The Capsule is the most basic type of spaceship that a player can control. It houses the player's body.
Capsule or Pod is a 4m long egg shaped Starship with built in sub-light propulsion systems capable of performing warp.
Modern capsules (hydrostatic capsules) are highly advanced devices and must not be confused with basic escape pods or emergency capsules in the sense that a Hydrostatic Capsule's main purpose is not for emergency situations. The main purpose of a capsule is to allow the capsuleer to command a spaceship with his/her mind, eliminating the need to relay commands to ship crew. In order to do so, a capsule must board the other ship. Most modern ships in New Eden are designed to be capsule compatible.
A Hydrostatic Capsule houses a fluid tank filled with ectoplasmic liquid (also called "pod goo"), various life-support systems, advanced neural interfaces and a transneural burning scanner, in addition to a basic capacitor and propulsion units, all covered with minimal armor coating.
A Hydrostatic Capsule allows a capsuleer (pod pilot) to command a spaceship by issuing mental commands directly to the ship's control systems. This allows the capsuleer to command spaceships with greater efficiency, almost eliminates the human error factor and greatly reduces the crew size necessary for the operation of a ship. Bypassing the need to issue/relay commands to crew members when controlling a spaceship requires that the capsuleer remains in statis inside his pod. When inside a spaceship, the capsule links itself to the ships's mainframe, which effectively grants the total control of the ship to the capsuleer.
While most frigate sized ships require no crew when piloted by a capsuleer, as the ship size increases, so does the number of specialist required to keep the ship's systems functional. A capital ship still requires thousands of experts to function properly, even when piloted by a capsuleer.
Capsules also function as emergency escape vehicles in case the spaceship they are piloting is destroyed. A pod pilot may also willingly leave its ship behind while in space, but doing so leaves the ship vulnerable; another capsuleer may easily board the now-abandoned vessel and claim it.
Since YC 104, all hydrostatic capsules are fitted with transneural burning scanners, which is a crucial component for successful cloning of the capsuleer in case of hull-breach (also called pod kill). Thanks to the advances in cloning technology and FTL communications, another function of the capsule is to make the capsuleer effectively immortal, by scanning the brain patterns of the pod pilot in the moment of death, thus allowing near perfect memory replication, which is almost impossible in any other situation. When a capsule's hull is breached, which signals that the death of the pod pilot is imminent, the transneural burning scanner takes a snapshot of the capsuleer's brain while destroying the brain tissue during the process. The information is then relayed to a cloning station where the pilot has a clone prepared for this purpose and the brain structure is re-created based on the snapshot. Within seconds following his or her "death", the capsuleer awakens, safely, inside a clone reanimation unit.
Technically speaking, the capsule itself is a spaceship, with on-board capacitor and propulsion systems capable of initiating warp. But it must be stressed that the capsule is an extremely fragile vessel; its shield, armor and structure is designed not to withstand combat but to protect its contents against the depressurized, cold space.
Capsules do not offer any fitting options.
Their small size facilitates maneuvering and allows rapid acceleration, shortening the time required to initiate warp. Capsules have small signature radii which increases the locking time of any hostile ship.
Pod pilots may willingly destroy their pods, by initiating a self-destruct sequence while flying in a pod. This will kill the pilot inside the pod, just like any other pod destruction scenario (pod killed, podded) and even though the pilot's consciousness is transferred to another clone, any implants or clothing the pilot was carrying at the moment of death is lost.
In the past, when a character was deleted his pod used to be discarded to the hangar of the player corporation of which he was a member (if any). Those pods used to be available for trade on the escrow market as a form of curio (they are worthless in game as you always own one). However, with the replacement of escrow with the contract system, pods can no longer be contracted or sold via the traditional market.
Pods cannot be reprocessed.