Black Skylands

Black Skylands

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Compass: The Unofficial Black Skylands FAQ
By BlackjackGT
Lost in Black Skylands? Don't know what you're doing or how to do it or how to get somewhere? This guide will try to help you get back on track. Compass has answers to many common Black Skylands questions, derived mainly from questions and answers on the official Discord channel and Steam forum. For the time being, I've organized FAQ sections alphabetically.

7/20/201 - Latest FAQ Entries
  • World Navigation FAQ: What are my Fast Travel options? Whom do I talk to? How do I activate Fast Travel?
Other Black Skylands Game Guides to Check Out
Black Skylands: A Economy Guide
pandalords's "Black Skylands: A Economy Guide" is a great new guide, well formatted and illustrated, to answer all your farming and resource gathering questions. :) Check it out!
With my own guide, obviously, it's early, and I only have a few questions and answers in this guide to start. So, uh, this is the Early Access Edition of Compass: The Unofficial Black Skylands FAQ. *trumpet plays*

If you have any ideas for common questions/answers, please feel free to chip something in on the comments thread for this guide. Thanks. :) Also, if one of my entries is wrong, please provide the corrected information in the comments section. Thanks again.
Moth FAQ
How do I know how much moth energy I have remaining?
Look at the lower left corner of the game's interface, you'll see white hearts just above your green health bar. The white hearts indicate remaining moth energy.

Does my moth need energy to perform all of its abilities?
No, it appears your moth only needs energy to revive your fallen character and deposit her back at your skyship. It does not appear to need energy to Fast Travel you back to your skyship or the Father Ship, or to move crates back to your skyship.

How do I unlock special abilities for my moth?
At the risk of spoilers, you must complete the southern mission where you free several groups of moths to help clear an area. Once you've completed this, including a boss battle, your moths will gain additional abilities, including ability to transport resource crates to your ship; and the ability to transport your character back to your skyship.

[BUG] When I use my moth to move Mod Chests back to my skyship, the Mod Chests disappear. What is happening??
This appears to be a BUG, which many players have reported on Discord. So for now, do NOT use your moth to transfer Mod Chests to your skyship. Only use the moths to transfer resource crates back to your skyship, or to fast travel with.

UPDATE: The July 15 patch should have fixed this bug. Make sure to update your game. :)
Resources FAQ
What are Nettles, and how do I get them?
Nettles are a type of crop that you grow.
You'll need to build a Trader's Square (cost: 2 Red Wood) on your Father's Ship, which will allow you to buy Nettle seeds.

You may then Sow those Nettle seeds at your Garden building.

How do I get pigskins?
As I understand it, you get pigskins from your piglets (sorry, vegetarians! :-)).
You can do this two ways:
  • As mentioned under the nettles question, you may build a Trader's Square (cost: 2 Red Wood) on your Father's Ship, which will let you buy piglets. Then you can get the pigskins from those.

  • Or, you can build the Ranch Building (cost: 2 Red Wood, 1 Granite) on your Father's Ship, which will let you raise piglets and other animals.
Where and how do I get Plates?
I've seen a few answers to this frequent question on Discord:
  • Snowball: "Usually just the rocket ship near Iron Burgeon. For me is how I get it."
  • Mattyboy0066: "Yeah, the larger ships around the west-southwest of the map drop plates."
  • Charmle: "Defeating ships on the left-half of the map drops them pretty regularly (the area near iron-burgeon drops 1-3 materials each, and they usually drop plates)."
UPDATE: The July 15 patch says Plates can now be purchased in a shop in Turtletown. Probably not so cheap though. :)
Ship Upgrades FAQ
My factory built cool ship components and weapons, but now they're too heavy for my skyship to equip them all - what do I do?
As I understand it, you'll need to keep upgrading your Factory building so that you gain access to new skyships. Some of these will have larger weight capacity ratings, and will let you equip heavier components and weapons.

Also, pay close attention to the weight rating for each component in the skyship upgrades screen. In most cases early on, one component choice will be a little heavier and may be a better fit for the starter skyship. The other choice may be a bit lighter and a better choice for the Needle skyship, which is smaller and has a lower weight capacity limit.

