Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader — Space Combat Guide

What is a Rogue Trader without their Voidship, after all?

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

In Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader, you must create team builds and assign combat roles to your companions for strategic battles. The game's story, dialogues, and battles span a considerable length of time. However, beyond fighting xenos, cultists, and robots on planets, there is another type of combat in the game: Space Combat.

At the beginning of the game, your chosen voidship serves as not only a means to reach your targets in the vast void of space but also a well-equipped war machine. While getting accustomed to the game's battle system is challenging enough, space combat might add to the confusion. Don't worry; we're here to assist you with this.

Do Not Avoid Space Combat

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

Make sure to seize every opportunity for space combat that comes your way. The reason for this is that as you engage in these battles, your voidship will gain experience and consequently level up. With each level gained, your ship will acquire various upgrades.

Another rewarding aspect of participating in space combat is the chance to acquire parts that you can attach to your ship after the battle. While these often consist of weapons, you may also find better shields among them.

Yet another advantage of entering battles is the scrap you gather at the end of each fight. These scraps are crucial for repairing and upgrading your ship, enhancing its hull, ram, and abilities on your posts. In short, scraps serve as a currency for improving your ship, and the best way to acquire them is through space combat.

Know The Basic Combat Mechanics And What You Can Do In Battle

Firing Weapons And Movement System

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

Frankly, while space combat may seem complex at first glance, it's not very different from regular battles apart from a few distinctions. Firstly, you control only one unit (for now) at the beginning of the space combat: your Voidship. It moves and attacks each turn.

Unlike normal battles, your attack options are not limited to one; you can use all of your weapons, but there are conditions for using each weapon fired from the ship. Some weapons target the left, some the right, and some deal damage to a large area around you. You can check the range of weapons by hovering over them.

You can either fire before or after moving. Even you can fire first, then move, and then fire again.

To conclude your movement, you need to reach your ship to the end-phase cells, which are the greenest cells. Choosing the last cell where your ship will stop is crucial because your ship's movements are not overly agile, and you need to consider its maneuvers.

Shields Protect You From Damage

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

Your ship has shields in all four directions, which protect you from enemy damage in the early stages of battle. The damage you receive diminishes the shield on the side from which the enemy has fired. If all shields on one side are depleted, any subsequent damage from that side will directly affect your ship.

Additionally, due to the mathematics behind shield mechanics, shields may not always fully protect your ship from damage. The higher your shield points, the better your chances of protection. Therefore, allowing your shields to decrease can lead to dangerous situations. In short, higher shields have a greater chance of absorbing damage.

Your ship has the ability called 'Restart Shields' to restore shields to their original state. When used, this ability maximizes the shield points in all directions at the beginning of the next turn but reduces your speed and firing range for that turn.

The most important thing to know about shields is this: try to keep all enemies on one side of your ship. For example, if they all target the shields on the right side of your ship, your ship will undoubtedly sustain heavy damage.

Also, remember that enemy ships have shields as well and operate on the same principle. Initially, they won't take damage from you when they have high shield points, and if you manage to penetrate their shields, you'll have a better chance of destroying them.

Use Voidship Ram When Necessary

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

One of the most effective methods of dealing damage to enemies is Voidship Ram. Of course, there are conditions for using it; firstly, you can only collide with a ship directly in front of you, offering you little choice in terms of range like your other weapons. Additionally, you can use this feature during the acceleration phase, meaning before you move.

Also, the enemy ship must be at least two cells away from you. While this type of attack deals significant damage to the enemy proportionate to the distance you've traveled, unfortunately, it's not always an option you can use. Remember that your ship will also sustain collision damage after hitting the enemy.

Don't Forget That Torpedoes Are Your Best Friend

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

To be honest, one of the most effective weapons in the game is torpedoes. Keep in mind that after using torpedoes, you won't be able to use them in the next turn. You summon torpedoes in front of your ship, and they come in a specific quantity. Typically, you start with four torpedoes. After using torpedoes, you can control them each turn as if they were ships.

Your goal is to collide your torpedoes with enemy ships, thereby inflicting damage equal to the number of torpedoes. Additionally, you don't necessarily have to ram the enemy ship with the torpedo; you can detonate it immediately next to a ship's cell to inflict damage.

Alternatively, you can damage multiple ships around a cell with a single explosion.

Also, remember that enemy ships have torpedoes too. Your method of damaging torpedoes is different from damaging ships. Since each successful hit destroys a torpedo, a firing that inflicts multiple hits will be effective in destroying them.

Moreover, if torpedoes fail to reach any target within four turns, they automatically explode. It's essential to keep this in mind.

Finally, even the toughest battles can be won by evading using torpedoes. By constantly fleeing in one direction from enemies and continuously firing torpedoes, you can keep your enemies occupied with your torpedoes. If they can't destroy them, you can hunt down all your enemies one by one. Although this process is lengthy, it's quite effective.

