RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT
You now earn “tech points” along with scrap. When you die, these points will permanently earn you “tech levels”. Each tech level lets you choose a new aero, weapon, or special that you will be able to build and equip. You do not lose unlocked technologies OR scrap when you die, but you lose everything you have built and equipped like before.
The game was aching for some kind of progression and gradual reveal of all the aeros and weapons rather than throwing everything right in front of you from the beginning.