SWTOR Galactic Starfighter new player guide
A guide for players to new to the SWTOR Galactic Starfighter with gameplay videos.
Quick Video overview
Accessing Galactic Starfighter
To access the menu for Galactic Starfighter, either press H or click on this little icon on your minimap. This should bring up a window that contains everything related to Galactic Starfighter. This is where you will spend most of your time outside the instanced space battle.
Dallies & Weekly
You can pick up a daily and weekly at the PvP Terminal in the fleet (Combat Training section) once you completed Introduction to Starfighter which will grant you 1000 fleet requisition. The daily will grant you 750 Ship Requisition to all ships on your character. Weekly will grant you 500 Fleet Requisition and 2500 Ship Requisition to all ships on your character.
You will get a introduction quest first when you visit the PvP terminal. Complete that for access to daily and weekly.
Galactic Starfighter Menu Overview
The window has 5 tabs at the top, Ships, Components, Cosmetics, Crew and Launch.
- Ships – where you select ships to modify or purchase new ships
- Components – where you purchase upgrades to various components and modules attached to a specific ship
- Cosmetics – where you can purchase and select paint jobs, various colored blasters, etc. Most of the stuff here cost Cartel Coins
- Crew – where you select what companions you want aboard each of your ship. There are 5 compartments for companions (Engineering, Offensive, Defensive, Tactical, Co-Pilot) and you can unlock companions from other classes in addition to four new companions that are exclusive to Galactic Starfighter.
- Launch – Once everything has being configured and you want to head to a battle, select this tab to either battle solo or in a group (max size of 4 players).
At the bottom is a row of 5 slots where you can click the Select Your Ship button to get them ships you have unlocked loaded up for space combat.
You will see three class of ships here: Scout, Strike Fighter, and Gunship. There should be two ships under each class except for Gunships. You will have two ships to play with initially, the other 5 are locked and greyed out until you can acquire enough Fleet Requisition to unlock them or purchase them via cartel coins. You cannot access the Components tab of ships that are locked but you can see a brief description, ship stats, and a list of their components when you click them on them in the Ships tab.
- Scouts: Fast and agile ships designed to fly from point A to point B faster than other ships. Combat capability is slightly limited compared to other types of ships due to limited weapon loadout and weak defenses but can easily outfly blaster fire and missiles. Max range is ~6000m.
- Strike Fighter: Standard lock-on missile carrying ship that comprise the bulk of most matches. Not as agile and fast as the scout but has a much bigger weapon loadout that allow them to carry two types or blasters or two types of missiles to handle any situation. Max range is ~7000m to 10000m depending on the missile loadout.
- Gunships: Designed to be a sniper ship that can shoot at enemies from afar (15000m) with its railguns that requires a few seconds of charge up and immobilize itself. Cannot carry any missiles but has some hard hitting blasters. Able to kill enemy ships in 2-3 hits but is vulnerable to fast moving scouts carrying rocket pods.
Below is a basic list of ships, if you want see characteristics of each ship in detail, please see this Ships & Components guide.
|Scout||S-12 Blackbolt||NovaDive||Basic scout, fast moving but limited weapons||Unlocked, default Scout|
|Scout||S-13 Sting||Flashfire||Scout with more slightly more weapon options||Locked, 5000 fleet requisition to purchase|
|Scout||IL-5 Ocula||IL-5 Skybolt||Identical to Sting/Flashfire for the most part||Cartel Market – 1800 CC|
|Strike Fighter||F-T6 Rycer||FT-8 Star Guard||Basic fighter, can swap between two blasters||Unlocked, default Strike Fighter|
|Strike Fighter||TZ-24 Gladiator||TZ-24 Enforcer||Identical to Rycer/Star Guard for the most part||Cartel Market – 1800 CC|
|Strike Fighter||F-T2 Quell||FT-6 Pike||Fighter carrying two types of missiles||Locked, 5000 fleet requisition to purchase|
|Gunship||GSS-3 Mangler||SGS-45 Quarrel||Only one type of gunship||Unlocked for subscribers|
There is an important option you should turn on before viewing this tab. Use Esc to access your preferences menu and then go to Starfighter section. Under Tooltips, make sure Show Detailed Star Fighter Weapon Tooltips is checked. This will allow you to get detailed info on weapons.
