Anacreon Era 2 Gameplay Guide and FAQ

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Militia Captain
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This thread is obsolete! Click here for the Era 3 reference thread!

This thread is a tutorial and guide for Anacreon Betas I & II for the period called "Era 2", which ran from April 2014 to March 2017. An FAQ is a few posts down. Attributions are at the bottom.

This guide does not reflect the Era 3 rebalancing of units and addition of jump beacons! Tables relating to units and strategy suggestions are out of date!

If you are a new player, read the official Quick Start Guide and then read my Beta II starting guide.

This guide is intended to be a comprehensive reference. You can read straight through it to use it as a tool to learn how to play the game, but it's a little wordy. I recommend using it by doing keyword searches on this page when you have questions about how game systems work.

Some of the charts in this thread give masses in "tons". These should actually say "kilotons", the default mass unit.

The terms "labor", "industry", "work units" and "WUs" are interchangeable. They refer to the unnamed resource produced by planet populations and used by structures to make resources and units. "Work units" is the name used in-game but the older names may be seen on some of the charts.

This guide reflects my personal biases and is not definitive. I urge everyone to explore and find new strategies and approaches to playing the game. Hussell's thread “Gameplay Tips” inspired me to make this. Many strategies were initially suggested by other players. Some information is derived from the Anacreon Core Library. The license for redistribution of information derived from the Anacreon Core Library may be read here. Special thanks to MaxCPP for corrections; to CaleyM, Wayward Device, and many others for testing and reporting findings; and to Stargazer and lazygun for finding workarounds for the graviton launcher bug. Some of the comments in the thread refer to earlier versions of the guide, since this post is regularly updated.

Most recent update: Mar 5, 2017.

  • If you only see the Alpha game link when you log in to Multiverse, reload in your browser window and the Beta I and Beta II game link will be visible. Beta II is the most active.
  • Don't build tech programs on your capital until you have a chronimium processor planet that it can import from, or you won't be able to build jumpships.
  • Don't switch to a different doctrine until you have at least one standalone jumpship yard and one jumpship autofac, or you'll run out of jumptransports.
  • If you have 100+ planets and >2 sector capitals (4 or more capitals total), you must switch to the Law & Order doctrine or sector capitals will randomly secede.
  • The "graviton launcher" and "double capital"/"ghost empire" bugs have recently been fixed. You may see reference to these in other posts and threads, but you don't have to worry about them anymore.
  • Avoid civil wars: don't raise planets up to high TLs right away; be sure that your planets are supplied with trillum; be sure your consumer goods autofacs aren't being asked to export more than they can produce.
  • If a planet goes into civil war, use transports to drop infantry on it. You want ~4x as many ground forces as there are rebel forces, shown under the planet's "News" tab.
  • Civil wars won't end if people keep dying from starvation or survival resource shortages.[/color]


    The FAQ is here.

    Unit Tables

    Planetary Defenses:

    Errata: autocannons do not fire at ships below them. "Needs/unit" should be read as T = trillum, H = hexacarbide, C = chronimium



    • The Reliant is TL 6-8, and the Vanguard is TL 6-7. TL 5 yards only build Stingers.
    • The Hammerhead costs 525 WUs.
    • The Typhon ramjet starcruiser has a D:600 R:10 missile, 3800 armor, power 8143. Unlike its starship equivalent the Megathere, it doesn't have missile defense. All starcruisers are terrible, don't build them.
    Ship Resource Costs:

    The first and third columns give the cost of building the ship itself. The second column and fourth columns give the cost of building the ship PLUS the cost of the ship's components. "Supply-chain-inclusive" means that the resource cost of producing other resources is also considered. For example, it takes 1 unit of trillum to produce 1 unit of hexacarbide. This extra unit of trillum is not considered in the base cost of the ship, but it IS included in the supply-chain-inclusive cost.


    Errata: Hammerhead uses 8 hexacarbide, 10 aetherium.

    Component Resource Costs:


    Total Supply-chain-inclusive Labor Costs (includes mineral extraction labor costs):


    Cargo masses:

    (Mass units are in kilotons.)

    Ships and defense masses


    Structure build times


    Gameplay Guide

    You start with one planet - this planet is the capital of your empire.

    When you click on your capital you'll see 5 tabs at the bottom of the screen. These give info about the planet. The action buttons on the right will change depending on the tab that you're currently in.

    Overview gives general information about the planet.

