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Crime refers to illegal activities that can be committed by the criminally-minded throughout the settled systems. If you are caught doing an illegal action by a witness you will incur a bounty and they will report your crime to local guards who will attempt to arrest you. When confronted by a guard you will have several different options to resolve the matter. Resisting an arrest will always turn the guards and NPCs with high responsibility in the area hostile towards you.

Bounties are tracked separately for each settlement and you will only incur a bounty in the settlement in which you commit a crime. Bounties can be paid off using a Self-Service Bounty Clearance machine, which are often found next to Mission Boards.

The four main companions, Sarah Morgan, Barrett, Sam Coe, and Andreja will react angrily to any major crimes you commit, such as assault or murder. They will flee the scene and later confront you about your behaviour. Your disposition with them will be greatly reduced.


A red icon next to an item's name when looking at it indicates that it is owned. Taking it while being detected by another person will incur a bounty. Successfully sneaking while committing a crime will prevent you from being detected.

Regardless of whether a crime is witnessed, the Status page in the menu keeps track of all your criminal activities. Each illegal activity will incur a specific penalty in credits that is added to your bounty.

Crime Description Bounty
Thievery Taking an owned item is considered a crime, but reading an owned book or note is not. Placing a stolen item into a container can also be treated as stealing. A stolen item will be permanently marked in the inventory with a red icon. Viewing items in an owned container, taking your own items out of an owned container, and taking items from a dead person are not considered stealing.

If you steal an item of very low value, the guards may deem that it's not worth their time pursuing you and will merely warn you not to cause any further trouble.

When caught stealing an item, the item's owner will attempt to take it back from you before raising the alarm. Failure to give the item back will incur a bounty.

Half of the stolen item's value, rounded down.
Pickpocketing Pickpocketing can only be performed when you have Rank 1 of the Theft skill. Activating a person while sneaking will allow you to view their inventory and take any unequipped items. The chance of being detected is determined by the total mass of the items taken and your Stealth level. Credits, although weightless, also have a relatively high chance of being detected.

A crime is only committed when attempting to take an item. Simply viewing an person's inventory will not incur a bounty.

Hacking Being caught attempting to pick the lock of an owned door or container results in a bounty, even if nothing was taken. Whether or not the lockpicking attempt was successful is irrelevant.

A crime is only committed when attempting to hack a lock. Activating the hacking minigame without taking any action is legal and will not incur a bounty.

Trespassing When trespassing you will receive one warning and be told to leave the area. If you linger and continue to trespass, you will receive a bounty after 30 seconds. At this point, witnesses will call for the guards or attack you. Certain areas in the game will immediately incur a bounty if you are caught trespassing.
Smuggling Being caught with contraband from a scanner will incur a bounty. When scanned in orbit, there is a percentage chance for you to evade the scanners which is dictated by the level of shielded cargo your ship has versus the mass of the contraband in stored in cargo. The more extraneous shielded cargo space your ship has, the better your chance at evading detection. Contraband held in your personal inventory will always be detected during a scan. It is also possible to use Scan Jammers to evade detection.

The security checkpoint in Neon requires you to pass through a scanner that detects the presence of Aurora, but not other contraband. If you are detected smuggling Aurora either in your inventory, or by attempting to physically carry it through the scanner, the guards will immediately attempt to arrest you. The checkpoint is enclosed, so it's not possible to bypass the scanner directly, but it's possible to boost jump from the walkways in Ebbside to the spaceport without raising suspicion.

Piracy Holding other ships in space to ransom will incur a bounty. 1000
Assault Initiating combat or using a hostile power on another person will incur a bounty. Witnesses to assault will cry out to alert others and call for guards.

Self-defense against an unprovoked assault is legal and not considered a crime. Guards will often flee the scene rather than engage to assist you, however.

Murder Killing a non-hostile person is considered one of the most serious of crimes. Guards will attempt to arrest you on sight. Causing environmental deaths, such as drowning or falling to death, will not count as murder. 15000

Consequences of Committing Crimes[edit]


Each type of crime will incur a bounty. See above for the bounty amounts associated with types of crime.

Guards in most settlements will attempt to arrest you, unless you engage in severe violence against others in which case they will respond in kind. In some settlements, such as the Red Mile, guards will never attempt to arrest you. They will always engage you in combat as soon as an alarm is raised.

Contraband and Stolen Items[edit]

Contraband are items that have been deemed illegal in the Settled Systems, such as the drug Aurora, mech parts, human organs, xenowarfare technology, and more. Security will scan you for contraband when orbiting certain planets, and will attempt to arrest you if any is detected in your inventory or in your ship's cargo. Contraband items in your inventory are marked with a yellow icon. Companions will not carry contraband for you.