Here is where you can select components specific to the ship you just selected in the ships tab. The components category vary depending on the ship you selected but typically you can select your blasters, missiles, shields, engines, magazines, reactors, thrusters etc.
Within each component category is a choice of several items. Only one will be unlocked but you can unlock others via Ship Requisition. Each item will have a small talent tree where you can pick up upgrades via Ship Requisition to make them better. If you do not have enough Ship Requisition to purchase something, Fleet Requisition can be used to supplement the purchase at 1:1 ratio. This is something you should be extra careful as you can accidently spending Fleet Requisition (which are much slower to acquire) without intending to.
Note: For upgrades with two options, the unlock will unlock both of them but you can only select to equip one of them at a time.
This tab is specific to the ship you selected in the ships tab.
You can pick your blaster bolt color, ship paint jobs and different colors for engine aftertrail here. These are purely cosmetic and have no effects on your ship stats. Some of them will be free while others will cost Cartel Coins (90-250 CCs usually)
Paint jobs are mostly eye candy for you as other players are unlikely to see them. However different colored blaster bolts and engine aftertrails are likely to be very noticeable to other players.
This tab is specific to the ship you selected in the ships tab.
Companions fill crew slots in Galactic Starfighter. There are four new companions per faction exclusive to GS that serve as default companions for everyone. All of the companions belonging to your class are also unlocked if you have unlocked them already on your character in the “ground” game. You can unlock other companions belonging in the same faction as well with Fleet Requisition (1500 Fleet Requisition per companion).
There are five crew slots: Engineering, Offensive, Defensive, Tactical and Co-Pilot. Each slot have a roster of companions that can fill this role. For the co-pilot slot, you must pick one of the four companions you have selected for the other slots. This companion will double up as both your co-pilot and fill one of the other roles.
Companions in the Engineering, Offensive, Defensive, Tactical slots grant you passive bonuses to your ship. Different companions grant different passive bonuses. Your co-pilot will grant you with an active ability you can use in combat with a cooldown (usually 1 minute cooldown)
Just like with components, selecting companions with passive bonuses and active ability that you want is crucial. You can see a guide to these companions passives and actives here.
Once you are comfortable with your selections in the components, cosmetics, and crew tab, you can go to the launch tab to get ready to queue.
If you havn’t noticed already, at the bottom of of all tabs is a small row with 5 slots. This is where you can select what ships you like to bring to a match (maximum of 5 different ships)
Once that is done, click the queue button to get iinside an actual match. Available are solo queue and group queue (up to 4 players).
When you finish a match, you earn two types of currency called requisition. One of them is fleet requisition and the other is ship requisition. Both types of currency are specific to a character and does not carry over to your legacy. There is currently no weekly cap on earning both types of requisition but this will probably change on live servers.
- Ship Requisition – This type of requisition is earned towards the ship(s) you used in the match and is only specific to that ship. You cannot purchase things with another ship’s ship requisition. Ship requisition is mostly used for component upgrades but excess ship requisition can be converted to fleet requisition via cartel coins.
- Fleet requisition – Fleet requisition is earned as a % of your ship requisition (~5%). They are available to every ship on your character. Fleet requisition is mostly used to unlock new ships but you can also use fleet requisition to supplement component upgrades if you don’t have enough ship requisition (Becareful of this when purchasing ship components to make sure you don’t spend fleet requisition without intending to)
There are two places where you can keep track of your requisition. First is the scoreboard at end of a match. Looking at the Requisition Gain portion of the scoreboard tells you how much requisition you earned that match. The bigger number is the ship requisition while the smaller number is the fleet requisition. If you have used multiple ships in the match then the ship requisition will be divided up among the ships you used (split is based on how long you flew each ship).
The second place where you can view your total requisition is at top of the Galactic Starfighter menu. Fleet requisition will stay constant when you switch between ships but ship requisition will change since it is earned specific to each ship. In other words, if you have never played a specific ship, then that ship’s ship requisition will be 0.
As mentioned above, ship requisition can be converted to fleet requisition at a cost of 1 Cartel Coin for every 25 fleet requisition via a small button between the ship and fleet requisition totals.This exchange rate may change before Galactic Starfighter goes live.
