FTL: Advanced Edition Out In April, Free To FTL Owners

By Nathan Grayson on March 28th, 2014 at 8:00 pm.

Are you ready to have even more of your life sucked away by FTL’s infinite, endlessly twisting black hole of finely calibrated systems? Then you are in luck, person with an improbable amount of time on your hands, because FTL: Advanced Edition is just around the corner. Or rather, the space equivalent of a corner. There are not a lot of corners in space.

Advanced Edition is an expansion to 2012′s death-tacular roguelike masochism-fest, and it includes everything from new sectors and events to a story by Chris Avellone to miiiiiiind control to a race of evil robots who literally eat war.

It’s coming out very, very soon:

“The time has come! We will release both FTL for the iPad and the FTL: Advanced Edition expansion on April 3rd!”

“FTL: Advanced Edition is a free content expansion for FTL. All current (and future) customers will receive this update regardless of where they purchased it. Prior to release, we will post detailed instructions on how to get the update from whatever digital vendor you originally purchased FTL.”

So there you have it. FTL: Advanced Edition will soon claim your life and the lives of all you hold dear, both literally and figuratively speaking if you, like, love your in-game ship’s crew members or something. Are you ready?

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48 Comments »

  1. JohnnyPanzer says:

    Free stuff! Free good stuff! Free good time-sucking portal stuff!

    Huzzah!

  2. Faren22 says:

    I’m sorry to say that I’ve never beaten FTL. The final boss is obnoxiously difficult.

    • Chris D says:

      The thing about FTL is that scrap is basically health, cash and experience all rolled into one. Which means that damage works like compound interest and taking a little extra than you needed to take at the start can snowball into quite a large difference in your power by the end of the game.

      All of which is a roundabout way of saying that if the boss seems impossible it’s quite likely that you haven’t quite upgraded your ship enough by the time you reach it but you probably only need to become a little more efficient at the rest of the game to find that makes all the difference.

      • Premium User Badge

        SuddenSight says:

        This right here is what makes FTL simultaneously fun to replay after beating the boss, and a little frustrating.

        It is fun because every little bit matters, even from the first systems. You absolutely need to dilly-dally and gather up as much scrap/cool parts as you can without taking too much damage in order to power up enough to destroy the big-bad. The “not taking too much damage” part has the benefit of making every battle feel important, even when you thoroughly outclass the enemy.

        On the other hand, it is sad when you manage to limp your husk of a ship with broken doors and sensors and just the captain left flying it, only to be forced to turn around and fight the boss battle. It can be a little immersion breaking.

      • Chiron says:

        The main problem is finding weapons that work, with 2-3 lasers and a fire bomb you can easily take the boss.

        I’ve seldom encountered even 1 laser for sale while chased by the rebels.

        Plus when things go wrong they go wrong stupidly fast, one minute your top of the world with a full crew, massive weapons systems the next you’ve got Mantis boarders taking your engines out, your shields are down and oh wow your breathing vacuum.

        Great stuff but its not easy

    • Synesthesia says:

      It isn’t. You just need to get there with the right tools. I thought it was impossible and abandoned for months, then at a friends house over a few beers we did a full run while we talked about the systems. It CAN be beaten, and it becomes actually easier than the later maps if you know what to expect.

      Here are a few tips:

      -Have a teleporter on your ship by the time you get there. Always focus on his multi missile system. Bring that down as soon as you warp into the fight, then focus on slowly killing it. Tanking everything else is easy if you have the evasion and the shields upped enough.

      -At least a point on the stealth thingie. You will need it for the drone surge.

      -Don’t wipe out the crew. Trust me on this one.

      -have a lvl1 defense drone. It gets -almost- every missile, and doesnt bother with lasers.

      After that, you can use your ships strengths to bring it down. I normally use pulse laser barrages, if i can get my hands on them.

      • Enkinan says:

        I’ve beaten it with multiple ship types many times, but my successes have always involved a teleporter and a defense drone, usually a mark 2 version. I haven’t needed stealth much, though I have beaten with stealth as well.

        I’ve found it easiest with the first engi ship with a bunch of ion weapons to take down the shields and one powerful laser of any kind to keep damage going while the teleport crew takes out the missile and gun rooms.

        • Kaeoschassis says:

          From my own experiences I can promise that while teleporters and defense drones are incredibly useful, neither is strictly necessary to take down the flagship. Bombs are an excellent substitute for teleporting, clever use of stealth and a maxxed out engine can make up for the defense drone. I’ve actually beaten it without those, too, but then you are getting into ‘obnoxiously difficult’ territory.

          What I’m really getting at here is that there’s no one piece of equipment that’s vital to beat the flagship. What are vital, though, are certain abilities – the ability to shut down its missles, the ability to survive its drones, etc. Once you figure out what abilities you need, you can gradually tick off those items from your ‘checklist’ as you make your way through the sectors.

