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MOO2 Darlok stories

Discussion in 'Other Civ-Related Games' started by neilkaz, Feb 10, 2013.

  1. neilkaz

    neilkaz Chieftain

    Joined:
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    Chicago Suburbs
    I'm starting a series of a few (maybe many) games as Darlok on what are typical settings for many of us, Huge/8/Impossible/Pre-Warp/Average Age/Antarans attack/Random events/ and with ship initiative on.

    I expect this to be very challenging as when playing many games with the weakest races using Cluster Galaxies (72 stars crammed into a Large Galaxy) I was only able to win 9 of 17 Darlok games. I was losing most of the initial games and winning most of the latter ones so I presume that I've learned to play an awful race better.

    OK Game 1: I spawned in the upper right corner (this is good as I DON'T want early contact with such a poor race as I may quickly be overwhelmed). My system has only 1 other planet and while large it is barren and HG (that is bad since I will only get 1PP/t per worker initially so it will be slow to develop). There are 4 other stars within range of a scout when I build it with extended fuel tanks. This is good as hopefully I can colonize some of those systems and still remain safe and happy in my corner to build up for 100 turns or so.

    Races with zero economic advantages are so slow starting up when compared to better races and custom uber-races since you need 4 guys farming. This means only 4 guys to research or build. Each scientist only provides 3 RP/t and each work will provide only 3 PP/t. 2 workers on the HW will provide 6 PP/t but pollution will make 3 workers provide only 7 PP/t and 4 workers 9 PP/t. As I need to both research and build labs and factories prior to colonizing with this lousy race, an optimal start will be efficient and not waste PP's to pollution and also be timed well so that I can buy these critical things when half built.

    So I start out selling no buildings as the SB will take very long to rebuild and I need my rax for moral. 4 guys start researching the computer (pre-req for labs) and after 4 turns I am 20% to get the tech so I move on guy to production to start banking 3 PP/t (Assign him to build a CB or spy) 4 turns later I get the tech and have 12 of my needed 30 PP saved. I now move the worker back to research as it will take a long time to get the lab tech with only 12 RP/t. I will need 6 turns more of one worker producing 3 PP/t to have the 30 I need so when I the game said that I was 5 turns away from getting the lab tech, I moved 1 guy back to bank production but lucked out by getting the tech next turn with a very low percentage chance.

    Now I could spend all my cash to get buy labs needing 45 PP/t or more efficiently (IMHO since I will need some cash later) spend 3 pollution free turns with one then two workers saving up the needed 15 PP/t while the others research hulls on the way to factories. On turn 26 I bought my lab for 60 BC paying for the 30 PP remaining.

    Similarily I bought my factory on turn 41 and then put all workers into making my CB while my lab passively contributed 5 RP/t towards freighter research. I was able to buy my CB on turn 48 when a bit more than half built. On turn 51 I bought freighter when a bit more than half built as I left one worker on my HW (Nazin 1) generating a pollution free 9 PP/t. On turn 52 I moved 4 more guys over to Nazin 2 as they are producing 5 pollution free PP/t and I want my factory built quickly. I am close to completing the initial chemistry tech so that I can then make a scout and see what systems are nearby. One worker is banking 9 PP/t working on a spy, built I won't build that spy and will spend the PP for a scout.

    OK onward into the game. My scout went into the corner and had to retreat from an ameoba at Gharne. Hmmm...just one planet and barren and rich guarded by an ameoba! Oh well, we'll safely take that later. Turn 59 and I buy my factory on Nazin two and move one guy back to Nazin 1 to research towards colony ships. Oh no....turn 62 my scout comes to the planet just below Nazin and it is connected to a Coid planet all the way across the galaxy! My dreams of early isolationism have been shattered and these Coids have 3 systems already and a bonus attribute of +50 pop growth. These will make great slaves if I can conquer them and their tolerant people will be superb for transferring to new worlds as I expand. But those dreams are 100+ turns away as now I simply must expand and stay alive. They're also well ahead of me in tech, but soon a spy will show up so I need a spy to defend (at least doing something with my +20 spying).

    On turn 66 my spy is built just their spy shows up. Hopefully he'll get bored and move elsewhere or get killed. I now have a decision to make and fortunately my scouting has helped me. Soil enrichment is usually a must so that I can free up some guys from my HW due to more efficient farming. An early colony ship is also a must as I must expand somewhat or remain too weak and be considered an easy victim for AI's. OK my scout just found a neighboring star with 4 planets to colonize and one of them is pop 6 swamp and will provide good farming and another is rich. I must colonize that system quickly and will let colony ship research finish and then go for biospheres and then soild enrichment. I've also bought my lab on Nazin 2 and am working towards a rax to improve moral and then will have just one worker building the SB there.

    10 more turns have been played and now it is turn 76 and the Coids have grabbed their 4th system and are further ahead of me. Their spy is gone, fortunately. Hopefully they will get no spy techs and later on a few of my spies will show them how spying is really done. I now have a research decision to make as I am about to finish the tech for Biospheres or HydroFarms. I almost always go for Biospheres since I want larger planets and the added pop can due useful things like pay taxes, etc. Coids have Biospheres and maybe I can steal them later but I have only 4 income/turn now and if I build two farms that will cost me 3 BC/t (I'll save 1 BC as won't be spending as much on freighters). That would seem to cripple my early income, and I've done that before by building several farms quickly. OK Spheres it is and then Soils. I can afford the maintenance for spheres since I will have room for more pop and will build them as needed.

    Onward to turn 87 and I am still a long time away from getting my CS. I built Biospheres on my HW and maxed out pop at 14 and built housing on Nazin 2 so that I now have 16 total pop requiring 8 farmers on Nazin 1. Now Nazin two has one guy working slowly towards a SB and the other adding a measly 2 RP/T to my 10 RP/t towards Soils. Yes, HG is a BIG drag. Still only have met the Coids and still still are relaxed towards me and have no spies in my empire. I don't recall seeing AI's come down a long wormhole to colonize and they also never do so and build an outpost and attack. They sometime can come down a wormhole to attack from system to system so when I colonize that connecting system later I'll make sure to have some defensive ships.