    Sovereign: This is your empire. If you click on another player empire's planet (on the map, these are either red dots or planet images with the name given in red text, depending on how far zoomed in you are) you'll see that empire's name. Worlds belonging to no player are "independent" and can be conquered and added to your empire without any repercussions.

    Designation: What the planet is assigned to do. When you add a planet to your empire, you assign it a single production task, like building jumpships or mining trillum for use on other planets. What you can order a planet to do varies depending on its location, resources and tech level; see the planetary tech tables at the end of this guide.

    Tech level or 'TL' determines what tasks a planet can perform and what resources it can make use of, and what kinds of consumer goods the population will consume. Higher TL = more WUs / person, lower max population, and more consumer goods demand. (Labor and consumer goods will be explained a little bit later in this section).

    Space forces and ground forces are estimates of the strength of all units currently stationed on the planet. Ships and planetary defenses are "space forces" while infantry are "ground forces". Some force comparisons are deceptive: a seemingly weaker basic jumpship fleet will almost always win against "stronger" jumpcruiser fleets since jumpcruisers use missiles and basic jumpships have an ability that protects them from missiles.

    Social order is the population's satisfaction with your rule. It doesn't affect anything unless it gets really low and people start "rebelling". See the "Social Order" section below for more information.

    Population is the number of people living on the planet. More people = more WUs, but also more need for consumer goods. If there are two numbers here, the number in brackets with the arrow next to it is the planet's maximum population and indicates that the population is increasing or decreasing towards this. All planets have a finite max population they can support. The max population depends on TL, world type, and structures; these are discussed in "Planets". Population slowly increases to a planet's current max as long as the planet can get enough consumer goods. As in other space 4X games, population can increase much faster than in real life (e.g. doubling in one day.)

    Efficiency affects work unit production. It's not a a flat multiplier; a world at 90% efficiency does not not produce 9x as much labor as the same world at 10% efficiency. Efficiency decreases every time a planet is conquered, suffers resource shortages, or gets redesignated (changing doctrine counts as redesignation for capitals). Otherwise it slowly increases to 100%.

    To the right is a listing of all units on the planet, the world type, and the mineral resource deposits on the planet. These are discussed a little later.

    Button actions available in the Overview tab are:

    Deploy lets you move space units up from the planet to form a new fleet.

    Import from lets you establish a trade route from another planet you own.

    On any planet other than your capital, you'd see another button, Designate, which changes the planet's designation. You can't directly redesignate your imperial capital.

    If another player has a fleet is orbiting your capital (a little red shape to the left of the planet), you'll also see:

    Attack, which orders all your units on a planet and in fleets orbiting it to attack another player's fleet or fleets at that planet. Space combat takes place in orbit around planets. Combat involves both ships and planetary defenses (giant laser cannons, nuclear missiles, etc). Attacks by fleets against other fleets when orbiting worlds that are independent or owned by a third party only involve ships; defenses won't get involved. Fleets that are losing automatically try to escape combat; you may need to order multiple attacks to completely annihilate an enemy. Defenses can't escape combat, so they fight to the death.

    Very rarely, you may have another option available from this tab, Missiles. This button lets you fire jumpmissiles against fleets of ships moving through space (this is the one exception to the all-combat-in-orbit rule) or orbiting other planets. Only citadel planets can build jumpmissiles, but planets that got redesignated can fire any missiles that they have left over. Each jumpmissile generates 16 warheads that do 100 damage each, and require four times as much interception power (two starfrigates or four jumpships) to intercept. Fleets moving through space can't intercept missiles and will take full damage.

    Next tab!

    The Structures tab lists all the ways work units are used on the planet.

    Most structures are are built and demolished automatically on planets based on demand for resources, so you don't have to worry about them too much. Some structures are manually built by the player.

    In each box there will be a % and a smaller number to the right of the %. The big number is the % of the planet's total Work Unit pool being allocated to the structure (allocation is automatic for most structures), and the small number is the number of WUs being used by the structure. Work Units are generated by population and increase with population, efficiency, and tech level.

    Most structures convert WUs into resources or units, sometimes consuming other resources to do so.

    A planet's labor pool isn't a fixed value; fewer WUs are available overall when the labor pool has to be divided between many structures. Planets generate the most labor when all WUs are going to one structure. This is not the same as "efficiency", which is a specific planet-wide modifier on labor production that is affected by how recently a planet was conquered (and a few other things). To get the most WUs out of your planets, use trade routes to import needed resources from other planets instead of producing everything on the same planet.

