The Orphan Text

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The ideas and concepts are raw and still in need of rewriting. Read them "as-is" at your own peril. Also, parts of them may not even make it into our final design.

Basic Game Concept

‘The Universe’ revolves around economy, on doing what is necessary to keep your economy healthy.
Most other games of this nature are structured like this:

  • Easy to play
  • Addictive with easy successes
  • Once you reach a certain level/size, repetition/grinding sets in
    • You may gain access to other play areas, but contain the exact same repetitive behavior
  • A lot of “pay some money and get xxx in bonus”
  • Spread the word to all your friends and get even more bonuses
  • You must have friends in the game to complete specific starter missions
    • And cannot abort or avoid these missions
  • Little interaction with other players
    • Send a few gifts
    • Attack or weakly help each other

While this is a successful way to create games and hook many players, it quickly becomes annoying to play and you lose interest after a few months of casual gaming, simply because it turns into mindless grinding and a waste of time.
‘The Universe’ aims to change some of these misconceptions of what a good game is:

  • It definitely should be easy to play, but more advanced players can also delve deeper into the game and micromanage for more finely tuned results, without making it hard for casual gamers who does not share the interest of micromanaging.
  • Addictive with easy successes is a good idea in the beginning, and some players like it like that, but harder successes should also be attainable, requiring a bit of micromanagement.
  • Repetition/grinding is unavoidable, but the ability to change what resources you are grinding, as well as having a dynamic market, constantly changing what is needed, introduces needed change to the gaming style.
    • In this game, you immediately have access to many other areas of the game, which are radically different, because the entire game changes to a different format when you enter them. You are also able to move between the areas
      • However, some areas may be blocked by other players or events, but options to gain access exist.
      • Politics become equally as important as economics and you can simply outsource the parts you’d rather not handle. Just make sure you can trust the person you outsource to! Yes, person! You can only outsource your responsibilities to other players in the game.
  • There will be “pay some money and get xxx in bonus”, but they should not be required to advance in the game, only aid advancement.
  • You do not have to spread the word to all your friends and do not get any bonuses for doing so
  • You do not need friends in the game to complete specific starter missions
    • You do not have to complete missions, but aborting them can have an economic impact.
    • Also almost all missions are created by other players needing specific goods or services.
  • You choose what interaction you want with other players
    • You cannot send gifts to other players, unless as part of a trade or diplomatic agreement
    • Make trade or alliances or warfare with other players.
      • War is a costly business though

In the beginning, before the pest of humanity spreads across The Universe, the computer will handle higher levels of economy on Planets, but as a Player proves his economic skills, he can (choose to) be promoted to handle these higher level economies, which not only affect his own private economy, but also the Players (un)fortunate to have their Villages under his care.
If you were in charge, would you be selfish and scam your way to unimaginable wealth and power, or make choices that benefit everyone?
Just remember that Players below you are also able to affect the economy and can make your career hard or easy. Are you sure you are ready to be promoted?

The setup

Your quirky uncle unfortunately passed away in a freak accident and left you his Village to rule over.
The question is: where in the Universe is his Village?

First decisions

You can freely choose a galaxy where you wish to start, but beyond that, you have only two free options to find your new home.

  • Random placement: This option may place you in a very populated area, but could also place you in the middle of nowhere. Your new home could be in a Village under another Player’s Citystate or as the first Player in an unoccupied Citystate.
  • By invitation: An established Player can invite friends/allies to move in to one of the Computer Controlled Villages in the same Citystate. All CC Villages are available for random placement, but a Player can temporarily prevent random assignments on a Village by making a Down Payment.
  • As a last option: You can pay real money to be more fortuitously placed. Some Villages are richer in special minerals or resources. If you are really lucky, they are unique and very valuable. You are placed in a random Village and that Villages underground or surface will be upgraded to contain something special. It can be a weed which turns out to have health benefitting effects when smoked or eons ago a special mineral meteor crashed here, or an alien vessel crashed and once you learn to survey the underground, you find it. Not all paid benefits are instantly discovered.

‘We’re going to the Market’

To survive in this game, you need to produce goods for sale on the Market. Without goods, you have no income to pay your bills, and you could face a bankruptcy. The Citystate Market is tightly controlled by the Mayor. Some goods may be illegal to sell, but this usually makes them more profitable on the Black Market. The Mayor decides which goods should be sellable, so do your best to influence him to make the right decisions. And/or sell the goods on the Black Market at a reduced price, but at least you can sell them.
It is in the best interest of the Mayor to allow goods on the Market, which he can make a profit from, but unless his own private Village is able to produce them, he must rely on production from the other Village Owners in his Citystate. The Mayor can establish a trade agreement with someone else (anyone, anywhere, as long as a communications channel is available) and ask the other Village Owners to produce the goods. Alternatively he can purchase the goods from another Citystate or District, if they sell it cheap enough. They don’t need to know about the Trade Agreement, which basically triples the income. Unless it is restricted goods, the Mayor (Player) does not need to account for where the goods are coming from originally.
The other Village Owners decide if they wish to farm/produce these goods. Village Owners can request to create new items/goods, or notify the Mayor which products they can produce automatically or manually inform. This enables the Mayor to try to sell these new items/goods on the market.
New items/goods may allow new technologies to be researched. How the Mayor gains access to the items/goods, is irrelevant.

  • E.g.: A Player does not have production units for steel, but does have production units for firearms, which require steel. He can sell firearms, but must have steel in his stockpile to produce them.

In the beginning, everyone needs Food. Everyone loves Food. Food is cheap to produce. At some point, a Player decides to create glass, but cannot pay upkeep for Farms in his Village too, as Farms + Glass Factory is too expensive. Now a Village will always need food, so he opts to sell the Farms and buy the Food from the Market or other Villages instead, allowing the Player to manufacture Glass to sell.
This creates a dependency with your neighbors. A Village has its own Storages for Food, Oil, etc., but a Citystate also has Storages, as does Districts and Nations. These Storages can be what keep a Nation going during wartime, where your supply lines are cut off and internal production just doesn’t cut it. Alternatively you can turn to the Black Market, which profits by smuggling Food and other goods into the warzone. Not a cheap endeavor, as it is very risky.

