RBGC SG2 - In the Thick of It - TEAM G

Sirian

Designer, Mohawk Games
Joined
Dec 20, 2001
Messages
3,654
Location
Pennsylvania, USA
This is a succession game sponsored by Realms Beyond. In a succession game, members of a team take turns at the helm of a single player game, playing a specified number of turns before passing the game to the next player. This game will involve three teams, each playing with a different stragetic slant toward a different victory condition, each on the same map from the same start file. Our team in this thread is the Good Team. We will be playing Galactic Civilizations with the following specifications:

Version: 1.13
Difficulty: Crippling (All Genius AI's)
Map Size: Medium
Habitability: Occasional
Star Clusters: Scattered
Political Party: Universalists
Bonus Picks: 3 picks Sensors and Range, 1 pick Influence, Repair, Trade, Weapons
Victory: All conditions enabled

24 hours "got it" notification
48 total hours to play and report a turn
Twelve Turns (one year) per player.
Autoturn: On.
Changeover: At the beginning of the first turn of each year.


VARIANT RULES:

Team G will aim for good alignment and must win by Alliance.

Team G must finish with alignment at or above 70.

Team G may not start wars, by any direct or intentional method, but may act freely against those who declare war against them or against their formal allies.


TEAM G:

Sirian (Team Captain)
AmulekBird
Samurai Ben
Physicist


Active participants will not view the threads of the other teams until their game has been concluded. We ask spectators to maintain an ettiquette of no spoilers. PLEASE do not say anything about what is going on with the other teams, or if you download the games to try to "follow along at home", please do not mention any elements of that until the team has completed the game. This will best protect the quality of the competition and the fun factor for those doing the playing. Thank you for your cooperation.

Here are links for those who may be interested in GalCiv or Realms Beyond.

Galactic Civilizations

Realms Beyond

RBGC Forum (Feel free to decline any ad-related promptings).

Recruitment Thread for Realms Beyond players, at Stardock's forum.

RB Metaverse Empire

This round of games includes guests from other Metaverse Empires, who are welcome to post links to their resources and introductory information about their groups. We hope everybody playing and watching has a good time with us.


- Sirian
 

Sirian

Designer, Mohawk Games
Joined
Dec 20, 2001
Messages
3,654
Location
Pennsylvania, USA
These directions are lengthy, but I wanted to cover every step for those who may need the detailed help. Feel free to skip any or all of this post and refer back to it only as you need directions.


PROCEDURES


How to Play Your Turn

Each player plays one year, twelve month-long turns. Your turn starts and ends in January of each game year. After you move all of your active ships in December, your last month in office, the game moves to January. You should issue new build orders through the production cycle, as that is still part of your turn, but as soon as production ends and the calendar shows January of the next year, save your turn with all ships unmoved and pass the game on to the next player.

Each team will have its own saved game. You may want to save a second copy after your turn under a different name, to have a backup. For the main copy, save over the same game name as you received.


How to take Screen Shots

Since we are playing in Windows, you can use the PrntScrn key at any time while playing to dump the screen to the clipboard. You may then Alt-Tab or use the Windows key to reach your desktop. Open a graphics program of your choice and paste the image from the clipboard into a file and save it. It is a good idea to use jpegs, which save on file space and which download faster. Using moderate jpeg compression will further save space without compromising a lot of image quality. After you are done playing your turn, you should crop your screenshots, saving only the most relevant portions of the image, to reduce the image size to get rid of unnecessary portions and keep only the parts that are relevant to supporting your report.


Naming Convention for Files

In order to ensure that files of one team do not conflict with files of the other teams, each file should begin with the following identification: "rbgc2-g-" for the Good Team. Use "rbgc2-n-" for Neutral and "rbgc2-e-" for Team Evil. You can use your player name or the current game date to further identify files, and then whatever naming procedure you like for additional effect. The goal is to ensure that players do not use the same file names. The file server won't write over existing files, but if your upload is renamed because a file of that name already existed, you'll have to go the file server and track down the new file name.

Example: "rbgc2-g-2178ad-a.jpg" for the first screenshot for Team G from 2178AD.


How to Zip and Unzip the Saved Game

Using Winzip is recommended. Once the Altarian Prophecy expansion comes out, galciv saved games will be contained in one file, but for now, we have to deal with a folder. There are two elements you need to save. Both are readily identifiable. There's an index file "GameName.sav" where GameName is the name YOU used to save the game. There will also be a folder with your game's name, containing all the other save files. Saves are located under "Galactic Civilizations\Data\SavedGames\" wherever you have GalCiv installed. You want to zip the files with full path name included so that when files are unzipped, they can be quickly put into place without tedium.

When you unzip, the GameName.sav file, the index file, needs to go into the SavedGames directory. The folder containing all the other files goes there, too, but the files (all except the index file) have to be INSIDE that folder, or the game won't be able to find them. And each saved game has its own folder. You may want to unzip to a temporary folder, then copy and paste from there to the final destination, since the Full Path Name you receive may not match where you have your copy of GalCiv installed. I know it sounds complicated, but a little trial and error should help you figure it out if you are having trouble. You can use Windows Explorer or any other file management utility to look around and see where the files belong and how the folders are structured.

If each player uses the same saved game for outgoing games as incoming, then once you've successfully done this once, you'll have no trouble repeating the process for subsequent turns.


How to Upload Files to CivFanatics

At the bottom of each forum page are some banner ads, between which are sandwiched notifications and a row of links. You need to use the far right hand link, Upload File. This opens a new window where you can upload up to three files per window to the file server: just browse, select and go. That simple. You will get a confirmation message after the files are uploaded.


How to Use Uploaded Files

In your forum posts, you can link to images (anywhere on the net, frankly, but here on the CFC file server for our purposes) and to files using vB code. There are helpful shortcuts above the message window where you write your post. Click on IMG and then type in the URL of the image you want to show. Click on http:// and type in your link text, then the URL for your zip file containing your zipped saved game, to pass the baton to the next player.

I keep a utility text file on my desktop containing one line:

http://www.civfanatics.net/uploads6/

That's the URL of the current CFC File Server active folder. When it fills up, they'll close that one and open uploads7, etc. All I have to do to keep it current is keep the upload folder number current. Then any time I post a turn for an SG, I open my temp text file, copy the URL, and paste it into every IMG or http:// command I decide to use. With the folder address ready to paste, all I have to do then is type the correct filename. The IMG button will produce the commands to display your image file (screenshots, etc) and the http button will create a hyperlink for you.

This may sound like a lot to learn, but it's not really. You do it once or twice and you'll have it mastered, since the parts you have to take responsibility for are short and consistent. Once you know how, it becomes a piece of cake. :)

CFC will link anywhere, but since they offer a file server for use in combination with the forum (and it is primarily used to support modmakers and succession game players) you might as well use it. The ability to use images largely unregulated, and to upload saved game files, sets CFC apart as a unique site on the net. However, for all this hospitality, it is still in our interests to conserve space, so please crop your screenshots and choose wisely on which details you decide to illustrate.


- Sirian
 

Sirian

Designer, Mohawk Games
Joined
Dec 20, 2001
Messages
3,654
Location
Pennsylvania, USA
OK folks, here we go. If you are a member of Team N or Team E, and your game is still ongoing, you should not be here. Scat. Scram. Skedaddle. :lol: To everybody else, I bid a warm welcome. :wavey:

Our game involves a medium size galaxy, and our start position has us smack dab in the thick of it right from the start, thus the game name. Let me show you the stategic map from the start of the game.



This map gives us a wealth of information, some of which I've labeled or highlighted. Let's take time to evaluate that information, to gather intelligence, before making any moves.