    The planet's designated task is performed by the structure in the upper left of this tab. Your capital's primary structure is Fleet HQ. Clicking on it moves you to another tab which shows how the WUs assigned to HQ get used to make units, and allows you you can change how this labor gets allocated. A planet designated as a trillum extractor would have the trillum extractor structure in this position. Your capital probably currently has a trillum extractor structure located somewhere else on the Structure tab, automatically producing enough trillum to supply your consumer goods autofac, hexacarbide foundry and Fleet HQ. All these structures produce resources or units that require trillum.

    Most structures other than the primary structure work automatically and you can't directly change when they appear or how many WUs are assigned to them. You can directly control how many WUs (as a % of total labor pool) get assigned to defense structures from the Structures tab.

    The only Button actions available in the Structures tab is Build

    A few structures are manually built. Building structures only takes time, not resources or WUs. Planetary defense structures, habitats and technology programs are manually built. They are discussed in-depth in the "Structures" section further down.

    Next tab!

    The Production tab lists resources and units being produced and/or consumed on the planet.

    Planets use WUs to produce the mineral resources and consumer goods needed to run their primary and defense structures. Ship components, which are also resources, usually can't be produced on the same planet that uses them. Your planets will be more productive if they use trade routes to import resources from other planets. Trade routes can only export the products of the primary structure on the exporting planet. Trade hubs will export any resource that they can import.

    The quantities given in the boxes are resources' production, import, export, and use on the planet during the previous watch. Any quantity followed by a numbers in [brackets] indicates a shortage- the planet wanted to consume the bracketed amount but only had the first amount available. Consumer and survival goods shortages create an alert message at the planet where they occur, since they cause social unrest and lead to deaths and civil war. Alerts are buggy in the beta- they aren't marked with the time at which the shortage occurred, and they stack for every watch that a shortage recurs. If there's a shortage when you're not playing, you'll likely have to click though multiple alerts stacked over the same planet.

    Resources which could be produced or imported by the planet (through a preexisting trade route) but are not currently needed appear as empty boxes. Resources and units present on the planet but not actively suppliable- that is, resources which can't be produced or imported by the planet- are not listed and can only be seen from the "deploy" option on the overview tab. For example, if you used transports to drop jumpdrives onto a planet that doesn't have a jumpship autofac or jumpship yard, you wouldn't see them on this tab. A planet can't use a resource not listed on the production screen, so (for example) a world without hexacarbide deposits can't build ships unless imports hexacarbide through a trade route from a foundry planet, even if there is a stockpile of hexacarbide on the planet. However, once a trade route is established, any stockpile will always be pulled from before more of the resource starts to get imported or produced.

    The Production tab has no options

    Next tab!

    This is the tab for your planet's primary structure, so its name varies between planets.

    For your capital right now, the primary structure is the Fleet HQ.

    This tab can also be reached by clicking on the structure in the "Structures" tab. The Fleet HQ produces units- spaceships to attack planets and infantry to capture them. Specifically, it can produce four different kinds of jumpships plus basic infantry. Later on, you can have your capital build different units; this is discussed in the "Doctrines" section.

    This tab has no button options

    Last tab!

    The Empire tab gives info about your empire.

    This tab is only on imperial capitals. You can see it for other players by clicking on their capitals (once your explorer fleets have found them). It gives the age of the empire, doctrine, number of planets, total population, and average tech level. It also gives:

    Imperial might, a (bad) estimate of an empire's strength given as a % of your own. You always have an IM of 100, so you can only compare your might to other players' by looking at their empire tab. IM is based on population, so an empire with lower IM than you may be much stronger, or a bigger empire much weaker.

    If a player tries to invade a planet of another player whose IM is less than about 50% of his/her own, the invader's own planets suffer social unrest and even go into civil war. Attacking other players' fleets can also trigger social unrest (it'll warn you of this when you go to order the attack). You can attack the planets and fleets of empires that are close to your own IM with no penalty, and vice versa. You can attack fleets orbiting worlds you control for no penalty, regardless of IM. You can also fire jumpmissiles at any fleet with no repercussions

    Risk of secession is the danger that one of your sector capitals might secede and become the capital of a new AI empire. This won't be an issue until you have sector capitals and a lot of planets.

