SSO Crew Cards Guide
In the interests of saving box space, the SSO main rules are extremely dense. As such we have created a series of guides for first time players with more in depth explanation. The following guide goes into further detail on the special abilities of the SSO base set Crew cards.
What – At the end of Challenge Phase step 5, Must have this Crew die, skip the next step.
How – At the end of Challenge Phase step 5 the player controlling this character can choose to have this Crew member die to skip the next step.
This ability is activated at the end of Challenge Phase step 5, after all players have seen which Challenge card is about to be activated the Captain can sacrifice themselves to skip the next step, during which the card would be resolved, to save the Crew from its deadly effects. If the Challenge card would lead to the death of multiple Crew sacrificing one Crew member to save many is a logical choice; especially for everybody not controlling the Captain.
What – May treat 1 in Medical Pod “Crew” actions as 2.
How – When this Crew activates the Medical Pod “Crew” action to reduce or increase the Morale of Crew members they can choose to raise or lower the target’s Morale by 1 or 2 points.
As the most (or only) skilled medical professional in the Crew the Psychiatrist is able to use the Medical Pod with greater ability.
What – Crew: Must flip 2 Missions face down.
How – As a “Crew” action this character can flip face down exactly 2 face up Missions.
Since failing Missions comes with significant punishments this ability can be used to abort Missions players know will fail to avoid such negative effects, but only if 2 Missions can be shut down at once, forcing you to sometime take the bad with the good.
What – Auto: if alone with Morale = 0 this Crew gains 1 Morale.
How – If this Crew member is alone with Morale = 0 during Check Phase step 1 raise their Morale by 1 to a maximum of 6.
The Pilot’s training and background mean they will almost never end it all in a moment of despair. Note they do not gain Morale from this ability unless they are on their own, relevant if it is being spent on actions such as the Botanist’s “Crew” ability.
What – Crew: Must reduce Personal Oxygen by 2, May flip 1 Adjacent Location face up.
How – As a “Crew” action the Engineer can choose to reduce their Personal Oxygen by exactly 2 to flip an adjacent face down Location face up.
If the Engineer can spend the Oxygen they can use the dry dock manual override outside the ship to reboot any Location. If the Computer Module is shut down or out of reach this ability can be vital. Remember, although face down Locations lose most qualities they retain their colour, meaning that same coloured Locations remain adjacent and different coloured Locations attached. As such the Engineer’s ability cannot flip face up an Array from a Pod.
What – Once per game, during Activation Step 1 deal all Activation cards to players of your choice.
How – Once per game, at any point during Activation step 1, take all unused blue backed Activation cards and deal them one at a time to players of your choice, they may look at them as you deal them.
If players have a complex plan of action reliant on certain players getting specific cards to co-ordinate their actions the Logistics Expert can make certain, once per game, that the plan can come off. The player is free to announce the use of this ability before or after the standard Activation cards are dealt, in case the right cards come out naturally they can reserve the use of this ability for a later turn, or they can deal out the remaining cards. Alternatively, openly aggressive players can use this ability to starve other players of cards for a turn.
What – This Crew’s Location cannot be flipped.
If the Computer Specialist is in danger of having their Location shut down they can hack the system via remote link up to save themselves. This ability stops a Location from being flipped no matter what flips it, the ability is constantly active and cannot be “switched off” by the controlling player. Remember, when randomly selecting Locations to be flipped this ability can make certain Locations not legitimate targets, which might affect the random determination process. Also Crew in the Cryo Pod lose their printed abilities, so a frozen Computer Specialist will not stop the Cryo Pod from being shut down. This ability can be extremely powerful or practically useless depending on the Challenge Deck.
What – Crew: Must reduce General Oxygen by 6, Try to increase this Crew’s Personal Oxygen by 6.
How – As a “Crew” action the Astronaut can reduce the General Oxygen by exactly 6 in return for their Personal Oxygen being set at 6.
This means the Astronaut can load up on Personal Oxygen anywhere, even outside the ship, making them excellent Crew for external Missions. They can even go out and wait for everyone else to catch up. However, this ability can only be used if there is at least 6 General Oxygen remaining and it reduces General Oxygen by 6 even if the Astronaut only gains 1 or 0 Personal Oxygen (because the Astronaut has a maximum Personal Oxygen of 6, if this ability is used when they already have 5 or 6 Personal Oxygen only 1 or even 0 points of oxygen are gained).
What – Once per game, look at top 6 Challenge cards, replace in same order.
The Science Officer can extrapolate and predict upcoming events, though they are powerless to change them. This ability can be used freely at any point but it is at its most useful after a Mission has been activated and before voting to engage or abort. If the next card to be flipped is for example “Airlock Shutdown” then engaging with “Realign Solar Arrays” becomes a very different prospect.
What – During Check Phase Step 6 once per game, once per Mission, when in the Radio Pod repeat a Mission card’s reward.
The Radio Officer can report successful Mission completion to Mission Control more efficiently, gaining increased rewards. This ability can only be used if the Radio Officer counts as living Crew, is in the Radio Pod and a Mission has its success conditions fulfilled. Deciding to use this ability on a relatively minor Mission in case the Radio Officer is unavailable later or preserve it for the higher reward Missions is often a vital choice.
What – Crew: Change this “Crew” action to that of 1 other living Crew.
This can only be used to copy “Crew” actions, so those on the First Officer, Engineer, Astronaut, Botanist or Trillionaire Backer. All text on this card relating to “Crew” actions becomes that on the copied card, meaning that if the Astronaut is copied 6 Oxygen will still be paid even though only 4 can ever be gained. Also once an ability is copied it becomes permanent, since the Generalist’s original ability is lost when changed.
What – Crew: Must reduce Crew in Hydro Pod’s Morale by Y, increase General Oxygen by Y.
How – As a “Crew” action the Botanist can reduce the Morale of any Crew in the Hydro Pod by any amount (signified by Y), to a minimum of 0, in return for raising the General Oxygen by the same total amount.
The Botanist can be anywhere when they activate this ability, they can work other Crew in the Hydro Pod while being in another Location. They can reduce any number of Crew’s Morale by any amount. A Crew alone can be used to produce oxygen in this manner, a pair of Crew can be reduced by different amounts of Morale in any combination. The Botanist working the Pilot makes for an effective team.
What – Crew: Mission with only this Crew’s rank token on them count as having their success conditions fulfilled.
How – As a “Crew” action the Trillionaire Backer can rule that the success conditions of any single Mission that has their rank token on it and no other rank tokens count as having been fulfilled. It does not mean that the events required to fulfil the success conditions actually occur.
The Trillionaire Backer is a Kickstarter exclusive Crew and will only be present in the first print run of the game. It is extremely powerful and will change the shape of the game, players who wish to experience a Challenge Deck’s story as intended and in full should remove the Trillionaire from the game at set up. If the Trillionaire is present players will find the Mission becomes a PR exercise and they constantly use the Radio Pod to report the Trillionaire’s progress back to the waiting world’s press. Players who pull a Trillionaire with a very low rank will still find the game potentially extremely challenging and might insist they have the lowest available rank if used.
Should a Crew member using the Trillionaire Backer’s current rank token be added to the game or flipped face up they take their rank token as usual, randomly determine a new rank for the Trillionaire Backer from the remaining unused rank tokens. Certainly the death of a Crew member will shift priorities, it only remains to be seen if the Backer’s cash becomes more or less important.