The fat white dot is Sol system. Earth is PQ18 for this game. There are no other useful planets in the Sol system this time. Although the cluster setting for this game is scattered, we've drawn one of the more densely clustered regions of space.

By checking the background color of sectors, we can identify the presence of two neighbors right off the bat. The sector northwest of our home is flagged green, meaning Torian influence. The starting influence is strong in the sectors with home planets, weak in adjacent sectors, and zero everywhere else. Thus the Torian homeworld must be in a sector adjacent to the one showing as green, and because that is the ONLY one showing as green, the Torian homeworld must be the one I have identified, since it must be in that sector, and that's the only star in that sector.

Secondly, with the help of our +4 sensor range and Earth's positioning in the south end of our home sector, we have intelligence reaching two sectors to the south, where we can see three different sectors marked with faint dark red. This is Drengin influence, therefore the Drengin home sector must be the one I have marked. This we know for certain.

Thirdly, we know one more thing for certain. Because of the LACK of any other influences showing up in sectors we have knowledge of, none of the stars I have flagged orange can be the homes of other major civs. Minors might live there, but not majors. This may impact the early expansion strategy.

Finally, I have a theory about start points. On medium and larger maps, I have not seen majors start in adjacent sectors. They have always been at least two sectors away from other majors. If this holds true as a rule, then the gray stars near the Torian and Drengin home sectors cannot hold major civs. That would leave the stars I've flagged yellow and pink as the only possible locations of the remaining three majors. If anybody was given the southern yellow star, they are screwed. If anybody has the western yellow stars, WE are in some trouble. The pink stars are all fairly distant, although with this central position, smack dab in the thick of it, I suspect we're going to be known to all very early in the game.

All of this information can be deduced from information shown on the tactical map, without resorting to using influence scouting to check for influence in unexplored sectors. The precise locations of the majors can be found and confirmed that way, if desired, but I wanted to show everybody how much can be learned (especially on smaller maps) without doing that. You can be sure that influence scouting will be OFF the table for at least some events, come time to open RB tournament play for the expansion. So anybody who expects to want to play some tourney games would do well to exercise and strengthen their early game strategics. We'll be playing some games without a net. :eek:

That's also a reason I chose the maximum boost to sensor range among the bonus picks. I did that for the previous GalCiv SG, too. If playing without reloads and without spoilers, the added sensor range can make a big difference in reducing risktaking and ensuring strong success in the early land grab by providing a lot more intelligence about the map in the same time frame. At the moment, I actually consider the sensor range boost to be one of the best picks available for a game like this. Wait until future SG's where we play without it and watch how the expansion will sometimes go awry and leave the game in a weaker position. When that happens for a Maso game, it could... get... ugly... :lol:


OK, strategy time. Where do I send the initial colony ship? And where do I go with the surveyor? Should I emphasize surveying anomalies with it, or scouting?

The Torians dictate the situation. They are our closest neighbor, and there are two stars in the sector between us. Also, the initial colony ship starts offworld. Compared to where new ships launch, the initial ship will either "gain" or "lose" turns depending on which direction you send it. That is, if you are going to send a ship north and a ship south, the initial "gains" a full turn if it goes north, while the first ship produced by earth goes south. If you reverse that, and send the initial ship south and first new one north, BOTH ships "lose" a turn compared to doing it the other way. This is not always a defining fact -- sometimes the best thing you can do is to send that first ship south. You should think about it, though, and choose deliberately. Plan your exploration and your strategy, based on as much intel as you can gather.

So with the Torians already the closest, and to our northwest where our initial ship already has a one turn jump, it seems like a no-brainer to me to send the USS Discovery north and west, to explore the two stars in the sector where the Torians are already showing influence. If there are yellow stars there, it may be now or never on trying to grab them.

Next, what to do with the surveyor.

Check out the light blue star on the galaxy map above. Thanks to our extended sensor range, we can already SEE that star, Gladstone, from Earth and it is yellow! There are two good planets at that star, a PQ16 and a PQ15. Thus we can send our first colony ship from Earth down south, and it can build a colony ship which can further explore the other two stars in that direction. And should they be crap, the colony ship produced can grab the PQ15 at Gladstone, rather than wandering aimlessly.

Thus we do not want to scout southeast, that's covered. And northwest is covered. So, I should either scout west-southwest toward the backwater region, or go northeast. I opt to go northeast with our surveyor.

Taxes are set to 37%, which keeps our morale at 100% to gain pop growth benefit, and gives us the most income we can manage while still doing that. Spending is set to crank 17 bct in military production at Earth each turn, for colony ships every three turns.


JANUARY, 2178AD.

President Sirian is inaugurated for his one-year term. The colony ship heads NW, the Hero heads NE, and we're off and running.


February

Our colony ship spots a military resource northwest of Sol. Ugh, that is rather close to Torian space. We'll be lucky to grab it. And since it is "behind" earth, from the Drengin point of view, if the Torians do get it, we may not get the chance to get it from them for a long time. We'll have to wait and see.


April

Earth produces a colony ship. I ship 220m colonists toward Gladstone. Our surveyor has caught rumors of Altarian influence to our northeast. This means our closest neighbors are the Torians, Altarians, and Drengin. This may play well for Teams G and N, but could give Team E a lively time starting early in the game. Then again, the Torians only have a few stars in their corner, and the Altarians don't have many more, while the Drengin have a lot of stars in their region, and we don't have any "sentient shields" to stand between us and the Drengin. This could get interesting for those watching all three threads. :)


May

We settle the PQ16 at Gladstone and start a colony ship, due in four turns.

The Discovery spots a yellow star in the sector north of Earth. Should I forego exploring northwest to go grab it? Or should I continue pushing toward the Torians? This is the first "brainer" strategic decision I've faced. Or, in other words, not a no-brainer.



I decide to push toward the Torians. If there are no yellow stars, we will lose the gamble, but if there are and I don't go there first, we may lose really big. Better to delay a couple turns on founding a colony than to lose an entire sector for not reaching out far enough fast enough. To the bold go the spoils.

In the shot above, you can see a red cone in the SW corner of the view. That is the military resource. We would need to build a pricey constructor to secure it. We're not ready for that. Also check out the pie chart. This is another "secret" source of useful intelligence. It's right out there in the open, but it provides a bit of information about the majors not otherwise available. We can see on the chart, the Altarians have a larger slice. Their colony ship has reached a planet and settled, ahead of everybody else.

There is more good news this month. Our surveyor has found a PQ18 at Thuban, to our northeast. Since the Altarians are up that way, I will send our next colony ship in that direction. We have buffer zone of dead space between us and the Drengin, thus less urgency in grabbing stuff in their direction first.



Note that Thuban has a starting influence of 13. I've not yet found any actionable use for this information, since there are more urgent strategic concerns that a few points of influence, but this MAY factor into the order in which the AI pursues its settlements, and maybe someday I'll figure out a use for this data. Most stars start with 1 or 2 influence points. You certainly don't want to use minimum-influence stars to build wonders that increase influence for the star where they are built.


June

We explore our first anomaly, gaining a minor bonus. I'm sorry, but it was so minor I forgot what it was. :lol:

With no more stars to explore to our north and east, I "retired" the Hero from scout duty for now and ordered it to start snatching up the anomalies we've already found. A string of them runs east to west in the space above Sol and I can pick up several quickly.
 

Sirian

Designer, Mohawk Games
Joined
Dec 20, 2001
Messages
3,654
Location
Pennsylvania, USA
July

Both stars in the contested sector near Torian space turn out to be low quality. One is completely dead, the other has a PQ14.