    Hmm...turn 93 has thrown a monkey wrench into my slowly progressing plans as Hyper Space Flux has hit. Now I have no need for a CS as I can't move it, so I can put more guys into tech to get Soil Enrichment which I tech at turn 104. I also moved some guys back to Nazin 2 so I can grow pop naturally at home. Much earlier I didn't hire Emo and his lousy +10% tech. Now Androgena is waiting to be hired and she has +20% in four categories. As ugly as she is, she seems to scare everyone into working harder just by glaring at them :). I'll now build spheres on Nazin 2 to speed up natural growth and to make room for more pop as I am stuck in this system for a while.

    Coids still like me..normally relations with a repulsive decay rapidly, but perhaps since they are so far away, they don't fear me. I'll take a chance and head for neural scanner and supercomps to build up my very lagging tech, rather than preparing for quick war with chem techs. I've raised taxed a bit to hire Androgena quicker.

    Onward to turn 136. The space flux lifted on turn 115 so I then put more PP into my nearly completed CS and colonized the rich pop 4 world in the Osae system since it will build up quickest and then build 3 more CB's. Androgena was hired and her +20 food, PP, $$, and growth are a big help to Nazin. I've quickly transported colonists into the Osae system, and a 5th is on the way as I built Biospheres. I now need to increase taxes back to 10%. My SB will be built on Nazin 2 (I'll need it eventually for the CP) and then I may have to assign a couple guys to trade goods there. Two Coid spies showed up as he has Neural Scanner but once I completed that tech they left in search of more fertile places to steal from. I still have and seem to need only 1 defensive spy. I'm banking PP as I work towards supercomps.

    OK moving on to turn 150. I've gotten a very lucky random event as my Rich Barren planet of Osae 2 has become Terran and now with Biospheres can support a pop of 14. Of course this will be my shipyard for much of the future. I am transferring colonists over to it and once supercomps are finished on Nazin 2 I may go to pop 1 housing there. I'd like another colony ship or two but research needs to be done and I won't expand into alien areas I cannot hold. Coids still are relaxed towards me. This is quite shocking since I haven't made any defensive ships. I am avoiding Deut cells for now as I have plenty of nearby systems and don't want to yet meet 3 more races at once as will likely happen once I get more range of movement. Turtling and building up continues but as soon as I meet someone else I may need some ships.

    Turn 182 and now the real game can begin as a strange looking race called Humans has made contact. They seem nice and have quickly agreed to a research treaty (I need tech more than trade). Osae has been fully colonized and supercomps are in almost everywhere. I was banking PP for the coming Robo-Miners but now much switch over and crank out war ships up to my CP limit of 7. Ships, any ships will help prevent the Humans from contempt and demanding things from me since I am SO weak looking. Around turn 165 I had to crank taxes up to 50% for a while to hire Valin, a financial leader with very useful megawealth and a boost to trade treaties. Spaceports on my two big planets have helped with income. Houry showed up begging for a job, but all she does is reduce pollution in one system. Her piercing green eyes and stunning red hair made Androgena quite jealous and as a much better leader is waiting to be hired, I sent her away. OK time to make 6 more frigates as I finish Robo-Miners and get into Chem techs to prepare for war. Once upgraded to MIRV Nukes these frigates can kill the Amoeba I can have that Rich planet in the extreme corner safely.

    A quick update on turn 188 as these Humans seem very friendly. I already have added a trade treaty and a N.A.P. Their leader is an honorable diplomat. They have only +5 vs spies unless they have a helpful leader I can't see, but I'll leave them alone for now. Often, I'll be framed for spying and they'll turn against me from my experiences. I'll send out a scout once as Deut cells will soon finish. Coids continue to love me and they and the Klacks continue to get no where in their ongoing war. Humans are near the center and Orion is likely in their space. Perhaps I can get there later via outposts or ally with them, although alliance is a last resort since I don't want to be dragged into their one turn wars and have them make peace as soon as they demand I fight their current enemy.

    Turn 231 now and I've come a long way. I hired Torg who gives me +60% in farming, PP, and BC and put him in Osae, my best system and have expanded to 5 systems. This is enough for now as relations with Coids have been deteriorating since about turn 190. I hired another good leader and sent Valin packing since I have plenty of income now and want the new leader's +180 famous. I have one Merc 18 BB and am working on another. My lousy Nuke 2 FF's will be refitted as Merc 2 FF's or I may just wait and refit them when I get EMG to help go after Orion etc.

    I have 65 pop now. This pales in comparison to Coids who've taken some planets from the Ants and are running away. Psilons seem to have spread a bunch of spy techs around, and somehow to the Repulsive Coids as well. I have 3 defensive spies and if alien spies show up, I may need more.

    Once my 2nd Merc 18 is ready I'll feel more comfortable about colonizing another system or two, but what I really want is Orion and Locknar's ship.

    My experience has shown that if you expand too much without a decent amount of ships, you get attacked and friendly races may stab you. I found a nice commando leader that added 4 CP as well.

    Onward to turn 260 and things continue to improve for me and I'm reaching critical mass where I'll be quite unlikely to lose unless things go very badly. I have 16 planets and 85 pop and will soon colonize yet another monster planet. Hmm..I do wish that some of these were UR but oh well :(. I found Orion and it is well below the center of the galaxy and hopefully I can outpost a friendly Gnol system and get there. As I add autolabs I am catching up a bit in tech. A bit earlier, my tech level was 5.5 times less than Psilon and 5 times less than Coids.

    On the diplomatic front, Coids hate me although I slowed this somewhat by voting for them rather than me in the last GC, and Ants have never liked me. The Ants have recovered and taken back some planets from the Coids. Other races have had minor skirmishes and a couple planets have changed hands. Psilons, Gnols, and Humans love me. Mecks were friendly but I lost contact with them and now they don't seem to want to trade, but the Gnols have beaten them up. Elerian is somewhere and likely getting stomped on as usual.

