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Old Nov 09, 2010, 11:54 AM   #1
harmonic42
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5 Secret projects you can't live without.

If you had to pick 5 and only 5 secret projects you cannot live without, list them here and why. Ascent to Transcendance not included since that ends the game.


#1 - Weather Paradigm. Obvious choice. The sheer amount of stuff you can do with formers is amazing, and the more, the better. Hello extreme early game borehole supply crawlers. Overall not as powerful as the Cloning Vats, but is available at the start of the game, and thus, gets more mileage.

#2 - Cloning Vats. A close second. Seriously, if ever there was a "game changer" wonder in any sid meier game, the Cloning Vats are it. Instant boom in all cities all the time, and allows for guilt-free power and thought control. So not only do you have insanely cheap levels of population, but you can usually get enough +MORALE from social engineering so that every unit you make, every step you take, every move you make, is elite status.
...I'll be watching you.

#3 - Hunter-Seeker Algorithm SMAC version. Total immunity to probe teams. I'll take it.

#4 - Virtual World. More a convenience project than anything, but TERRIBLY CONVENIENT. Just pop a Network Node everywhere and watch the drones melt away.

#5 - Space Elevator. Besides the passive bonuses, orbital insertions are something I cannot live without in late game.
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Old Nov 09, 2010, 11:58 PM   #2
sendos
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I think there's already a topic like this, but what the heck. These projects aren't in a particular order, but I highly prefer them.

1. Human Genome Project - controlling social unrest from drones is important and I need those talents. Virtual world also helps but the other factions tend to grab it pretty quickly before I get it. Oh, and being immune to epidemics too (and nerve gas?).

2. Hunter Seeker algorithm - 'nuff said.

3. Empath Guild - very important if you wish to get more income as governor, that is if you can beat Lal.

4. The citizen's defence force, cloudbase academy, maritime control center, Command nexus, Cyborg Factory - the reason why I've combined these 5 projects into one is because they are equally important in improving the morale of my troops and doubling my base defences from all forms of attack. Get as many as you can and you will succeed.

5. Telepathic matrix - if you don't like restless drones.

There's a lot of good projects in this game, so don't be surprised that I missed a good one.
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Old Nov 10, 2010, 08:38 PM   #3
Wolf Dreamer
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Early game bore holes only allow you two mineral and two energy.

Being able to double the speed of terraforming operations(other than fungus removing) is quite useful to have though. The cost of the secret project is far less than the cost of having to make twice as many formers to get the same job done.

And the bore holes become more useful later on when you get the mineral cap, and later the energy cap to be released, so having them already made and placed about works well. It also helps at pissing off the environment and getting mind worms to attack you so you can kill them for energy and to level up your units, and you can also use it to heat up the planet faster and flood everyone else into oblivion if you go for that tactic.

The Virtual World is great, since you need to make network nodes everywhere anyway, just to get the lab bonus. Faster you research new techs, the better off you will be. And of course if you play University you get a free network node in each base, so that makes it even more valuable to you.

The top five secret projects early game, are different than the top five in later game of course. Anything that eliminates all drones, is of course better than something that simply reduces it.
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Old Nov 10, 2010, 08:43 PM   #4
Kilkakon
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I think the best project to have is the Ascent to Transcendence.
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Old Nov 10, 2010, 11:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by harmonic42 View Post
If you had to pick 5 and only 5 secret projects you cannot live without, list them here and why. Ascent to Transcendance not included since that ends the game.

#5 - Space Elevator. Besides the passive bonuses, orbital insertions are something I cannot live without in late game.
There's a tech that grants the same bonus, might be SMAX only though.

The morale trio (Command Nexus, Cyborg Factory and Cloudbase Academy) are ones I really hate missing out.
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Old Nov 11, 2010, 04:13 AM   #6
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The morale trio (Command Nexus, Cyborg Factory and Cloudbase Academy) are ones I really hate missing out.
Don't forget the sea equivalent.
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Old Nov 11, 2010, 12:01 PM   #7
harmonic42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilkakon View Post
I think the best project to have is the Ascent to Transcendence.
Quote:
Originally Posted by harmonic42 View Post
If you had to pick 5 and only 5 secret projects you cannot live without, list them here and why. Ascent to Transcendance not included since that ends the game.
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Old Nov 11, 2010, 05:24 PM   #8
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I was being silly.
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Old Nov 12, 2010, 12:04 AM   #9
JH24
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My favorite Projects (No particular order):


- Human Genome Project: I like the extra room it gives me to grow my bases. (If I'm playing Lal I would replace this with Empath Guild)

- Any Project from the "Morale" group. Command Nexus, Cloudbase Academy (Highest Priority), Cyborg Factory, Maritime Control Center (Lowest Priority).

- Ascetic Virtues/Cloning Vats): I love the extra growth it gives me and to be able to get those above "14 Pop" bases early.

- Supercollider/Theory of Everything: Can really be useful to my tech research, especially if I'm playing with Tech Stagnation on.