Should I divert our colony ship now? Should I push on past this sector, going west? That's one possibility. Turning back east to grab the PQ 16 at that star I showed you earlier is another. Or if I settle now, we can have the PQ14, start building a colony ship right away, benefit from some population growth from these 100m colonists starting right now, and in five turns complete a colony ship and launch most of the people off the planet, leaving a small number behind.

The costs of settling now are a five turn delay on the arrival of the colony ship at the next destination, plus a faster drain on our starting treasury as the PQ14 would spend but be bringing in no income. The gains would be "free" population from pop growth starting now, which would otherwise be lost, plus faster progress on settling the available stars.

One thing to keep in mind. The AI's have only one sector of range for their colony ships. We have extended range. Thus, until they get a tech that extends range, or they build starbases, they cannot leap two sectors to grab a planet. WE CAN. Looking at the map, neither the Torians nor the Altarians can possibly make a one-sector jump to the PQ16 at risk, north of Sol. Both races require range extension to get there, thus our risks are low and I believe the five turn delay is a nonfactor. Thus the real question becomes, do I want to grab the PQ14 AND the PQ16 with this colony ship, or do I want to try to push farther west and hope to grab even more total land during the land grab.

I opt for the conservative choice (in my estimate) and settle now. The first colony ship from this world will be finished before my turn ends and we can secure that PQ16 with only a short delay, gaining in effect a "free" colony ship in terms of timing. (We still pay for it out of our treasury, but would you rather have 50 more bc in the treasury, or have a colony ship and 50m extra colonists? Yeah. I thought you'd see it my way. :D ).



Note that this star begins with only 1 influence. Expect this sector to show the green Torian colors for a long while, since this sector is adjacent to their homeworld. We should be safe on catching up before we approach the 500 influence mark where cultural flips become a danger, though.

Earth has produced its second colony ship and I sent it northeast, toward that PQ 18 on the frontier of Altarian space.


September

Gladstone produces its first colony ship. This is the planet in our southeast, and there is one more star in the area to be explored. Our planet has 280m people, and needs slightly over 200m to put out 13 bct in military production. The difference between 12bct and 13 bct is a net cost of 60bc and five turns, for a colony ship, vs 52 bc and four turns. Clearly the latter is much better, so part of managing the early game lies in how many colonists to send where in what order, and when to build scouts, and so on. There is a lot you can do to further your cause starting very early, so heed the details and look for ways to gain an edge. Information, population management, tax management and more.

Speaking of tax management, back in July I dialed our taxes down a few notches to get the new PQ14 up over 100% morale, so we get the most out of our free population boost. At this point in the game, the extra population is very important, as higher population is what drives the economy. If you jump to 50% taxes TOO SOON, you may cripple yourself compared to the AI's. I usually try to run 100% morale everywhere (with the odd exception, such as for a planet that drew a hard morale penalty for the sake of alignment). Keep the pop growth going as fast as possible while the lower taxes are only costing pennies. Then when we are ready to go on a social production push to pull in those PQ boosters (which boost taxes, morale, and pop growth rates all in one) and for larger planets to build banks and entertainment while smaller ones catch up on PQ boosters, THEN is the time to raise taxes because you build improvements quickly which improve the morale and economy more quickly and speed your growth curve. But if you raise taxes too soon, you crash your growth curve for negligible benefits, since without the population in place, raising taxes just don't do much for ya.

So anyway, we've got 280m on the PQ16, so how many should I launch? If that one unexplored star is really strong, I should launch a lot and transfer, but if it isn't, or if it's dead even, then launching a lot would be a big mistake. If you want to play the statistics, experienced teammates will never fault you. If you gamble, and get it wrong, you may draw a few gentle pokes and prods. Nothing tops success, so if you consistently get it right, no one will care how you arrived at your choices (except perhaps to learn how you make those choices). If you often get it wrong on guesses or haphazard choices, though, perhaps you would do better to look into figuring out the probabilities and trying to play it safe.

I play it safe and get it wrong. Hey, it happens. That extra star turns out to have a PQ 19 and a PQ15, but I launched only 80m colonists. Would have done better to launch 200m, leaving 80m behind, and get that PQ19 going faster, but too late now. And no regrets here. More times than not, my choice would have been the best one. We're lucky to find a strong double-planet star at any given star, given the habitability of this map.



I could drop the 80m onto the PQ15 down there, securing the star, and send 200m on the next colony ship, but I've tried that move before a few times and regretted it every time, so again I play it safe and settle the PQ19 with the 80m. One thing we do not want to do is build any colony ships off the PQ19, though. We want the population there to grow, so I set this planet to start on a constructor. We may not build it in time to grab the military resource I've spotted, but we might. We might also find other resources, perhaps out in the Void to the east. Gladstone can handle producing two more colony ships to fill in the two PQ15's that sit under the PQ19 and 16 we've already secured here.

Again, notice the pie chart in the treasury panel, above. The Torians, Drengin and we have all started to catch the Altarians on the size of our slices, while the Yor and Arceans remain weak. Those two might be pulling some OPC action on us. (One Planet Challenge -- one because that's all they've got!) If so, that could bode well for our chances, leaving only the Drengin as a strong opponent. Then again, if the Drengin have five or six good systems down there, they might be a handful all by themselves. Time will tell. But with the Drengin, who are notoriously opportunistic, being strong, and the Torians and Altarians also being strong, with the two pals of the typical evil civ, the Yor and Arceans, being weak, our brothers in Team E may have their hands full. :eek:


October

Earth builds its third colony ship and I sent it southwest toward the Backwater.


November

Our 80m colonists arrive at their new PQ19 home in the southeast. Contructor started, as explained above. Our surveyor has cleaned up four anomalies in recent months and now has scouted out a PQ19 on a yellow star to the west of Sol. The colony ship going in that direction will be diverted, as this is too strong a prize to toy around with, in case the Torians are expanding in our direction.


December

My turn saw a lot of strategics but no events. No alien vessels of any kind have been spotted yet, so zero diplomacy. There are three ungrabbed yellow stars in immediate range of earth and all three have a colony ship en route to them, thanks to the PQ14 churning out its colony ship this month, plus two ships from Earth.


January 2179AD

Earth and Gladstone produce colony ships. Although I had the right to launch them during the production phase, to decide for my successor how many colonists would be onboard, I opted to defer these decisions. I will give recommendations, though. 80m colonists is still a good number for the PQ15's in the SE, and I would reach out for the farther one first. Earth has nowhere left to send its colonists except westward toward the Backwater. There should be something useful in there, though.

Make sure to launch the colony ships first, lest you forget and leave them sitting idle for a month. (We do have autoturn active, so if you move your last ship, the game automatically cycles the turn).

We have definitely secured the PQ18 in the NE.



It will be settled THIS TURN if you right click on the star while the colony ship is active. (You get a "free move" at the end of your movement when settling, merging a constructor with a base, or attacking, if you use right click to issue orders. If you use the keyboard to move one tile at a time, you do not get the free move). Therefore, with free move in hand, that system is ours.

(Daffy Duck voice)Ours, ours, ours all ours. We're rich. We're fabulously wealthy. We're stupendously blessed. WE'RE RICH BEYOND OUR WILDEST DREAMS!(/Daffy Voice)

Also note the PQ 14 at Nesro. Send 40-60m there using the colony ship that will be built out of the PQ18 we're about to settle. :) At least that's what I would do. Next leader has the decision on that, though, and could pursue other priorities.

Here's the PQ19 to our west.



