Ok so, for a great many of you this is going to be a new game to you. It's previous update was mid 2011 which in app store years is eons so... I'm jealous to be honest. Such an enjoyable game for me I wish I could play it over again for the first time. Thankfully the game is enjoyable enough that I don't mind re-running through it on increasingly higher difficulties.
That said, I've had a friend or two not sure what to do and the like so here is a starter guide with tips, tricks, advice and whatnot.
. Easy difficulty is the new players friend. You can always do later play through on higher settings, this one will let you get around and learn the way things work.
. When approaching an asteroid sector for the first time prioritize your reason for being there.
.. First priority is always to kill anything red. These guys are stealing your ore! Quicker you get rid of them, the more there will be for you.
.. Orange lootables are also priority with one exception, if this is a specific quest target. If its for a quest, loot it after you've filled your cargo hold with ore.
.. Then asteroids. Do not 100% fill up your cargo hold, you run the risk of killing one or more asteroids and being unable to loot the ore due to your full cargo. Open ore left behind is lost ore.
. If your a completionist or looking to keep the game as easy as possible for as long as possible, do not move on to a new sector until the current one has the completion icon over it on the map. Also, do all the sectors. I prefer to approach cleaning sectors in a clockwise fashion, circling the mining facility in every larger circles as I clear sectors. This generates a whole lot of ore and be extension cash.
. When I reach the final outer most ring of sectors around the facility I start skipping ones with the arrow/page icon on them. I clear out all the generic ones for profit / random side quests. Then I knock out the story ones.
. Every so often when you upgrade your license you will receive new ship hulls. If you receive one option, the choice of which to take is simple but if you see two then you have to weigh your playstyle. The bottom of the two will be more heavily armored, more cargo space and slower. The top choice of the two will be faster, more guns, less armor, less cargo. I always go with more cargo. I am a miner after all. The armor keeps me in tact and a nice engine upgrade solves the speed problem anyways.
. Reactor is the priority upgrade. More juice in the ship means more upgrades you can actually power up on the ship.
. Second priority is the collector. Better models tractor faster (you don't have to slow down) and reach further.
. Beyond that, weapons kill asteroids quicker, scanners are very useful for seeing things on your mini map well before they see you, engines get you around quicker.
. Shields are another play style choice. In general the larger the shield, the slower it recharges. You'll find three choices. One extreme recharge low hp, one exactly the opposite and a somewhat balanced option. I tend to lean towards balance myself.
. Weapons are your largest playstyle choice. You have lasers, missiles, sonic, all sorts of choices here. And with two exceptions the choice is largely up to you. Try them all out early on when they are more affordable, decide which weapon style you prefer and use it.
.. Exception 1, special weapon slot. You can put any weapon you want in this slot but its usually worth while to put a special weapon there instead. some special weapons are weapons, some are thrust turbo boosters, or large speed drills, etc.
.. Exception 2, alien tech. You'll be introduced to this eventually and one of the alien technologies you can put on your ship gives you a really nice attack rate boost, but only if you have certain weapon types equipped.
. Tourist rescue. Rescue them all as quick as possible, pick up ore and kill bots only as necessary. If possible when your down to the last one, stop shy of the tourist and instead go do some mining. When the clock runs short, pick him up. Maximize that profit!
. The alien tech tracker. The shop keep will eventually task you with tracking down several satellites that have whats needed to basically reveal on the sector map every sector with alien tech in it. Each of these satellites is a mini gauntlet. Waves of enemies will attack you, fend them all off and then loot the tech. When you enter one of these sectors fill your cargo half up with ore but don't cap off. Often the bots you fight will drop scrap which is pretty valuable and you don't want to have to leave scraps behind due to a full cargo container.
. Rescue that super hero guy. Don't recall that dumb butts name but basically his ship breaks down, you defend it from waves of enemies.
Things of note
. I've read somewhere that this platinum update brings with it a additional entire follow up story that happens after the main and takes place on a whole new grid of 16 additional sectors to play around in.
. Alien tech follows you permanently every time you start a new save, very useful :) Follow up runs become that much more fun. I'm going to play every difficulty in order so that eventually I'll have every alien tech and will maximize my chances of survival in the final permanent death difficulty.
. Always use the trade button when buying things on lower difficulties, no need to keep old equipment around.
. Higher difficulties you may want to keep different weapon types or ship types around to use as needed base on what your engaging.
Will add to this as I think of more, safe flying folks :)