Thanks to the meddling of the Feds and the Royals, among others, all starship commanders are required to carry mandatory state-approved insurance. And when you’re flying a stock Sidey, it’s all good, because what you get busted in is what you get back.
When you start adding improvements, though, your insurance company will start hitting you up for “extras.” Upgraded to turrets? That’ll be 500Cr each, thanks. Improved shields too? Oh, let’s add on another 300. And if the cost of restoring everything is too much, they’ll be glad to float you a loan, and take a cut of your earnings for an arbitrary period of time.
What? You no like? Well, sure, go ahead and uncheck those boxes for the optional extras, and we’ll give you a free unenhanced Sidewinder just like you started in.
Besides all your hard-earned enhancements, there are two other things that you can lose in the transition between life and death and life again.
First, any cargo you’re carrying will be lost. You can’t even go back for it. It’s gone, forget it, it’s been carted off and sold on the black market by the time your Pod gets back to your last port of call.
Secondly, all the exploration data you’ve been collecting is lost. Remember, no computers between where you collected it and, oh, 20 LY from where you collected it will even accept the data. So it’s sitting on your ship’s storage matrix, and even Suzuki-Gryphon brand storage crystals can’t withstand vaporization and explosive decompression. And if they could, salvors would have ganked ‘em before you got back, anyway.
So all that data you’ve been toting is gone for good.
These are not optionally recoverable by your insurance agency, so don’t even ask. I’m not sure they even know what “data” is.
The upshot is this: dying isn’t the end of all things, as long as you eject in time, and since most ships have the ever reliable Benz-Yahoo brand life pods, you’re probably going to make it out alive, as long as you don’t get sucked into a Black Hole. But even if you are essentially immune from being killed by your enemies, all they have to do is remove your ability to respond in kind, for example vaporizing or stealing several MegaCr worth of cargo and scrapping a well-equipped ship you can ill afford to replace in full.
So be mindful of your actions and remember to run like the wind when events call for it. There are few attacks you can’t escape if you are quick in your assessment of the situation and can elect retreat rapidly enough.
There is no shame in living to see another day. There is even less shame in living to see another day with your full cargo and data store intact, ready to cash in at the next eligible stop. Let the apes celebrate their primacy at your expense; especially when you have a fat wallet and they’re trolling for scraps.