We could try to be bold and pass it up, let the next colony ship from Earth target it while that one races west for a longer grab, but this system could be within one sector of Torian planets if they settled anything south of their homeworld. That could be some serious gambling. Especially since the influence factors on the strategic map do not seem to indicate a major to our west. If a minor is over there, they will already have the yellow stars, and in any case, the Backwater is probably out range, for the moment, of both Drengin and Torian, while this system shown above may be at risk.

Those are my thoughts, at least.
 

Sirian

Designer, Mohawk Games
Joined
Dec 20, 2001
Messages
3,654
Location
Pennsylvania, USA
I settled three planets on my round. The first one never gives so an event, so that is two shots at a morality event, and none were encountered. Our morale is still at 50.

We have at least six more planets that will be ours. There are three yellow stars with active colony ships en route. There are two PQ15's in the SE, one of which will be grabbed with the colony ship at Gladstone, and the other with the next colony ship out of Gladstone. We can grab the PQ14 in the NE with a colony ship out of the PQ18 up there. Earth can continue to build colony ships and send them west, in hopes of securing systems in the Backwater. How many ships to send that way, and how many colonists to send on each ship, is a gamble. The safe bet would be to send at most one with 200+ million, and any extras with 80m or less, in case what we find over there is either squat or low-PQ planets. Of course, worst case, colony ships can be merged back into planets, but that wastes the 50bc spent on constructing them.

Still, this ain't RBGC1, which had zillions of low-PQ planets. So far we have NINE PQ15+ planets in range, and two PQ14, and that's it. Almost the opposite of the previous SG. With all these planets on a moderate habitability map, we might well be the runaway civ this time, and the game might be easier than I intended. It LOOKED challenging based on the start position. Could still turn out that way, too, as there is a lot we don't know yet. In any case, this is the game we're playing, so that's water under the bridge for now.

The one thing I would caution against is tying up our planets with lots of constructor building. I did set one, but we should build a pack of freighters fairly early, since we are aiming for peaceful relations and alliances. Good civs can get up to three extra trade routes, plus the trade monument wonder. If this were Maso, I'd be worrying my tail off about early contacts and early wars. That could still be a threat, even, thus I built no scouts. Would be best if the first contact we make with our neighbors is through freighters going in both directions.

The next big question is to whom do we send our freighters? And from which planets to which planets? We should factor route security as well as profit, since the most likely scenario is war with the Drengin -- UNLESS we manage to keep them friendly.

What do my teammates think about that issue? If you have an opinion, please forward it. Thanks.

Here's the strategic map from the end of my round.



Next is my dotmap. "Dotmap" is a term I coined to describe my suggestions for expansion in Civ3 succession games. I would take a shot of the terrain, with the map grid on, then place colored dots on the map on tiles where I recommended founding a new city. I'd usually give strategic rationale, explain why I thought this or that should be a priority, and which dots were probable vs which ones were wishful thinking.

The dotmap for GalCiv is a bit different, but the stars are dots and it's a map, so "dotmap" still fits. :lol:



Sol is currently selected, thus the big white dot. The three small white dots are the unclaimed yellow stars in our space. You can see triangles nearby each, marking our colony ships en route. I drew blue arrows to show where each was heading, although none are set to autopilot.

The pink star is an unclaimed PQ14 in our space. Those are lower priority as the AI usually passes them up.

The yellow stars are in Torian space. If the Torians have settled in that sector, we must forget these stars. Forget em. However, if there are no yellows in that sector, we could consider those stars if they have PQ12-14, either for our own use, or even to GIVE to the Torians to boost their strength, since we expect them to be a steadfast ally eventually.

The orange stars of the Backwater are all unexplored as yet. Could be good, could be owned by minors, could be garbage. We will have go there to find out. The colony ship on Earth is a likely candidate for that duty.

The PQ14 in the northwest is currently building a colony ship, which could go west to the yellow stars or SW to the Backwater. I'd send a mere 20m with it (There aren't a lot left on the PQ14 anyway, as I launched 100m on the first ship it built). OR you can can the colony ship altogether and build scouts.

We know that we need at least one more colony ship for the southeast, although one more alternative would be to forsake the Backwater entirely and use the ship from earth to settle the second PQ15, let the PQ14 in the NE wait until later, and swap to research now, right away. Not what I would do, but could be a strong path.

Lots of possibilities for our next leader, who will surely reach the end of our initial colony ship craze during his watch, and have to choose our next set of priorities. Best wishes!

One concern is morality. If we draw bad luck and get few or no planetary events, we may have to "go long" on the game length to get enough morality swing to qualify for victory. We need at least a rating of 70 or we lose! :eek: And considering how many strong planets we have, I'd think seriously about eating almost any penalty offered, pay any cost, to Do The Right Thing while settling new planets.


Oh and one more thing. Here's our list of bonuses. It's very long for only one year of gameplay.



We got +1 to defense, +2 morale, +5 espionage from anomalies, plus a HP boost to our surveyor, and the rest of these are the totality of our many minor starting bonuses and party bonuses. It may seem futile to some if none of these are strong enough to make a major difference, but if you've not explored a wide variety of settings before, you may be surprised at the total effect of a lot of little bonuses. The +10 pop growth, for one, does more in this stage of the game than one might expect, and that's just one of our little strengths.


TEAM G - 2179AD


ROSTER:

Sirian
AmulekBird <<< UP NOW
Samurai Ben << On Deck
Physicist

May the powers of Goodness bless our next great leader, President AmulekBird. :hammer:


- Sirian
 

Physicist

The Universe is flat!
Joined
Nov 19, 2002
Messages
205
Location
Germany
A fast response during lunch break... :)

Sirian: Thank you for the both detailed and instructive report. I already learned several things. :goodjob:

You asked for opinions concerning trade routes, so I will throw my opinion in the ring: :)

"Geo-politically", we are in an interesting situation. Us, the *good* Humans, between the Drengin and all the other majors, that smells like trouble :eek: . If I were the Drengin, I would try to get those blue dots ("your planets look so delicious..." ;) ). We will want to install some good (= long distance) trade routes with the civs north of us, but probably (at least) one fast (= short distance) route with the Drengin to reduce the danger of an early war with them.

Thus, I would propose to produce most/all of the freighters from Petroni. It is a strong system (PQ19 & PQ15), if not our strongest; it is located slightly southward, meaning fast connection to Drengin worlds and long, lucrative routes to Altaria and Toria. And, having two planets in this system, will allow for more flexibility for freighter building. We might even decide to build our Economic Capital on Petroni's PQ19. (Do I remember correctly that trade route profit is based on economics of the system of origin?) I have to admit that trade route security during a possible war with the Drengin is a *very* weak point in my strategy, especially in case of a sneak attack by the Drengin, but I would take this risk (given the otherwise good location of Petroni).

Maybe an additional freighter might be send from Sol towards Toria, as at the moment Earth is our strongest planet, and trade troutes from Sol and Petroni towards Toria might run the same way (for possible trade boosting via star bases in the late game.)

Just a few ideas to get the discussion started. :)

- Physicist
 

samurai_ben

Chieftain
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Messages
20
I agree with Physicist that avoiding a potentially disastrous early war with the Drengin trumps the advantage of an additional trade route or two with the Torians and Altarians. The Drengins should get at least one, possibly two, early routes.

For that matter, we've done exceptionally well in the first phases of the land grab. It might be worthwhile to shift away from colony-ship production within the next year and get started early on both social improvements and tech.

With a strong Drengin Empire as our closest neighbor, I'm already feeling paranoid. With a good production base, we should prioritize getting a "paper tiger" military in place. Between that, a trade route or two, and our industrial potential, war worries can be delayed for a bit.

