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For example: another player, 'Player A', currently has the highest bounty, and the pirates are now raiding a planet or asteroid controlled by them.

If I also attack and send my ships to the planet or asteroid controlled by 'Player A' that the pirates are raiding, will the pirate ships there be hostile to me or will they not attack my ships, and only proceed to attack 'Player A'? What if I also have a bounty (but not the highest)?

Also, how do pirate ships or structures behave towards a player's ships or structures if that player has no bounty and is not being raided?

Note: I'm playing the Rebellion expansion.

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

Here is what happens when a pirate bounty is set:

  1. A pirate fleet jumps/appears into the pirate system.
  2. They select one of the closer planets (not guarenteed though) of the target race that has the bounty.
  3. Their fleet then heads for that sector.

If you or your ships are along their flight path, they'll exchange potshots as they fly past each other. However, if your ships are outside of their flight path, they'll be completely ignored even if they're in the same sector.

Once the fleet reaches the sector, they'll start destroying anything in that sector and their various ships will prioritize depending on their functionality (i.e. pillagers will start the bombardment right away over everything else). At this point, if your ships just happen to be in the sector, they may become targeted by pirates.

As for pirate structures, the only pirate structures that exist are in pirate bases, and they are hostile to everything. Expect to be targeted immediately when you jump into a pirate base.

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If you're not the current target of their raiding, they should leave you alone right up until you either start shooting at them (note that your ships will automatically open fire on pirates by default as they're always flagged hostile).

It's been a while since I last played, however; things may have changed in the interim.

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Know if the pirates can be toggled as non-hostile? I would like to do this in case they are raiding a planet or asteroid controlled by another player, and I want to join in the attack, without the pirates firing at my ships too. – galacticninja Jan 10 '13 at 8:39
Don't think so. Maybe you can set them to hold fire against anything you don't explicitly tell them to shoot at, but a better bet might be to hold position in system and wait for the pirates to kill the planet so you can colonize it yourself. – Shadur Jan 10 '13 at 10:09

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