Influence does matter

Villages

Each Player has control of one Village. This is his home, his livelihood. The Player cannot lose the Village, but economic troubles may force him to pawn part of his income to another Player or a Computer Controlled bank, in exchange for a loan to do what is necessary to get back on his feet.
Production: The Player controls what to produce in their Village. It is possible to produce many different types of goods. Some goods may require other goods to be processed.
Market Access: Village Owners without a status (Mayor or higher) can only sell their products to Village Owners in the same Citystate or to the Citystate Internal Market.
Taxes: Village Owners should pay taxes to the Citystate. 'Should', because they can choose not to, but the Mayor may dislike this and you will most likely not get your goods sold and burn in with produced special goods without buyers. Other options for sale exist, but in general with much less profit. You should stay on good terms with your Mayor.
Upgrading: A Village Owner can upgrade his Village with a vast array of production units, dependent on availability and technology. Some upgrades can be purchased on the black market or from other Players. Some upgrades can be constructed.
Expanding: A Village starts out small, but you can purchase additional space from the Citystate to produce larger amounts of goods at the same time.
Research: A Village Owner can research most technologies on his own, but gaining access to some higher level technology branches will require the use of Research Centers in the Citystate, District, Nation or Planet. Village Owners within the same Citystate can connect their Research Centers with networks to gain knowledge faster.

Citystate

A Citystate is formed when several villages grow too big and their borders meet. They grow into a Citystate, which is governed by all the Players. An alternative to a Citystate is to create a Municipality or form protection alliances with neighbors.
A Player is elected Mayor through available means (Democratic, warfare, bribes, etc.). The Mayor makes economic decisions for the entire Citystate and handles trades with foreign powers or allies. It is the Mayor’s task to collect taxes from the Villages. Computer Controlled Villages will adapt to generate any resources the Mayor flags as necessary. As Players show up, the Mayor must rely on their assistance to produce the goods he needs to advance the Citystate. He can implement various punishments to Villages not conforming to the laws as set up by the Mayor.
Market Access:
Taxes:
Upgrading:
Expanding: The Mayor can wage wars against other Citystates, if no treaty preventing this exists. Winning over another Mayor can grant him with more Villages or simply more wealth or advantageous trade agreements.
Research:
The Mayor can promote a Village Owner to handle the responsibilities of an office in the Citystate. He can pass all decision posts over to a subordinate Village Owner, but also relieve him of them. This allows the Mayor to go on vacation, while another Player handles the Citystate’s affairs, or simply do so to delegate responsibility.
Mayors should pay taxes to the CE. 'Should', because they can choose not to, but the CE may dislike it and you will most likely be restricted to selling your goods through Citystate Trade Channels and the risky Black Market. Any existing higher level trade agreements will be put on hold and cash and goods flow is stopped, until the situation is resolved. How you resolve the situation, is up to you. Try taking out loans, making bribes or getting absolution by convincing the CE you simply could not pay.
The Mayor is responsible for choosing and assigning funds for advances in the Citystate, both technological as well as social. Some technologies can be researched, but not used until most or all Villages have acquired the technology for themselves. Researching some higher level technologies may rely on acquiring technologies from the CE.

Districts

The first Player in a district is automatically upgraded to Chief Executive. The CE makes economic decisions for all the Citystates. He must handle trades of greater importance and may require one or more Mayors to deliver specific goods or services for resale. The CE is also in charge of forging and maintaining alliances between districts, or waging war against them.
Market Access:
Taxes:
Upgrading:
Expanding:
It is up to the Mayors to make sure Trade Requests are filled, but the CE's should be sure agreements can be filled, before making them. He is the responsible party noted in the agreement and is rewarded or punished depending on success or failure.
The Mayor, who completes Trade Requests, may be rewarded. Those that don't, may have lost an opportunity of a lifetime.
Research:
The CE can promote a Mayor or his subordinate Village Owners to handle the responsibilities of an office in the District. The CE can pass all decision posts over to a subordinate, and later relieve him of them. This allows the CE to go on vacation, while another Player handles his affairs, or simply to delegate responsibility.
CE's should pay taxes to the President. 'Should', because they can choose not to, but the President may dislike it and you will most likely be restricted to selling your goods through District and Citystate Trade Channels, and the risky black market. Any existing higher level trade agreements will be put on hold and cash and goods flow is stopped, until the situation is resolved. Either by loans, bribes or getting absolution by convincing the president you could not pay.
The CE is responsible for choosing and assigning funds for scientific advances, benefitting the entire District. Some technologies cannot be researched until most or all Citystates have acquired the technology. Researching some technologies rely on other technologies acquired from the President.

Nations

The first Player in a nation is automatically upgraded to President. The President makes economic decisions for all the Districts. He must handle trades of grand importance and may require one or more CE's to deliver specific goods or services for resale. The President is also in charge of forging and maintaining alliances between other Nations, or waging war against them.
Market Access:
Taxes:
Upgrading:
Expanding:
It is up to the CE's to make sure trade requests are filled, but the President should be sure agreements can be filled, before making them. He is the responsible party noted in the agreement and is rewarded or punished depending on success or failure.
The CE's who completes Trade Requests, may be rewarded. Those that don't, may have lost an opportunity of a lifetime.
Research:
The President can promote a CE, a Mayor or a Mayor’s subordinate Village Owners to handle the responsibilities of an office in the Nation. The President can pass all decision posts over to a subordinate, and later relieve him of them. This allows the President to go on vacation, while another Player handles his affairs, or simply to delegate responsibility.
CE's should pay taxes to the President. 'Should', because they can choose not to, but it may incur the wrath of the President and you will most likely be restricted to selling your goods through District and Citystate Trade Channels, and the risky black market. Any existing higher level trade agreements will be put on hold and cash and goods flow is stopped, until the situation is resolved. Either by loans, bribes or convincing the president you could not pay.
The CE is responsible for choosing and assigning funds for scientific advances, benefitting the entire Nation. Some technologies cannot be researched until most or all Citystates have acquired the technology. Researching some technologies rely on other technologies acquired from the rest of the Universe.

United Planet

This requires all Nations to agree to work together, as well as space technology to evolve, enabling contact with other spacefaring Nations.
More space technology advances enables contact, and possibly trade, with more and more distant planets, and in the end, the entire Galaxy.
You are unable to contact a planet which has not reached the required space technology for contact yet, but as they advance, they may pop up just in your neighborhood, opening up for trade, or possibly war. A planet may choose to invent space travel, but not to establish contact, nor respond to hails. They could instead research better weapons in order to starting wars against everyone.

Game mechanics

This section describes some of the mechanics used in the game.

Mining

EarthBound-Resources must be mined. These resources are required by Productions Units and are therefore also a good to be traded. Some EB-Resources must be refined before becoming viable for production. Examples of EB-Resources are Coal, Oil, Stone, Marble, Gold and Silver.
To mine a material, you need to know how to mine. There are two types of mining:

  • Surface Mining
  • Tunneling

Harvesting

SurfaceBound-Resources must be harvested. Some of these resources must be refined.
Examples of SB-Resources are Wood, Flowers, Spices and various foods.

Breeding

Breed-able Resources must be gathered. Some of them must later be processed into food, or sold as is.
Examples of breed-able resources are Geese, Cows, Horses, Chickens and Fish.