    To the right of these is a list of all the unit types in your empire and how many you have. You can only see this for other players if their capital is within the vision range of one of your planets or fleets for more than one watch.

    Button actions available in the Overview tab:

    Doctrine changes the units your capital and sector capitals build. Doctrines get their own section later on.

    Abdicate dissolves your empire. All your planets go independent and you are ejected from the game.

    If you are looking at another players capital, a different button will be visible from this tab:

    Message lets you send a message to another player. Messages sent to you appear as alerts on your capital. Once you close a message, you can't retrieve it. You can't send messages to other players until you find their capital, but you can try to talk to them by renaming planets and fleets near them and hoping that they notice.

    That's it for the planet tabs. The next sections describe game concepts.

    Game Clock

    The game clock is at the top of the screen under your empire name. A minute in real-time is a "watch", an hour is a "period", and a day is a "cycle"; that's about an earth year in the game universe. The first number is the number of cycles that the game has been running. New games start at cycle 4021; the original Anacreon game (from 1987) was "Anacreon: Reconstruction 4021".

    The next two numbers are a 24-hour clock. The game refreshes every minute, with a few seconds during refresh when interface elements like buttons are unresponsive. During refresh, commands won't go through immediately for things like trade route designation and fleet movement. The length of the refresh period may depend on your empire's size, your computer's processing power, how many other players are active, and the stability and speed of your internet connection.


    The size of a world's icon on the map indicates current population, not physical size. Worlds grow and shrink! The maximum population a world can support is highest at Tech Level 5; TL1 and 10 worlds support low populations. Most types of worlds can build habitat improvements at higher TLs to increase the maximum supportable population. Habitable worlds support 11 billion people at TL 8 with all hab structures; hazardous worlds max out at around 8.5 billion people at TL 7. Desert and Empyreal worlds max out around 9 billion at TL 5.


    "Habitat" is where in space this planet type will occur. Black square is open space; "N"s are bright and dark nebulas.

    Mineral abundances given here are averages for planet type; individual planets vary but will always include the same mineral types as others in their class.

    Trillum is usually abundant on desert and fiery worlds; barren, desert, chthonic and underground worlds are the most likely to have abundant hexacarbide. Planets with abundant chronimium are rare. Aetherium is abundant mostly in light nebulas and chtholon mostly in dark nebulas, but both resources appear in both nebula types.

    Fully habitable worlds- ocean, underground and earthlike - support the highest max populations. Ocean, earthlike and desert worlds get a 100% bonus to food production (they produce more food for the same amount of WUs). Desert and empyreal worlds are partially habitable- they don't need survival goods but can't build any habitat structures.

    All other world types are hazardous: they support lower max populations and must dedicate 5-10% of their labor to building "survival goods" at habitat structures. These worlds support low populations until better habitat structures can be built (the largest, arcologies, are available at TL 7). Survival goods are things like radiation meds and air filters; they can't be exchanged through trade routes. All things being equal, at TLs 5 & 6 a hazardous world will produce less usable labor than a desert or empyreal world, but at TLs 7-10 with all hab structures built it will produce more.

    If a worlds goes independent and drops below the TL that was needed to build a hab structure present on it, the hab structure can become "ruins" after a while. Ruins can be rebuilt without having to build the preceding structures.

    For extractor planets, try to pick worlds with "abundant" or at least "major" deposits of the resource to be extracted. If you want to reduce reliance on dedicated extractors and trade routes, the same rules apply for building self-supplied autofacs and yards; e.g. for a high-TL jumpship autofac you'd want to pick a world that has at least minor deposits of trillum, hexacarbide and chronimium so that it can get all the resources it needs without spending so much production to do so that there isn't much left over to actually build components.

    Worlds pretty much support the same max pop. and produce the same amount of industry as any other worlds of the same type at the same TL. Within each world type, there aren't really "better" and "worse" worlds (aside from resource deposit distribution). Worlds with a high fated TL- the TL they naturally go to when not part of an empire- don't need to be supplied with tech from a foundation or build technology programs.

    Labor and Structures

    A planet's labor pool is affected by population, TL, and efficiency. If your planet is putting Work Units into multiple structures, the sum total of the WUs assigned to all structures will be less than the maximum amount WUs that the planet could produce if all WUs went to one structure. Two planets building 50% trillum and 50% consumer goods produce less of either resource than if 1 planet was building trillum and the other building CG with the two supplying one another through trade routes. This promotes specialization, rather than leaving every planet self-reliant.