There is a tutorial you can access in the top right corner of Galactic Starfighter menu. The tutorial is fairly basic but allow you to fly around and get a taste of capturing objectives without enemy player interference.
When you zone into a match, you will be presented with a respawn HUD. Here you can select any of the ships you have readied into the match and view both your team and enemy team’s compositions (player names, ships they own and selected). If you are ready to head out, click on the Ready button and you will spawn in your ship once the timers counts down.
If you died during a match, you will be presented with the same respawn HUD.
Minimap The HUD is fairly simplistic. On the top left corner you have the standard SWTOR chat window. On the top right corner is a 2D minimap with a small overlay grid. Red circles on the minimap are enemy ships while green circles are friendlies. Your ship is represented by a small green triangle on the minimap with the tip that is filled representing your heading.
Scoreboard: Also in the top of the screen is the scoreboard with A, B and C circles. These circles are objectives. If they are green then they are under your team’s control and if they are red they are under enemy team’s control. The small dots surrounding the circles are turrets. The maximum number of turrets on an objective is 3 so you will see 3 dots if they are all there. If there are no dots then that means the all of the turrets have being destroyed.
Blaster & Missile circles –firing arcs: Smack in the middle of the screen is a big circle with a curved orange bar on the left and a curved purple bar on the right. This is the circle you must position enemy ships inside to be able to fire your blasters at them (the official term for this is firing arc). The left orange curved bar is your weapon power pool and the right purple bar is your engine power pool. To the right of the purple bar is a graduated blue bar that tells you how fast your ship is traveling. Inside the big circle is usually a smaller circle. This is where you must keep enemy ships inside to fire your missiles. The size of this smaller circle varies a lot between missiles with hard hitting missiles having much smaller circle.
Enemy ships near you but outside your field of view will appear as red triangles on the inside edge of the big circle while the ship you have targeted but outside of your view will appear as a lighter red rhombus on the inside edge of the circle.
Ship health & power conversions On the bottom left of the screen is a circular display with an icon of your ship in the middle. The two rings around your ship icon is your shield and it will change color depending on how damage the shield is. (Green, yellow, orange, red). The top arc of the ring represent your forward shield while the bottom arc of the ring represent your back shield. If your shield is completely depleted, the ring will disappear.
The ship icon in the middle represents your hull health. It will go from green to yellow, to orange and finally to red depending on how damaged it is. If your ship icon is red then you are not too far off from dying.
Any debuffs you receive will be displayed on top of the circular display as icons.
The three bars to the right of the circular display are your power conversions. F1, F2, F3 will switch them to Blaster, Shield, and Engine power conversions respectively and the bars will go up or down as indicators. Power conversions are a huge component of the gameplay and will be covered in detail below.
Ability Bar: On the bottom of your HUD is a row of 6 buttons. Buttons 1-4 are mapped to your keyboard’s 1, 2, 3 4 buttons while buttons 5 and 6 are mapped to your left and right mouse click respectively. The functions of 1, 2, 3 buttons vary depending on the ship and components. 1 is usually to swap weapons or activate scout systems, 2 is shield ability 3 is engine ability and 4 is co-pilot active ability. Left mouse click is always blasters (hold down for continuous fire) while right mouse click is for missiles/rockets/railguns (holdown the right mouse button to lock on missiles)
Target Window On the bottom right of your screen is a window that will display your target’s name, ship type, ship image, shield HP (blue bar to the left), hull HP (red bar to the right), and their distance. Their buffs and debuffs from your companion active ability for example will also be displayed here.
Shooting & Reticles
Enemy ships in your view will appear as a small square box with their distance on the bottom and their name on the top. If you tab to them or use E to manually select them, a circle and a targeting reticle will appear. The circle is where they are traveling towards and you should aim your blasters & rockets there. The reticle is where you will need to aim your missiles to get a lock on.
If you are within missile range, the triangles on the targeting reticle will turn slightly red, allowing you to start locking on missiles. If you are within blaster range, both the circle and the targeting reticle will turn completely red.
Gunships have a special view scope when they use their railguns. This is similar to a sniper scope and enemy ships inside the scope will just have a circular crosshair if you switch to them. Red crosshair will indicate that the target is within your railgun range. There is a curved bar at the top that show you how charged your railgun is. Much like sniper scopes, the area outside the scope is obstructed so you have no way to tell if someone is sneaking up on you from the back or sides.