Production

The Mayor can ask Villages to produce specific goods destined for sale to Districts, other Citystates or the risky black market. How he rewards Villages for producing these goods, is up to him. He can choose to prepay for the goods, keeping the Villages economy good, or choose to pay once goods have been sold, with the possibility that the money flows too slowly back to the Village, resulting in bankruptcy.
New production units can be built, purchased from other Players or leased from the GSO. Production units are available is dependent on the technology purchased by the Village Owner.

Refining

Most resources must be refined before they can be used in production. The better the refinement, the higher the price the end product can fetch, as quality usually depends on cleaner products. Some, however, works best for some productions if a little bit unclean.
Refining is a special type of Production Unit.

Resources

  • Stockpiling: The Player can choose to stockpile resources through own production or by purchase. The upside is cheaper resources, but the downside is that it requires space in his Village.
  • Citystate Resource Pool: An alternative is to buy access to the CItystate Resource Pool. Prices may be higher or lower than stockpiling, depending on how greedy the Mayor is.

Upkeep

All Production Units requires upkeep to function. In general this upkeep is money, but some production units also require resources to produce goods. If the upkeep is not available, production halts, until they become available.
As technology levels rise, some goods will eventually only serve as a sort of upkeep. Purchasing large volumes from other sources to your stockpiles may be easier and possibly cheaper than producing them yourself. Do note that some resources are perishable and must continually be refilled, but don’t buy too much each cycle, or you lose money. Also be wary that you could lose your market access or Trade Route and be cut off from the upkeep goods. This would prevent you from producing your own goods.
You have the option of restructuring production internally, but remember that it takes time to replace existing Production Units to do so. In times of war, it may become a necessity if other sources are unreachable.
The Mayor (and higher) needs to keep an eye on the shared stockpiles to ensure enough goods for upkeep is available for the Village Owners who has purchased access to them. If the stockpiles run low, he needs to either purchase from the District Market, Black Market, or ask his Village Owners to produce extra. Production must be kept running, or the economy in general may suffer.

Workforce

Most Production Units requires a Workforce to be employed and although each Village has its own indigenous Workforce, some Production Units requires a lot of workers. You can hire available workers from other Players, but usually only your neighbors, depending on the infrastructure (travel time). At the (much) higher transport tech levels, the entire Planets workforce is available, as TransPortalling becomes normal. But at that tech level, most Production Units will have become automated anyway.
Having workers involves a lot of management, as you need to keep them supplied with lodging, food and water, if they are indigenous to your Village. If you hire them from other Players, lodging, food and water is their problem, not yours. Hiring workers from other Players entails creating a Trade Agreement. You must pay the fee each cycle for the agreed upon amount of workers, whether or not you put them to use. The other Player must ensure you receive the agreed upon amount of workers each cycle. As with any Trade Agreement, the agreed penalty must be paid, if either fails to uphold their part.
Workers can be modified with several different options:

  • Boosters/Enhancers: These provide a temporary or permanent boost to production or enhance their work to produce more perfect goods, which gives better value when sold.
    • Drugs: These usually provide quite a boost, but also have drawbacks such as extended downtime after a production cycle as well as extended use can trigger addiction, requiring more of the substance to keep production at high levels, or it will drop to horrible in no time flat. Use with care.
    • Robots: A permanent boost as well as reducing required amount of workers at the cost of a little extra upkeep.
    • Implants: Can only be added to a Players’ indigenous workers and depending on tech level has upkeep, but can be hired/sold to other Players at a greater price.
    • Education: Educating your workers, will enable them to work smarter and faster, but cost more in upkeep.
    • Extra payment: Don’t underestimate the value of money. Workers certainly don’t!
  • Degraders/Reducers: Usually not something you’d want in a production environment, but nothing is so bad, that it does not do some good too.
    • Addiction: A problem arising from the continued use of drugs or very powerful implants, which have been removed after extended use.
      • Causes severely degraded work performance if untreated or drugs become unavailable.
      • Treatment costs a great deal and prevents or severely degrades work for the duration, but workers can return to normal afterwards.
    • Removing robots: Causes a drop in performance and quality, and requires more workers to maintain same production size.
    • Reduced payment: Depending on the type of government, workers may continue working, even though payment has been reduced, however quality and quantity may be affected.
    • Removing implants: It removes the benefits gained by the implants, but also makes workers cheaper to keep around.
    • Sabotage: Other Players can sabotage your production to prevent you from generating goods. Usually they can do this to prevent you from fulfilling a Trade Agreement so you get a bad reputation, enabling them to sell the same products instead of you.

Research

You can acquire new technologies through purchase, research or Reverse Engineering. Any Player can choose to sell any technology they desire, but here is a thought: Is life really fun if everyone have the same toys? Also selling the blueprints of a nuclear weapon to a 10-year old boy, may not be the best sale you ever made.
Blueprints and technologies learned are never lost, although Blueprints can be sold.

  • Village Owner: Players can construct Research Facilities in their Village, but they are nowhere near as good as the Citystate Research Centers. Having at least one Research Facility to reverse engineer ‘acquired’ technologies and research basic technologies will allow you to produce more different types of goods. He can request access to the MRC’s to perform research he otherwise cannot handle himself, at a price.
  • Mayor: He has control of Citystate Research Centers, which are much more powerful than the RF’s that Village Owners can construct. The Mayor must fund the construction of MRC’s with Citystate Funds. He can use the MRC’s to find new technologies, which he can sell to the Village Owners. Or allow the Village Owners to use the MRC’s to Reverse Engineer ‘acquired’ technologies. They can pay extra to keep the discovery to themselves, or pay a reduced price, if the Citystate gets to keep a blueprint of the technology for resale.
  • Chief Executive: He has control of District Research Centers, which are much more powerful than the MRC’s that Mayors can construct. The CE must fund the construction of DRC’s with District Funds. He can use the DRC’s to find new technologies, which he can sell to the Village Owners. Or allow the Village Owners to use the DRC’s to Reverse Engineer ‘acquired’ technologies. They can pay extra to keep the discovery to themselves, or pay a reduced price, if the District gets to keep a blueprint of the technology for resale.

Learning new stuff

A lot of the technologies researched, as well as elements discovered are based on actual science. All information in the research database has an external link to Wikipedia, which explains the individual molecule or technology as it exists in the real world. This is simply an informational link, and Players can choose not to show this, but isn’t it fun to learn about new technologies, materials and goods more in depth?

Blueprints

Blueprints are used to determine how a unit is constructed and which resources are needed for construction. Other information includes required tech levels for each element and technology trees. If a Player does not have the technology tree or knowledge of any required elements, they show only a ?, regardless of the amount of trees/elements/levels.