    All planets have a primary structure appropriate to their designation. This is the first structure on the left side under the "Structures" tab. All labor left over on a planet after labor has been assigned to defenses and supplying the planet's needs goes to this primary structure.

    Structure types:

    Extractors, foundries, and processors are all be called extractors in this guide since they do the same thing- convert WUs into mineral resources. The amount of WUs required to generate one unit of a mineral varies depending on the planet's deposit size. Deposits are permanent and never run out.

    Labor needed to produce 1 unit of each mineral:
    Each unit of hexacarbide also uses 1 unit of trillum. Chronimium uses 2 units of trillum. Chtholon uses 2 units of aetherium.

    Extractors appear and disappear automatically depending on need, except on extractor worlds where they're always present as the primary structure. If a planet has 100,000 unitof trillum sitting on it, it won't build a trillum extractor and allocate WUs to it until the supply starts to run low. If you use transports to dump 100,000 units of trillum on your capital, the extractor stops and the WUs are reassigned to the Fleet HQ and other structures, allowing you to spend more WUs per watch building ships. The extractor also stops if you imported 100% of the planet's needed trillum using a trade route to a dedicated trillum extractor planet.

    Extractors are only built on planets that have deposits of the appropriate mineral type. You can't do tasks that require hexacarbide, like building ships, on a planet that doesn't have hexacarbide deposits unless you actively import it using a trade route.

    Autofacs consume WUs and minerals and produce other resources. All autofacs can perform multiple kinds of production tasks simultaneously by dividing WUs between different tasks. Most autofac types are restricted to planets which are dedicated autofacs; e.g. the infantry autofac structure, which makes components for armored infantry and exotroops, only exists on dedicated infantry autofac planets.

    There are two notable exception: the consumer goods autofac can appear on any planet, and Jumpship or starship autofacs may also appear on your capital and sector capitals if you are in an appropriate doctrine (doctrines are discussed later). These autofacs are not built manually but appear or disappear depending on need.

    Try clicking on the consumer goods autofac structure on your capital. The consumer goods autofac will always produce 10 units of durable goods for every WU dedicated to this task, and consumes 0.25 units of trillum to do so. It can simultaneously produce organic food and will produce 25 units for every WU dedicated to that, but doesn't consume any resources doing so (food is the only autofac product that doesn't need resources to build, and the only autofac task modified by planet type- earthlike planets like your capital get a 100% bonus to food production and produce 50 units for every WU, as do ocean and desert worlds). You don't directly control the proportion of labor that the autofac assigns to tasks; it allocates WUs based on demand. If there is no demand for anything a dedicated autofac planet can produce, WUs will be divided evenly between everything the autofac can produce.

    What an autofac structure can build depends on the planet's tech level. For example, a jumpship autofac can't build the advanced jumpdrive resource unless it is TL 9 or higher. Resources that can't be produced by an autofac because a planet's TL is too low are shown greyed out. High-TL autofacs can make anything a lower-TL autofac makes. This is a major difference between autofacs and yards; yards stop being able to build low-TL units when high-TL units become available.

    Yards and academies convert Work Units, minerals, and other resources into units. The "citadel complex" structure on designated citadels also does this. Only one unit type, basic infantry, does not use resources to build (just WUs); all other units require at least one resource.

    Yards and academies are always the primary structure on worlds so designated. The primary structures on sector capitals under the "Fire and Movement" and "Strength and Honor" doctrines can build infantry and space units.

    As usual, there's an exception. "Autonomous" worlds (which have not been given a designation) have no primary structure but can build basic infantry at a "militia base" structure. This works like a defense structure and labor is manually assigned to it.

    Defense structures build stationary units that fire at attacking ships. Most defense units are actually located on the planet's surface rather than in space; some are orbital satellites. Defense units only participate in space battles, not in infantry battles. The kind of defenses that a planet can build depend on the planet's TL and available resources (native and imported); they are listed in a table at the end of this guide. Like other units, defense units undergo attrition and defense structures constantly build new ones. Defense structures are manually built by the player and the % of labor assigned to them can be directly controlled.

    Habitat structures increase a planet's max population. On hazardous planets, a basic hab structure will always be present and will use 3-10% of a planet's WU pool (depending on the planet's efficiency and population) to manufacture appropriate survival goods. Hab structures on habitable planets only increase maximum population and don't consume any labor. Hab structures are explained in the "Planets" section.