    Great news as I was able to take Orion on turn 278 and my colony ship will be there shortly. I attacked with 3 EMG 1's (all killed ) and two Merc 18 BB's (one killed) and 1 Merc 2 EMG 6 BB which delivered the kill shot. An amazing basket of techs was had along with the given Death Rays. X-armor (!!!!), Damper Fields (!!) and Particle Beam (good for point defense). My bonus techs seem to be the nearly useless Gyro Destabilizer and the nice Reflection Field.

    Gnols came asking for Terraforming and since Psilons had it and it is a basic single tech I figured they get it anyhow so I traded it for Heavy Armor and since I was sure that the Humans would get it in short order, I traded it for HydroFarms.

    Anyhow time to refit and make more BB's and realize that I want Aug Engines to help with ship initiative. The only thing that can kill an X-armored BB with Heavy Armor, Rein Hull and Damper Field is EMG missiles and my enemies don't have that.

    I am now doing some Physics techs to reduce battle scanner size and to get sub-space comm. I may trade Particle Beam if I can get several AI's to give me good stuff but so far no luck.

    Things started to go down hill quickly for me as on turn 291, the Gnols complained about my spying (I'd been framed) and broke all treaties. Several turns later when I could talk to him, he wouldn't make any new treaties. Perhaps I should've tried to bribe him towards better relations, but that doesn't always work and I wasn't terribly worried as I was building up nicely, and making some great ships with plans to take what was left of the Mecklars (3 systems along the right side below the center).

    On turn 300, my happiness was shattered as out of the blue, Baldy, the Human emperor complained that I'd dishonored him and stabbed me breaking all treaties and DOWing me. I had thought that I was strong enough appearing and had enough ships to minimize the chances of this nonsense, but I guess not. Apparently I was framed for spying. I hadn't put a single spy into any AI's camps, but that would change now.

    One of the issues with this game, other than that I was lots slower to develop than the strong AI races were at the Impossible level, was that Psilons were in the game and doing well and able to get all sorts of techs which were getting distributed to most other AI's. Psilons are also creative and get spy techs as they progress and most AI's had all these spy techs, so in spite of my +20 spies, I knew I'd not have much luck spying. Thus, by turn 300 when all hell broke loose, I was facing an AI with a larger array of nasty stuff to attack me with and better planetary and spy defenses than normal.

    Now I had a big fleet of about 15 Human BB's trashing my colonies at will. Even with X-armor and heavy armor along with the normal reinforced hulls, my SB were no match for this fleet and I couldn't catch up with it. A single BB of mine along with the SB didn't help either as I'd have to shoot once and retreat. I couldn't kill much if any of them. Some stray small fleets did meet their deaths by my SB's or running into a couple of my ships.

    Fortunately I had several decent planets near the center and Orion was built up by transferring in workers (sometimes from colonies that the humans were heading to). I was also making some more spies on minor planets using my production buildings while researching. The spy master leader came back and this time he was +6 so I hired him. Now my spies are +51 while Humans with all the spy techs -10 demo penalty are +35 defense. Perhaps I could steal a few techs and gradually as I increased my spies, I stole a couple techs. I kept 8-10 spies at home always and never saw an alien spy and wanted to keep it that way.

    In this game, by turn 300 one can often face a rampaging fleet of more than a dozen enemy ships. If I could get all my somewhat superior ships together including the Avenger, I could do some serious damage to this menacing attack. However, that didn't look to be at all possible and there were enough other Human ships near the center that I couldn't afford to take The Avenger away from Orion. Orion had become my capitol since Nazin was trashed around turn 310.

    One good way to deal with having you colonies trashed by a run away enemy fleet it to return the favor and instead of trashing, I want to conquer the enemy planets with troops and steal techs and keep up my empire's pop. But, OMG, they also had powered armor and a couple more GC techs. I had to max out GC and was helped by having two commando leaders so I could split my attack fleets. By turn 325 the galaxy map looked nothing like when I started as I had quite a few Human systems while my original systems were most wrecked and they'd taken one planet with troops. I was only a bit weaker than before since some of these planets were nearly built up and some stolen techs were helping.

    Oh happy day !! The Coids and the Humans were now at war and on turn 328 I couldn't find the huge Human fleet as it seems it took big losses to the Coids. Hmm..heaven forbid that I have to fight them soon and again I could vote for them in the GC without them winning and boost relations a bit. What looked like it would be a loss since I've I get too weak, other AI's will dog pile me now seemed to be tenable. But ..OMG... next turn the Gnols DOW me!!!

    Well things look bad once again, I as hadn't fully recovered from the beating the Humans gave me and with many destroyed SB's suffering from a big CP overrun. The Humans weren't completely dead, but they would no longer a major threat for a while, even though they'd made peace with the Coids who sooned finished off the Mecks. The last thing I needed to do was to face another rampaging huge fleet of doom.

    Fortunately, the Gnols first destroyed systems away from my now central location up near where I started in the corner and was rebuilding. I quickly took two nearby remaining Human systems (confining them to the upper center) and two Gnol systems, stealing Stealth Suit to help my spies. Gradually I added more spies vs the Humans and now every several turns a tech was rolling in. Stock Exchange/Astro Univ so now I didn't need these as pre-reqs for Imperium and soon enjoyed a 20% moral increase and a CP increase. Virtual Reality Network was stolen for another free 20% moral boost and now my income and tech are doing better and I need only a few farmers.

    As it was just past turn 340, you can see how far behind my tech was. Galactic Cyber Net was stolen by my troops, and my spies stole the +100 computer from the Humans and soon Class X shields, making my SB a less tempting target. I was sticking some outposts around to distract the Gnols and in hopes to keep my Psilon friends from colonizing my former good planets until I could find some peace to rebuild. Hmm..here comes a big Coid fleet and he trashes a newly conquered colony of mine and rebuilds it with a CS and doesn't DOW me (thank heavens). Klackons move their fleet all the way across the galaxy and destroy my outpost on Mecklon but neglect to colonize it with their CS and didn't DOW me.