Sirian, I'm noting that your style of play is far more technical and mathematics-based than mine. I generally focus on the "feel" of a game and past experiences in making general decisions. So, I'm already suspecting that my style might conflict with long-term decisions you have in mind. To avoid these problems all around, I suggest that we make particular note of any particular strategy that will take several years to execute.
 

Sirian

Designer, Mohawk Games
Joined
Dec 20, 2001
Messages
3,654
Location
Pennsylvania, USA
"Geo-politically", we are in an interesting situation. Us, the *good* Humans, between the Drengin and all the other majors, that smells like trouble

Perhaps not. Unless they have even better terrain luck than we do, we can take them on. They have no potential allies. I see several ways it could play out.

First, if we get few/minor events from settling planets, our alignment could still be under 55. In that case, we may have nearly as much worry with the Altarians as the Drengin. The game does not measure intent, therefore we are not "good" in its eyes until the alignment number climbs. Even so, if we do end up in war with the Drengin, the good civs would likely back us with some support -- a few ships, maybe even join our side.

Second, if we get our alignment up over 65 early on, we're much more likely to see relations with the Drengin sour quickly, and since they have no closer targets, early war could happen. In that case, though, the other good civs would definitely aid us. If there is alignment pressure, our relations will start to drop even if we cave to extortion demands.

Third, if contact is delayed and we send three freighters down there, we might connect all of our early trade to them and avoid a war. That might feel cozy, but we're not going to be able to reach Close relations if we're more than 70 alignment points away from them -- in my experience, at least. Thus, eventually, in order for us to win, either the Drengin must change their alignment toward the good, or they must be wiped out -- by war or by culture. If we have a large chunk of our mature trade with them, we could suffer if we have to go to the aid of our allies and the trade is killed off. The good news for us is, even if we get into a situation where our relations with the Drengin are strong and they will not declare war on us, we still have two ways to win. One would be to build up our influence and flip them, the other would be to get to Close relations with one or more good civs and join in on their side when they go at it with the Drengin.

Any of these can be made to work, so I don't see that we need a fully synchronized strategy. We can play it by ear, with each leader making the choices he deems best. For any moves and plans that sit incomplete at the end of a player's round, just explain your intent and reasoning and leave it up to the next leader to decide whether to continue that momentum or change course. Learning to adapt to situations you wouldn't have gotten yourself into is part of the fun of SG's. You get a wider exposure and a chance to learn things you wouldn't by yourself.


I would propose to produce most/all of the freighters from Petroni.

That is certainly our best system. I usually prefer to build my economic capital away from Earth, if there is a higher PQ planet available, or the same PQ as Earth. Why? There's a cap on economics, and this cap is reached sooner by population growth. Earth has the biggest population, thus always reaches its cap sooner, and much sooner if the economic capital is there. Thus a trade-off between putting it in the strongest place early or the place where you get the most total benefit. Either can work.

Physicist is right, though. Economics factors, so if we're going to build a lot of trade out of Petroni, that's even more reason to put the Economic capital there. Putting all our eggs in that one basket could be trouble during wartime, though. Plus the stronger Petroni planet is tied up on a constructor unless next player changes those orders.

Faster beats stronger in my experience, with trade. On a gigantic map, I've set up routes as long as 800+, but I've never seen a route over 350 length recycle. The game just does not last that long. Thus I've learned, on giant and huge maps, to build a pack of freighters from anywhere decent sized and send a lot of them. Send extra, like the AI does, because wars may break out, or you may get extra trade routes from a UP event, etc etc. Always good to have freighters parked AT their destinations, waiting to connect a route if one opens. They only cost 50 bc to build, and nothing to maintain. And because of seniority, an older weak route will always beat a younger strong route on benefit, thus it does not help to replace routes with "better ones" later on.

On a smaller map, though, the routes will recycle. So designing effective routes becomes more important. The economics of the planets involved becomes more important. Longer is good, but so is stronger. Since we don't have any systems with three or more planets, we won't have a megatrade center on our end. We get as much benefit connecting from a single planet on our end to a double on theirs, as we do to connect our double to their single. See? So I'd say that we have five viable candidate systems for building freighters -- Sol, our two double systems, and the lone PQ18 and PQ19 stars.

I would rather see us build a wave of freighters quickly, out of any and all of these systems -- build as many as eight, right out of the gate -- than to see us going long on military trying to build them all out of one system, or worse, building only a couple before another priority takes over. Looking only at the trade potential, I agree with everything Physicist said, but looking from a macromanagement perspective, building one apiece out of each of our strong planets and two out of the strongest, would give us seven to nine freighters in a short production run. We could use them to explore as they go, have extras to park near good civs in case our routes with the Drengin are lost to a war, and these do qualify as ships and boost our military rating slightly, as a bonus.

We have to get to Trade tech first, though, which is why I'm not already building some. :) And we should not stop to research until we are confident we've built enough colony ships.

Maybe an additional freighter might be send from Sol towards Toria

I would rather see definitely several extra freighters sent toward both good civs. If we take an extra turn (or two) to research Deflectors (and Defense Theory if we can't trade for it) we can be building defenders at weak systems, working on our military rating, while building freighters at the strong systems. Thus no military expenditures going to waste.

The key early techs are: Comm, Translators, Diplo, Trade -- on the Yellow branch. Medical, Basic Enviro -- on the Green branch. Defense, Deflectors on the Purple branch. All cheap techs, and if we meet a minor, we can trade for some of them. Why are these urgent? Translators lets you trade with other civs. Diplo gives you new government. (AI's will often trade you Diplomacy for Medical Theory, though, so I often pull that move and "research Diplomacy" on the cheap). Trade is key if you want to build freighters very early, and I've been leaning more toward that as I gain more experience. Deflectors is key to get early because you may have a chance to trade it for a whole pack of techs, and to have something to build if you go for extra freighters or an early constructor. Medical is a great trading tech, and Basic Enviro gives access to the second PQ boosting improvement, Habitat.

Impulse Drives is also urgent (to double your freighter speed), but I almost always trade for it, along with the other Blue techs and some of the Red techs. The AI does not research Orange techs early, in most cases. The Overpriced techs you want to research for yourself are Deflectors, Corvettes, and Interstellar Tactics, but only Deflectors factor early. For me on Maso, I almost never get to Deflectors before even the minors do, but if you can manage it, you can trade that for three to five techs you don't have.

I tend to build almost all of my colony ships first, plus scouts if desired, then do research through most or all of the key eight techs I listed above, and perhaps a little trading (if I met anybody) for several rounds. Then I build freighters and either more colony ships or some defenders, then start a social push, at which time I wake any colony ships parked over PQ12-13 I intend to grab and settle them right as the social spending rush begins.

Larger maps and higher habitability means a longer period of colony ship building, and lower habitability means more scouts needed so I don't overbuild colony ships. Everything has to adapt to the map, the neighbors, the remaining balance on my starting cash, and more. Yet the formula of colonize, research, social push always works in some form, with freighter construction tossed in wherever it seems to fit best. (A good trading partner, especially a nearby minor civ, can speed freighter construction by shortening the amount of early research needed).

I never build military before the first social push, and here's why. The AI's measure both your economic strength and your military strength. The PQ-boosting improvements are the biggest bang for the buck early on. They raise morale, allowing higher taxes. They raise PQ, which increases the tax base in addition to the morale factor, for a multiplicative effect on economy. They raise pop growth rate, which puts a THIRD multiplier on the economic growth. Now in the same time you could build a star fighter, you could also build a PQ booster. If you build the PQ booster first, though, you will have the economic benefits PLUS the deterrent factor of strong economy, while building the star fighter first gives you only the deterrent effect.