    Tech programs consume WUs to raise planetary TL. They are explained in the "Tech Level" section.

    A Starport doubles a planet's maximum trade route range. It does not use WUs or resources. Starports are available at TL 5 and you should build one on every planet.


    Planet designations are manually assigned by players and can be changed at any time. Changing designation lowers a planet's efficiency, reducing the labor produced by the planet. Efficiency slowly increases over time, up to 100%. You can only change designations for planets within 250 ly of a capital or sector capital (inside the big white ring).[/color]

    There are a lot of planet designations but they fall into four categories (not official, just my interpretation). Designation defines the primary structure on a planet, so designation names overlap with structure names.
    • Extractors consume WUs and produce mineral resources, usually consuming other minerals while doing so.
    • Autofacs consume WUs and minerals to produce specific kinds of components that are needed to build certain units.
      • Consumer goods autofacs are a special case, since consumer goods are needed by planets' populations and one type of consumer goods (food) does not require minerals to build, just WUs.
    • Yards and Academiesconsume minerals and WUs and build units. Yards build space units and infantry academies build ground units. Depending on the units being built, components from autofacs may also be required.
    • Enhancer planets help your empire to function. Specifically,
      • Foundations increase the Tech Level of other worlds, making their citizens more productive (but also making them require more consumer goods) and/or allowing them to build higher-level units. The more WUs a foundation structure is consuming, the more TLs it can uplift. Foundations export TLs using trade routes.
      • Sector capitals allow you to expand into other areas of space. They may also build units depending on your empire's doctrine, consuming WUs, minerals and components to do so. Under some doctrines they can make their own ship components.
        • Any world of TL 5 or higher can be designated a Sector Capital. Sector capitals retain their fated TL unless this is improved with a foundation or program.
        • Sector capitals produce the same unit types as your main capital. If your empire's doctrine is Trade and Enterprise, they act as trade hubs instead.
        • You can capture planets outside the 250 light year control radius of your capital, but you can't give them orders, assign trade routes or redesignate them until they are inside the control radius of an active sector capital. About 36 hours after a sector capital is designated, planets within a 250 light year radius of the new sector capital become controllable. You can see the progress towards activation from the newly designated sector capital's overview tab.
        • If one of your sector capitals is captured by another player, some of the worlds near it will defect to the other player, along with all the units stationed on them!
        • If your capital is captured by another player, one of your sector capitals becomes the new capital.
        • If you don't have any sector capitals when your capital is captured, your empire will be totally destroyed. All of your remaining worlds will become independent and you will be kicked out of the game. You can only rejoin as a new empire.
      • Trade hubs make it easier to exchange resources between planets, making them more productive. The trade hub structure doesn't consume WUs, so it's possible to assign very high labor %s to defense structures on hubs.
      • Citadels use WUs, minerals and light jumpdrive components to build jumpmissiles that can attack fleets moving through your territory; they also use WUs to build basic infantry.
    Independent planets are designated "autonomous" and remain so after capture until redesignated. Planets captured from other players keep their old designation (but can be redesignated); capitals and sector capitals turn autonomous. Autonomous planets have no primary structure and will waste surplus WUs. Autonomous planets in your empire remain at their fated TL unless supported by a foundation or program; giving autonomous planets a designation will cause a planet to increase to TL 5 if their fated TL is lower.

    Some designations require a certain TL and their primary structure stops working if their TL drops below this level. There is a full list of designations in the Tables section.

    Trade Routes

    Check the FAQ.

    Tech Level

    Higher tech level, or TL, means each citizen generates more WUs and consumes more consumer goods. Some designations are only available at higher TLs and autofacs/yards/academies produce different resources or ships depending on their TL.


    Planets have a "fated" TL that they will increase or decrease to on their own if they're independent.
    You capital's fated TL is 7, biotech. If you invade an independent planet with a TL below 5 it will increase to TL 5 in under an hour once you've given it a designation. Planets with fated TLs above 5 will remain at their tech level unless they suffer consumer or survival goods shortages; TL drops caused by shortages reverse automatically when the shortages end.

    If (for example) you want to designate a planet as a hexacarbide extractor (requires TL 4) but it's only TL 2, you can designate it as a consumer goods autofac (available at any TL) else and wait for TL to rise high enough to redesignate it. Most designations are available at TL5, but you will want higher TL planets as your empire gets bigger for increased production.