The movement is pretty simple. It is WSAD control with X to halt completely. When you need to use the afterburner, hold down space. You will gain 320% speed boost as long you have enough engine power.
|X||Stop engines – you will come to a stop|
|Space||Afterburners – 320% speed boost|
|Shift +W||Strafe Up|
|Shift + S||Strafe Down|
You will use your mouse to control your cameras just like in the ground game. There are some additional camera options that are vital to space combat.
|F||Hold down this button for free look camera. You can basically look around without moving your ship|
|Z||When you hold down Z, your mouse cursor will free itself from the camera and you can look up abilities etc|
|Shift +Z||You can look up stuff without having to hold down Z|
|C||Switch your camera to look at your target. This doesn’t actually move your camera but useful in figuring out where your target is.|
Targeting is fairly basic. Use Tab to cycle through nearby enemies to see who is near you and how far away they are from you. If you spot someone in your HUD, you can manually target them by pressing E. This will cause a targeting reticle to show up on top of them, allowing you to aim at them. If you want to know who just attacked you, press R and their name and targeting reticle will show up.
|Tab||Cycle through nearby enemy players and target them. Their ship and name will be displayed in a small window at bottom right corner of your screen|
|E||Manually target someone near your mouse cursor, a reticle will show up, allowing you to aim at them|
|R||Press this button to target the enemy player that just hit you|
Blasters & Missiles
Holding down left mouse button will fire your blasters while holding down the right mouse button will allow you to lock on and fire missiles. If you are on the basic scout, right mouse button will fire rocket pods instead, which do not require lock on. If you are on the gunship, right mouse button will open up the sniper scope for railguns.
Power Conversions plays a vital role in space combat as picking the right one will allow you to either take more damage, dish out more damage or fly further. Use the F1, F2, and F3 keys to swap to the appropriate conversion
|F1||Weapon Power Conversion, use this when using your blasters|
|F2||Shield Power Conversion, use this when you are under attack|
|F3||Engine Power Conversion, use this when you are traveling|
Buttons 1-4 are your abilities.
|1||Activate Systems component ability (scout) or swap between weapons (strike fighters & gunships)|
|2||Activate Shield component ability|
|3||Activate Engine component ability|
|4||Activate Co-Pilot companion ability|
Sensors affect your ability to detect someone either visually or via tab-targeting. If you cannot detect an enemy ship, you cannot target them and thus cannot fire at them.
There are four things associated with sensors: Sensor Detection, Sensor Dampening, Sensor Focus Range , and Communication Range. Sensor Focus Range isn’t exactly well known at this point so I will skip mentioning them until we have a solid confirmation of what they do.
Sensor Detection: This is how far you can spot an enemy ship. Strike Fighters and Gunships can detect up to 15,000m range with the default loadout and companions while scouts can detect up to 17500m-19500m range depending on which scout you picked (Blackbolt/NovaDive have 19500m while Sting/Flashfire have 17500m range). Both the Blackbolt/NovaDive and the gunships also have a sensor component that can be outfitted with range sensors to add more range (Blackbolt/NovaDive already have the range sensor has its default choice for sensor component, hence why it can detect further than any other ship). This range senor adds 2000m additional sensor detection range and if fully upgraded this becomes 5000m. You can also select companions in the Tactical department with Peripheral Vision passive, which adds additional 2500m (Note that one of the Republic companions, Nadia, have a bugged passives and this will grant an additional 2500m range to those with who select her as the defensive companion. This will likely be fixed soon so I will ignore her for now),
- Blackbolt/NovaDive max sensor detection range: 17500m ship default + 2000m range sensors + 3000m fully upgraded range sensors + 2500m companion passive = 25000m
- Sting/Flashfire max sensor detection range: 17500m ship default + 2500m companion passive = 20000m
- Rycer/Star Guard max sensor detection range: 15000 ship default + 2500m companion passive = 17500m
- Quell/Pike max sensor detection range: 15000m ship default + 2500m companion passive = 17500m
- Gunship max sensor detection range: 15000m ship default + + 2000m range sensors + 3000m fully upgraded range sensors + 2500m companion passive = 22500m
Sensor Dampening Sensor Dampening reduces the distance that enemy ship can detect you. If the enemy ship has 15000m sensor detection range and you have 5000m sensor dampening,they would have to be within 10000m range of you to detect you. Both the gunship and Blackbolt/NovaDive scouts can equip Dampening Sensors that reduce this range and there are companions that offer Sensor Dampening as a passive ability. In the default loadout/companion setup, none of the ships have Sensor Dampening so this is something you have to manually pursue.