  • Construction: A Blueprint enables construction of the device, if required resources are available.
  • Selling: It can be sold to another Player, but a sale transfers the Blueprint, so the original owner loses it.
  • Copying: A Player can copy Blueprints and sell them as desired.
    • A word of warning though: While earning a lot of cash selling Blueprints is nice, consider that someone else can do the exact same thing with the Blueprint you just sold, if their tech level is high enough, making it harder for you to find buyers, as suddenly everyone has the technology. Some technologies are best kept as a secret, so you are the only one that can produce them.
    • Selling to the masses: The GSO may not look kindly to species, who share their technology en masse (selling to hundreds of Players in a very short time). Non-weapon-tech may not cause problems, but selling WMD’s and/or technology to produce WMD’s may cause the GSO to show up and warn you.
      • If you have been warned, still continue selling and is judged guilty, all sales and produced (unused) weapons will be reclaimed and destroyed in a Black Hole (unrecoverable).
        • Recompense is only monetary and at 75% of the construction/purchase price. Resources are lost. Angry? Blame the seller!
        • Any money/valuables you have will be used/sold to recompense your buyers’ losses, as long as there are Blueprints and created devices left. It is similar to what happens during a Bankruptcy, and may result in such.
        • Which Players will be recompensed, depends on when you started selling bulk loads.

Reverse Engineering

Any technology unknown to the xRC’s can be exposed to Reverse Engineering, but the process may damage or destroy it. How far along in the process the technology is destroyed, determines whether the research is a success or not, and whether it is possible to try again. If the technology survives Reverse Engineering, it is returned to the Village Owner, along with the results. A technology may survive Reverse Engineering without any results. The research level of the xRC’s has an impact on the success/failure.
As all materials are composed of elements, reverse engineering can only be performed if you (or the xRC) know about these materials and it also depends on the required levels for Reverse Engineering of the device.

  • E.g. A Player acquires a device, either through combat, theft, trade or simply a lucky find. The Player has a low tech level and does not have access to high level xRC’s. He is unable to Reverse Engineer the device and to him, it is no more than a decorative object in his office. By chance, a friend sees it (by directly browsing through his publicly available trade goods). The friend offers to purchase the device for a small sum. The Player agrees, as it serves him no purpose. The new owner does not have enough of a tech level either, but does have access to a high level xRC and pays them a large sum of money to Reverse Engineer the device and to not keep the Blueprint. The xRC delivers the Blueprint and the device, as it miraculously survived the Reverse Engineering process. It turns out to be a portable Fusion-device, which consumes Tritium to produce several GigaWatts of power. The output can be sustained for 1 week without refueling and carries 50% fuel. 25% was used during experiments (~spent during the time it took to Reverse Engineer it). The new owner can now utilize this device for power in a single Power Plant. He would really like to be able to produce new units, but is unable to produce/acquire Tritium, so decides to sell the Blueprint.

Transportation

Moving goods around is how the Universe enables trade. Everyone needs goods and who is going to get them there? Several layers of transportation are required to perform this daunting task.

Area

Internal transport

External transport

IntraPlanet:

  • Villages
  • Citystates
  • Districts
  • Nations

 

  • Automatic Transport of Resources from Stockpile to Production Units.
  • Option to upgrade infrastructure to reduce transport time penalty.

Planetary Wide Transport

  • Use public channels for transport at public prices.
  • Hire a Player Courier Service to transport goods to destination.

IntraGalaxy:

  • Systems
  • Regions

System Wide Transport

  • Automatic Transport of goods related to Trade Agreements using publicly available transportation. Transports are available x times per day, depending on available public transports.
  • Hire a Player Courier Service to transport goods more frequently. But you must rely on their services. Delays may happen.

Region Wide Transport

  • Transport over longer stretches of space is not cheap, as well as the availability of Deep Space Transporters is severely limited to maybe 1 or 2 transports per week. Plan your long distance trade agreements well.
  • Hire a Player Courier Service to transport goods more frequently. But you must rely on their services. Delays may happen.

InterRegion Transport

  • Automatic Transport of goods related to Trade Agreements using publicly available transportation. Transports are available only about once a month. You’d be better off using Player Courier Services, which may have a better transport network available.

Internal Village Transportation

Each Production Unit has a default Base Production Speed, which can be augmented with different technologies to improve their speed. But you can only produce as fast as your Base Resources can be transferred from your Stockpile to your Production Units. There are a few standard types of transport routes which at first give penalties to production speed, but later in the game, new technologies will provide even better solutions.
A Production Unit must be connected to a Stockpile to function, but it is by default always via Open Grassland or through adjacent PU’s. The length of a road/railway has no impact at Village level.

  • Open Grassland: Reduces Base Production Speed by 50 % and Base Movement Speed by 50 %.
  • Dirt roads: Reduces Base Production Speed by 40 % and Base Movement Speed by 30 %.
  • Paved roads: Reduces Base Production Speed by 15 % and Base Movement Speed by 10 %.
  • Highways: Reduces Base Production Speed by 5 %. Does not reduce Base Movement Speed.
  • Railways: Does not reduce Base Production Speed. Increases Base Movement Speed by 30%.
    • BPS is not increased by better transportation because a factory can only produce as fast as its production devices can process the material received. Researching better production technologies can however increase the Base Production Speed. At least with Railways, there is no longer a penalty.
  • Connected through adjacent Production Units: Inherits Base Production Speed penalty (+ 5 %-point for added distance) and Base Movement Speed penalty from adjoining PU.
    • If a PU is built directly next to another PU with a lower penalty than Open Grassland, the penalties are inherited. However PU number 3 away from a Dirt Road would not have a lower penalty, as the penalty will be set at 40% for Dirt Road + 5 %-points for PU number 1, and another 5%-point for PU number 2, making the penalty 50%, which is the same as Open Grassland.

Personal transport in space

You can travel around in space using trade lanes, if you do not have a spaceship of your own. This is a great way to learn about your space neighborhood and establishing trade relations with foreign powers, but the freedom in choosing destinations is limited to the existing trade network and other Players’ acceptance of passengers on their transports.
You may get lucky and find an interconnected trading world, which specializes in finding rare and exotic goods, as well as mass-trading of goods. Other Players interested in making trades have moved here from other parts of the galaxy, creating a new government centered on trade. They pay another government to protect their entire planet, preventing raiders from stealing the goods.
These worlds are highly active and have multiple transports leaving for all corners of the galaxy. You may also be able to trade to newer Star Maps, or purchase temporary access to a Galactic wide map, allowing you to choose destinations for travel. Do note that Star Maps must be constantly updated, as new information arrives from around the galaxy, and some information may be very old.
Some of the actions you can perform while travelling around the galaxy:

  • Explore and find new planets, either with inhabitants, or without.
    • Perform surveys of the underground, if technology and equipment permits this.
    • Report/sell the findings to either your own species or sell to anyone who pays.
      • Who wouldn’t want to know where a planet filled with gold exists?
  • Examine space reports (submitted by other players) to determine your next destination, or take up tasks submitted by other players.
    • Maybe a widely used trade network suddenly went silent and someone needs it investigated?
    • Or you find and introduce an entire cadre of interconnected planets to your species’ Trade Network?
      • This requires your own spaceship, as you’d need to travel outside known space.
  • Remember: Any new information is valuable.

