Well, that was depressing...

Like everyone else on Twitter, I have been playing a fair amount of FTL lately.

I'm really enjoying the game, the variety of each adventure and discussing the different strategies and builds online. Despite the somewhat randomness of your path, there seems to be enough room to wriggle your way out of even the most desperate situations, creating a satisfying balance between luck and skill.

I haven't been feeling too great lately (It's either the flu or AIDS. It's probably not the AIDS.) so I'm actually kinda pleased that it's been pissing rain for the past 12 hours. Otherwise I would have felt like even more of a useless sack of shit for sitting inside and playing videogames all day. In between deleting spambots and playing Dota (718 hours logged and counting) I decided to boot up FTL for a quick meander through the galaxy.

I tend to pick the starting ship, as I value being able to target manually - an option that is unavailable to the drone-based ship. I named her the SS PAX, with crewmembers Sweep, Matt and Waffle, because reasons. And so off we went.

The first jump was to a distress beacon.

A scientific vessel was having some kind of trouble so I sent my crew over to investigate. Turns out it was some kind of space zombie outbreak that not only immediately infected one of my crew, but as I tried to bring him back onto my ship he turned violent and attacked me, along with several other zombies from the science ship. It was Sweep. I had died after a single jump. Not only had I died, by my animated corpse was now trying to eat Matt and Waffle.

Go figure.

Having killed myself without much trouble and fixed up the minor damage to my ship, I set Matt at the controls, Waffle in the engine room, and we shot off into space. There were a couple of standard pirate/rebel encounters which I won easily, until I reached the exit of Sector 1. The rebels were still far behind and I needed a third crewmember so I decided to search around for a shop, having stacked up some decent scrap. I had previously met a merchant who requested an escort to a further star and, seeing as it was within reach, and that I was due some luck, I shot past the exit to complete the quest.

It was a trap. Waffle died.

So then there was just Matt, with a whole ship all to himself. That was pretty depressing. The one consolation was that I still had a decent stockpile of fuel and missiles, so I could still fight my way out of any trouble that I found. I would just need to be careful. Into Sector 2 I popped.

Into nothing. Two jumps. Three. The fourth through a nebula. Still nothing but eerie silence at every stop. I encountered several ships who requested my assistance but those which I answered would always cause more problems than they solved. My hull strength dropped to 5 or 6 bars, my fuel rapidly depleted. I became jaded, ignoring distress calls, using the last of my scrap to buy miniscule amounts of fuel when I eventually hit a store. On several occasions I would arrive at a store with only 1 fuel remaining, and only enough scrap to buy 2 or 3 to keep me afloat. On top of this, the rebel fleet continued to push me forward further into harsher and more dangerous territories, and without the scrap and equipment that I had failed to find in the first two sectors, I was completely fucked. I knew I was fucked. Even the game seemed to know I was fucked, the music compounding the sense of hopelessness. But what can you do except keep going? So I kept going, limping desperately through space.

Despite the aforementioned fucked situation I remained optimistic.

Something good would happen, the game would throw a couple of friendly encounters my way, or some aliens would take pity and join my crew. I used the last of my fuel to jump to a random star. Not a distress beacon, no store, just a single unassuming dot in the nothingness of space.

It was an asteroid field. A rebel fighter launched itself at me and, setting my weapons to autofire, I dashed around the ship desperately trying to stay on top of the damage caused by the passing rocks. It took a while, but I won. The rebel ship was destroyed. It was only once I had repaired my scanners that I realised that my ship was on fire. I quickly opened the airlocks but it was too late - my life support had been destroyed and the room was ablaze. It was hopeless. I had to put out the fire before I could repair the system, but there wasn't enough oxygen left to let me do so.

Matt died.

It hit me harder than it should have done. There was no malice to it, just complete indifference to the actions I had set into motion, and that was somehow worse. I quit the game and felt slightly hollow. I have played FTL plenty of times and I had never been so entirely screwed over on any of my other attempts. It was sobering to think that, despite my best intentions and supposed skill, I had failed so miserably. I was also vaguely nervous that this streak of bad luck would somehow follow me out of the game and corrupt everything I touched for the rest of the day.

So I did what any sane adult would do: I drank 2 bottles of cider and watched cartoons. You know, Sunday shit. My FTL adventure left a lasting impression though, and it might be a while before I feel like returning for another attempt.

If you haven't played it yet.... well. You should probably go and do that. That game is pretty great.

Thanks For Reading

Love Sweep

39 Comments
40 Comments
Edited by Sweep

Like everyone else on Twitter, I have been playing a fair amount of FTL lately.