Stolen items are items that have been illegally taken from their owner. Stolen items in your inventory will be marked with a red icon to indicate that the item was stolen, even if you were able to steal the item without being detected. As long as this tag is present, the item is considered stolen. Furthermore, standard merchants will not buy stolen items or contraband. However, Trade Authority merchants and certain other characters act as fences who are willing to buy such merchandise. The stolen flag can be cleared from items by selling the item to a fence and then buying it back, effectively serving as a means to launder stolen goods.

Any stolen items or contraband in your possession will be confiscated by the guards if you are arrested and do not bribe the guard to let you keep them. All items that are confiscated as a result of your arrest will be stored in a stolen items locker in the jail of the settlement. The chest is locked with an expert or master lock. Reclaiming confiscated items will not remove the status on them.

Getting Arrested[edit]

The response to your crimes will vary based on the authority that challenges you. If you have a bounty, usually guards from the settlement in which the bounty applies will attempt to arrest you. You can ask the guards to ignore a very low bounty. However, you will have to ask every guard you speak with to overlook the crime to stop them from taking further action.

Generally there are various ways to respond to an arrest, such as paying a fine, bribing the guards, going to jail, or resisting arrest. Not all options are available with every authority, and some will forgo an arrest altogether and simply turn hostile as soon as you are detected committing a crime.

When meeting the conditions to begin Deep Cover, UC Security guards who confront you will be under orders to transfer you to the UC Vigilance. Other than asking them questions about what is going on, you will only have the option to either go with the guard or resist the arrest. When you go with the guard, they will process your arrest in the normal manner, but you will be transported on board the UC Vigilance to meet with Commander Kibwe Ikande. After this, they will resume the standard arrest procedure should you be confronted again.

Paying the Bounty[edit]

If you choose to pay off your bounty, you will pay the requisite amount of credits for the infraction and be transported to the nearest jail. All stolen items and contraband in your possession will be seized and put into the jail's stolen items locker. In certain jurisdictions, such as Paradiso, the guards will state they don't care about illicit goods and will not confiscate anything from you.

If your bounty is very low, the guard will simply deduct the fine from your current credit balance on the spot and take no further action.

Bribing a Guard[edit]

This option is available at Rank 1 of the Negotiation skill. For an additional 2500 credits on top of your bounty, you can clear your name but keep hold of your stolen goods and contraband. As with the regular process, you will be transported to the nearest jail after paying the guard.

If you choose this option in a jurisdiction that does not confiscate items, the guard will simply tell you to keep your money and will process your arrest as though you had chosen to pay your bounty in the normal manner.

Going to Jail[edit]

If you are unable or choose not to pay your bounty, you and your ship will be transported to the nearest jail and your stolen goods will be seized and placed in the jail's stolen items locker. You do not have to actually serve your sentence; several days will immediately pass and you are free to go right after being transported. However, you will lose an amount of XP proportional to the bounty you incurred. You cannot lose a level or any skills, however it is possible to incur an XP deficit in which you cannot gain any more XP until the deficit has been increased to 0.

The only valid jails are in New Atlantis, Akila City, Cydonia, Neon, ECS Constant, HopeTown, and Paradiso. Getting arrested and going with the guard in any other location will transport you to the nearest valid jail, despite some locations visibly having their own jails.

Resisting Arrest[edit]

Resisting arrest will cause all guards in the area to attack you. If you change your mind, yielding to a guard by sheathing your weapon may prompt them to stop attacking and to arrest you again, presenting the same options. Sometimes, you cannot yield, and the guards will continue to attack.

Persuading a Guard[edit]

If your bounty is very low, you can simply tell the guard that you do not have the means to pay it. The guard will deem you not to be worth the effort of pursuing and will take no further action. The bounty will remain, however, and speaking to guards will initiate an arrest once again.


UC Security[edit]

UC Security's home is New Atlantis, but also maintain peace within the associated territories of Cydonia, Gagarin Landing, New Homestead, Deimos Staryard, and The Den. Their base of operations is the UC Security Office at the spaceport in New Atlantis, where the city's own force is led by Sergeant Yumi.

Freestar Collective Security[edit]

Freestar Collective Security is headquartered in The Rock in Akila City, but also operate in HopeTown, Stroud-Eklund Staryard, The Clinic, and Trident Staryard. Several locations appear to have their own sub-divisions of the wider force:

Akila City Security is led by Marshal Daniel Blake, and are based within The Rock. HopeTown Security is led by the ranger Nia Kalu, and have a small station near the entrance to the HopeTech building. Freestar Security protect The Clinic, and are led by the ranger Ben Armistead from his office in the main lobby. The Freestar Collective Embassy in New Atlantis also employ their own personal security force and fall under the purview of Ambassador Evangeline Radcliff.

