A player's relations to other players or factions can vary. Depending on the relations, the interaction possibilities of a player to a faction become different. If a player has good relations to a faction, they are able to interact with it.
Benefits of good relations
Good relations with a certain faction will result in better prices at that faction's stations.
Bad relations will result in that faction's stations not communicating with the player any longer, or even attacking the player on sight.
The initial relations of factions to each other are randomly chosen. Each faction has a value of initial relations to other factions, some are good, some are bad. As soon as these factions (including players) meet, their relations to each other are then determined by their initial relations. If a player chose a higher difficulty level, the initial relations with a faction will be worse, to the point of even immediate war.
Relations can be improved by trading with other factions. Whenever there is money flowing, the relations will change. Depending on the amount of money traded the relations may improve a lot.
- Buying or selling resources at a resource trader
- Buying ships at shipyards
- Helping factions defend against hostile attacks
- Selling claimed asteroids
Defending against pirate and xsotan attacks may be very profitable in terms of resources, including turrets, and diplomacy as it increases relations anywhere from 2000 to 4000, depending on the attack. After the attackers are defeated, there is a 50% chance of the player receiving an iron weapon or an uncommon upgrade. If the player is to receive a weapon, there is again a 50% chance of a chaingun or a mining laser. Note that this means it is impossible to obtain combat lasers from defense. The rewards are added only after all attackers are defeated, and the player is only given a reward if they actively fought the pirates.
If you help during another factions invasion of a sector, your status with the enemy faction you attacked will immediately be set to the lowest relation possible, while also increasing your relations with the opposite faction to the highest possible. This is the easiest way to quickly gain or lose relations with factions. Do note, that defending a sector from a faction attack DOES NOT give you any bonus rewards, and that faction ships are by far some of the strongest in the game. Do note that you DO NOT have to fully participate in a battle to get the relation increase / decrease. A few shots on a ship will trigger dialogues between both factions and you can immediately leave afterwards.
Relations to a faction can get worse if a player starts fighting them. This includes shooting at their ships, destroying parts of ships or even entire ships.
- Firing shots onto a faction's craft will most likely decrease the relations only a little.
- Destroying blocks will make relations worsen more, depending on the destroyed parts of the ship.
- Destroying ships of a faction will make the relations worsen a lot.
- Mining or damaging wreckages without a salvaging license will also hit the relations between a player and the faction owning the wreckages. First, a little, then the relations will degrade faster if the player continues to salvage.
- Having the ship of a faction take collateral damage in the crossfire. (If an enemy attacks and a ship between the player and the attacker takes damage, relations to the faction of the ship in the middle will decrease.)
- If the player is smuggling suspicious goods, there is a chance a frigate will scan the player and take any present cargo. If the player refuses it will lower the relations towards the faction drastically. Furthermore, if the player stays in the area after refusing to give up their cargo, it is treated as a hostile act and the ship that scanned the player will attack. If there's any other ships by the same faction as the frigate, only it – the frigate – will become hostile if orders are not obeyed.
- Building a station inside a faction's borders or affecting their sphere of influence from outside costs reputation
Limits on improving/worsening relations
Relations can't be improve/worsen beyond a certain point with some kinds of interaction
A few examples:
- Equipment trade won't improve relations beyond 75000
- Using services of a faction (refinery, shipyard) as well as selling minable Asteroids won't improve relations beyond 45000
- Smuggling won't worsen relations below -75000
- Doing missions or helping via events (pirate attacks) will always improve relations
- Destroying ships, raiding etc. will always worsen relations
Players should be careful with their relations to other factions worsening, as they might get to a level where the other faction will never again communicate with the player, thus eliminating the chance of ever improving their relations through normal means again.
It is, however, still possible to improve the relations, by killing any present Xsotan- or enemy pirate ships in another factions sector. This is very impractical, since it takes several minutes for both Xsotan and pirates to emerge from hyperspace.