    You can manually raise planets' TL above TL 5. The simplest way is to build a technology program that raises a planet above its fated TL. Programs consume a flat 5% of a planet's WUs per TL raised, but can result in a net increase in WU production (there are a lot of factors but it's too boring to go into.) Your capital can be raised up to 3 levels with program, up to TL 10, post-industrial. All other planets can only use programs to go up to TL 7. Worlds with fated TLs of 7 or above can't build programs. If you capture planets from another empire, the planets will retain any programs built on them. The tech level of a planet raised above fated TL with programs or just through being in an empire (which brings planets up to TL 5) is the "native TL".

    You can also raise tech level by importing TLs from a world with the "Foundation" designation. Foundations automatically go up in TL to match your capital's current TL (if their fated TL is higher, they will remain at this TL, but they will not raise planets above the capital's TL.) A planet's TL is raised by establishing a trade route that imports TLs from the foundation. Foundation TLs raise planets above their native TL. You can change the TL that the world is being uplifted to by clicking on the trade route. TLs added by uplifts don't consume WUs on the planet being uplifted, so can be a better option than programs for maximizing production. One foundation can supply up to ~200 TLs! If your foundation gets captured, the planets it supplied will begin to regress to their native TLs. If the supply of consumer goods to a foundation gets cut off, it won't be able to produce as many TLs since it will have to dedicate WUs to provide for its own people.

    Social Order

    You only need to really start worrying about social order when a planet's social order is "rebelling". Rebelling planets have an (undetermined) chance to go into civil war. Civil war trashes efficiency, resulting in reduced WU production. A portion of your infantry on the planet become rebel forces and the world will likely declare independence after about 24 hours if you don't drop a bunch of infantry on it to restore order. If the civilian population continues to die during the war (from resource shortages, etc) the world may declare independence even sooner. Planets that go independent retain all infantry, ships and defenses; don't let your shipyards and academies lose civil wars!

    A planet's social order gradually increases by default.

    A planet's social order periodically decreases by a small amount:
    • when the planet's TL is much higher or much lower than the capital.
    • when the space forces level of the planet is below a certain (unknown) number.
    A planet's social order immediately decreases:
    • right after you conquer it from another player. Being conquered also damages planets' efficiency.
    • any time there's a shortage of consumer goods. This happens most often when TL goes up from TL3 to TL4 or from TL6 to TL7, as citizens start to demand durable goods at TL 4 and luxury goods at TL7. The planet will start making these (or begin to import them) once the TL changes but there will not be enough to meet demand for a few periods unless you put them there with transports beforehand. Disorder from TL changes usually isn't enough to lead to civil war unless the planet was also recently conquered.
    • when the planet doesn't have enough organic food or survival goods (see the "I conquered a planet, why did it go into civil war so quickly?" section of the FAQ for more.) Mass deaths also hurt efficiency. Don't feel bad, though: even in the best-run empires billions occasionally die from starvation, asphyxiation or radiation poisoning. Hey, space is a tough place where wimps eat flaming plasma death.
    All your planets' social order will immediately increase:
    • when you capture a planet from a player with higher imperial might than you and who has attacked you before.
    Multiple (randomly chosen?) planets' social order will immediately decrease:
    • when you attack a planet belonging to a much weaker player. The other player's imperial might (displayed in the "Empire" tab when you click on their capital and in the box that appears when you order an attack) must be around 50 or lower to trigger this. Imperial might of other players is always given as a percentage of your own. There can also be a penalty for attacking fleets that aren't orbiting your planets. The penalty is assessed per attack, so taking one planet from a weaker player causes less disorder than taking all their planets. Social disorder from attacking weaker players may scale depending on the might difference between the two empires; I'm not sure. Disorder won't be caused by attacking the worlds of a player that previously attacked you, even if they're much weaker.


    Units are ships, infantry or planetary defenses. All units continually undergo attrition (so do most resources). This means that any fleet, collection of infantry or set of defense structures will gradually shrink over time. Starfrigates and starcruiser have lower attrition than other units. The only solution to attrition is to make sure that your yards and infantry academies are constantly building more units. Fortunately, they do so automatically as long as they're supplied with resources. Planetary defenses work the same way- they are subject to attrition, but more always get built as long as you have labor assigned to the relevant structure and resources flowing in.