Communication

If you have access to instant or message communication, you can still handle the daily life in your Village, while you are gallivanting around the Universe. But if something prevents you from communicating, you are unable to handle your Villages issues and just have to hope it can manage until you can contact them again. It may be best to make precautions before you start travelling around the galaxy.

The Market

The public Market is where you make most of your money, depending on what you specialized yourself in producing. Market prices change all the time and the only way to secure a steady price, is to enter into a Trade Agreement directly with neighbors or through the Open Market.
The Market is divided into sections:

  • General Market: An autonomic system, where you buy/sell goods, which the market accepts “without question”, because these resources are primarily in demand. Available/accepted goods, as well as price, will vary greatly from Market to Market.
    • Prices and availability is determined simply by supply and demand within each Market.
    • Note that each Citystate, Village, Nation has its own local Market, each with their own needs and demands. The leader in each Market can decide if availability and accepted goods follow higher market demands, or if their market is closed.
  • Open Market: Here you find all the other (legal) goods, not generally available on the General Market. The Open Market works through postings. You set up a request for or sale of a fixed amount of specified goods. Another Player can then purchase or supply the goods at the price given.
  • Trade Agreement Market: Here you can establish contact with buyers/producers of goods, who wish to enter into long or short term Trade Agreements.
  • Black Market: This is where you get all the stuff you can only dream about. You can buy and sell stuff here, that are unregulated by the other Markets.
    • Quality may be worse than advertised, as the content is not inspected, unless the Player pays extra to have it controlled before delivery.
    • Goods are most likely illegal
    • Goods from other planets can be available here, even if a Trade Blockade is in effect
      • It costs more to smuggle goods past a Trade Blockade, but at least they are available
      • Your workers may have become dependent on that special powerful work-enhancing drug from another world, and a sudden stop would cause your production to be severely crippled for longer periods until their addiction wears off and normal production is again possible.

Trade Agreements

A Trade Agreement is a binding contract for a specific amount of goods over a specific amount of time.
The agreements consist of several parts:

  • Is it a single or multiple deliveries
    • One destination or multiple
      • The agreement could entail sending food to several planets for longer periods of time. Usually an agreement of this magnitude is made between Nations or Districts.
  • Duration of agreement
    • Amount and schedule of deliveries
  • Type of goods
  • Minimum amount in each delivery
  • Minimum quality
    • If production generates lower quality than agreed (‰ bad production based on tech level, bad/infected/hungover/addicted workers, etc.), the lesser quality will remain in storage, and amount for delivery may not be ready when transport is available.
      • If transport is local, it may be frequent enough not to matter, but if transport is off-world, it may cause problems with upholding the agreement as Offworld-transports rarely waits for anyone.
        • An alternative here is to allow production to complete and then hire someone else to make the missed delivery. This increases expenses, but you get to keep the Trade Agreement intact and not pay for failing to uphold the agreement.
        • A second alternative is to purchase the missing amount from a Market.
    • The lesser quality goods can be sold at a lower price on the Market. Some people may accept lower quality goods, as they are cheaper.
  • Penalty
    • Each agreement has a set of default penalties for breaching the Trade Agreement.
    • Players can change these penalties as desired before accepting.
    • Penalties are void, if one of the parties is involved in a Trade Blockade or War which prevents fulfilling the agreement, except the monetary part. Payment must be rendered, if goods are delivered. Remember that Players can always use own transports, pay Black Market Transports or hire another Player to ferry the goods behind the lines, but they can choose not to, without paying the penalty.

Trade Range

The Citystate in general must gain sufficient Trade Level (essentially Trade Range) to enable Market Trade with other Citystates. Distance between Citystates varies depending on location within the District. As soon as a Citystate has the Trade Range to reach another Citystate, they can both start trading, but ONLY a Citystate with sufficient Trade Range to reach the other Citystate can send transports. This allows a Citystate to make money on transport of goods, while the first must wait till sufficient Trade Range enables them so send their own transports.
The Citystate has a combined Trade Level, which the Mayor is responsible for developing, but internally, a single Player may have sufficient Trade Level to establish a Trade Connection to another Citystate. In this case, that Player can offer the Citystate to act as transport for goods between Citystates, linking the Markets together.

Trade Bandwidth and Trade Connections

The amount of goods that can be transported between Markets or Players is determined solely by the quantity and quality of the Trade Fleet available to the Player or Citystate that has the access to provide a Trade Connection to/from another Player/Citystate. These possible connections are accessible in the local Market, allowing other Players to purchase transport on his transports.
A Trade Fleet can be anything permitting transport of Goods: Planes, Cargo Trucks, Trains, Ships, etc.
A Player can choose to invest his money in an Airport and Planes to establish long range Trade Routes, but they require another Airport (very expensive) or Airstrip (cheaper) to be built by another Player. Or invest in a Seaport and Ships to establish a water Trade Route. It is slower, but can carry larger/heavier goods.
A Player can establish each leg of the Trade Route himself by contacting and negotiating a transport price with each Player with the individual Transport Connection to his intended target, or utilize automatic connection, which automatically books each leg at standard rates.

  • A Trade Connection across a Planet will consist of multiple legs.
  • An interruption anywhere in the Trade Connection will delay delivery of goods, causing issues for all involved.

Governments

Many types of governments exist. Some are not even governments, but mere coalitions of factions. But in time even these tend to melt together into a government.
Regardless of the type of government, there exist some basic functions, which must be handled by a Player. It can be the same Player handling everything, if so desired, but it may be best to delegate or put two in charge of the same position.

  • Diplomacy
  • Production
  • Research
  • Security
  • Trade
  • Warfare

Corporation

A Corporation is basically a company running everything. They are primarily interested in maintaining control of their production facilities and making money. They will resort to conquest to gain new sources of revenue, but will most likely try to haggle for the resources first.

Confederacy

Getting many governments to work together, but still stay sovereign in their own turf, is the job of a Confederacy. Usually all governments under a Confederacy are the same type and ruled by officials from each government.

Communism

Often called a ‘wonderful idea’ and a ‘beautiful experiment’. Communism is about sharing resources at all levels for the betterment of all. But it only works as long as corruption and greed is kept out of the equation. Can you really keep all the commercialistic entities away from your borders? It may be a good idea to keep your borders closed and do trade with outsiders very carefully.

Democracy

Maintaining a Democracy can end up with disagreements and internal fighting, if the parties involved are of radically different opinions. Keeping a democracy together can be a lot of work, but also be rewarding.