So there is such a thing as building military "too early". I see the land grab as the item that can least afford to wait. You wait, you lose the race and lose systems you could have had. Next most urgent is wee bit of tech because you can't do much without a few early techs. So that can't wait, except to wait on colony ships. Then the first brainer choice: freighters, or PQ boosters? Waiting on either costs you something. If you still need a couple more colony ships, then the choice is easier. Whichever you choose first, though, both are higher priority than anything else, at least from the perspective of your growth curve. After these four top "can't wait" priorities have been accounted for, the game opens up and effective strategies can be had in many directions. About the only thing that could become more urgent than these is trying to Rob the Cradle by taking out a minor or direct neighbor with a rush attack in the earliest game, if you are cramped on a small or tiny map.

That's my take on the early game. I'm all for "paper tiger" military, but not too soon. In RB land, we call them "cardboard cutouts". Same concept. Throw something up there to look like you are defending, even if you aren't. In GalCiv, both colony ships and freighters count toward the military rating, so I usually let those suffice while I prioritize the PQ boosters. Then with stronger economy and 50% taxes in hand, building a round or two of battleaxes and defenders is much easier.

Don't worry, though, Ben. GalCiv is versatile, with many ways to reach success. Talking general strategy or even specific tactics is one thing, but no plan survives contact with the enemy anyway. All I ask is that players share some of their reasoning, so we can understand what plans are already in motion. Plans can be followed through or changed, at each leader's discretion. When you are Up, you are in charge. Whether you continue a plan or change it, though, it is better to know what was intended. Thus I encourage attention to detail and plenty of communication.


I hope AmulekBird checks in soon. The other teams appear to be off and running, and I'd like to see us build good momentum too.


- Sirian
 

Physicist

The Universe is flat!
Joined
Nov 19, 2002
Messages
205
Location
Germany
Originally posted by Sirian


Perhaps not. Unless they have even better terrain luck than we do, we can take them on. They have no potential allies. I see several ways it could play out.

First, if we get few/minor events from settling planets, our alignment could still be under 55. In that case, we may have nearly as much worry with the Altarians as the Drengin. The game does not measure intent, therefore we are not "good" in its eyes until the alignment number climbs. Even so, if we do end up in war with the Drengin, the good civs would likely back us with some support -- a few ships, maybe even join our side.

Second, if we get our alignment up over 65 early on, we're much more likely to see relations with the Drengin sour quickly, and since they have no closer targets, early war could happen. In that case, though, the other good civs would definitely aid us. If there is alignment pressure, our relations will start to drop even if we cave to extortion demands.

Third, if contact is delayed and we send three freighters down there, we might connect all of our early trade to them and avoid a war. That might feel cozy, but we're not going to be able to reach Close relations if we're more than 70 alignment points away from them -- in my experience, at least. Thus, eventually, in order for us to win, either the Drengin must change their alignment toward the good, or they must be wiped out -- by war or by culture. If we have a large chunk of our mature trade with them, we could suffer if we have to go to the aid of our allies and the trade is killed off. The good news for us is, even if we get into a situation where our relations with the Drengin are strong and they will not declare war on us, we still have two ways to win. One would be to build up our influence and flip them, the other would be to get to Close relations with one or more good civs and join in on their side when they go at it with the Drengin.

Good points, all of them. I agree with you. The alignment will not be the main issue. Well, I always (sort of) fear the Drengin as they tend to demand tribute independent of my alignment (I usually try to stay neutral in the early game), so they might go for us anyway. But I agree that the Altarians are not much better in that respect.

I agree that we are indeed strong regarding terrain and that we could handle most situations, but I would like to try keeping most/all of the civs friendly in the early game.That's why I proposed one trade route to the Drengin, even is that would mean losing that one on the long run. I would not connect all of our early routes to the Drengin, however.

Originally posted by Sirian


Any of these can be made to work, so I don't see that we need a fully synchronized strategy. We can play it by ear, with each leader making the choices he deems best.

Of course. :)

Originally posted by Sirian

Faster beats stronger in my experience, with trade.
[...]
So I'd say that we have five viable candidate systems for building freighters -- Sol, our two double systems, and the lone PQ18 and PQ19 stars.

I would rather see us build a wave of freighters quickly, out of any and all of these systems -- build as many as eight, right out of the gate -- than to see us going long on military trying to build them all out of one system, or worse, building only a couple before another priority takes over. Looking only at the trade potential, I agree with everything Physicist said, but looking from a macromanagement perspective, building one apiece out of each of our strong planets and two out of the strongest, would give us seven to nine freighters in a short production run. We could use them to explore as they go, have extras to park near good civs in case our routes with the Drengin are lost to a war, and these do qualify as ships and boost our military rating slightly, as a bonus.

Good arguments again. I am lacking the experience with different trade strategies (I tend to send all freighters from my economically strongest planet), so I am more than willing to rely on your experience and try something new. :)

I especially like the "scouting" freighters.

Originally posted by Sirian

The Overpriced techs you want to research for yourself are Deflectors, Corvettes, and Interstellar Tactics, but only Deflectors factor early. For me on Maso, I almost never get to Deflectors before even the minors do, but if you can manage it, you can trade that for three to five techs you don't have.

Lately, I often see myself skipping Deflectors & Defense Theory completely, direcly buying Shields as for some strange reason, this tech does not seem to be that overpriced. Then, after the first infrastructure push, I directly build BAxes for defense (due to their offense rating they also improve your military rating much more than Defenders).

Not necessarily a good strategy, of course ...


Originally posted by Sirian


I hope AmulekBird checks in soon. The other teams appear to be off and running, and I'd like to see us build good momentum too.


Yep. From the post at GalCiv.com it looks like AmulekBird had problems with registering here. I hope that we will hear from AmulekBird soon.

- Physicist
 

AmulekBird

Chieftain
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Messages
10
Well, I finally have access, but I'm at work. I'll post the new save game and the report this evening.:mad:
 

Sirian

Designer, Mohawk Games
Joined
Dec 20, 2001
Messages
3,654
Location
Pennsylvania, USA
OK, glad your access has been straightened out. Sorry for the hassle. Looking forward to your report. :)

- Sirian
 

AmulekBird

Chieftain
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Messages
10
This is my second attempt because apparently if you use too many images in a post, it dumps your message and you start over. I'm going to conservatively use six images per post from here on out.

This turn was very eventful. (There is a hidden message in there that should become clear during this post.)

Jan 2179: We colonize Thuban (PQ18) and, lo and behold, our first morality event.

Our morality is now 51.
Sol and Gladstone build colony ships. I send both to the west. I set taxes to 38% (keeping us ast 100% morale), but switch spending to 35% military, 35% social, and 30% tech (to get Communication Theory in 1 month). I plan to research Comm Theory, Universal Translator, Diplomacy, and Trade during my turn. I assign Ms. Kolaz as governor with soil enhancement and entertainment network in her queue (we know about Mr. Ford's double dealings so I avoid him).

Feb 2179: Comm Theory arrives and I adjust spending to get UT next month. Our colony ship gets close enough to see Drengin space to the west. This may signal the end of our colonization phase.
I add News Network to our governor's queue. We colonize Rathra and get our 2nd morality event.

The exact same event brings our morality to 52.
I assign all our systems to Ms. Kolaz for now. A colony ship spots a Drengin Planet to the SW (19 base influence). I don't want to deal with them yet so I redirect it to avoid them for now.

Apr 2179: UT arrives unfortunately just in time for us to understand our new friends.

I set up research to get Diplomacy in 3 months.