- The Space Elevator: Love the bonuses it gives.
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Old Nov 12, 2010, 10:27 AM   #10
civac
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My list:

1. Weather pardigm
50% faster terraforming is already overpowered. Add to this the ability to build condensers (lift nutrient restrictions), construct boreholes on ressource specials and raise/lower land and you are looking at a game breaking SP.

2. Hunter-Seeker-Algorithm (Smac only)
I wonder what the developers were thinking when they invented this. Probably, they weren't thinking at all.

3. Cloudbase Acadamy (Smax only)
See Hunter-Seeker-Algorithm.

4. Empath Guilds
Automatic infiltration of every other faction. Oh, and you are likely to become Governor as well. The main weakness of the SP is that people might gang up on you in a MP game if you build it.

5. Cloning Vats
Permanent Boom without drawbacks.
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Old Nov 12, 2010, 02:13 PM   #11
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1. Weather paradigm - its not just boreholes. Early rivers equals free +1 energy per square, and if you're stuck on a tiny island you can build more land. And get rid of useless rocky land, and sink enemy cities, and build epsilon mirrors, etc.

Boreholes scare me. Every game I make more than two I get global warming which does not end well. On the other hand, massive energy farm seem to be A-OK.

2. +1 talents

3. Orbital, though it comes quite late

4. Any of the +moral ones, though cyborg is the best (obviously)

5. Hunter-Gatherer. Because buying cities with 20 needlejets is annoyingly affordable, espcieally by the computer. Almost as bad as Civ3 flips where you just lose an entire army.

I also like the merchant exchange if I'm trying to be "mister money". +2 econ (+1 per square) plus merchant exchange both apply to boreholes, mirrors, and solar panels. I had one game where Morgan Industries had 500 energy and 1500 labs (and I didnt have supercollider, though I had the other one.)
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Old Nov 12, 2010, 03:05 PM   #12
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Yeah, if I'm morgans, Merchant exchange is almost a requirement. With an easy switch to "wealth," that city will be pumping out ridiculous energy at an early stage in the game.
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Old Nov 13, 2010, 01:46 PM   #13
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Yeah, if I'm morgans, Merchant exchange is almost a requirement. With an easy switch to "wealth," that city will be pumping out ridiculous energy at an early stage in the game.
Yes, but make sure you build it in your capital (they don't suffer any inefficiency) and make sure your capital has a hab complex, so you can collect "ridiculous" amounts of energy, as you put it.
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Old Nov 14, 2010, 04:39 AM   #14
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(serious face) I'ld agree with Cloudbase Academy being broken as Aerospace Complexes are one of the best facilities in the game. Most of the projects from the first two levels of tech are pretty vital too, e.g. Citizen's Defence Force makes defence a lot easier, Human Genome etc.

For quick kill games, Command Nexus is probably the only project that's necessary. Green strategies love Dream Twister too.
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Old Nov 14, 2010, 04:43 AM   #15
harmonic42
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I can live without those early projects, since command nexii and perimeter defenses are cheap and quick to build and you dont need every city to build troops.

But the weather paradigm is irreplaceable, and its effects last the entire game. Priceless project, that is. If I don't get it, I just restart :P
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Old Nov 14, 2010, 04:47 AM   #16
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Weather Paradigm is pretty awesome yeah. I like Citizen's Defence as it's great for ICS setups as each base just becomes a pain to take out.
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Old Nov 14, 2010, 05:14 AM   #17
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I agree with the importance of the Weather Paradigm. The decrease in terraforming time is a significant advantage whose importance does not diminish as the game continues.
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Old Nov 18, 2010, 01:58 AM   #18
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By the way, Harmonic's suggestion of the Cloning Vats being a good project is the only the case once you have got the tech that provides you with habitation domes and is also the tech to get if you want the Space Elevator (remembering later tech names is not one of my strengths in this game). Other than that, it's not so special.

Does anyone tend to ignore the planetary transit system or do they go for it? I don't find much use of it unless your faction has a lot of efficiency and you wish to send out more colony pods before the base limit starts biting into your efficiency.
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Old Nov 18, 2010, 05:21 AM   #19
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Does anyone tend to ignore the planetary transit system or do they go for it? I don't find much use of it unless your faction has a lot of efficiency and you wish to send out more colony pods before the base limit starts biting into your efficiency.
We used the PTS effectively in one demogame to win a diplomatic victory. We kept sending out a lot of sea pods. It turns out that despite the manual, it is possible to build sea bases in trenches and ocean squares. Diplomatic victory was the quickest way to victory in that game with a CMN enhanced AI and customized map and setup.
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Old Nov 18, 2010, 09:10 AM   #20
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Hmmm...
SMAC Hunter-seeker algorithm. I usually don't do much with probes anyways, so this is one less area I need to think about. Plus the movie and quote are cool.
Empath guild for diplomacy

After that, I'm not sure what I can't live without. Maybe nano factory, again for quote/movie, or xenoempathy dome, since I'm still playing at the level where mindworms can be effective.
And the space elevator video in SMAC is much better than in Civ IV. Admittedly, at my level of play/experience, I can afford to choose wonders for entertainment rather than strategic value.
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