Dictatorship

Always wanted to run everything? Well, find a good general and some good security and put yourself on the top through any means necessary.

Economics

Every Nation has its own coin. Later multiple nations, or the entire planet, can agree to use only one currency. If a currency goes bankrupt, the coin can become worthless.

Loans

Village Owners are able to take out loans from either the CC bank or other Players. The bank has a 5% default interest and each cycle payment must be at least the same value as the interest, but also no less than 5% of the cycle's net income (after expenses), until the loan is paid out. The CC bank is merciless and unstoppable with regard to repayment. If the economy is not good enough, the Village Owner is warned and given 1 day to find the money, or a random valuable is liquidated at perceived value (may be lower or higher than market value).
If other Village Owners lend money to friends (not possible if they currently have an active loan at a bank) and the Village Owner goes bankrupt or quit the game, the lent money must be repaid immediately. The CC (Computer Controlled) Banks are, of course, happy to help the unfortunate payee in this case, but at an increased interest rate.
Some creditors may be lenient, while others just jack up the interest for each cycle without payment. If you are tardy toward a CC Bank, it will result in repossession of valuables/production units (Only the GSO can perform repossessions).

Banks

The CC bank has a limited set of funds and is limited to its own galaxy. A bank’s interests are based on the current economic standing of the galaxy.
If the bank has only few cash holdings left (1% of a given cash limit), it will either become reluctant to give out loans, or the interest will climb. This is not expected to happen, as the bank does cater to an entire galaxy.

Villages

One Citystate, Many Villages

The description under this headline is dependent on using the Isogenic Game Engine, allowing for Multiple Players on the same Canvas.
All Village Players in the same Citystate can wander over and see nearby Villages. Players can only build on their own assigned Villages. Mayors can sell or buy land from Players allowing individual Players to expand their Village. This also enables other Players to keep an eye on spies in the entire Citystate.
And now we resume the normal text…

Village Transfer

A Player can decide to move to another Citystate, but this incurs a transfer fee of 1% of his entire economic value (after debts). Any valuables or equipment can be liquidated (sold automatically at a reduced rate, or sold manually) and any local debts must be paid. If done automatically, then in the order they were created. A Player can pay for transport expenses to bring along all valuables and equipment. Moving buildings is not possible, but they can be dismantled.
If a Player goes bankrupt, he is automatically forced to move to a new random Village.
Moving to a whole new Galaxy is also an option, but the Galaxy is a large place, so there is really no need to move that far away…

Workers’ health and drug abuse

Everyone needs workers. Without them, production simply is not feasible. Taking care of your workers is a choice, like any other. If you do nothing to enhance or aid your workers, production will falter or ultimately stop. Dead workers can’t make anything but mulch. Keeping your workers healthy makes them happier and more inclined to work longer hours for the same pay, as well as keeping production up, because they don’t report in sick. A sick worker or two is not worrying, but a lot could be the start of an epidemic. Not handling an epidemic in the beginning could cause you to lose your workforce, as well as lower their general IQ. Losing a workforce is not always a bad thing, as only the strong survive, and their genetic structure will better be able to withstand this type of disease in the future, some might even become immune.

Diseases

Some technology enables creating horrible diseases to send to other villages. This is known as biological warfare and, depending on politics, is very frowned upon. Also be careful your lab assistants aren’t spies, who might release the toxins in your own populace. You’d generally be better off not creating something that can kill your own people. You don’t control what people use your produced goods for; you can only choose not to sell to them, at least directly. Middlemen can be unscrupulous with regard to whom they resell your carefully constructed bioweapons.
Some diseases lurk in nature though. These can be combatted using medicine. Again here, your workers can grow tolerant or immune to the disease they were treated for. But in few cases, the opposite can happen, depending on the type of medicine. Some medicines work faster, but carry no long term benefits. In few cases, it even makes workers more susceptible to the specific type of disease.
Should you manage to breed workers (over several generations) which are healthy, strong, etc.; they can be sold as inter-breeders, replacements or general workforce, to aid another player in various ways.

Leasing workers and sweat shops

You can lease your workers to other players, if you have a surplus of them. You may have bred them specifically to lease or sell them (slavery may not have been abolished on your planet or in your nation). Regardless how you acquired them, you can lease them to other players. If they live close by, they will require transport to/from the player on a regular basis. Alternately, you (or the player) must set up a workers camp nearby, to handle feeding them. The price you obtain may depend upon you supplying them with food and water; otherwise they will become an extra drain (while being leased) on the other players food/water-supply. If neither supplies them with food/water, they cease being effective workers, then they become sick and ultimately they die.
How you treat your (or other players’) workers, can be a determining factor for who wants to make trade with you. If they find out, that is. You may be running a sweatshop to produce cheap goods in volumes. This can get you more trade and money, but if other players with higher morals find out, you could lose a lot of customers. Or be forced to clean up your act, if they choose to make a trade blockade.

Genetic manipulation

In time, technology permits genetic manipulation, but this too has side effects. Or at the very least, political effects. Not everyone likes mutants. And not all mutants like ‘normals’. Some workers may demand more money to continue working when near unlikeable species.

Racism and hatred

Information campaigns or specific religions/ways of thinking, can mitigate effects of racism and eventually it will die out. Sometimes it is not racism per say, but more a hatred against an old enemy from wars past. If someone had tried to take over the area and failed (or succeeded), the other species/political persuasions may react negatively to working near them.
Hatred/racism can go both ways, increasing costs for both players. Here it would be advantageous for the players to initiate a combined campaign to get the two peoples to work together. Worker-sharing near borders will mitigate/eliminate hatred or racism. The longer hatred/racism goes ‘untreated’, the more expensive it becomes for the player(s) to pay wages. Eventually you might have to scrap your entire workforce and start over with a fresh one. You can do it brutally and swift by not hiring anyone with hatred (a percentage of your populace will be affected, just hire the non-affected percentage). The non-hired part will die out eventually, as they need to have their living costs covered by wages. However this will cause riots, as hatred/racism does not go quietly. Riots reduce production substantially, and as only a small percentage of workers are active, it is very troublesome. Hiring outside workers will not help much with production when afflicted with hatred/racism riots, as the workers you hire might be someone they hate. The best method is to slowly reduce the amount of hatred/racism-afflicted workers being used. You will have a lower production for a while, but will weed out your workforce eventually getting a ‘clean’ base of diligent non-hating workers.
You can also opt to simply exterminate your entire workforce and buy a new one. But this is very frowned upon politically and you may not be able to find someone who is willing to sell new workers to you, knowing what happened to your last workforce. But the key here is 'knowing’. If they don’t know, they can’t object.