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

Lastly, if you've also unlocked the 'Warp Wave' ability while using this method, it becomes even more effective. Since the 'Warp Wave' ability has an infinite range, you can exhaust and eliminate enemies with torpedoes and 'Warp Wave.'

Additionally, the 'Torpedo Control' ability provides extra movement to your torpedoes, while the "Focused Efforts" ability allows you to reduce the cooldown of the 'Warp Wave' ability faster and use it more frequently. In conclusion, if you have a well-equipped ship with good abilities, speed, and high HP, you have an advantage in battles.

Effectively Manage Your Scrap Economy

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

Scrap can be considered as the currency with which you can enhance your ship. Scrap serves three purposes:

  • Hull Repair
  • Hull and Ram Upgrades
  • Post Skill Upgrades

While you can generally obtain scrap by engaging in battles, there are also situations where you can acquire it through your Profit Factor.

When your ship reaches the fifth level, the 'Rugged Repair' development reduces the cost of repairing your ship by 50 percent. The 'Take it All!' ability increases the scrap you earn by ten percent. Acquiring these upgrades will be quite beneficial and will further strengthen your ship.

In the Hull Repair section, make sure to repair your ship after every battle to avoid being caught unprepared for the next fight. Additionally, during Warp Travel, your ship may sustain damage as a result of certain events.

As the name suggests, 'Ram Upgrade' increases your ram damage, while 'Hull Upgrade' is crucial because it increases your ship's maximum HP.

Furthermore, the officers you place in the post section can utilize the ship abilities you've learned. If you want to upgrade these abilities to higher levels, you will need to scrap again. It's essential to upgrade these abilities as they enable your ship to perform more effectively in battle.

Obtain Ship Equipment by Trading with the Imperial Navy

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

In Chapter Two, you'll start in the Furibundus system and encounter a ship in that system before reaching Footfall. After interacting with that ship, you'll be able to trade with the Imperial Navy. As your Profit Factor increases, you can acquire good ship parts, shields, and weapons.

Additionally, after some battles, you may receive loot, such as weapons, shields, etc. that you can equip on your ship.

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

Furthermore, after interacting with the Imperial Navy once, you can speak with High Factotum Janris Danrok on your ship's bridge to open the screen of merchants with whom you can trade. This allows you to continuously provide your cargo for the Imperial Navy without having to constantly go to their ship and acquire useful items.

You can already see which equipment you can install on your ship in the 'Component' tab. After battles or purchasing new components, always remember to remove the old ones and update your ship by installing better ones.

Upgrade Your Ship And Assign the Most Suitable Companions To Posts

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

Your ship can level up to a total of 12 ranks, and at each rank, some skills can be learned. When upgrading your ship, it's best to acquire the 'Warp Wave' ability as early as possible. Thanks to its infinite range, it inflicts damage based on the hull damage taken by enemy ships, making it a very useful ability.

Additionally, skills such as 'Swing Run,' 'Shallow Jump,' and 'Strafe,' which increase your ship's movement, can help you position yourself well on the battlefield and aid in evading. As an ultimate ability, the 'Empyrean Storm' is a good option for first choice due to its high range and effective damage.

If you find using torpedoes in battle more effective, try to acquire the 'Torpedo Control' and 'All Hands on Deck' abilities as early as possible. Also, don't neglect to acquire skills that reinforce your shields.

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

Another tab on your ship is the 'Posts' tab. Here, you can assign your companions to specific posts on the ship. If you assign the most suitable person to each post, the skills associated with that post will work more effectively. To do this, click on the post, and next to your companions, you'll see some numerical values. Assign the person with the highest numerical value to each post.

These numerical values are determined based on your companions' skills. The skills relevant to the posts are as follows:

Post Name

Skill Required

Supreme Commander


Master Cannoneer


Shield Master


Master of Maneuvers


Warp Channeler

Lore (Warp)

Master of Etherics


Don't forget to place the best companions in terms of the specified skills in each post to get the best performance. Also, if you don't assign anyone to these posts, you won't be able to use the related post's skills. Finally, from this tab, you can also upgrade the skills associated with posts for scrap.

Add Extra Ships To Your Fleet

Warhammer 40,000: Rogue Trader - Space Combat Guide

While not initially possible, as you progress through Chapter Two and establish colonies on your planets, you'll be able to complete certain projects. Some of these projects offer rewards that can strengthen your ship or provide additional ships to accompany you in every battle.

Although you do not directly control these ships, they're crucial for dealing extra damage to enemies and drawing their aggro away from your main ship. Here are three projects that your colonies can complete, resulting in obtaining ships:

Colony Name


Project Name

Kiava Gamma


Flawless Servitors



Filth of the Expanse



Shield of the Emperor

Choosing Shield of the Emperor will lock out the other option, Filth of the Expanse, and vice-versa.

Additionally, remember that you can initiate projects from your colonies that will allow you to craft effective weapons for your ship and provide some talents for your ship.

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