I'm really enjoying the game, the variety of each adventure and discussing the different strategies and builds online. Despite the somewhat randomness of your path, there seems to be enough room to wriggle your way out of even the most desperate situations, creating a satisfying balance between luck and skill.

I haven't been feeling too great lately (It's either the flu or AIDS. It's probably not the AIDS.) so I'm actually kinda pleased that it's been pissing rain for the past 12 hours. Otherwise I would have felt like even more of a useless sack of shit for sitting inside and playing videogames all day. In between deleting spambots and playing Dota (718 hours logged and counting) I decided to boot up FTL for a quick meander through the galaxy.

I tend to pick the starting ship, as I value being able to target manually - an option that is unavailable to the drone-based ship. I named her the SS PAX, with crewmembers Sweep, Matt and Waffle, because reasons. And so off we went.

The first jump was to a distress beacon.

A scientific vessel was having some kind of trouble so I sent my crew over to investigate. Turns out it was some kind of space zombie outbreak that not only immediately infected one of my crew, but as I tried to bring him back onto my ship he turned violent and attacked me, along with several other zombies from the science ship. It was Sweep. I had died after a single jump. Not only had I died, by my animated corpse was now trying to eat Matt and Waffle.

Go figure.

Having killed myself without much trouble and fixed up the minor damage to my ship, I set Matt at the controls, Waffle in the engine room, and we shot off into space. There were a couple of standard pirate/rebel encounters which I won easily, until I reached the exit of Sector 1. The rebels were still far behind and I needed a third crewmember so I decided to search around for a shop, having stacked up some decent scrap. I had previously met a merchant who requested an escort to a further star and, seeing as it was within reach, and that I was due some luck, I shot past the exit to complete the quest.

It was a trap. Waffle died.

So then there was just Matt, with a whole ship all to himself. That was pretty depressing. The one consolation was that I still had a decent stockpile of fuel and missiles, so I could still fight my way out of any trouble that I found. I would just need to be careful. Into Sector 2 I popped.

Into nothing. Two jumps. Three. The fourth through a nebula. Still nothing but eerie silence at every stop. I encountered several ships who requested my assistance but those which I answered would always cause more problems than they solved. My hull strength dropped to 5 or 6 bars, my fuel rapidly depleted. I became jaded, ignoring distress calls, using the last of my scrap to buy miniscule amounts of fuel when I eventually hit a store. On several occasions I would arrive at a store with only 1 fuel remaining, and only enough scrap to buy 2 or 3 to keep me afloat. On top of this, the rebel fleet continued to push me forward further into harsher and more dangerous territories, and without the scrap and equipment that I had failed to find in the first two sectors, I was completely fucked. I knew I was fucked. Even the game seemed to know I was fucked, the music compounding the sense of hopelessness. But what can you do except keep going? So I kept going, limping desperately through space.

Despite the aforementioned fucked situation I remained optimistic.

Something good would happen, the game would throw a couple of friendly encounters my way, or some aliens would take pity and join my crew. I used the last of my fuel to jump to a random star. Not a distress beacon, no store, just a single unassuming dot in the nothingness of space.

It was an asteroid field. A rebel fighter launched itself at me and, setting my weapons to autofire, I dashed around the ship desperately trying to stay on top of the damage caused by the passing rocks. It took a while, but I won. The rebel ship was destroyed. It was only once I had repaired my scanners that I realised that my ship was on fire. I quickly opened the airlocks but it was too late - my life support had been destroyed and the room was ablaze. It was hopeless. I had to put out the fire before I could repair the system, but there wasn't enough oxygen left to let me do so.

Matt died.

It hit me harder than it should have done. There was no malice to it, just complete indifference to the actions I had set into motion, and that was somehow worse. I quit the game and felt slightly hollow. I have played FTL plenty of times and I had never been so entirely screwed over on any of my other attempts. It was sobering to think that, despite my best intentions and supposed skill, I had failed so miserably. I was also vaguely nervous that this streak of bad luck would somehow follow me out of the game and corrupt everything I touched for the rest of the day.

So I did what any sane adult would do: I drank 2 bottles of cider and watched cartoons. You know, Sunday shit. My FTL adventure left a lasting impression though, and it might be a while before I feel like returning for another attempt.

If you haven't played it yet.... well. You should probably go and do that. That game is pretty great.

Thanks For Reading

Love Sweep

Moderator
Posted by BUD

I just beat this game yesterday. On easy. After playing for 3 days. Pro tip: hate yourself.

Edited by Sweep

@BUD: Here's a protip for you: If you get banned, maybe avoid antagonising moderators with your alt account if you want to stay undetected.

Idiot.