Neon Security[edit]

Neon Security are led by Owen Dexler and fall under the direct control of Administrator Benjamin Bayu. Their peacekeepers are openly disdainful of citizens and visitors, and their primary directive is to prevent the illegal transfer of Aurora out of the city. They are based out of the Neon Security HQ in Neon Core.

Paradiso Security[edit]

Paradiso is outside the jurisdiction of the United Colonies and the Freestar Collective. As such, the resort employs a private security force to maintain peace led by Chief Jiro Sugiyama. As Paradiso is independent, there are no laws regarding the possession of stolen items or contraband, and guards will not confiscate these goods when you are arrested. Their base of operations is a small station located at the resort's spaceport.

Red Mile Security[edit]

Red Mile's security force is made up of paid Ecliptic mercenaries, led by Stocker. They are extremely unfriendly to visitors, but will not cause any problems provided you don't cause trouble. Unlike other forces, they will not make any attempt to arrest you when an alarm is raised. Instead, they will immediately become hostile.

ECS Constant Security[edit]

The ECS Constant have their own peacekeepers to maintain order within the colony. By their own admission, they are not trained to defend against outside threats, but will engage you in combat if provoked. There are no fines on the ECS Constant, so if you are arrested by a guard you will only have the option to go to jail or to attack as they will refuse any offer to pay a fine.

Private Security Firms[edit]

Infinity Security[edit]

Infinity LTD are one of the largest corporations in New Atlantis, and so have their own security force protecting their corporate headquarters. Unlike most other forces, however, they will immediately become hostile when an alarm is raised.

Ryujin Security[edit]

As one of the largest corporations operating in Neon, Ryujin Industries employ their own private security force. Usually their guards act identically to regular Neon Security, even sending you to Neon Security HQ should you pay a fine or submit to them. During "Background Checks", however, they will act differently if they catch you trespassing. The only options available in this instance are to persuade the guard to look the other way, or be detained in Ryujin Tower's security room for questioning.

If you successfully persuade the guard, you may freely roam the floor you are on without challenge from any of the guards. But guards will immediately become hostile if you are caught on another level. If you fail to persuade the guard, you will be escorted to the security room. While detained, you can escape by either hacking the lock on the door, pickpocketing the key from a nearby guard, or climbing through a hatch in the ceiling to the ventilation shaft. After escaping, the alarm will be raised and the guards will be placed on high alert.

Slayton Security[edit]

Slayton Aerospace are one of the largest corporations in Neon and employ their own private security force, reporting directly to CEO Nicolaus Slayton. Unlike most other forces, however, they will immediately become hostile when an alarm is raised.

Guard Dialogue[edit]


Confronted by a guard after incurring a bounty:

"Hold it right there! You're under arrest!"
"Hold it right there! You're in all kinds of trouble!"
"You're under arrest! No sudden moves!"
  • I'll pay the fine.
"Smart move. Now come along with us. We'll take any contraband and stolen property, and you'll be free to go."
"You're coming with us. We'll be taking any contraband and stolen property you have on you."
"Any stolen property or contraband you're carrying will be confiscated."
"I guess you're smarter than you look"
"Good. We don't need any more trouble today."
  • [Attack] You won't take me alive! (Guards turn hostile)
"We've got a live one here!"
"You want to do this the hard way, huh?"
"Why do I always get the dumb ones..."

Recognized by a guard when having a low bounty:

"Looks like you've got some fines to clear up."
  • I give up. Do what you have to do.
"I wish everyone was as honest as you."
"It's hardly worth the trouble of taking you in, but... all right. Come with me."
"It's a pretty minor offense, but... suit yourself. Let's go."
  • I can't pay the fine right now.
"That's fine. Just make sure you take care of this soon, and don't get yourself in any more trouble."

When challenged over a stolen item:

"If you know what's good for you, you'll hand it over. Now."
"Are you trying to get your ass kicked? Hand it over."
"You think this is funny? I'll show you "funny.""
"Enough of this. Give it back. Now."
"Put that back, right now!"

When handing back a stolen item:

"Was that really so hard? Now get the hell out of here."
"You're lucky I don't feel like doing paperwork today."
"You caught me in a good mood, but try that again and we'll have a problem."
"Nice try. Now get lost."

When pursued by guards:

"Stop, in the name of the law!"
"Don't be stupid. Stop, now!"
"You're making things harder for yourself."

UC Security[edit]

Confronted by a guard after incurring a bounty:

"Stop right there! UC Security!"
"UC Security! You're under arrest!"
"UC Security! Don't make any sudden moves!"
  • I give up. Do what you have to do.
"UC Security always gets you in the end. Remember that."
  • You won't take me alive! (Guards turn hostile)
"Have it your way!"

