Hear that ringin' in your ears, son? Let me introduce you to the ground.
The Das Kochenhammer is a giant, airborne zeppelin manned and guarded by the remnants of the United States Air Force, the Sky Pirates. It is most frequently visited for the unique rewards afforded by its four boss mobs, three of which cannot be obtained anywhere else in the game.
The Das can fly to most any sky tile and linger there. The only locations it's locked out of are the Necropolis Gate/El/Heart/Floodplain, Ashen Valley, and Mt. Fisty. Your best bet for finding it quickly is someone with Clairvoyance, who can check all the sky tiles very quickly using their speedy . The Das pauses for long intervals between movements, so once it's found, it's easy to board.
The Das no longer has its own sky tile; now, it must be docked with, and it sports two docking options.
- The Landing Gantry is the old landing spot; an empty tile with a voxguard Platinum leading into the Das, near the ship's top.
- The Assault Platform is a new landing spot that is only accessible by mosquito ultralights and Flight mutants. It sports a sky pirate voxguard, which is easier than a vox platinum, and also opens into near the bottom of the ship (where the good stuff is).
All mobs on the Das follow the general sky raider template, which means that they all cannot bebed under any circumstances, and all give some degree of FC/W-U rep upon being killed. Upon death, you will usually find several nanites and medium trauma kits on their person. All of the boss mobs only reward their kill journal (and unique reward) to one person in the group that attacks them. This means that if you have multiple people who want the rewards, you'll have to run the Das a few times for everyone to get them.
Sky Pirates - Sky Pirates have mediocre armor and only wield assegais. They swarm intruders and mostly serve as trash mobs in front of the bosses.
Sky Raiders - Not to be confused with the actual "sky raider" mob, there are two bosses here who are also called sky raiders, each equipped with a contingent of sky pirates. One wields a luftspeer and the other a sonic scalpel. Killing the luftspeer boss will grant you a luftspeer of your own, while the sonic scalpel boss will give you a Flughammer. Neither are good compared to other endgame weapons, but they look pretty cool and are very rare.
Sky Commissar - Wears endgame armor, wields a 12mm with chudstoppers for unsoakable bleed damage, and has absolutely monstrous stats. His feints in particular are extreme; even at 30+ brains, they will stun you. He can also spew. Usually the most dangerous mob on the Das; a very serious threat. Once killed, he awards one of the most valuable armors in the entire game, so it's worth it!
Sky Captain - Essentially a weaker version of the above Commissar. Drops a moderate strength armor on death that looks very fly and is a serious contender for rarest armor in the game.
Electric Commissar - A new addition to the Das roster, he will hunt intruders down in his zone, much like Zardoz in the Necropolis. Also wields a partially unsoakable Flughammer and stern armor, but his stats seem to be less impressive than the other commissar. Gives the 400 XP award for killing any commissar, but no other rewards.
Running the Das
The Das requires preparation, but so long as everyone in the party knows what they're doing, three people is enough for a Das run. It respawns 24 real-life hours after it's blown up, so there are plenty of chances for everyone to get the reward. Much of the Das is a spoiler, but here are some must-haves for free:
- A good picker, smart enough to get through VoxGuard Platinums in a hurry, because there's one on every significant door in the Das. About 35 hack and 35 locksmith is optimal.
- Endgame or late-midgame fighters. Since bullet damage is undodgeable and fights can be rather long, builds with high Endurance will have a significantly easier time.
- Bullet armor. If the pirates are a danger to you, you have no business running the Das, so it's just the stiff bullet damage from the bosses you need to worry about.
- A good combination is a caballero jacket and pants, layered with reinforced kevlar, plasteel, or even studded armordillo, with a double-ceramic exohelmet for your head.
- An experienced leader. The Das has some nasty surprises, and it is much easier when led by someone who knows where to go and what to do.
- Lots of players who have hit endgame have also done the Das at least once. Ask around, it won't be long until you've found someone who can school you on the strats.
- There is a nice bonus available for returning to the Das, different from the unique awards, but it is very heavy. If you wish to take advantage of this, bring someone with good Brawn and a trail pack or two.
One last chunk of advice: kill the Captain last, be ready to move once you've done the deed, and don't let your picker die.