Databanks

Each Player and each Government has a Databank. The information in this Databank can be bought and sold, just like any other goods. Someone may prefer to be anonymous to a specific Government and pay a high ranking officer to delete the information stored in the Government Databank.
Players can also buy/sell information from/to the Government Databank. Some Governments may choose to give its citizens free reign to the Databanks, enabling them to read, update and delete information at will. Or only access to freely read and update information, but still requiring payment if data is to be deleted. For some inexplicable reason, Databanks can only contain true information. Players cannot create doctored information; only delete information, if undesired. All information stems from reports Players have received during the game.

How big is yours?

There is only one limit to how much data a Player or Government can store. The size of the Databank-building(s) they have built. If the enemy destroys these buildings, the acquired knowledge is lost.

  • With higher technology levels, more data can be stored in each building.

If a Players’ Databank is becoming full, a warning will be shown, and the Player must upgrade the Databank or lose old data. You might lose information about old allies, which is no longer valid. It could be Players who have quit or gone bankrupt. Data is automatically deleted by age.

  • A simple inexpensive Databank cleanup can help remove old info for you, reducing storage usage.
  • Or you can pay extra upkeep to lock specific data in the Databank, deleting only unlocked data.
    • At least until only locked data exists, after which the oldest will be deleted, if new data is uploaded.

Information stored

The Databank stores information about an allies and enemies, as well as general information about a Species. It is possible to have the information about a Player and what species he is, but not know about the species in general. Such information can be used to determine weaknesses or strengths. Allow you to make an informed decision whether you want to go to war or if you want to trade with this player.

  • Location in the Universe
  • Species
  • Existing/old Trade agreements and how they ended.
  • Military action against you/him
  • Covert actions against you/him
  • Known location
  • Size of army (at time of report)
  • Lives under government
  • Financial information

Financial insight

Everyone can request insight into how many times a Village Owner has moved, as well as what their financial situation was at the move. The Player can deny showing this information, but may also risk losing a loan opportunity, as a Player may require the info (credit rating) before extending a loan.
A Player resigns his influence in the old Citystate/territory/nation. He is starting over, but has the former title mentioned on his resume, along with affidavits from his former subjects/superiors on how well he performed (he has no power over these blemishes or praises).
This may help him be elected to office in his new home Citystate.
The rates below can be different depending on local politics. Some may not want non-wealthy players to join their community. Only random move is the exception, where these numbers are fixed. Do remember that a strong player can simply muscle his way into a territory, claiming land as his own. It may not be popular and can bite him later, if politics in the region changes and all ‘muscled in’-lands are deemed illegal and they force him out. Politics have a way of changing depending on who is running the place.
The old and new Citystate receive 2,5% of the transfer fee each.
- In addition, they receive up to 25% of the transfer fee each, but can be no more than 5% of the territory GNP.
The old and new territory receive 1,25% of the transfer fee each.
- In addition, they receive up to 15% of the transfer fee each, but can be no more than 0,5% of the nations’ GNP.
The old and new nation receives 1% of the transfer fee each.
- In addition, they receive up to 5% of the transfer fee each, but can be no more than 0,05% of the planets GNP.
The GSO (Galactic Shadow Organization) receive a fee of 1,5% for handling the move and financials, if it is to a random destination.
- In addition, they receive any leftover transfer fee, if above limits were reached.
(Rates are subject to market changes)

Down Payment

A Player can make a Down Payment on a Village to make sure it does not get randomly assigned to someone else. This down payment must be reimbursed by the friend purchasing the Village within 24 hours, after which the Player loses the down payment and the Village is once again open for random placement. The down payment can be released without expenses within 1 hour, but after that, every 1 hour locks 10% of the down payment, meaning after the 10th hour (start of 11th hour), the Player cannot release the Village again without losing the entire down payment. Releasing a Village early incurs random assignment lock for 3 hours. Choosing a tardy friend can cost you.

Bankruptcy

Even the sturdiest economy can end with bankruptcy if pressed hard enough. War, lost trade agreements, losses… whatever the cause, the end is close. A Village alone can go bankrupt, but so can a Citystate, a District, or even an entire Nation. If truly everything goes wrong, the entire Planet may go bankrupt!
Individual Village Owners may escape a Citystate (or higher level) bankruptcy by making a Village Transfer. Unfortunately this costs quite a lot of money and has other costs associated with it. But it may just be worth it, if you do not want to share the combined debt of the bankruptcy.
The path to a bankruptcy has three stages:

  • 1. Notice: First a notice about insufficient payments on the debt, along with a deadline after which all missing debt payments must have been paid.
  • 2. Warning: If the deadline is passed without sufficient payments, a warning is issued along with a shorter deadline.
    • If a Player wishes to pay off specific debts to keep those out of the bankruptcy, this would be the time.
    • If a Player wishes to remortgage the debts with other creditors, ie. make new loans to pay off existing debts, this would be the time. Finding a willing creditor, could be hard, though.
    • If a Player wishes to get out before a bankruptcy happens, this would be the time.
      • Do note that transfer prices increase when a bankruptcy has been warned.
      • If the bankruptcy is for the Player only, a Village Transfer is not possible.
  • 3. Bankruptcy: All economic transfers for all involved in the bankruptcy are put on hold. Existing trade agreements, which will bring money into the bankruptcy, will be permitted, but new trade agreements/sales cannot be made.
    • Players are now forced to sell any and all goods/valuables to help cover their part of the debt, if their cash does not suffice.
    • If a Player has expanded his Village beyond the base size, he can sell off plots of land to neighbors.
    • Each Player may have other debts to other parties, beyond the debt, which has caused the bankruptcy. The Player is not able to choose which debts he pays first, as the bankruptcy-causing debt has precedence.
    • Each party in the bankruptcy will need to cover the combined debt. By default the debt is simply divided into equal parts. However, not every Player may be able to cover their part of the debt, unless other parties help them cover their part freely. Wealthy Players can choose to cover a larger part of the debt, reducing the shared debt.
      • At this point financial aid from other Players to a Bankrupt Player cannot be undertaken as loans, but must be willing donations, i.e. money they will not get back.
      • Players, who are a Creditor, can choose to reduce the debt owed to them, by paying double into the Bankruptcy. As long as they are a part of the debt, they must pay double if they wish to help. Each 100 paid, reduces the debt owed to them by 50 and the other 50 goes to the combined estate.
      • If a Player is unable to cover their part, the remaining debt is transferred to the rest of the debtors to pay. The Player is then subject to a Final Bankruptcy.
    • Creditors are paid in the order the debts were created, regardless of size or debt type.
  • 4. Final Bankruptcy: Everyone involved in a Final Bankruptcy will be forced to abandon their Village and everything of value, starting completely over in a new Village somewhere else in the universe.
    • You lose:
      • All your worldly possessions.
      • Constructed production units will be left to decay.
      • Whatever special resources you had in the underground.
      • Your friendships and trade agreements
    • You keep:
      • Your health.
      • Your technological knowledge and blueprints.
      • You can pay real money to keep special acquired items safe.
        • In-game mechanics; you pay some Black Marketeer to smuggle the items to safety.
      • A Credit History with a black mark, showing old bad economy.
        • A note stating if the bankruptcy was caused by a higher level bankruptcy.
          • If it was your own damn fault, you may have trouble convincing Players to loan you money in the future, and Banks might charge higher interest.
          • If it was a higher level bankruptcy, Players might and Banks will be more forgiving.
        • The Credit History is a Personal Information, which you can choose not to share with potential new creditors, but some may demand to see it, before they choose to lend you money. Unfortunately you cannot lie about this, if you choose to tell.
        • But you can pay a Black Marketeer real money to get it expunged.
    • New beginnings: You are back to square 1, with a vengeance.
      • You can choose to be randomly assigned in the Galaxy.
      • You can be invited by a friend (even into the same Citystate), but he must pay double in starting fees, of which he only gets half of the normal fee back, if you accept within the first hour, 45% if two hours pass, 40% if three hours pass, etc. The rest is lost to the banks.
      • You can pay real money to be fortuitously placed.
      • The local bank will sport you with normal starting funds at a 0.5% loan so you can start over and rebuild. The old debt is cancelled and the Creditors stand with the loss.