    By turn 352, I have Warp Interdictors in several systems and in ship of losing one great ship yard to the Gnols, have cranked enough ships at Orion to be in reasonable shape. I now have Megafluxers (researched) and with Structural Analyzer (stolen) my BB's with Aug Engines and Transporters and beefed up with Dampers/Hull/Heavy Armor were formidable and could also with ship initiative could move first and close enough to enemy ships to bust through the shield and kill all marines and transport in to capture it. However, as I'd neglected to put the stolen Warp Dissapators on any ships, enemy ships often retreated before I could capture more and this prolonged things. I still have no planetary defenses other than SB's. Nothing was stolen and AI's wanted to take huge advantage of me to trade for such. I guess I should've forgone Titan construction for ground batteries, but anyhow I decided to work on some Titan ships (noting huge CP issues still). LOL I took a good look at my colonies, always trying to micro to speed my economic comeback before I got critically behind. My only remaining Darlok species lived on on Orion. All my other planets had alien races from conquests.

    Gnols and I soon had each other pinned down in systems near the bottom center edge of the Galaxy. On turn 355 their Emperor made a fatal mistake and split is huge fleet in half, sending half to a nearby planet that had WI and by the time he got there, I had plenty of ships waiting for him. My 7 ships carved up his 17. Capturing several, killing many, and watching several limp away. I kept a couple ships to supplement my forces and scrapped the rest for a couple more techs and cash and to reduce a -33 CP overrun. Next I went after the nearby system with the remaining Gnol fleet, but the wimp ran away, ceeding the system to me with out a fight. I took another system on the way into the lower left corner where their fleet was running to two systems that were trashed previously during the recurring Coid/Ant wars. I was also beginning rapid recolonization and making some artificial planets and building housing in places.

    Soon I noted that much of the Gnols fleet was gone. Apparently, lack of CP had caught up with him. It was now turn 360 and with nearly 40 spies in human labs, I was stealing every several turns. Humans destroyed a minor rebuild colony and then I caught up with that small fleet and captured it and took a nice big human planet, leaving him with just two lousy systems. Klackons were losing the fight with Coids and had just trashed a far away new colony of mine but didn't colonize it, again not DOWing me.

    Well...I could use those few Klackon systems and they've been nothing but a nuisance all game so it is time for war with him as well as his systems are right by the Gnol's two remaining. I demanded a tech from him and he DOW'd me. Quickly I took a minor system from him, but now saw that his other 3 had WI's to slow me down. I finished off the Gnols on turn 365 and this time accepted the Psilon's request for alliance. The last thing I need is for them to ally the dieing Humans and then DOW me before I can demand they break alliance with them. They're Pacifistic and hopefully won't get me embroiled in a war with the Coids too soon.

    More techs continue to roll in and I start building stolen android scientists on a huge poor world. I soon finished up Advanced City Planning and now all planets can support more pop. I spent some time redistributing my colonists and races and set some planets on pop-1 and built housing, getting about 800k/turn with several production buildings in place.

    On turn 376 most of my fleet was camped out in the Ant's 2nd system waiting for transports to show up just as the Klackon's large fleet arrived back from their piracy back on the right side of the galaxy. I capture several with some Death Ray transport ships and managed to capture a few more the next turn before the couple remaining retreated. I also destroyed a few of their BB's. Note to self..bring along a couple ships with Warp Dissipators with your capture ships so the enemy can't retreat. I also noted that my Psilon ally had 45 spies in my labs. I demand that they go home, and he complied.

    Anyhow, turn 380 now, and the Humans are reduced to 1 planet and I think I'll let them stay alive so my 50 spies can harvest more techs. I suspect that the Humans may surrender to the Psilons at some point. Klackons will be gone soon and in the event I fight and conquer the Coids it will be useful to have the Humans still alive since the GC doesn't come up with just two races remaining. However, I suspect that my quickest win will to go to Antares, but I need some more Physics techs to reduce stolen Plasma Cannons nicely as they pummel unshielded Antarans. My rebuilding is going well, and some peace will be great for a couple dozen turns so I can catch the Coids in pop and finally catch up in tech. Of course, I'll keep building and upgrading my fleet.

    Well, I've progressed to turn 392 and the Ants have surrendered their distant just colonized planet to the Coids and the Psilons have unfortunately recently finished off my Human spy victim. The GC just came up and while i njow have a bit more pop than the Coids I was 5 votes shorts of the 2/3 majority needed to win, in spite of my Psilon ally's votes for me. I have 63 spies (max) trying to steal a few desired techs from the Coids and 13 at home for defense. Coids hate me anyhow, so stealing a few techs can't really make relations critically worse. At least this should force the Coids to keep spies at home, reducing chances that they steal from Psilons and frame me. I have to carefully watch the races screen and the turn summary as I just had to demand the Psilons make peace with the Coids or they'd drag me into a war I don't want, yet.

    I'm carefully and aggressively building up my pop with housing in many places and now have Mutated into Warlord finally solving my CP issues as well as having all my ships crews instantly gain a level of experience. I don't expect a GC vote for a few dozen turns now. I expect to just build econ and research til about turn 400 and gear up to go to Antares while getting a couple advanced physics techs to reduce weapons.

    I continued to expand my econ and teching almost exponentially and was catching up to the AI and got one steal from the Coids. On turn 395 I received a warning that Antarans were going to attack. The map showed that they'd be arriving with two CC's in two turns. I had a Titan 1 turn away and instantly refitted it with two bays loaded with assault shuttles. Since my troops had taken Powered Armor from the Ants, and I now had +100 GC with 2 hits, it was trivial to capture both Antaran CC's but both blew up. 50% of the time they are not supposed to self-destruct upon capture, and actually sometimes I get to keep them and scrap them for techs, but trust me when I say that they certainly don't self-destruct less than 50% of the time.

    I was also building Android workers and Scientists (Droid scientists go on my large P/UP planets) and shifting mortals around with my large freighter fleet. As I passed turn 400 I realized that I should have enough ships soon to have no issues taking Antares just using my death ray ship along with some captured ones and a few assault ships with some EMG ships.

    On turn 410 after trading Death Rays to Psilons for Dimensional Portal almost 60 war ships when to Antares and amazingly most of my ships had the ship initiative. I destroyed their Star Fortress before it could get off a shot and then took out a BB leaving them with 4 more ships. I simply pressed Auto to speed things up, and was surprised that I captured most of their remaining ships (GC of 100 with powered armor and a +12 commando can do that at Antares it seems).