- Blackbolt/NovaDive max sensor dampening: 0 ship default + 3000m dampening sensors + 4500m fully upgraded dampening sensors + 4000m companion passive = 11500m
- Sting/Flashfire max sensor dampening: 0 ship default + 4000m companion passive = 4000m
- Rycer/Star Guard max sensor dampening:0 ship default + 4000m companion passive = 4000m
- Quell/Pike max sensor dampening: 0 ship default + 4000m companion passive = 4000m
- Gunship max sensor dampening: 0 ship default + 3000m dampening sensors + 4500m fully upgraded dampening sensors + 4000m companion passive = 11500m
Sensor Communication Sensor communication is how far friendly ships can broadcast enemy ships they have detected. If you have a Communication range of 15000m for example, every friendly ship within 15000m of you can see the enemy ships that you have detected. What this means is that say if you are exactly 15000m away from a friendly ship with 15000m detection radius and 15000m communciation range, you will be able to see enemy ships that are as far as 30000m away from you. In the default setup with default companions, Strike Fighters have 12500m communication range, scouts have 15000m communication range and gunships have 19000 communication range since they equip Communication Sensors as a default component.
- Blackbolt/NovaDive max sensor communication range: 10000m ship default + 4000m communication sensors + 6000m fully upgraded communication sensors + 5000m companion passive = 25000m
- Sting/Flashfire max sensor communication range: 10000m ship default + 5000m companion passive = 15000m
- Rycer/Star Guard max sensor communication range: 7500m ship default + 5000m companion passive = 12500m
- Quell/Pike max sensor communication range: 7500m ship default + 5000m companion passive = 12500m
- Gunship max sensor communication range: 10000m ship default + 4000m communication sensors + 6000m fully upgraded communication sensors + 5000m companion passive = 25000m
Sensor detection vs dampening: Since sensor detection and dampening work against each other, it is useful to see the effects. Here are the range enemy ships can detect you with max sensor dampening against default sensor detection range.
- If you are on a Blackbolt/NovaDive or Gunship with max sensor dampening, Strike Fighters/Gunships with default loadout have to be within 3500m to detect you while scouts needs to be 6000m-8000 range. This put them well within your railgun range.
Here is the table with max sensor dampening against max sensor detection range.
- If you are on a Blackbolt/NovaDive or Gunship with max sensor dampening, Strike Fighters with max sensor detection have to be within 6000m to detect you, Sting/Flashfire scout have to be within 8500m, Gunship have to be within 11000m range, and Blackbolt/NovaDive scout have to be within 13500m
These interactions assume solo 1v1 scenarios. It gets more complex with nearby ally ships that can supply communication range. In general you can detect things much further and sensor dampening is much less effective with communication range added in.
What is domination?
Domination is basically capture objectives and earn points by keeping the objectives for your team (i..e similar to Alderaan Civil War). Whichever team reaches 1000 points first or have the highest score at end of a match will win the match. Match are typically 10-14 minutes in length but if a team completely control all objectives for the entire match, it could be much shorter.
There are 3 objectives on the domination maps. A, B and C. To capture an objective, you will need to fly towards it and get closer and closer to the objective until a green bauble surrounds your ship. You will need to maintain that green bauble until the white bar on the objective fills to full with green color. Once an objective is captured, 3 turrets will spawn and attack any enemy players until they are destroyed. New turrets can spawn to replace the destroyed ones but this does not happen if there is an enemy player within capture distance.
If the objective is already captured by the enemy team, you will need to destroy any turrets guarding it and also enemy players nearby before you can capture it.
