To join the Pirate Guild, you'll need to have a correct reputation with the pirates (at least 1000 reputation points). All you will need to do is to go near a pirate base and comm. with it using ECS, asking to join. You won't need money (or a jumpdrive, unlike Yaki Armada). Being a member of the Guild will give you access to the Pirate News Network and to various features and missions. It will also slowly and automatically increase your global reputation amongst the pirates. Moreover, if a group of hostile independent pirates try to attack you, you can cancel their attack for free by using ECS.
The PNN can be read by any member of the Guild. Com-link a pirate station and select Guild News. It's a news system displaying recent important events happening in the Guild's territory. You'll see a report when a PB decide to invade a sector or to attack a military ship. Decisions of the Guild HQ will also be displayed here. Notice that PNN works in real time. Unlike the X3 BBS system, you do not need to quit and re enter a sector to see a new set of news (full of useless junk :p ). News are added and removed in real time. Announcements for the various contests held by the Guild are also posted on the PNN.
Important: It may take up to 2 game hours before the first news are displayed on the PNN. It's because there's nothing much to report, pirate bases are building up basic fleets and defenses before starting major operations.
The pirate mechanics are the best in the whole universe, everyone knows that. They can make a killing machine out of a poor unarmed M4. But it will cost you a hell lot of credits to do so. Nothing's for free, especially in the X-Universe. The two Independent Shipyards built by the plugin offer much more services than traditional shipyards. You can of course sell and repair your ships, you can also buy rare ship variants (looking for a Nemesis Raider?) and you can buy new upgrades, software and devices for your ships through ECS.
You're not the only guild member here. There's several other pilots fighting for the title of “Guild Leader” that only one pilot can keep. Each pilot of the Pirate Guild has his own experience level and ranking in the Guild. Each time a guild member (either you or an AI pirate pilot) successfully kill a target or fulfill a mission he will gain rank. The 10 Top Members are displayed in the Guild Communication Center.
This features implies a lot of things. First, only one member can control the Guild behaviors. So if you want to be the leader, you'll have to climb your way up to the top and to stay at the top. The method you will use is up to you ;)
Notice that a “Top 10” in the Guild is also a “Wanted List” for the police forces. Killing a member of this list may give you a nice amount of credits.
There's various ranks in the guild. The more advanced you are in the guild, the more services will be available from pirate bases.
Unlike most other scripts and plugins, Pirate Guild doesn't offer BBS mission (or static / click-me mission) that you have to accept to complete. Here, missions are dynamically generated, depending of what the Guild is doing. As an example, when a Pirate Base decides to attack an Argon Military Centaur, a news will be displayed in the PNN, and if you're in the same sector as this Pirate Base you'll also receive a broadcast message through ECS. You can decide to kill the Centaur yourself or to let the other members deal with the enemy. If you destroy the Centaur yourself, you'll get a bounty and experience points. Same applies with sector invasions or assassination missions. Helping pirates who are under attack will also give you money and XP. Sometimes you may destroy a guild target without even knowing it (you'll still get the reward, though). Oh, and even if you don't want to join a fight, you may still give it a look. You certainly won't get XP, but you'll still be able to collect some crates from the destroyed ships ;)
Notice that some of the raids sent be the pirate bases aren't displayed on the PNN. You'll be informed about those minor missions (like the attack of transport ships) only if you're in the same sector as the base who's launching the mission.
There's also some missions that will occur each time the plugin meet a given situation. As an example once you'll be a high rank Guild official, you may face assassinations attempts. And beware, some of those mercenaries are less stupid than you can think.
You'll sometimes find, on the PNN, announcements about contests being held, those events are a good way to make money and gain ships with unique abilities if you don't mind taking some (huge) risks. Here's a brief summary of the various contests:
This event is only available on in Pirate Bases not too far away from a Xenon sector (5 sectors) and it is by far the most dangerous, as a failure means death. You will be placed in a fast Split M5. Your goal will be to go to a specific Xenon sector and to collect as many crystals as possible in a given amount of time. Each collected crystal will give you 100.000 credits and if you succeed in collecting all the crystals before the time ran out, you'll either gain additional money or a special prize.
This event will take place in an “unknown” sector. You'll be placed in a fully equipped Pirate Nova Raider. You'll have to fight against successive waves of attackers each time stronger than the previous one. Each time you defeat a wave, you'll gain money and have the choice to quit or continue. If you successfully manage to destroy each wave you will either double your income or gain a special prize.