There are hundreds of different encounters in the PC game FTL: Faster Than Light. Space battles are generally rather similar, depending on the layout of your ship, but text encounters vary greatly. In a text encounter, sometimes you will have a blue option. Blue options are almost always universally better than normal options, but can only be unlocked by possessing a specific piece of equipment, specific system upgrade, a specific race of crew member. Upgrading your engines can potentially give you five blue options in various encounters in the game. Since your engines are one of the most important systems on your ship, you are likely to do this naturally, but engines are only usefully upgraded with additional reactor energy, so be prepared to spend a lot of scrap upgrading your engines. The following guide to engines blue options will help you maximize your chance of finding and taking advantage of these options in FTL: Faster Than Light.
Rebel Ship Waiting For You – This event only appears in a nebula in the Slug Home Nebula sector. A rebel ship has been waiting for you. If you want to fight it, you always have that option. But, if you want to avoid it, you chances increase if you have at least level 4 engines. If you attempt to remain concealed, you may need to engage your engines to actually avoid the ship. This option risks letting the rebel fleet move faster, but as long as you have the engines, it will usually result in you avoiding battle. It is important to note that if you have a cloaking system, that option will always avoid a battle.
Crystalline Cache on Asteroid – It is unlikely that you will need upgraded engines, but if you do, you need at least level 6 engines for this event that can only be found in the Hidden Crystal Homeworlds. Assuming you investigate the cache, there is a chance that one of your crew members will activate a singularity trap. If you have advanced engines, you save the crew member and get a free weapon. This is by far the best result for this event, so take this option, even if other options are available.
Pirate Demands Crew Member – Sometimes having the right equipment will not assure you of a good result. This event is one of those cases. Even if you have the level 6 engines necessary for this blue option, you may fail to evade the pirates. If you simply want to fight, don’t take the blue option, but if you want to avoid one, your engines give you a high chance of escape without battle.
Burnt Out Rock Mine Layer – You can only find this event in a Rock system. Unlike the last event, level 5 engines always protect you in this event. If you have them, you can escape safely without any damage. If you also have a Beam Drone, you could alternately give up a drone part for scrap by initially taking the normal option, but any other option leads to a high chance of taking hull damage and possibly losing a crew member.
Automated Scout in Plasma Storm – This is one of the more dangerous events in the game. An automated scout is waiting for you in a Plasma Storm environmental hazard. If you also have Long-Ranged Sensors, you should simply avoid any Plasma storm and never see this event. But, if you do run into, level 6 engines will give you a chance of avoiding a battle. Unfortunately, the engines don’t assure it. The only way to assure you avoid the battle is by having a cloaking system. If you have that system and upgraded engines, take the cloaking system blue option instead.