Moderator
Posted by ZombiePie

Whatever happened to the Giant Bomb moderator themed ship you were running?

Moderator
Posted by Irvandus

@ZombiePie: Hopefully it doesn't go down in flames. How much power do you divert to the moderation section anyway?

Posted by Sweep

@ZombiePie: MB died, then Hamz and Sweep actually did surprisingly well. I always knew he was holding us back...

Moderator
Posted by Video_Game_King

@Sweep said:

I haven't been feeling too great lately (It's either the flu or AIDS. It's probably not the AIDS.)

Are you sure it's not both at once?

@Sweep said:

I'm actually kinda pleased that it's been pissing rain for the past 12 hours.

Shit, dude. You got the FLAIDS.

Posted by LikeaSsur

Great, this sounds like the perfect game to play after doing anything that might raise my self-esteem. A reality checker, if you will.

Posted by pyromagnestir

@LikeaSsur said:

Great, this sounds like the perfect game to play after doing anything that might raise my self-esteem. A reality checker, if you will.

You've just convinced me to buy this game.

Posted by EverythingsPerfect

@Sweep said:

@BUD: Here's a protip for you: If you get banned, maybe avoid antagonising moderators with your alt account if you want to stay undetected.

Idiot.

Antagonizing? Dude... I was talking about myself. As in: this game is hard; I hate myself. Then you call me an idiot? You guys are seriously just bullies. Horrible bullies.

Posted by swamplord666

Thanks for that sweep! Great to hear more stories about FTL. Sounds like an awesomely brutal game.

Posted by Sweep

@EverythingsPerfect: Oh. Well... easy mistake to make, I guess.

You are still banned, though :|

Moderator
Posted by MariachiMacabre

This game sounds like the most depressing shit ever. Imagining one guy scrambling from room to room putting out fires while the fires burn away his depleting oxygen is such a bleak image it makes me want to avoid it so I never feel that sense of utter emptiness. Now hopefully the guy puts it on iOS.

Posted by Snail

Fine internet, I'll buy that game.

Posted by Phatmac

Seems like a game that I can appreciate from a distance. Glad folks are liking it.

Edited by buft

i had a chance to get hands on with the game recently, played it on easy and everything went fairly smoothly up to area 5 when i got to close to a star while fighting the rock people, needless to say my crew of 5 died of asphyxiation before the fire could get them

Posted by SexyToad

I'm getting this game tomorrow after hearing you and everyone else talking about it.

Posted by Video_Game_King

@SexyToad said:

I'm getting this game tomorrow after hearing you and everyone else talking about it.

Where in this blog was there talk about FTL :P?

Posted by Red12b

was that the game you were playing when I messaged you last night?

Posted by SexyToad

@Video_Game_King said:

@SexyToad said:

I'm getting this game tomorrow after hearing you and everyone else talking about it.

Where in this blog was there talk about FTL :P?

Wat?

Posted by ShadowConqueror

Poor Sweep loses his crew and gets called bad names.

I guess the lesson here is never lose crew members. Or something.

Edited by Jams

FTL is pretty darned good, but i couldn't help but get kinda bored with the game. It was also a bit frustrating to lose all the time just because you've been given a shitty hand to play. I guess FTL is more like poker or Texas hold'em than a rogue like.

Posted by TheSouthernDandy

Your post shows how unrealistic FTL is. We all know with the amount of space booze space Sweep would have in his system, there's no way a space virus would be able to live. He'd be immune to becoming a space zombie.

FTL is such a great game, inaccuracies be damned.

Posted by SexyToad

@Video_Game_King: Can't we all get along?

Posted by Giantstalker

This game was definitely over-hyped for me.

I love space games, and am all about the Starfleet Command or Artemis school of technical ship management, but this game is kinda really shallow compared to gems like those. It's a great base but after trying to beat it twenty times, I'm starting to see just how random the whole thing is, and don't feel like trying anymore.

Considering it was only eight bucks though there's not much room to complain. I guess I should have checked my expectations at the door.

Edited by twigger89

I beat the game on easy for the second time tonight, and honestly I think a boarding focused ship is the way to go. Try to unlock the mantis warship and get the augmentation that gives you 10 percent more scrap. The beginning can be more difficult, but a good boarding ship is much more profitable than blowing up enemy ships, and boarding is incredibly useful against the final boss. Good luck man, this game really knows how to bring about a love/hate relationship.

