As a player, once you have the mechanics of the rules down, you move onto building lists and figuring out what ships and upgrade card you want to run- an entire FUN part of the game is building, playing, and analyzing the different ship configurations out there.
But before that, there is one intermediary step- the focus of your list.
Are you a MASS list or a MOBILITY list?
Success depends on one or the other as a list combining the two won’t have the synergy to play competitively.
MASS relies on a lot of ships on the table- 5+ in a 100 point game. You fly in formation, line up ships in multiple fire-arcs and roll lots of dice at your opponent. Not a ton of upgrades or perhaps even named pilots so when you lose a ship there is not a major loss of points or reduction in dice that your list can put out.
On the opposite side is MOBILITY.
3-5 ships, perhaps fast, but not bound by flying in formation, where you are going to use speed and maneuverability to win.
Stealth lists, big ships, hunter packs, are all mobility lists where you are using the movement dial to get in a good firing position while keeping your opponent out of firing positions.
Are you mass or mobility?