          I’m secretly hoping the advanced edition will throw in something new in the final battle, actually. It’ll be interesting to see if they’ve done so…

          • Phasma Felis says:

            Yes, this. If you’ve got enough lasers and maxed or near-maxed shields and engines, you always have a shot. Stealth, defense drones, teleporters, this or that particular weapon–they’re all handy, but none of them are required.

      • Premium User Badge

        SuddenSight says:

        Ah, killing the crew. I was sooo excited when I had a ship with full evasion, shields, sensors, and teleportation, plus 4 (!) crew members with green or better combat. That ship was a monster. It did not take me long to kill all the crew of the mothership…

        I have used bombs as a replacement for teleporters before (fire bombs are fantastic against the isolated weapons chambers of the boss, ion bombs obviously work well with lots of lasers).

        • KDR_11k says:

          The automation is really annoying and more of a stupid “gotcha” moment since it’s so easy to avoid (just leave the guy on the triple laser alive and you can ransack everything else). I can see why they don’t want a complete decrewing to work but with only the laser guy alive it’s pretty much the same as a de-crew.

    • Jenks says:

      Abuse the transporter throughout the game and you’ll be rolling in scrap by the end. Upgrade the hell out of your ship, bring a cloak, and you’ll roll over the last boss even on normal difficulty. Make sure you transport your away team(s) to the weapon rooms at the top of the ship, they only have 1 guard each and they can’t be reached by the rest of the crew.

      I’ve beaten the game on normal with other setups, but they’re all much harder than this.

    • Moraven says:

      Was able to beat it with 4 Manti as my only source of damage. Fun that you can beat it in many different ways.

      • LionsPhil says:

        How did you land the killing blow? Sacrifical mantis? (I don’t think boarders can ever cause fires…)

        • Premium User Badge

          SuddenSight says:

          It wasn’t my only source of damage, but I have lost my noble boarders in a suicide run to defeat the boss before.

    • Lemming says:

      Same. I love playing the game, but it’s always ‘over’ for me when I get to the boss. The lead up to it is the most fun aspect.

  3. whexican says:

    Fun game but I felt the end boss was VERY load-out specific and you were basically screwed if you didn’t have a particular build or certain key weapons. I found it to be a pretty big issue since the progression is randomized on each play-though.

    • bleeters says:

      One reason why the federation cruiser is so absurdly effective: it comes equipped with a slow charging and uncontrollable but reasonably damaging beam system that bypasses all shields. Meaning you start with the firepower to destroy anything you come up against given enough time.

      ‘Course, you have to actually beat the flagship once in order to unlock it, but it’s not too bad on easy difficulty.

    • LionsPhil says:

      Nah, there are ways to make most loadouts work against the boss. Once you’ve figured its weakpoints, it’s a cakewalk compared to high-end riggers/auto-drones (shudder).

      I suspect this expansion will shake those weakpoints up, though.

    • Kaeoschassis says:

      See my comment above for my opinion on this, but basically I disagree.

    • Phasma Felis says:

      Everyone always says this. It’s really not true. I’ve beaten the boss with all kinds of loadouts. The only really important thing is that you’ve stayed more or less on top of things up to that point, so you’ve been spending your scrap on systems and upgrades and not on keeping your hull together. A ship that is just plain undersupplied can be hopeless, but there definitely is no magic system or set of systems that’s required to win.

      • DodgyG33za says:

        That there is the key ingredient in a nutshell. If you are spending scrap on repairs you are probably doing it wrong. Either avoid being hit (using stealth or going into a battle with fully charged weapons), or use drones to heal.

        FTL is fantastically well balanced. I have a lot of admiration for the developers. Let’s hope the advanced edition doesn’t disappoint in this regard.

        What I love most about the game is that the randomness forces you to take a different approach, and explore different loadouts. Waiting for that perfect piece of kit is a recipe for a failed run.

        • GDwarf says:

          “Fantastically well-balanced” and “One mistake in the first 1/10th dooms you forever” are mutually-exclusive.

          I loved FTL, but after losing to the boss a dozen times I gave up. It’s simply way too large a difficulty spike that punishes you for not being psychic. You have to use tactics that are never taught to you, have to deliberately do the opposite of the game’s instructions (game says: “Get to the end as fast as possible!” actual strategy requires you to go as slow as possible) and is just generally very poorly designed and implemented.

          It’s a shame, too, ’cause the game up to that point is excellent. Decisions matter without a single bad choice dooming you forever, and there’s always a chance you can scrape things together and win. But the final boss is a complete paradigm shift and far, far more frustrating than fun.

  4. Tuckey says:

    Beat the last boss with many different load outs, there’s no one way to kill the boss :-)

    • Premium User Badge

      jrodman says:

      How many ways are there to lose to the end boss?

      • Syra says:

        Going by my own play throughs, hundreds at the least =)

        There’s also dozens of different ways to beat him with load outs ships and crew combinations.

  5. Shadow says:

    The article’s main picture is broken! Anarchy and calamity!

