempt to ram yours when their situation gets desperate. Keep your capitals constantly moving!
- Steal everything you can.
- No really, EVERYTHING. Even if it is shit or you want the unit cap back, you can just retire the ship.
- Stealing also lets you break the puny limits of unit cap. Hello, wall of 100 ion frigates!
- Stealing the pirates' stuff is probably your best bet for a lot of the beginning.
- Steal fuel pods.
- Enough heavy corvettes being healed by repair/support stuff are amazing against anything.
- If you play multiplayer, build Scouts and ignore all other fighters. Target the enemy. Hit F2, then K, then mash the Z button 4000 times. Your Scouts are now untouchable.
- If you're playing multiplayer still, that cheat code that the chat room said gave you invulnerability is why your Mothership just exploded. Don't feel bad, just tell everyone else you play that amazing and blessed code. Everyone falls for ACCESS or ESSENTIAL at least once (it was ACCESS for me).
- DEAR GOD GET EVERY DAMN MULTIBEAM FRIGATE IN THE GAME. THEY ARE FUCKING AWESOME. I think there's 17 of them and they're so much better than any regular ion frigate.
- Be aware that you can hang around after missions, or delay starting parts of missions. Use this to gather everything you can. Mission 5 is of note(Where you take vengeance)-If you can kill the enemy harvesters, there's something like 10,000-15,000 Resources out there. Not counting stealing, which is also advised-the enemy has a Carrier, and Carriers are stealable with 5 or more Salvagers. You won't get to build one till about 5 missions later.
- Scouts are far, FAR better than Interceptors. The Speed Boost special ability increases their ability far more than you'd expect, especially when you keep the next one in mind.
- Fighters make repeated 'runs' to attack and destroy a larger target. Switching to Evasive when a run completes gets them to come about and attack again faster. That's when you switch to Offensive and get them focusing full fire again. For best results, hit Speed Boost in the Evasive phase, to have them set up even faster. Watch the fuel though...