Captain's Edition adds various new hazards, some of which can occur only in open space, some if which are a new take on nebula beacons. New nebula Hazards will disable sensors as usual, alongside their new effects.
Point Defence System Edit
"You're being targeted by point defense systems. Your ship might take heavy damage if you don't jump away in time."
Planetary Artillery PDS and the Rebel Fleet PDS are devastating long range weapon that can severely damage your ship. They fire multiple shots in one barrage, pierce all shields, deal heavy damage and can also cause fires and breaches, but they also charge extremely slow. A lone cruiser should avoid getting hit by these weapons at all cost. Facing a PDS will create a deadline for a fight, where failing to escape or not beating the opponent in time will result in heavy damage. If you can not evade PDS shots by escaping, then it is at least advisable to evacuate any crew from targeted rooms before the shot hits, as PDS shots might instantly kill injured or weak crewmen. The player needs at least three bars in engines to reliably escape from PDS events.
At the beginning of PDS events, you ship will be marked by spotter or defender classes for the artillery strike. Depending on your evasion, you might prevent the spotter from getting a full lock on your ship. Cloaking immediately after the fight begins will prevent the ship from marking you till your cloak wears of. UI prompts on your ship will show where the strike will hit and how much times remains till they hit. How many PDS shots are fired is somewhat random, but fewer shots will usually mean that they will arrive faster, while larger PDS salvos with greater damage potential will charge slower.
There are actually two kinds of PDS: PDS Artillery and Planetary Beams. Artillery will fire shells that deal three damage and stun crew for a long time. Artillery UI prompts show the distance of the incoming shell, counting down. Planetary beams deal four damage and always breach, but generally fire fewer shots. Their UI prompts show the charge percentage of the beam, counting up.
PDS events can happen in Civilian Coreworlds, Zoltan Controlled Sectors, AI Controlled Sectors (Nano Clouds), Rock Controlled Sectors, Rebel Controlled Sectors, Federation Controlled Sectors and in The Last Stand. They also have a chance to occur whenever the fleet catches up with you.
Note that Anti-Ship Batteries and Planetary Defence Systems are different hazards. The ASB is a genuine, hardcoded hazard already existing in-game; the PDS, however, is simulated through invisible dummy weapons attached to the spotter ship.
"You're inside a minefield. Shield piercing mines will periodically home in on your ship during fights here."
The Rock hail. "This area is off-limits, even for our kind. You foreign spies will be executed on the spot!" A Rock minelayer is approaching."
Minefields will almost always pitch you against a faction minelayer class, with additional mines homing in on you during the fight. Defense drones can easily negate this hazard. Minefields can be encountered in Rock, Pirates and Mantis sectors.
Black Holes Edit
"You're too close to a black hole. Some additional fuel was spent to escape its gravity and the fleet will catch up with you faster."
Black holes catch ships within their strong gravitational pull, which requires the player to spend two more fuel to jump on. The time difference caused by the black hole's strong gravity also causes the fleet to catch up with you. Black holes can be found in Rock and Hazard sectors.
- If you have the Advanced Navigation AI or FTL Recharge Booster augment then you can avoid the negative effects the Black Hole.
Ion Fields Edit
"You're close to an ion barrier. All ships present lose one shield bubble."
This spectacular Hazard permanently drains one shield bubble of any ship present at the beacon, similar to the effect of the Ion Field Projector augment. It can only occur in Zoltan space.
Zoltan's use Ion Fields/Barriers as border markers for their provinces.
- The Reverse Ion Field augment will negate the effects of the Ion Field.
- In game, it is said that Ion Fields mark the boundaries of Zoltan Provinces.
Magnetic Anomaly Edit
"You're close to a space anomaly. All ships present have their weapon and drone systems jammed. Sensors do not function."
This hazard jams one bar to weapon power and three bars to drone power on both player and enemy ships, similar to the effect of the Weapon Targeting Jammer augment and the Drone Uplink Jammer augment. It rarely occurs in Zoltan and Hazard sectors.
- The Advanced Targeting Computer augment will resist the effect of the wormhole on your Weapon Control system.
- The Improved Internal AI will resist the effect of the wormhole on your Drone System
Confined Space Edit
"You're in a confined space. With no space to maneuver, ships present will only be able to use a fraction of their engine power."
In this rare Hazard, ship movement will be severely hindered by jumping to an area with very little space to maneuver. Player and enemy engines will be limited to one bar.
- The Advanced Navigation AI augment will allow you to restore full functionality of your engines.
- A variation of this hazard has all lights off.
Dust Clouds (Nebula Beacon) Edit
"You're inside a smog cloud. Sensors will not function and engines will be jammed, but the fleet will advance more slowly."
This hazard can come in three different levels of pollution, each of which limits your ships engines further (from 1, 3 and up to 5 bars ). Ships with weak engines might remain unaffected by the hazard. Dust Clouds can occur in Industrial, Auto and Rock sectors.
- A Slug crewman or the Subspace Scanner augment will come in handy should you encounter this hazard.
Acid Clouds (Nebula Beacon) Edit
"You're inside an acid cloud. Sensors will not function and your ship takes damage, but the fleet will advance more slowly."
Acid clouds will deal one point of damage to your ship hull upon jumping into them. Further damage might occur when fighting in acid clouds, including breaches caused by the acid. Attempting to salvage defeated enemy ships or abandoned equipment will also result in further damage.
Acid clouds can wear down the player ships hull if travelling through them continuously, but overall they offer better rewards than regular fights. The player trades damage for resources by jumping here, with some degree of control of how much damage will be taken. Repairing the ship before jumping into industrial clouds is advisable.
Acid Clouds can occur in Industrial, Auto and Rock sectors.
- A Slug crewman or the Subspace Scanner augment will come in handy should you encounter this hazard
- The Rock Plating augment will protect your ship from taking damage while inside acid clouds.
Ice Fields (Nebula Beacon) Edit
"You're inside an ice field. The lack of background radiation that comes with that makes most cloaking systems useless."
Ice Fields lie far away from active stars. The absence of background radiation makes cloaking useless here, disabling the system. This affects the enemy ship as well.
Ice Fields can only be found in Engi sectors.
- The Adv. Cloaking Field augment will allow you to cloak while inside an Ice Field.
Nano Bot Clouds (Nebula Beacon) Edit
"You're inside a nano-bot cloud. The fleet can't track you here, but all systems are jammed and your ship takes some damage."
Nano Bot clouds will deal one point of damage to your ship upon jumping into them. The bots will also intrude into your ship and start to interfere with your systems, disabling one bar of any systems your ship is equipped with. This hazard can poses a serious threat, even to a well-upgraded player ship. It can only occur in AI sectors; therefore, nebula in these sectors should best avoided completely.
Probably the most dangerous part about Nano Bot clouds is that if you have a LV. 1 Oxygen system then it will completely disable it until you leave. If you must travel into a Nano Bot cloud you should try to upgrade your Oxygen system before hand.
There is a rare event where you can encounter a PDS and a Nano Bot Cloud together.