    OK Game 1 of this series goes to the Darloks.

    In summary, I was fortunate to have a decent starting spot where I could build up somewhat without much early interference. Unfortunately, I didn't have a good collection of R/UR monster guarded planets around. As so often happens to me, the Humans stabbed me and DOW'd me, breaking what seemed like wonderful relations. I was in danger of losing from about turn 300 -345 (note that Gnols attacked right after the Humans had been mortally wounded.) I think that I'd have lost this game without X-armor and perhaps without Damper Fields as well as my ships couldn't have held up and I couldn't make enough of them. Stolen techs from GC and spies were a big help in getting some very helpful things like Structural Analyzer and Power Armor and Virtual Reality Network etc etc.
     
  2. vmxa

    vmxa Chieftain

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    Ah yes the Darlocks, one of my least favorite races. Not played them in some time. Corners are good for later contacts and maybe being left alone longer. They are terrible for getting Orion, before someone else as you are farther from it.

    It is too bad that Orion is located in more less the same place all the time as you can find it easier than, if it was totally random and could end up in a corner as well.
     
  3. neilkaz

    neilkaz Chieftain

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    Turn 231 in my game and I'll soon stick on hopefully non-provocative outpost on a gas giant in a Human system near the center and then find and see what I need to do to get to Orion.

    I'll put new games that I play in this series into new posts and likely give a little less minute details about my start so as not to be overly repetitive.
     
  4. neilkaz

    neilkaz Chieftain

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  5. vmxa

    vmxa Chieftain

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    The first comp upgrade for non creatives is 2750 RP and I never use aug engines. Not that they are bad, just don't need them and would rather have more weapons.

    Put in as much or as little as you want. People can skip over parts that they know or have read before. Everyone that comes later, may not have read any other post. Just segment the redundant parts.
     
  6. scratchthepitch

    scratchthepitch Chieftain

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    neilkaz

    Thanks for the link. Useful info. The author got one thing wrong on ship move, which I'll point out in case others don't know this trick. He said when you get a new engine type tech, ships in transit don't upgrade. That is true, but there is a way around that. If you can redirect a ship, then it's engines will upgrade and show a reduced transit time. I usually click on my transit ships when this happens and those close enough to a system with an orbital can usually gain a turn or two in the transit times.

    Gyro Destabilizer.

    Not very powerful, but not quite worthless, either. It's usefulness comes into play when you are lacking computers and hitting specials. GD always hits, so you don't need a computer to use it. Pile enough on large ships and they can really do some damage. The damage is also structural, so armor does not affect it. Another thing I like about GD is it turns the target ship. If the ship is armed mostly with forward firing beams, and slow, a common AI design, then turning it away can cost them a turn without they're being able to hit your ships. I found this out the hard way when fighting some AI ships that relied on GD. My well defended (I thought) ships that got hit by these AI ships took some serious damage. This is using my modded game, where GD are a lower tech and use less space than the original game, but they could be put to use in similar circumstances in the original. GD are not as good as beams, but when playing an uncreative race and lacking in beam hitting tech, they can still be useful.
     
  7. vmxa

    vmxa Chieftain

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    I seem to remember that before it was patched, the Gyro was quite strong and the AI used them like crazy. I used to hate them spinning my ships, so I could not bring forward guns to bear. They nerfed Gyro and Plasma Cannons. Both needed it imo.
     
  8. scratchthepitch

    scratchthepitch Chieftain

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    With the patch, GD cost 75 and used 50 space, which does make it much to large and expensive for the amount of damage it can do. In my mod, I reduced both cost and space to 18, and that gives the weapon some bite. But I also moved higher up the tech tree so it is a 6th level, rather than a 4th level tech. In test games I was seeing AI titans armed with 36 GD, plus an assortment of other weapons.
     
  9. neilkaz

    neilkaz Chieftain

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    Yes, that is a great computer, but to get it I forgo AutoLabs which are a must have tech to keep up with the AI's research. Also, I forgo Structural Analyser which is a huge increase to beam weapons and also, if I recall goes into the SB as well and helps.

    However, now that I finally realized to play with Ship Initiative on, I may have to rethink my computer ideas. But normally, unless I can trade for it without giving up too much or have stolen it, I don't worry about getting a better comp til the final +125 one.

    With Ship initiative on, I expect to end up using Aug engines quite often for +5 to initiative. But in the past, I'd usually go for more weapons as well.
     
  10. vmxa

    vmxa Chieftain

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    Yup, comps for ships are a bugger. There is no good section, where you can go for one and not give up something important. If you skip and take autolabs, may as well forget about comps as the next one is 6000rp. If you skip autolabs, you suffer as well.

    I don't think you need to have the inititive. I take the drives and forgo the aug engine. In the end you can skin the cat a number of ways.
     
  11. scratchthepitch

    scratchthepitch Chieftain

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    If you don't have the initiative, then I would think a heavy emphasis on defensive specials would be a must to absorb the AI first strike.
     
  12. neilkaz

    neilkaz Chieftain

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    I'm finding that learning to play with ship initiative turn on is interesting. I think it will weaken the often OP effects of my early attacks with nothing but missile ships with no computers and sometimes poor drives as these ships won't have the initiative and will have to an initial enemy strike before getting off one shot. Fast missile racks may also be of more use since now I am less likely to be able to fire both rounds of missiles and still survive and retreat or simply survive as all enemies are destroyed.

    Time will tell...and I just hope that I don't end up blowing a Darlok game or two while I learn.
     
  13. scratchthepitch

    scratchthepitch Chieftain

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    Ship initiative might make a custom race like the following worthwhile:

    Warlord
    Trans dimensional
    +50 Ship attack
    +50 ship defense
    Feudalism
    Repulsive

    :D

    Warlord so you can have more ships and feudalism so they are 1/3 cheaper to build.
     
  14. neilkaz

    neilkaz Chieftain

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    OK time for Darlok game 2. Same settings and I'll do the same basic start since I think it is best. Once again, I'll edit in from time to time as I play.