Posted by Red12b

My Favourite ship was The Royal Crown, although my best ship was just named "Corpse"

With 3 Key human crew "The Boss" at the Helm, "Smoke" the weapons master and "Snake" in the engine room. We started strong, getting an Ion cannon early and a scrap arm in the first section, as we made our way through the second sector, things continued going great getting another ion canon and a Automated re-loader we were able to take over ships without damaging the hull earning more scrap,

I don't know what it was, maybe over confidence... in the 7th sector I lost Smoke and Snake, a mantis Crew member named ken and a Rockman when we were boarded in an ion storm.. with only 4 crew The boss staying on course, an Engi on sheilds, An amateur mantis on weapons and another engi in the engine room we headed with our heads held high into the final sector...

we were decimated on the second form, We just could not penetrate those shields to turn of all those fucking drones. . .

My last run with the ship "Corpse" we handily defeated the second form, only to watch that motherfucker reach the base as we were right behind him.

in otherwords.

Fuck
This
Game

Edited by Akyho

26hours played of FTL and all on easy as several reasons.

One, its a hard game.

Two, I have been having fun trying my luck in getting the other ships,

Three, I have been mining each sector pretty hard.

Four, I use manual attack only, meaning pause alot.

Five, I simply do not want this game to be over and beaten on normal in 3 hours!

I beat it once on easy, and that was only recently. I dont just want to be so awesome I fly through in one fuel tank and beat the boss. I want to have FUN.

A concept some people here bitching about "You took 6 hours and died? Pff I did it in 3 on NORMAL! YOU SUCK!" big deal. Completing games and having fun can be vastly different things. I kinda want to suck more with this game..

FAILING IS HALF THE FUN!

So says FTL, Dwarf Fortress, and Kerbal Space Program.

Two of which I have spend hundreds of hour playing and would like the third to match that.

Posted by Red12b

@Jams said:

@Red12b said:

was that the game you were playing when I messaged you last night?

grab the pickle?

where is that Claude.jpg

There we go

Posted by BisonHero

@MariachiMacabre said:

This game sounds like the most depressing shit ever. Imagining one guy scrambling from room to room putting out fires while the fires burn away his depleting oxygen is such a bleak image it makes me want to avoid it so I never feel that sense of utter emptiness. Now hopefully the guy puts it on iOS.

You actually just described my favourite episode of Firefly. So yes, this game is fan-fucking-tastic.

Posted by Hailinel

I need to get this game so that I too can feel the crushing despair of my crewmen dying agonizing deaths in the cold, cruel vacuum of space.

Edited by Turambar

Its probably the complete and utter randomness of events that you have zero control over that breaks the game for me.  This fits all the proper bills of a rogue like: permadeath, potentially fatal random combat encounters in really disadvantageous positions, bitchin' hard at times.  But the ability to cause you to lose random crew at the press of a button?  Fuck that shit!

Posted by Red12b

FTL CAN SUCK MY DICK

Posted by TheHT

I dunno. This game sounds like it could be kinda funny. Like that "oh god, everything's fucked" kind of funny. Or maybe that's just the right attitude to have while playing it.

Edited by Fattony12000

Make that jump to light speed,

I had a great two hour learning experience a couple of days ago, some random person on my stream was helping out/advising me on what to do. Kinda like a choose your own adventure...KINDA LIKE THE NEW FEATURES COMING TO GIANT BOMB DOT COM!? WAS IT SNIDER!?

It got me the furthest I've ever been into that deep dark beyond known as the final frontier, but I still couldn't manage to get to the end, and I was still playing on easy mode. GAH! FTL!

Posted by Breadfan

@Red12b said:

FTL CAN SUCK MY DICK

Posted by Hunter5024

Well these comments sure took a strangely antagonistic turn. Can we all just agree that I suck, and stop picking on sweep and users who are mean to sweep?

Anyways this post makes me want FTL, I love watching things go horribly wrong, even though I'm still bitter because I had the idea for space Oregon Trail forever ago. I knew I should have mailed that shit to myself.

Posted by Akyho

@Hunter5024 said:

Well these comments sure took a strangely antagonistic turn. Can we all just agree that I suck, and stop picking on sweep and users who are mean to sweep?

Anyways this post makes me want FTL, I love watching things go horribly wrong, even though I'm still bitter because I had the idea for space Oregon Trail forever ago. I knew I should have mailed that shit to myself.

You may have had the idea, however would we be playing the game right now? I think I am fine with your self annoyance.

Posted by HeavyDuty32

Well, I've now gotten to the last sector twice, but the one time I actually went to face the flagship in battle, I had no idea how you were supposed to win that fight. Dude has like 6 guns, teleporting a bunch of bruisers onto your ship, I think he even cloaks? Kinda horse shit. Whatever, I'll just keep trying to get those other ships.

Posted by championfetus

I had fun going after some of the achievements. Then my graphics driver crashed in sector 5 after I got pacifism. That's some shit.