May 2179: We colonize Wardell and, not-so-surprisingly get our 3rd morality event.

Is there an echo in here? Now our morality is 53.
The Drengin have 4 planets, all to the South. None in the west as yet. From economy and other clues ;), I assume Yor are in SE and Arceans are in the NE.
 

AmulekBird

Chieftain
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Messages
10
Jul 2179: I always think that this report is silly because by the time it comes you usually have already colonized 3-5 yellow stars.

We get Diplomacy, and I change our government to Republic to get the economy bonus. Next up is Trade. We'll get it in 1 month. Our colony ship finds a worthless system in the West. I redirect it to Torian space to check the two systems there. (This was my only clear mistake during this turn as we'll see shortly.)

Aug 2179: Since I switched our government to Republic, we hold our first election. (NO, Kerry doesn't win!)

What does luck do anyway?

Sep 2179: We can now do trade with other civilizations. I switch our research to Medical Theory to get Basic Environmental Control in order to build Habitat Improvements. I switch spending to 41% to get in the black (Money's down to 408bc and I like to have padding). Petroni switches to build a Freighter next month. Earth builds its last colony ship for now and also switches to start a freighter as well. I send the colony ship from Earth to Gladstone's PQ15 to help fight the Drengin influence that has taken over that sector. Currently I have a colony ship building for the PQ14 in NE and Petroni's PQ15.

So now I have to decide where to send the freighter (Drengin or North?) I decide to send it to the Drengin for peace and also for a bumper crop while waiting for the longer trade routes to be established.

Nov 2179: Medical Theory is done and we go to Basic Environmental Control, due in 9 mo. When we get to Gladstone's PQ15, we're confronted with our 4th morality event.

Our morality is 54. Why does it only take your morality up one if it would take you down ten by taking the juicy +42% PQ bonus? Isn't resisting the temptation as valuable as succumbing to it?
Anyway, a colony ship finds another worthless system in the West. We continue on. (Manifest Destiny and all.)
I spot a Drengin colony ship headed north. He's got a lead on us, but I don't know where he's heading.
Say hello to the Torians.

They have 4 planets as well.
The Drengins beat us to a planet in the West. Here's where I kick myself because if I hadn't diverted the colony ship to Torian space, we would have beaten them there. Thus sadly ends our excellent colony phase, other than the PQ14 at Nesro and the PQ15 at Petroni. Our two extra colony ships become scouts (hopefully they don't tread on anyone's toes).

Dec: As my last move we colonize Nesro PQ14. I bat 1.000 this turn as we get our 5th morality event.

My turn ends with our morality at 55.

I recommend we establish some serious trade soon. The freighter to the Drengins will arrive during my successor's turn, but we definitely need more.
The two minors are the Alexians and Caranoids, but we haven't found either of them. My guess on where Arceans and Yor are is circled on the map. The three systems I circled are our systems that are in another races influence. We need to watch out for them.

Here's the file:
http://www.civfanatics.net/uploads6/RBGC2-g-2180ad.zip
Sorry I wasn't able to zip the entire path. Couldn't figure out how and didn't want to take the time (a little frustrated having to type this twice.:mad: )
 

samurai_ben

Chieftain
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Messages
20
Samurai Ben steps into the office to begin his one-year term. Pausing only to hang the banner of Special Forces on the wall and place a bust of R. Lee Ermey on the desk, he dives into the paperwork that is the bane of any chief executive...

January 2180. Not much happening at the moment; it's going to be a long time before we can research one tech per turn again, and most of our ships are still on autopilot.

I take a closer look at the colony ship activity in our southwest, near the Drengin's Dester system. Amulekbird is correct; the first Drengin ship has a lead on us towards the two systems west-northwest of Dester. BUT, there's a second colony ship in the formation, and they're both avoiding our target planet in the sector south of Dester. That implies that the system has a PQ14 at BEST; it can wait a few turns.

Getting back to that double star formation, though; why are the Drengin sending two ships? Although the AI isn't always economical with its colony ships, it's possible that BOTH of those stars are yellow. It's worth a shot, anyway, as we'll only lose a few turns of travel in the worst case. I decide to chase the Drengin's colony ship with ours.

With both (potential) stars covered by the southern colony ship armada, our northwest ship is free to head back up by the Torians. There's an unexplored star up there; it's possible that it's yellow and the Torians just don't have a ship nearby yet.

As a final step, I take the Hero off auto-survey. Might as well have some use for the mouse for awhile.

February 2180. Gladstone finishes its colony ship. This one looks like it's going to be either a deep-space explorer or a fill-in for the second planet at Petroni; 150 million is a decent compromise population. Switch Gladstone I to produce a Scout; default production time is 15 months. We're definitely going to take a closer look at those allocation sliders this month.

Move the Hero to pick up an anomaly. A 5% espionage bonus. Woot. Almost as good as not finding anything. I decide to use the Hero as an advance scout up by the Altarians; we need to meet them sometime, there are four systems up there still unclaimed, and the only anomaly close to the Hero runs the risk of catapulting us across the galaxy. Scouting seems the best bet.

Decide to use Gladstone's colony ship to settle the PQ15 at Petroni. It's close, and the earlier we start building population there to boost our trade revenue, the better. Unfortunately, I save a few mouse clicks by using autopilot; unfortunate, because I forgot that colony ship was the last ship of the month. We advance to March before I get to fiddle with the sliders...

March 2180. Gladstone I and Petroni II finish soil enhancement. Glancing around, I note that Gladstone III is dropping its cash into a black hole; this is what I get for not playing my usual micromanaging game. I explain my philosophy to Ms. Kolaz using my katana; I don't care if the planet is ugly, she WILL show up for work and start enhancing the soil. Start a scout there as well.

I bump spending to 50%. This gives us a deficit of 20 bcs per turn; at the current levels, that's 20 turns before we go negative. Our population rise and the freighter en route to the Drengin homeworld should get us out of that problem with time to spare. Leaving the sliders as they are, production still looks decent and we'll save a few turns on the research. This is good enough for now.

Panning back over to the colony ship race near Dester:



I see our Drengin pals have already rush-bought a constructor. They're sending it AWAY from our territory (good) but we'll have to see what they're up to at some point. This also triggers alarm bells in my head that we may have to rush to grab the military resource near Earth and Rathra. I've never really prioritized rushing to resources, but that one's just too close to our power center to ignore. I decide that one of our future scouts should head up in that direction to give us an advance warning if a constructor's on the way.

April 2180. Suspicions confirmed; the AI is clueless on colony ship dispatching. We catch a glimpse of the first of the two systems west of Dester, and Jotunheim is a PQ 10 Ceti Alpha 5.



Likewise, we catch our first glimpse of the Betelgeuse system near Torian space.



Two PQ13s are worth noting for future reference, but it's going to take Soil Enhancement and Hab Improvement to stop them from bleeding, and there are other priorities at the moment. Betelgeuse can wait. Adding insult to injury, the Hero catches a glimpse of the first planet in its northeast travels; Alshain is a Yellow 15, and the Altarians just grabbed it. At least we should meet the neighbors soon.

I decide to send our northern colony ship chasing after the Hero, but keep the southern one going for a turn to catch a glimpse of the soon-to-be-founded Drengin world. Intel is always a good thing. For instance, I note the second Drengin colony ship has not only caught up to us, but is actually PASSING us - somebody used a Speed pick!

May 2180. The turn starts with Netro Mancer saying hello. Rathra II finishes Soil Enhancement.

Looking closer at the map, I see that I was mistaken. The Drengins DIDN'T pick speed. The morons actually diverted their first colony ship to settle a second world at Dester - we have a shot at the yellow star after all! And Vesta is a juicy PQ20!