New Worlds

When you reach a new world, you will either find an inhabited world or an uninhabited world.
If it is inhabited, you can contact the local governments and establish diplomatic relations and then trade agreements. Some of them may not want, or be able to, talk to you. They must have at least radio technology, before you can establish contact from orbit. Any attempts to land on a planet below a certain technology, or a protected planet, will be prevented by the GSO.
But once you do establish contact and permission to land, you most likely have something they want, but cannot produce themselves. If it is a less advanced civilization, you could sell them clean nuclear power sources and continually sell nuclear fuel to power them. You can modify the power sources to run out of fuel faster, enabling selling more fuel. They don’t have the technology to understand how it should work, so why not profit from it? And maybe they have something you want. Some special herb or spice, that does wonders for your species…
Eventually they will grow entirely dependent on your trade, as it is much easier running on power from Nuclear Fuel, than old school coal/oil. They will also be able to advance their civilization more easily, as their surplus power can be put to good use.
If you play your cards right, they may end up accepting inclusion under your governance, becoming an off-world colony.
Flying around in space is a costly affair, so you really should have the financials in order to back it up. Not many get to explore space, unless they pay to be ferried along a trade route through different systems, but you may not be able to get back, or be stuck in a system for a while, because the next trade transport is a long time away. Trade routes also have a tendency to, at least temporarily, fall apart when diplomacy fails or invaders pay a visit.
When you meet another space travelling species, you can initiate diplomatic relations and share maps of explored regions, so you can avoid entering into their sovereign area without permission. Some species have a tendency to shoot first, while others welcome newcomers.
Military information can be purchase or obtained through spies.

Colonies

If you have done your research, you can establish a Colony on another Planet. All Planets are subdivided into Nations, Districts and Citystates. If a Citystate is empty of Players, you can claim it and establish a Colony there. If the Planet contains a, for your species, toxic environment, you MUST build a Domed Colony. This makes your colony susceptible to attack, as breaching the dome causes the entire Colony to perish. Now these domes can take a beating, but only for so long. That is why you should only establish a colony on an inhabited Planet, if they are either peaceful, weak, low tech or interested in your trade. As a space faring species, you most definitely have goods they cannot get anywhere else. They may have goods you don’t have, or at least will be able to supply you with food and water for survival.
If the Colony is on an entirely uninhabited Planet with a toxic atmosphere, you can consider converting the atmosphere. This requires a certain percentage of claimed Citystates with established Colonies, which means that you cannot do it alone. Once enough Colonies of your species has been established, you can create (or purchase) Atmospheric Converters and deploy them across the Planet. These then slowly convert the atmosphere over time. Eventually you can recycle the domes and reclaim some of their components.

Intrigue

War

Waging war requires a lot of resources and you may want to employ those resources best possible. Village Owners can lend or rent their war units to Mayors in exchange for parts of the profit gained from the War. Mayors can lend or rent those war units to CE's who can then employ them in the war effort.
Wars can be profitable, not only for those waging the wars, but also for the ones living off gun sales and relief goods.
When you send troops to a destination, it will take time to arrive and the result may also take time to get back to you, unless you have access to high level communication arrays.

Espionage

Sending a scout or spy into enemy territory, can be a dangerous act. If he gets caught, it could potentially destabilize an otherwise profitable trade relationship. If relations are already frayed, it may start a war!
A player can choose to go in himself and sneak around the target Village, noting various information. If the Player is caught, he does not receive a report with the information gleaned. He may have noted it down manually on a piece of paper while rummaging around, and still be able to act on it, but no digital report will be received, as the spy was caught.
There is a percentage risk of discovery when target Player is offline. But if Target Player is online, he may be notified that a spy is around and which area, but must manually survey the Village and catch the spy. They are usually seen walking around on his map. How hard/easy it is to discover a spy, depends on both Players’ tech levels. A very advanced Player may have discovered cloaking technology, making it very hard to catch their spy. But a spy make a slip up, or the disguise/cloak may have a defect, causing him to be revealed.

Investigations

If a Players fleet/building is destroyed or a Transport is lost, the Player can send an investigator, who may return with information about the engine-trails at the site, indicating a Unique ID (only shown random number to indicate an unknown ID), enabling looking for the culprit.
The Player can pay to search the Citystate/District/National databases for the information of the originating Player. You may only receive the name of the Species and which part of space they usually keep to. Note that this information may not be available or correct, as it could be outdated.
But another Player in your Citystate may have had bad dealings with this culprit before, and reported it to the Databanks at some point, which enables the Player to obtain the exact location of the culprit. Enabling him to retaliate or go for a diplomatic solution. This solution may come with the backing of other Players, pledging military support, if the culprit does not stand down, or recompense the Player.

Technologies to research

Technologies drive the innovative works and successful trade in the Universe. Everyone has the potential to become acceptable with every single technology, but to excel and become dominant with a specific product you must invest time and money in few technologies and let others do what they do best. Researching your way to producing the best of a given product, takes dedication, time and money.

  • Can you build the best computer, which makes other Players want to purchase so they can research faster?
  • Can you sell it to the best affordable price?
  • Where do you purchase the processors that go into the computer?
  • Are you using substandard parts to save on production cost?
    • What will you do when another Player starts producing better computers and floods the market at a cheaper price?
      • Answer: Upgrade product and sell existing batch at a lower price.
      • Burning in with a lot of product is not recommendable.