Missions that require a fight element will have more and/or heavier ships to defeat as you progress in Fight rank. Missions with a time limit will have that limit 'changed' according to how fast <playership> is when you accept the mission. A jumpdrive is always an advantage when playing any mission, whether it be fitted to <playership> or another of your assets, so make getting one or more a priority.
During this guide I’ll be giving occasional keyboard shortcuts; these are invariably based on a UK ‘Enhanced AT’ desktop keyboard layout of 103/105 keys as that’s all I have access to (& can be bothered with); if your keyboard is different, or you’ve changed the default key bindings in the game don’t blame me!
I’ll try to be specific & consistent when using the oft-interchangeable terms ‘cap’ (capture), ‘bailed’ & ‘board’.
- If a pilot has ‘Bailed’ means a pilot has ejected from their ship ( they have ejected, usually due to sale (they sold you their ship) or combat - see morale sparky/X2 insert link here if I forget!) & is waiting to be claimed; the (see Morale [needs further explanation] & General Mechanics), & their vacant ship is dead in space, waiting to be capped if necessary. The ex-pilot may still be nearby in a spacesuit if you care to pick them up . The for further use (CLSS & suitable cargo space required!), otherwise they'll their way (slowly) to the nearest friendly (to them) station
- The resulting empty ship may hang around in the sector forever provided it’s not rammed to death by another ship/object
- or caught up in a missile or similar AoE (area of effect) blast
- until capped: no hostiles will /actively/ bother it while it's unclaimed (though in-flight missiles locked on target prior to the bail event may damage/destroy it)
- ‘Cap’ (capture) means an M3/4/5/8/TS/TP pilot has bailed, & you can claim it as your property (usually requiring a brief EVA process). This also applies to any other /pilotless/ ship, including up to M7x class later on
- ‘Board’ always means a marine boarding party is required (ie eg TM, M6 or up) to capture <target> while <target> is still piloted: if there's no pilot the ship can be easily capped (captured) as above; however see later for why you may not wish to always choose this method