    I play what I am dealt and WOW..I like this deal. I spawned along center of the left edge and have 2 medium UR HG planets to colonize. One Radiated and one barren. As you can imagine, I'll hope to make good progress thru Physic to get Gravity Generator and turn these two planets in my ship yards. I'll give less detailed specifics of my start up now so as not to be two redundant.

    On turn 24 my Labs tech finished but I only had 24 PP banked so I moved a 2nd guy to production to give me 6 more PP so I can buy that lab on turn 25 for 60 BC half built. Those 2 guys were now moved back to teching for Hulls and Factories.

    On turn 43 I bought my factory and started building my 2 CB's using all non-farmers as workers. (5 farmers needed and 5 workers). Some very basic and lousy ship leaders have shown up begging for a job but have been dismissed and have had the door slammed behind them. Cap't Merkur is also hoping for a job and I'd like him for his commando skills and attack upgrade, but I don't think I can afford him this early.

    On turn 45 Kimbuzzi came begging for a job and since he's only 1 BC/t and will aid my farmers on the HW with +20% I paid the 60 BC for him. Now I could move a farmer to production and am generating 20 PP/t after pollution towards my CB's. I'll buy them as soon as they are more than half built and I have adequate cash to spend.

    This has turned into the most amazing game that I've ever played with a very weak race like this. I bought my first CB on turn 51 and never looked back. I'll post a few highlights of this stomp fest along the way.

    I soon met the Psilons to me northeast and once again this Pacifistic Techie wanted to play nice and sit around the camp fire and sing Kumbiya with me. I demanded that he stopped spying so I didn't have to make a spy or two asap. My scouts found some good monster systems and Kae nearby with 5 planets including a rich one. I colonized Kae on turn 113 (yes Darloks start slowwwwwwww).

    I met the Birds near the galaxy center and they want to be my best friends as well. The Trilarians down a wormhole to the upper right also decided to love me as did the Gnols below them. I soon had amazing treaty income and RP boosts as well as 4 NAPs.

    Cmdr Sparky had shown up and I'd hired him at the last minute and managed to trade his Auto Repair ability for 3 useful early techs. Trit Armor, Deut Cells, and Heavy Armor. Since the first two complete a catagory that costs 250 RP, I saved several turns of teching.

    By turn 194 I had almost 60 pop in 5 systems (3 monsters) and had just met the Sakkra and as usual these Lizards were a near run away in strength. They wouldn't trade with me and I figured that my world might soon be shattered by them, but as luck would have it the GC came up instantly and I voted for him and then with improved relations he'd make treaties. Before starting a research treaty with them my growing empire was enhanced by 90 BC/t and RP/t from treaties with my 4 other best buds.

    Instead of being miles behind in tech and pop, I was OK in pop at this time, and while behind in tech, it wasn't critically like last game. As usual Psilons were teching like mad and spreading it around, but spy techs didnt seem to make it to the weak looking Mecklar victim in the lower left corner with only 3 systems. Soon my spies started to harvest a bounty of great techs from him. I was happy to pick on him, since he'd refused to trade with me and I needed a victim a conquest to start expanding towards an easy win.

    Ooo...I steal the +100 computer from the Mecks and then Graviton Beams and he threatens war. Noting that I expect to now have ship inititive vs him due to my aug engines added effect and noting how good Grav Beams are I switched over my ships yards to make Grav Beam BB's. I already had about a dozen MIRV Nuke FF's from monster system raiding and to let nearby friendly AI's know that I would not be a pushover if they stabbed me and attacked. Bitter experiences have resulted from having a dozen+ planets and few war ships at this stage of the game.

    Turn 200 and Mecks and Saks have traded a planet back and forth and the Saks have lost some of the eastern part of their vast empire to the Gnols, and they made peace with the Mecks who DOW'd me after my third good theft. A 4th theft soon followed. Pulson missiles were stolen and I'd decided to go for Microlite construction for that very nice +1 PP/worker and then go for N-armor for better ships and troops than the upgrade to Z-armor from Trit would give me.

    In the next couple dozen turns I'd conquered the Mecks and stolen the fabulous beam enhancement tech, Structural analyzer. I'd met what was left of the Bears and demand a spying tech which they gave me. The Lizards were suffering to the Gnols and both races' fleets had been decimated. Time to provoke war with Saks. I demanded that final missing spy tech and he gave it to me so now with my spy master I have +71 spies !! My ships depart for a nearby Sak planet and I demand another tech and as expected this causes him to DOW me, although he has no defense to my Grav beam armada.

    On turn 243 I get a 4 turn warning that a lone Antaran FF is coming and I can just managed to get one BB back to that planet with a turn to spare to refit it with 13 assault shuttles. I'll need better GC so since everyone had Z-armor and the Psilons are giving out techs like Halloween candy I trade N-armor to them for Personal Shield and trade N-armor to 4 other races for many goodies.

    Ooo.. this time the captured FF does not self-destruct and when I scrap it, my super good luck continues. I get X-armor and Quantum Detonator. Hmmm what do you think I could get for QD by trading it to all 5 remaining AI's that I could trade with? Well.. all 3 Droids, and Virtual Reality Net for +20 moral instantly, and Galactic Cyber Net which I can build quickly thanx to lots of banked PP working towards Battlestations (stolen) and Terraforming. Well turn 247 and this 99th percentile lucky game will be trivial to win.

    Hmm... I just found Orion exactly in the upper left corner !! I've played many 100's of games and never saw Orion in a corner let alone very close to it !! Weird game and one I will end quickly after stealing Sak techs and finishing my blitz of them. I'll slow down a bit once Saks are ruined and refit with X-armor. Grav generators are now on my great planets that need them and I'll finish a couple more physics techs to miniturize my Grav beams further and so that I can include a much smaller battle scanner.

    I'll get more experience with Droids putting workers on rich planets and an occasional farmer on farming planets with scientists on Poor U-poor planets. This will free up pop for other things and get me close to max pop which I can transfer to new colonies like Orion once I take it. Not that I think Droid farmers are great, but they are better than normal farmers and I wanted to complete that tech group and save 3500 RP. I also just realized that I've completed both the 2750 RP and 4500 RP computer techs saving me over 10,000 RP! thx to a my combined trading and spying efforts. Everything just seems to be falling into the ideal place this game as I've been able to trade for the desired stuff and most of my GC and spy thefts have fit right in and been very useful.