Confronted by a guard at the beginning of Deep Cover: "I've got special orders. You're coming with me. Prepare for immediate transport to our vessel."

  • I'm ready.
"Smart decision. Stand by to be transferred."
  • [Attack] I'm not going anywhere with you!
"Have it your way!" (Guards turn hostile)
  • You going to tell me what's going on here?
"I've been authorised to tell you that you're being transferred to the UC Vigilance. You'll find out more when you get there. Other than that, I'm not at liberty to divulge any additional information."
  • What about my ship?
"We have orders to transport you and your vessel to your final destination, the UC Vigilance. Any deviation from those orders on your part will be considered an act of hostility and will be met with aggressive force."

When pursued by guards:

"New Atlantis security! Stop!"
"UC Security! Give up now!"
"UC Security! Get back here now!"

When engaged with by guards:

"UC Security! Stand down!"
"UC Security! Surrender immediately!"
"Stand down now or you will be neutralized!"

Freestar Collective Security[edit]

Confronted by a guard after incurring a bounty:

"By the authority of the Freestar Collective, stand down!"

When pursued by guards:

"Freestar Security! Stop right now!"
"Freestar Security! Stop running!"
"FC Security! Stand down at once!"

Neon Security[edit]

Confronted by a guard after incurring a bounty:

"Neon Security! You're under arrest!"
"Freeze! Neon Security!"
"Wait... You're on the wanted list!"
  • I'm happy to pay the fine but maybe you don't need to search me for contraband...
"Searching a fine... upstanding citizen like you would be a waste of time. Still gotta go to the station, though."
"I can't remember if I already searched you. I must've, right? Let's go back to the station. Heh."
"You know, I can just tell you've got no contraband. Let's head to the station, though."
"I thought for sure you had contraband. Guess not. I'll still have to take you in."

When pursued by guards:

"Neon Security! Stop immediately!"
"Stand down immediately!"

Ryujin Security[edit]

Confronted by a guard when trespassing:

"Ryujin security. No sudden moves."
"You're not authorized to be here. I'm holding you for trespassing."
"You don't belong here. I'm taking you down for questioning."
  • Can't we work this out? I just left something here.
"Nice try, but the building is off limits. You sure didn't get in by any authorized means.
If persuasion is successful:
"Look, I'll trust you, but if any of us catch you on another floor, we'll shoot first and ask questions later.
If persuasion is unsuccessful:
"Enough talking. You're coming with me."
  • Fine. I'll cooperate.
"Good, because I wasn't giving you a choice."
"All right. Let's go."
"Smart. Now move it"
  • You won't take me alive!

When pursued by guards:

"Stop running if you know what's good for you!"
"Don't be stupid. Stop, now!"

While trespassing:

"No authorization, no access."
"Authorized personnel only. Get lost"
"You're not allowed here."
"You're not supposed to be here."

After escaping detention:

"Be on the lookout. Intruder has escaped."

Paradiso Security[edit]

Confronted by a guard after incurring a bounty:

"Under the authority of the Paradiso Group, you're under arrest!"
"Stop! Paradiso Security! We can handle this without making a scene!"
"Paradiso Security! We don't want any trouble. You need to stop what you're doing and come with us."
  • I'll pay the fine, but let's leave illicit goods out of this...
"Keep your bribe. I don't care about contraband. We're outside UC and FC jurisdictions. But you're still coming with me to pay your fine."
  • I'll pay whatever fine you're charging.
"Thank you for cooperating. Pay your fine, and after a short stay in our detention cell, you'll be allowed to go. No need to search for contraband."
"Good. We're not concerned with contraband here, so no need to check you or your ship. Just come with us, do your time, and we'll sort this all out."
  • [Attack] You won't take me alive! (Guards turn hostile)
"Take 'em down! Careful of the guests!"
"Code White! Protect the other guests at all costs!"

When pursued by guards:

"Paradiso Security! Get back here!"
"Paradiso Security! Stop running! You're only making this worse!"

ECS Constant Security[edit]

Confronted by a guard after incurring a bounty:

"Stop what you're doing! You're under arrest."
"Hold on a second... You're going to need to come with us."
"You violated our security directives. Stand down immediately."
"What's going on here? Come to turn yourself in?"
  • You're right. I made a mistake. I'll do the time.
  • [Attack] I'd like to see you try to restrain me! I'm out of here! (Guards turn hostile)
  • Look, how about I just pay my fine and you can let me go?
"That's not an option here. How about you just come with me, nice and easy?"
"Your money's no good here. You've got to come with me."
"That's not how we do things here. Now, this will be easier if you come in an orderly fashion."