  6. BTAxis says:

    I enjoyed FTL’s basic gameplay, but the roguelike nature of the game turned me off it real quick. Something a bit more open-world with a normal save/load attached would be nice, but alas.

  7. Enkinan says:

    “Are you ready to have even more of your life sucked away by FTL’s infinite, endlessly twisting black hole of finely calibrated systems?”

    Fuck yes I am.

    Since they are being so awesome and throwing what asshole companies would DLC in for free, I’m gonna go buy a shirt or something off of their website.

  8. Mittens89 says:

    I literally just finished FTL last week. It only took me nearly two years of on and off play. Such a great game.

    I have to say though, and I’m clearly not alone on this one, that the end game boss fight was hugely frustrating, annoying, and generally not all that good, actually. The rest of the game was superb, but the boss fight was just a touch beyond the line of enjoyable. The sudden change in game play mechanics was quite alarming when I had my first encounter with the rebel flagship, and then it just became a chore every time it beat me. I save scummed it in the end, because the frustration was too much, and my gaming OCD overwhelmed my sense of what’s right and wrong. Must… finish… at all costs….

  9. Enkinan says:

    Are you guys playing on easy or normal?

    I’ve beaten it on easy with darn near every ship and multiple different layouts. When I do die, it’s always at the drone portion.

    • Synesthesia says:

      A lvl1 invisibility has you safe from almost the entirety of the drone surge, and should cooldown in time for the next one! Also, evasion is your friend.

      • LionsPhil says:

        Since the invisibility cooldown is a constant and starts when the effect wears off, one level of it is actually all you want, or it won’t be ready again in time. (There is benefit to overupgrading the system even if you only allocate it one dot of power, since then it will tolerate some damage without failing you or transferring any extra to the hull, but it’s not a priority.)

  10. Premium User Badge

    SuddenSight says:

    I hope they have a content unlock button.

    I love all the different starting ships they give you, but the steps required to get some of them are a little on the esoteric side and many of the requirements are frustratingly difficult to reach and very luck dependent. I was able to unlock 4 or 5 ships just by flying around, and 1 more by following a guide, but the rest were too difficult even after I knew all the steps that had to be done. In the end I copied a settings file from the internets, but I would much rather have an “unlock all the ships” button – especially because copying someone else’s settings file overwrites your achievements.

    • Shadow says:

      I wouldn’t request what amounts to a cheat, but a bunch of the ship designs/variants are quite a pain in the arse to get indeed, generally requiring specific outcomes from a series of random events which might not even happen in some cases.

      • LionsPhil says:

        Why not? It’s only a singleplayer game.

        I eventually savescummed a bit to home in on a scenario in which the crystal cruiser was actually possible. This underhanded advantage has no reason to affect anyone else, unless you are desperately, intensely serious about fractional percentage points of how many people have managed which cheevos.

        In which case, honestly, get a creative hobby of some form and get some sense of accomplishment from something more meaningful.

        • bleeters says:

          Considering how insanely lucky you need to be to unlock the crystal cruiser legitimately and how fun it is to actually play with, I can’t say I blame you.

    • drinniol says:

      I believe they have them at least unlock over time. Details; http://www.ftlgame.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=20034

  11. Crimsoneer says:

    Were there ever good mods for this? It feels likes something the community could massively improve.

    • almostDead says:

      Yes there are mods. The first one made was probably the ‘turn off being chased’ mod.

      I tried one once. It was a pretty large content addition mod. So there are pretty extensive ones too.

    • Premium User Badge

      Hypocee says:

      Not in my opinion, sad to say. The major ones I tried were the Weapons Diversity Mod and the…Captain’s Pack…?, which includes WDM. I had thought WDM was a a matter of visual improvements – a randomised selection of spacelazer bolts rather than the same one every time – but it actually adds and replaces a bunch with generally nonsensical weapons like 1-ion missiles. Also turns all plasma weapons into masses of lurid green.

      The HD background packs don’t count as a mod to me, but though I like the original art fine the HD pictures are nice in their own way.

  12. Lemming says:

    “Free To FTL Owners”

    Dawww, you’re making me blush guys! ^_^

  13. Premium User Badge

    Hypocee says:

    It’s not in RPS’ remit, so fine that it’s not repeated here, but I will repeat that FTL:AE is coming out alongside an iPad 2-and-above edition,as everyone who’s ever seen the game has immediately suggested.

  14. FireStorm1010 says:

    It is pretty incredibly super aweosme of them to give serious free stuff for free, that for sure that could ahve sold as DLC for lots of hard cold currency.

    Awesome stuff, thanks.

  15. Premium User Badge

    Biscuitry says:

    Releasing on Monday? Really? They’re mocking me.

    EDIT: Well, that was a spectacular failure to read a calendar on my part. The 3rd is, of course, a Thursday.

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    Lambchops says:

    Looking forward to this, poured hours into it at the start but it’s been long enough since I’ve played it that it’ll feel new all over again.