The PC game FTL: Faster Than Light has dozens of different augmentations that improve your ship in various ways. Many of these augmentations offer unique benefits that can’t be gained through any other means. The main advantage of augmentations is that they don’t cost energy, though you are limited to only three at once. Racial augmentations are special because you can never purchase them. Many race specific ships start with one and each one can be earned from a race specific event, even if you aren’t flying that type of ship. The following guide to racial augmentations in FTL: Faster Than Light will help you determine which augmentations are best for your needs.
Engi Med-Bot Dispersal (Torus / Rebels Attacking Engi Event) -The Engi Med-Bot Dispersal makes the medbay affect all crew members, regardless of what room they are in, at a reduced rate. This lets your crew heal even while fighting enemies or putting out a fire. The Torus has an all Engi crew, which makes this a nearly critical augmentation. Without it, your crew will lose every fight. Upgrade your medbay at least once, preferably twice, and your Engi crew will even be able to fight Mantis enemies. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work with a clone bay, so it is useless for some ships. If you manage to acquire this and don’t have a clone bay, never sell it. It is one of the best augmentations you can get for any ship, especially one that is low on crew members.
Rock Plating (Any Rock Cruiser / Rock Cruiser Unlock Event) – Rock Plating gives your ship a 15% chance to ignore hull damage whenever the ship receives damage. This doesn’t prevent any associated system damage unfortunately. Effectively, this gives your ship 35 hull points instead of 30, though it is even more effective than that over the course of a game, assuming repairs. Other defensive augmentations, like the Shield Charge Booster, can provide at least as much benefit, depending on your ship setup, so feel free to sell this if you need the space for something better.
Titanium System Casing (Nesasio / Stealth Cruiser Unlock Event) – Similar to Rock Plating, Titanium System Casing has a 15% chance to negate system damage your ship takes, though the ship still takes hull damage when applicable. This is most effective against bombs that often only deal system damage. This is slightly more impressive than the Rock Plating, because a damaged system is usually much more devastating than hull damage. If you can somehow manage to get both on one ship, you have a very solid defensive combination.
Mantis Pheromones (Any Mantis Cruiser) – This increases the movement speed of all crew members of your ship by 25%. This increases Mantis speed to almost 150% of human norm. The main benefit of this is that it makes your Mantis particularly deadly when boarding enemy ships. Despite that advantage, this is a rather weak benefit and one that you might easily decide to sell early if you need the 25 scrap.
Zoltan Shield (Any Zoltan Cruiser / Zoltan Cruiser Unlock Event) – This grants your ship a supershield. A supershield absorbs the first five points of damage from any source, including missiles. It also prevents all teleportation onto your ship, including bombs. Once it is destroyed it can’t be replaced, but until then, your ship is practically invulnerable. This is a good way to get an early advantage against an enemy ship. Combined with the Weapon Pre-Igniter, you can effectively get at least two full salvos against an enemy before the enemy can meaningfully strike back. There is no reason to ever sell this augmentation.
Drone Reactor Booster (Vortex / Engi Virus Event) – With the Drone Reactor Booster, drones that you deploy in your ship have a 25% faster movement speed. This makes them move at roughly the same speed as humans. It is absolutely critical on the Vortex, because that ship relies entirely on drones for repairs and ship defense. If you happen to obtain this with any other ship, you should generally sell it as soon as possible unless you happen to have a drone control system and at least one drone deployed on your ship.
Crystal Vengeance (Any Crystal Cruiser) – Every time your ship takes damage, Crystal Vengeance has a 10% chance of hitting the enemy ship with an attack that is effectively a one damage missile. This only activates when your ship takes damage, so don’t expect it to happen often. And, if it is happening often, you are in a lot of trouble. Crystal Vengeance sells for 40 scrap. If you desperately need that scrap for something good from a store, sell it. If not, you might as well keep it around until you need the extra room for better augmentations.
Slug Repair Gel (Any Slug Cruiser / Slug Cruiser Unlock Event) – Slug Repair Gel automatically repairs any hull breach on your ship. This is less useful than Fire Suppression, but helpful when you don’t have spare hands for repairs. This won’t help much in the final flagship battles of the game, so you sell this and try to get something better some time in sector 7.