    A couple former Sak planets have revolted but no prob, I'll just take them again and hopefully steal more tech. Speaking of which, in spite of having all the spy techs, their spies are only +35 and have no prayer to withstand my +71 spies.

    A word or two about capturing Antaran raiding FF's. My GC was +60 and their's is +100 so a BB with Aug Engines (So it can move next to the victim so it can't shoot my assault shuttles and B.P to make room for 13 A.S lands 52 troops and will capture it. +55 GC often suffices. Bulrathi can do it with a bit less GC. Larger Antaran ships will require better GC or more A.S. and with better GC you can take them with A.S. maxed out on smaller capture ships.

    Onward to turn 253 and things continue to be great for my Darloks this time. I'm expanding my econ more and taking the time to make good use of Driods. In the past few turns most of the western Sak planets have been taken and soon I'll take his centrally located systems leaving him with just two near the lower right corner. Any threat from them is long ago neutralized. I left my capture ship hanging around my older empire both in hopes that more Antarans attack so I can capture more and as a deterant to a stab from Psilons (very unlikely) or Birds (much more likely from my experiences). If you leave a vast part of your empire without ships and defenses, sometimes AI's can't resist trying for some easy conquests.

    I just got EMG and now the only remaining comp techs cost 6000 RP. This has miniturized Structural Analyzer so I have more space for more weapons. Soon I'll have an EMG BB with MIRV Pulsons and take it and a few Grav Beam ships (they'll take down the Guardian's shield) to Orion for an easy kill. I'll bring along my remaining small ships as a distraction.

    I just stole Hyperspace Comm from the Lizards. Amazing AI tech level for turn 253 for a race with poor natural tech ability. Presumably the AI's are also benifitting from research treaties and I think Psilons are sharing many techs. Anyhow, I've traded for and stolen so many that it is almost like I am Creative.

    As expected I didn't have any trouble wrapping this game up and could continue to conquer and expand nearly at will. I decided not to the let Saks linger and finished them off on turn 260. My secondary fleet had 5 Grav Beam BB's with Structural Analyzer and these managed on turn 264 to finish off the Guardian evenn before my salvo of EMG Pulsons hit him. Then Thorium Cells were stolen from the Bears who never were friendly and became my next victim finished off by 285 as I needed to send in lots of transports. An Antaran CC showed up and I captured it and scrapped it for Damper Fields.

    I was then cranking out Titans from several very upgraded R/UR planets and expanding like crazy with Artificial planets while gearing up for a planned assualt on Antares in several more turns, but the GC came up on turn 293 and I had over 50% of the votes muself combined with two friends who saw me as the only true galaxy leader. Thus ending one of the luckiest games of MOO2 I've ever played with these weak races. Just everything fell into place almost perfectly.

    Score now Darloks 2 AI's 0
     
  15. vmxa

    vmxa Chieftain

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    Trade/treaties too strong, so I do not allow it. It helps the human player too much. Was worse on release day as you could demand whole systems from the AI.
     
  16. neilkaz

    neilkaz Chieftain

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    Yes they're strong and my experience with the very weak AI races is that if I can get a few treaties I do considerably better early on than if I meet unfriendlies who won't make tech and trade treaties.

    However, when I play these races on Impossible anything goes..my only house rule is that in the endgame I cannot make that unhittable cloaked time warp ship (but maybe that exploit was patched anyhow?).

    In spite of how strong early treaties can be, I still clearly prefer Coid as the top AI race since they are so flexible and production rules.
     
  17. vmxa

    vmxa Chieftain

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    I never even built either item of cloak/warp thing. AFAIK it was not fixed, but I could be wrong. I do not recall if 1.40 addressed.
     
  18. neilkaz

    neilkaz Chieftain

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    Game 3 has been another non-ordinary game. I spawned near the upper left corner and had three planets in Nazin to colonize, all poor, but certainly a nice help once I had labs on them. My start goes well and it becomes apparent to me that I might be quite isolated due to systems with no planets at the edges of my scout's range. I colonize one decent nearby system with 3 planets and decide to let a lousy system wait for now and build an outpost on an asteroid belt so my scout can explore into the corner and I find a nice rich planet and a very nice system guarded by a space monster.

    I'd decided to go for Neural Scanner and then build Supercomps but thought I should switch after meeting the Cats below me on turn 110 when they refused to make a research treating after several requests. Thus I went for Deut Cells and Mercs to gear up for potential war. I took out the space monster with 5 DD's with MIRV Nukes and colonized it and two more systems and was feeling quite happy with my status and simply built up my economy, but being careful to not take too long to head to Zort armor and MIRV Mercs.

    Past turn 200 and still no treaties with those grumpy Cats, and yet relations were still Neutral. Normally, they'd deteriorate by now. In spite of D-cells, I still met no other AI's. Finally on turn 213 Cats agreed to a Research treaty. Never had I played so long and met only 1 AI race.

    On turn 215 I met several other AI's (I guess they'd spread around some fuel cell tech) and the Cats decided to DOW me. Most AI's didn't want to strive for good relations except for the Humans in the center of the galaxy. I sent spies to the Cats now, and got some steals as I prepared a couple more Merc 18 BB's and many transports.

    After making and outpost on a hot Jupiter in the Risabam system I could reach Cat planets and unleashed a nice missile blitz starting on turn 237. Cat planets became mine, but I had to proceed slowly so he couldn't launch any winning counterattacks.
    EMG DD's helped defend systems as I moved on. I was also suffering from the typical CP problems from any early war.

    Coids were in the upper right and doing well as usual and with lots of tech from researching on their large planets. Psilon below me was not willing to make more than a research treaty and wasn't nearly as friendly as he can be.

    Turn 290 and the Cats are gone and I send ships to Orion which was just below Sol.
    The Guardian died to EMG as usual on turn 294 but my haul of techs wasn't good. However, I managed to trade both Quantum Det and Compression Field to 4 AI's bagging 8 very nice to great techs for myself!!