I want to purchase ship upgrades, and the game keeps telling me I have to be "in the shipyard." My ship is docked, what does "in the shipyard" mean?
At any dock that you can dock your ship at, (on keyboard) press and hold the E key to "enter" your ship yard.

This then pulls up the ship upgrades screen on your tablet. imho, they should highlight that explanation in a different color text, or circle it or something - it's easy to miss it. Or, just make it easier and less convoluted to access your shipyard upgrades screen. :)

I bought umpteen repair kits, and I can't fix my ship. I bought many ship ammo crates, and I'm out already. What is going on?
When you purchase repair kits and/or ship ammo crates, they are transferred to the Father Ship "hold." You must transfer your repair kits and ship ammo crates into your OWN skyship's hold before you can use them.

This may seem "duh," but I didn't understand this and bought about 20 repair kits before I realized my mistake. :) Note that this is NOT a problem when purchasing ship ammo and repair kits at a fueling station, because in that situation, they go directly into your skyship's hold.

How do ship Shields work? Mine don't seem to protect my hull from damage caused by enemy cannon fire?
The Needle Ship's Shields are ACTIVE abilities, NOT passive abilities. Essentially this seems to let you extend some sort of armor shielding around your ship, in preparation for incoming enemy projectiles.

On keyboard/mouse, use SHIFT key to ACTIVATE your ship's shield just before enemy cannon fire is about to hit it. My understanding is the shield will then absorb the enemy's projectile(s).

You can only keep this shielding up for a second or two before it retracts back into your skyship's hull. It's not something you can constantly have "on."
Weapons FAQ
How do I use a grenade?
On keyboard, press G; for controller press down the control stick and the right. On basically the stick called R3.

Can I replace my pistol with another weapon?
No, you can't place a rifle, SMG, etc. in the pistol slot, you can only equip them in the other two weapon slots. Note that you can eventually make better pistols, after upgrading the building that produces them.

Can I mod a weapon that an NPC gives me as a reward?
No, you CAN'T mod unique weapons that NPCs give you as question completion rewards. These are already pretty powerful weapons and have unique characteristics - you won't miss being able to install mods on them. I don't want to spoil what they are. :-)

What does the "Roll to Reload" weapon modifier do?
It means that every time your character rolls on the ground, the weapon (if selected) will add a couple bullets to its magazine, even if you have zero ammo for that weapon. Do note that it will do so up to the point the magazine or clip is fully reloaded ONCE, not beyond that capacity.

So for example, if your rifle has a 20-round magazine or a 6-round clip, and it's emptied and you have n more ammo, you can then repeatedly roll your character on the ground, adding a couple bullets each roll, until the magazine or clip is full. This can be invaluable. esp. in areas where you don't find other easy ways to gain more ammo.

How do I reach juicy item X, which is behind a bunch of boulders and has a bundle of dynamite sticks by it? Do I light the dynamite? Do I shoot the dynamite?
Whlie in some situations, you may be able to use your ship's cannons to demolish the boulders - if they're in range of the ship - in most cases you'll need grenades to blow up the boulders and reach the loot. If you don't have the grenades ability (weapon?) yet, you might jot a note to remember to return to the area later on when you do.

If you see a small bundle of dynamite sticks by a pile of boulders, it's meant more as an explanatory icon as to how to get past the boulders -- you have to blow up the boulders. The dynamite image is not "really" a bundle of dynamite sticks that you can interact with. :) This could probably be made more obvious to the player.
World Navigation FAQ
What are my Fast Travel options? Whom do I talk to? How do I activate Fast Travel?
  • Fathership (via shop NPC, north side; choose 2nd answer, "to go somewhere") ---> to Any Fuel Station. NOTE: On the map, it's easier/less clumsy to use LEFT CURSOR/RIGHT CURSOR keys to toggle/auto-center crosshair through your available fuel stations.

  • Any Fuel Station (via NPC; again, choose 2nd answer, "to go somewhere") ---> to Fathership or Any Other Fuel Station

  • Player Ship, when you're at its Helm (via Map; center crosshair back on Fathership) ---> to Father Ship. NOTE: I don't think you can Fast Travel from your ship to a fuel station. I will tweak this if I'm remembering wrong.

