From Elite Wiki


This is just a basic oxp that increases the chance of an encounter with pirates outside the space lanes and in deep space. This is the area were the pirates start their career and do their combat practice. Some of these pirates still have a clean status as they never have been caught in the action by an official copper or never let a victim escape to report the crime.

Minimum version requirement Oolite 1.74 (version 1.3)

Little Bear's famous words:

"Even pirates need to sleep / rest / make repairs etc. As they're offenders or fugitives, it make sense for them to park up outside the space lanes once they've filled their holds. The Captain of a pirate Python may perhaps have a fixed 'meeting point' way outside the space lanes. He may meet up with fellow criminals who have Clean records. The booty is transferred and the 'fence' takes it to the station in return for a cut of the profits. Naturally you don't want to do this sort of thing in the Space Lanes were a passing Cop might notice and give the 'fence' an offender tag (ruining his usefulness). A pirate might also have to shut down his main reactor to fix battle damage. It would be suicide to do that the space lanes where any passing Cop or Hunter might blast your helpless craft apart. I'd vote for quite a few pirates outside the space lanes.

This explains why traders tend to stick to the space lanes. At least they are patrolled by Cops. Even in an Anarchy there at least a chance that a bounty hunter might help you out or a fellow trader hear your distress call and come to your hail. But outside the space lanes, if you do run into a band of ruffians, there's nobody about to hear your screams..."

Background of this oxp

The original Elite was written for slow computers that could not cope with too much action. So ships were only added near the player's location. When the player left them behind they were removed from the system. (Player-centred game.)

Oolite was developed for much faster computers. Initially the system is populated. Then the player is put in the middle of it. A lot of action happens in places the player cannot see.

But more ships mean more calculations, so a choice was made to place ships along the routes a player is likely to travel (i.e., the space lanes: from the witch point beacon to the planet, and, to a lesser extent, from the planet to the sun.) Outside the lanes space is normally quite empty. (Ships spotted outside the lanes were probably added by some other OXP.)

DeepSpacePirates.OXP (DSP) was designed to add ships outside the space lanes--based on the player's location, direction and speed. Random ships can be encountered anywhere in the universe, bringing a realism to the player's experience.

Without this OXP the area outside the space lanes is free of piracy. Players often make a small detour and leave the lanes to avoid lurking pirates within.

This OXP makes travel within the lanes a better option by increasing the player's chance of getting assistance from GalCop (Police) and/or from bounty hunters who are only too willing to make a kill. Leaving the lanes is more like a short-cut through a dark alley: no more guarantees of a risk-free flight.


Currently it adds pirates and asteroids. Frequency of adding depends on government type and distance to the spacelane. The chance of adding is much higher just outside the lanes than in deep space.


Latest version available on the Expansion Manager and here: Deep Space Pirates v1.9

Older versions:

Deep Space Pirates 1.3 For use with Oolite 1.74 until 1.78.

Version History

  • Version 1.9
Changes Library Config for AddOns settings from integer to boolean. (Dybal)
  • Version 1.8
Fixes bug when adding pirates. (Dybal)
  • Version 1.7
Removal of derelicts and asteroids created by the OXP can be controlled by Library OXP Interfaces Screen (F4). (Dybal)
  • Version 1.6
Don't remove created ships that were turned into derelicts. (Dybal)
  • Version 1.5
Raised minimum Oolite version to 1.80.
  • Version 1.4
Raised minimum Oolite version to 1.77.
  • Version 1.3
Adapted to Oolite 1.74.
  • Version 1.2
Adapted to Oolite 1.73.
  • Version 1.1
More pirates in bad systems. pirates now can have cargo.
  • Version 1.0
First version for oolite 1.72.


  • Space Crowds - a less player-centric version of Deep Space Pirates - and with a couple of amplifying oxp's

Quick Facts


Minimum Oolite versionCPU usage averageMemory usage averageGPU usage average

Version Released License Features Category Author(s) Feedback
1.9 2020-11-27 (C)2009-2014 Adds pirates in deep space Ambience OXPs Eric Walch BB-Link

Gameplay and Balance indicator