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When I scrap a ship, does it accomplish anything besides reducing my financial burden? Does it matter if I scrap the ship in my own territory? Or would I be better off sending my useless ships on suicide runs to get them blown up an inconvenience my enemies?

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2 Answers

Yes, but not directly.

Ships have a hidden "upkeep cost", just like improvements' more explicit upkeep. If your income drops so low that you start losing Dust, you can scrap ships to lower the upkeep cost (unlike, for example, Sins of a Solar Empire, where fleet upkeep is a separate, non-refundable upgrade).

It becomes clear that eventually this must be the fate of "Advanced Defenders" and their ilk, if they're not destroyed in combat. They're simply not worth your Dust.

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So you're saying scrapping ships doesn't do anything besides reduce your financial burden? –  aslum Jan 29 '13 at 17:46
    
Yeah. It doesn't, for example, give you a flat return. It only decreases your future rate of economic drag. –  rsegal Jan 29 '13 at 17:51
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Maybe...maybe not

I thought that perhaps it appears that scrapping a ship provides a similar reimbursement to when one scraps an improvement, but I've searched a half-dozen articles, including the official user manual and I can't find a reference to it.

However, another player concurs with me that there is some reimbursement for ship scrapping. When he scraps a large enough ship, he can see his dust (money) go up after a scrapping.

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What race? I've done a little testing with the Sowers (or maybe it was the Cravers?) and didn't see an increase in dust when scrapping ships. Dust production certainly went up, but no refunded money. Could it be technology dependent? –  aslum Jan 29 '13 at 17:46
    
@aslum - I told my friend about it and he said that he thinks you may have scrapped too small a ship. I probably won't have time until the weekend to get into another big game one way or another. I'm cool if you want to award the other answer until I find out one way or another. –  Mark Rogers Jan 29 '13 at 18:36
    
The problem is I usually retrofit ships rather than scuttle them, so I almost never scrap, except with stuck scouts. –  Mark Rogers Jan 29 '13 at 18:38
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