  • Player via Moth call (no moth energy required) ---> moth carries you back to your Skyship. NOTE: Very useful on large island groups if you've lost track of where you parked your ship. :) Also, a constant game saver if a game bug traps you in a a fenced/gated area by mistake. Note that players report this won't work if your character has a crate "locked" in her hands -- i.e., Luma moth won't carry you if you're carrying a crate.

  • "Dead" Player via moth call (moth energy required - the tiny white hearts in lower left corner of interface) ---> moth carries you back to your Skyship, where you respawn

A fence or retractable gate closed behind or around me, or some animal is blocking my way, and I can't get out! What do I do?
This most often seems to occur when you have cleared the enemies from an island cluster, and the game then "spawns in" friendly NPCs, their livestock and some building structures such as fencing and rails. Most likely you'll have unlocked your moth buddy by the time something like this happens.

If so, on keyboard, press and hold C key to use your moth to fast travel to your Skyship or (I think?) to the Father Ship. This is not necessarily ideal, especially if you had to fight a long way on an island to reach where you were locked in by a fence or gate. But for now, this seems the only workaround available to at least let you continue playing.

Note that some players report that if the character is holding a resource crate when the fence locks her in, the moth won't be able to transfer the character back to the skyship. In that case, you'll have to exit the game.

Why can't I interact with these large bird nests? What are the nests for?
The bird nests scattered through the areas actually comprise a separate Fast Travel system that you unlock during a later storyline quest. Once unlocked, you can catch a ride from nest-to-nest via a friendly Giant Bird. :)
Until you complete that storyline quest, you won't be able to interact with/use the bird nests, so just ignore them until then. I think this could be better explained in-game. :)

UPDATE: The July 15 patch added a nest interaction dialogue to read while the player is unable to summon the bird.

Can I fast travel to locations other than the Father Ship?
[thanks to EDSB on Discord]
Yes, you can fast travel to any fuel station once you've visited it. Follow these steps:
  1. On the Father Ship, just speak to the shop attendant on the north side of the ship, east of your ship's docking area, and choose the 'I want you to take me somewhere' text dialogue.
  2. This will pull up the map view on your tablet.

  3. Align the crosshairs on the distant fuel station you'd like to travel to. These are marked by a white fuel can icon with an X on it. This is explained in the map legend in the upper right corner, but honestly, I never noticed that. :)
  4. On keyboard/mouse, press Spacebar to be prompted to travel to the fuel station for a small fee. Press spacebar a second time to confirm the fast travel to that gas station.
  5. Note that you can also fast travel FROM any fuel station. Just talk to the NPC that's inside each station - he can be a little bit hard to see.
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BlumeNation Aug 18 @ 11:20pm 
can you tell me when the bird quest is? spoiler free but there is no info when you get the quest out there right now; name of quest would be fine bc then you can check journal without spoilers in a sense
SIlentBlade45 Oct 23, 2022 @ 2:29pm 
Where do I find parts?
Comandre Dec 31, 2021 @ 9:34am 
where do i find stone
xXYT-SQUIDG4M3R_2014_URMOM-TTVXx Oct 10, 2021 @ 5:55am 
What weapons can I use against the swarm for my first trip?
Xibay Aug 5, 2021 @ 1:55am 
Fast travel now changed to just choosing a fuel station from map. No need to talk to clerk anymore.
pierox Jul 31, 2021 @ 3:22am 
so the statue is bugged ? because the number is 2.4.2 and nothing happened :/
сиджейка Jul 19, 2021 @ 12:14am 
In the danger world (idk in english, there are fckin' monsters) on the islands.
Mingau Jul 18, 2021 @ 2:24pm 
where do i get silver?
⎛⎝Z⎠⎞ Jul 18, 2021 @ 8:18am 
BlackjackGT  [author] Jul 18, 2021 @ 8:12am 
>>any got the numbers for the gate quest?

Do you mean the Statue where you interact with it to put in three numbers, after island provides 3 cryptic hints? (and then there's some good loot behind the area that unlocks.