The Drop Pod is a short-range personnel deployment spacecraft operated by the Deep Rock Galactic Corporation. It is used to transport parties of dwarves and their mining cargo between the Space Rig and Hoxxes IV.
The exterior of a Drop Pod consists of tough, metallic red material similar to other DRG company equipment. Its fuselage is capped by a thruster at the top and large auger at the base, which is used to drill into the caverns. On arrival, its safety barrier retracts and an access ramp is extended to the surface. Once all dwarves have departed the Pod prepares for launch and returns back through the entry tunnel. If the mission requires it, the M.U.L.E. will be deployed from a small storage port on the side of the pod.
After the primary mission quota has been met, a red button will appear on the M.U.L.E. and the launch buttons on the Mine Head and Mobile Refinery will become active. Once pressed, Mission Control will launch a retrieval Drop Pod. Though the Pod attempts to land in a safe location nearby, return distance can range from between 40 meters to over 200.
Upon landing, the M.U.L.E. begins an uninterrupted march back to the extraction point while leaving a trail of blinking marker buoys for the player to follow. All player calls are ignored from that point onward. The return path will generally try to avoid scaling vertical faces but may do so anyway if other routes are significantly less efficient. That said it is not mandatory to follow the M.U.L.E.; players can take any path they wish to return to the Drop Pod. The Driller, using their Reinforced Power Drills, can simply bypass natural tunnels and dig a safe and efficient way. Once the M.U.L.E. reaches the pod, it will be retracted up into its storage port, while the pod opens the safety barrier for players to enter.
Once onboard the player must stand in the zone marked Safe or risk the possibility of being removed from the Pod by enemy action.
Whether or not players have successfully made it back onto the Drop Pod, it will launch after 5 minutes for standard missions, 3 minutes for Point Extraction missions, or 1 minute for Salvage Operations. However, for each player that successfully extracts, an additional amount of credits are rewarded. ( 150 Credits x Hazard Bonus per dwarf)
- The Drop Pod may land in such a way that its ramp is not easily accessible. When this occurs, traversal tools are often required to reach the Drop Pod, such as creating a bridge out of platforms. But note that platforms fired directly at the ramp will not form.
- The Drop Pod can be seen despawning as it flies back up the tunnel. The top of the tunnel can be seen, revealing bedrock.
- Once a mission is selected, if the player continuously moves in and out of the Drop Pod before the countdown can finish, the beeping of the timer will drop in pitch. Should the player continue this behavior, it will close and begin the mission suddenly, regardless of how long is left on the timer or whether or not the player is fully inside the Drop Pod