Granted, it's going to be having culture problems smack in the middle of Drengin space, with a double system right next door, but this is too good an opportunity to pass up. Onward!

Now that we've met the Altarians, we can see how far they've spread out. They clearly are breeding like rabbits, and have four systems. It's possible that the two remaining unclaimed systems in their space are habitable, but I'm starting to suspect that our northern colony ship may be heading back to the two PQ13s at Betelgeuse...
 

samurai_ben

Chieftain
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Messages
20
June 2180. Finish researching Basic Environment Control, start on Improved Environment Control. This one always seems to be overlooked by the AIs early on. It's going to take 7 months, but the 10% pop boost will be good and we should be able to trade it fairly easily.

Skip over to the Hero's quest to boldly go where only the Altarians have gone before. Looks like they found a space shark. We shouldn't have any problems avoiding it with the Hero's move of 3, but we're definitely going to have to keep an eye on our autopiloting colony ship so it doesn't fly right into harm's way.



Our colony ship is getting closer to the PQ20 at Vesta.

July 2180. Get a call from the Torians. This is the all-time gold-medal-winning bull moose award for stupid communications. Check out the options.



Our colony ship makes it to Vesta! A PQ 20, and an event to boot! Our alignment stands at 56.



I kick in Ms. Kolaz again, and get started on a freighter - with the PQ20's production abilities and growth potential, this seems like a better option than the alternatives. On the downside, I note that the Drengins have a Military resource just to Vesta's south, and they're already sending another constructor there. If we wind up at war with them, it's gonna hurt.

The Hero continues on into Altarian space, and finds a lone PQ13 at Andersona.

Unukalhai I finishes soil enhancement, halfway through the month?!? Aha, the Hero has moves again...the calendar chose not to advance. Decide that the Hero may as well go back for the potential space-warp anomaly; if there ARE any yellow stars up here, they're clear on the other side of Altarian space and will be gone before we can get there. Likewise, our lone colony ship diverts up towards the unexplored stars in the extreme northwest corner. We can always send it to the twin PQ13s at Betelgeuse if necessary.

August 2180.

Earth finishes a freighter. I'm leery of sending it to the Altarians because of the space shark, and figure that Torian space is a better bet. I send it near the (unexplored) Torian homeworld; it's only one sector further away than their closest planet, and a lot bigger, which should mean more profits.

Switch Earth over to build a Constructor. Even if we're beat to the Military resource on our doorstep, Constructors are a good "depository" early on for Military spending; we can always switch it to a Defender later if we lose the race to the resource.

Speaking of freighters, I check the one heading south to the Drengins. It's stumbled onto a Morale resource, and the constructor-happy Drengins already have a ship en route. Make a mental note to REALLY try to grab the Military one near us.

September 2180.

Dull month. Everyone's on autopilot; nothing happening.

August 2180.

The Hero does indeed hit a wormhole, and lands right next to Earth's sector! The Carinoids - whom we haven't met - already have built an Economic Capital!

But the worst is still to come...



Yep, them cuddly Drengins are already getting hungry. This is a small bribe - we may as well pay them now. We're certainly not ready to go to a wartime footing just yet.

Earth builds a banking center; Gladstone I builds our first Scout. Because it's already to our south, I decide to send it off to the largely unexplored southeast. Two majors and two minors are yet to be found, and that's the most likely spot for some of them. We can always send the second scout to keep an eye on our military resource.

Switch Gladstone to start on a Constructor; again, this is more of a stockpiling order than an actual direction, as I don't think we want to wait 50 turns for a ship at this point in the game.

As long as the Hero's around here, I decide to start picking up the space debris nearby. A lot of chunks of metal are floating around here, and if the Drengin are already making noise, it would be nice to find a ship or two.

Realize it's November already. I'm not used to checking the calendar every month...

December 2180. Start the month by finishing Improved Environment Control, and start on Deflectors, which we'll have finished next month. Actually, I'm tempted to skip the defense techs entirely and push for Phasers-Photons-Corvettes; with a few worlds well-started on Constructors, we could built a paper tiger pretty fast. But I'll take the conservative path and let my successor choose how to deal with those cuddly Drengin.

The Hero hits a scrap of metal; +1 to Attack. With the Hero in the middle of its move, and my turn at an end as soon as it does, I decide to go trading.

Torians: Trade Advanced Environment Control for Propulsion Theory and 45 Influence Points.

Drengin: Trade Advanced Environment Control for Cold Fusion. They won't even cough up influence points in addition. Stingy.

Altarians: Trade Advanced Environment Control for Industrial Theory. Again, no influence points.

Take a look around. The freighter en route to the Drengin has spotted ANOTHER Drengin starbase; I briefly take control to scout it. Just a starbase sitting in space; no resource. Go figure. At least they're wasting their constructors; we need all the help we can get.

Move the Hero another few spaces; end of the year. A few notes:

Although we still officially have a Neutral alignment, the Torians have moved to Warm relations. Hopefully, the Altarians will soon follow, because...

The Drengin are already becoming a problem. I noted that they already had Phasers and Photons; it's a safe bet they're going to have Corvettes in the field within a year or two. And one stinkin' freighter won't make them stop picking on us. They're already rated as having the strongest military, and they clearly are going to be in great shape on resource development. We need to ensure that they don't get the military resource near Earth, even if we have to rush-buy a constructor. With two fully developed military resources, and the fact that we're their only neighbor at the moment (at least that we know about), we would have a serious longevity problem. If WE get that resource and can develop it in time, we're a lot better off.

We have another colony ship and a freighter rolling off the assembly lines at the moment. I recommend that we move away from colony ship production at this time. It's possible that those two stars north of the Torians are uninhabitable or a minor; in any event, the only planets left that I can see are 3 PQ 13s, two of which share a system. Two colony ships should be fine for what's left in this galaxy.

Final note: January 2181 was skipped completely - we're now in February. I accepted the defaults on research and new ship construction; my successor can change these without penalty. I also didn't even launch the new ships that were finished, so be sure to check that you didn't miss any.

Samurai Ben steps down from his one-year term in office. The humans have learned a bit more about their surroundings, and are primed for more. One neighbor already has taken a liking to us, but from another, the far-off beating of war drums is audible over "diplomatic" comm channels.

http://www.civfanatics.net/uploads6/RBGC2-g-2181ad.zip
 

samurai_ben

Chieftain
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Messages
20
P.S. Anybody know why the "IMG" button displays a hyperlink to the image instead of the image itself? The links obviously work, but I think I'm missing something here.
 

uglyduck

Chieftain
Joined
Dec 1, 2003
Messages
30
Hmm - I see what you mean. I had a try but could not get it to work either!

Oh well - no doubt your gallant Leader will tell us what we are doing wrong :)

EDIT:

Yes Elden - your suggestion works! I was copying and pasting his link so I was getting the space too :)
 

Elden

is back!
Joined
Dec 28, 2001
Messages
1,004
Location
Australia
Originally posted by samurai_ben
P.S. Anybody know why the "IMG" button displays a hyperlink to the image instead of the image itself? The links obviously work, but I think I'm missing something here.
Get rid of the space between
 

Physicist

The Universe is flat!
Joined
Nov 19, 2002
Messages
205
Location
Germany
Wow, now we've got momentum :goodjob: . I see and have downloaded the zip-file, but I am currently at work so I can't check if it works. I intend to play tonight (Thursday evening CET), so I am open to any kind of suggestions and strategic discussion during the next ~8 hours.

samurai_ben: I agree with Elden, try go get rid of those spaces btween the
 
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