    Deep Core mines were one of the bonus techs from Orion and I decided to just build up for a couple dozen turns and switch over to beam ships with High Energy Focus and Megafluxers. AI's seemed grumpy and were demanding tribute or techs and also griping about my spying (I was framed). All this discontent from them, even though I was clearly strong, and had a decent fleet and was growing exponentially. Soon the Psilons DOW'd me.

    On turn 330 Psilons were gone, and I was also at war (seemed to be dogpile DOW time even though I was able to crush them all) with Humans, Elerians (never a battle with them) and Mecklars along the right edge. I'd taken a couple Meck systems thanx to a worm hole all across the lower part of the galaxy. OMG I then noticed a Coid fleet of doom heading towards one of my systems. I switched production there to a missile base to help the star base and managed to get quite a few ships there in time. A captured Antaran DD had given me Dampers but still no X-armor, so I had A-armor nearly finished. Once I had A-armor I could handle Coid ships on 3 to 1 ratio and soon was pushing them back, after losing only 1 planet which I recaptured.

    A bounty of techs was flowing in from ground combat, but my spies weren't doing as well as expected with the Humans who had only a couple spy techs. They must've had some telepathic leader. Finally my spies stole Thorium cells from them.

    Only the remains of the Alkari empire was friendly to me and soon, the Elerians, after accepting peace with me, finished them off.

    Humans were reduced to one far away system on turn 343 and on turn 348 I took the last Mecklar system and was chewing up the Coids. All that I'd need now would be the have the GC vote come up since I was all over the galaxy and making artificial planets and starting on Advanced Physics techs to reduce Disrupters. I'd switched over to heavy disrupters since once reduced a few times, a ship with them can do more damage than with Death Rays.

    Coids fell on turn 360 and the GC came up and I had 140 of the 147 votes myself.

    Score Darloks 3 AI's 0.

    As expected it is easier for me to play Darloks in a Huge Galaxy than in a closer spaced Cluster galaxy since I usually have more time to expand and develop before conflicts. There have been times in Cluster galaxies where I am attacked too soon when playing these weak races and sometimes can't defend or am so delayed that my situation is critical.
     
  19. neilkaz

    neilkaz Chieftain

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    I've started game 4 but won't finish it for at least a week since I leave the country tomorrow on vacation. Once, again I rolled a lucky start with 3 new planets to colonize.
    One is UR radiated pop 3 and the other R rad pop three and a barren normal planet. These rich+ worlds will get Biospheres to enlarge them and once rad shield and terraformed will be extremely useful as ship yards in the mid-game.

    My lab was bought half built on turn 25 which is typical. I spent 100 BC for Cmdr Sparky who only costs 1 BC/T and 60 for Uro and 5 RP/T and 15% medicine. Thus I couldn't buy my factory til turn 40 when it was well past half built. Now time for freighters and chem tech to make a scout while making 3 CB's.

    As expected things in game 4 with this fine start went well and I soon had all 4 planets in my system built up with labs and factories and sent out my scout and found another system nearby with 4 planets, one of which was rich and another rich but HG so I colonized the rich planet and began building that up. Two other nearby systems had monsters so I waited til I could MIRV Nukes and colonized them. I met the Mecks below me and they became fast friends as did the Trilarians to their left. Above me was a growing empire of Bears who were repulsive and tolerant and would make great slaves.

    I sent some spies to see what they could harvest from the Bears since war with them was inevitable in any case and a repulsive can't threaten you for spying. Relations just worsen as you rob them and then war often starts.

    Humans in the bottom left corner became quick friends, but Psilons in the upper left were grumpy and I never got a full complement of treaties with them. Cats in the upper center also liked me and were suffering in wars with other races.

    On 213 my fleet left to conquer Bulrathi systems. I had a couple Merc 18 BB's and a couple support ships and loads of transports along with some GC techs. Bears couldn't offer much resistance but I needed many transports and since they had a decent empire I often had to leave behind a couple smaller ships to defend conquered systems so they could come in with a stray BB. On turn 278 in this game I was clearly crushing, I took the last Bear planet and headed for Orion in the center. I took Orion on turn 284 but had made a mistake in not dismissing a mediocre ship leader so I lost Locknar's services but this wasn't tragic as Mystic X was waiting to be hired and almost as good as Locknar. Still this was lots more expensive and a silly mistake. X-armor from Orion would prove very useful and I traded two less than good techs from Orion for some goodies for me. That very next turn, the Humans stabbed me (as they almost always do when I am Darlok) so I had a new enemy.

    Now with High Energy Focus and Structural Analyzer I could make some nasty beam ship and I decided initially upon Graviton Beams reduced in size and cost from a couple more advanced physic techs researched.

    Hmm..turn 290 and Psilons DOW me as I am chewing up some Human systems and plundering techs both from spying and GC. OMG...on turn 294 here comes a couple Coid ships (they were along left center edge and not doing so well this game, pinched between Humans and Psilons) so it was war with all 3. Humans fell and then Coids but in the upper left corner and noting it was turn 330 I had more issues with Psilons and all their planetary defense techs.
    The Avenger proved great as always for taking star bases but shooting with death rays to kill marines and capturing and then I'd retreat it as there'd be a huge barrage from the planet to follow. The Psilons weakened but I lost a few ships and some leaders including a spy master, but still my several dozen +55 spies scored a steal about every 8-10 turns from them. Disrupters helped pummel Psilon planetary defenses as Grav beams were too weak to do much.

    On turn 346 I just missed winning in the GC. Onward to turn 364 and finally the Psilon worlds are all mine and I have an enormous empire and will win the next time the GC comes up. No desire to fight my 3 friends so I now gear up to go to Antares, but before I have made enough EMG ships (to kill their ships while my beams (now mostly reduced upgraded disrupters) pummel their S.F.)) I won in the GC with over 80% of the votes from myself.

    Yes, another luck out with a great start leading to a huge stomp fest. One more game and I'll probably end this series. Once again, I will play whatever start I am dealt.
     
  20. vmxa

    vmxa Chieftain

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    Repulsives rarely have to worry about buying leaders as none will apply for the job that early, lol.
     

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