In-game bonuses are effects that affect player ships by either making modules/armours of a certain type cheaper or giving them a slight bonus in some other aspect.
Currently there are multiple ways to gain bonuses in the campaign game.
Hereditary bonuses are effects given to players and NPC factions by the main (first) design on their coat of arms, having more than one decal on the coat of arms does not give multiple bonuses as only the first design counts. Note that some decals do not give a bonus. These decals and their respective bonuses include:
- A Ram's Head (allows players to build a grand ram, campaign only)
- A Tower (stone backwall has 50% more HP)
- A Wheel (ship commands ready at double speed)
- An Eagle (cannons get double accuracy)
- A Tree (20% more wooden backwall HP)
- A Rat (injured crew do not slow down)
- A Lion (crew/boarders reload their guns faster)
- A Crown (cities are instantly conquered after battles, campaign only)
- An Anvil (steel armour has 1.50x pierce/blast resistance)
- A Mountain (suspendium chambers can lift 30% more weight)
- Waves (fires put out twice as fast)
- A Wrench (repairs are 50% faster)
- A Dragon (start with ability to train Dragonriders; $3000 per and fairly slow construction time for a controllable Dragon as an Airship)
- A Harpoon (increased money/research bonuses from defeating encounters; unclear whether this affects whether/which bonus is awarded)
(These bonuses are only found in campaign and are unlocked by capturing a city, they do not negate hereditary bonuses.) As of 2019, conquering cities doesn't seem to convey bonuses.
Successfully attacking and defeating encounters found on the campaign map (pirates, monsters, etc) can sometimes convey bonuses, rather than a money or research-point award.
As an example, the Mad Scientist is able to provide +30% blast damage (by far the most valuable benefit), the right to build Fleshcrackers, the right to use Heavy Steel Armour, the right to build Computers, or a flat Research point bonus.
If a bonus gives the right to build/use something that's also covered by Technological research, the bonus is NOT considered equivalent to having the technology. Being awarded Heavy Steel Armour, as in the previous example, would not allow researching the specialized options past Advanced Metallurgy.