Captured objectives allow friendly players to spawn on them instead of the spawn zone as this spawns a Hyperspace Beacon much closer to the objective. This allow defenders to get back into action much quicker. Not all captured objectives will have this (B objective in Lost Shipyards does not spawn a beacon when captured)
A kill is when you get the kill shot on an enemy player while assists are those where you didn’t get a kill shot but did damage to them. Unlike in the ground game, medals are not related to the amount of requisition you gain per match.
|Assassin||1 Solo Kill|
|Quick Draw||2 Kills|
|Support||4 Kill Assists|
|Fighter||8 Kill Assists|
|Wingman||12 Kill Assists|
|Combatant||10k Damage Dealt|
|Destroyer||20k Damage Dealt|
|Annihilator||30k Damage Dealt|
|Assault||Destroyed 2 defense turrets|
|Siege||Destroyed 4 defense turrets|
|Demolisher||Destroyed 8 defense turrets|
|Offensive Basic||Captured 1 objective point|
|Offensive Bronze||Captured 2 objective points|
|Offensive Silver||Captured 3 objective points|
|Offensive Gold||Captured 4 objective points|
|Defense Basic||1 Minute Defending|
|Defense Bronze||2 Minutes Defending|
|Defense Silver||4 Minutes Defending|
|Defense Gold||6 Minutes Defending|
|Defense Platinum||8 Minutes Defending|
|Defense Diamond||10 Minutes Defending|
You will turn in a tighter loop if your speed is slower. When turning, hold down S to slow down while turning and then accelerate to catch up after the turn.
Use your target camera (press C when you have a target)
Target camera is one of the most useful camera modes as it allow you to look directly at your target without needing to orient your ship towards it. This allow you to quickly find your target or locate your attacker’s position when you are trying to run away from it (i.e. if you are trying to run out of line of sight of a gunship, being able to see where the gunship is and if it can shoot you is very useful).
Swapping Power Conversions
Players of the current hardmode PvE space missions jknows how important is is to swap to shield regen when you are not firing so your shield can charge up. The same principle here. Swap to Weapon Power Conversion when you are firing so you can do more damage and fire longer. If you need to get somewhere swap to Engine Power Conversion so you can travel longer distances. If you are under heavy fire then swap to Shield Power Conversion so you can take more hits and increase your odds of survival.
Going against gunships
Gunship railguns have a 15,000m range so make sure you have full engine pool when you decide to take on a gunship as you will need to close the 150,000m gap quickly before they take too many shots at you. When you are within the railgun range, don’t travel in a straight line but zig zag as much as possible. It is much easier for the gunship pilot to shoot you down if you are just approaching in a straight line. Once you are blaster range, swap to Weapon Power Conversion and unload everything before the Gunship have a chance to escape. Watch out for Feedback Shield on the Gunship because if they have that up you can kill yourself, especially if you are on a scout with weak hull HP.
Sensor Dampening for gunships/scouts
Both gunships and Blackbolt/Flashfire scouts have sensor dampening component, which significantly reduce the range enemy ships can see or target you. Fully upgraded, this can give you 11500m sensor dampening and make you much less likely to be spotted by enemy ships far away. For gunships, this means you can snipe away at enemy ships without most of them noticing you and for scouts this means you can escape chases by enemy ships much easier as they lose your target when you get away a certain distance.
Hydro Spanner Companion active ability
Since there is no current way to repair your hull (Bombers won’t come out until February), Hydro Spanner is a very useful companion active ability to have since it repairs 245 of your hull HP over 6 seconds. You also get a medal if you heal 2000 Hull damage.
S-12 Blackbolt Scout Gameplay
- Loadout 1: Rapid-fire laser cannon + rocket pods
- Loadout 2: Light Laser cannon + sabotage probe
- Loadout 3: Light Laser cannon + thermite torpedoes
S-13 Sting Scout Gameplay
- Loadout 1: Light Laser Cannon/Cluster missiles/Targeting Telemetry/In Your Sights
- Loadout 2: Quad Laser Cannon/Cluster missiles/Blaster Overcharge/Bypass
F-T6 Rycer Strike Fighter Gameplay
- Loadout: Quad Laser Cannon/Ion Cannon/Proton Torpedoes/Koiogran Turn/Hydro Spanner
GSS-3 Mangler Gunship Gameplay
- Loadout 1: Plasma Railgun/Light Laser Cannon/Feedback Shield/Rotational Thrusters/Hydro Spanner
- Loadout 2: Slug Railgun/Burst Laser Cannon/Feedback Shield/Rotational Thrusters/Hydro Spanner