    It's easy to tell which worlds belonging to other players are generating combat units by zooming out on the maps screen: yards, academies, capitals, citadels and trade hubs are light red or grey, while extractors and autofacs are dark red or grey. When zoomed out to the level where only some planet names are visible, unit-producing worlds (and hubs) are shown with names while other world types do not have names.


    The #1 rule in combat is that fleets with much stronger space forces ratings than the opposing force usually win with far fewer casualties than they would take if the odds were close. The same is true for fleets with a really gigantic numerical advantage of units, if space forces are close. (The #2 rule is that ships and defense with longer range tend to be disproportionately better than ships with shorter range.)

    There are three propulsion types: Jumpship, Starship and Ramjet. Ships are built on yards planets. Jumpships and Starships can also be built at capitals and sector capitals under certain doctrines. Players start with the Fire and Movement doctrine; in F&M, capitals build jumpships. There are multiple ship roles. Each ship role (e.g. jumpcruiser) has a low-tech and a high-tech class version (e.g. for jumpcruisers, the low-tech Adamant-class and the high-tech Undine-class). High-tech classes require more resources to build and are only built on high-tech worlds. For specific details about individual ship classes, refer to the tables at the start of this guide.

    Jumpships are fast and individually very weak. The basic combat jumpship role name is also "jumpship". To reduce confusion, I call those "basic jumpships"to distinguish them from the other jumpship roles. High-tech jumpships are 50% faster than low-tech jumpships, and explorers are faster than all other jumpships.
    • Explorers are cheap ships for reconnaissance and exploration; they are individually weak. They have better sensors than other ship classes, allowing you to map territory, reveal planetary defenses and see enemy fleets moving around. Use them in fleets of more than 100 to maximize scanning radius. Explorers have the highest delta-v in the game: they move between orbits faster than other ships. Advanced combat strategies use a mixture of explorers and stronger ships to defeat starfrigates.
    • (Basic) jumpships are individually weak, fast general combat ships that are protected against missiles (both ships with missiles and missile defenses). They have weak armor and have armed with short- to medium-range cannons. They are most vulnerable to other ships with cannons and to cannon-type planetary defenses. The TL 9 Eldritch jumpship is the most popular ship in the game because it has decent range, speed, cost and attack strength. Missile protection is very effective and fleets of basic jumpships are nearly immune to missiles as long they outnumber their enemy by at least 2:1 or so (more for hypersonic missiles). Basic jumpships are great early on for conquering planets that only have missile-type defenses.
    • Jumptransports are fast ships that carry troops and resources. Jumptransports are the only transports in the game; there are no starship or ramjet equivalents. Jumptransports are vulnerable to other ships and planetary defenses, so you will want to bring combat ships with your transports when you invade unless the other planet is undefended. Transports don't participate in planetary defense (although they count as space forces) and get captured when a planet is taken. Transports stay in high orbit when invading until planetary defenses are destroyed, but they can still be attacked by defending ships, hypersonic missiles, and satellites. Send loaded transports to planets only after an attack fleet has destroyed all defenses, unless the planet is only protected by cannons and/or GDMs.
    • Jumpcruisers are fast attack ships with medium-range missiles. They are useful against cannon-type defenses and starships, but most of the time you're better off building Eldritches. They aren't much better armored than jumpships, but their strong attack makes them better against gunships and cannon-type planetary defenses. Jumpcruisers' missiles do a lot more damage than jumpship cannons (when they hit), and can defeat missile-protected starfrigates if they outnumber them by at least 10:1 or so (they have to be able to launch enough missiles to saturate the starfrigates' missile protection.) Jumpcruisers are very vulnerable to big fleets of basic jumpships, which are cheaper and nearly immune to their missiles.
    Starships are powerful but slow combat units that are often used as mobile planetary defenses. They can't enter nebulas. Capital ships (starfrigates & starcruisers) have lower attrition than other units; this makes them less costly to build in the long run than they appear, since they last longer.
    • Gunships are medium-speed combat ships that don't need any components. They have short- to medium-range cannons and better armor than jumpships or jumpcruisers. They're a little cheaper to build on a 1:1 basis than jumpcruisers. They're much faster than capital ships, but way slower than jumpships. Gunships are vulnerable to planetary defenses since their weapons are short-ranged and they don't have missile protection, but they have higher delta-v than jumpships or jumpcruisers and get into firing range sooner.
    • Starfrigates are powerful and very slow. Building 1 Starfrigate uses about the same WUs and resources as 12 gunships of the same tech tier (but gunships have higher attrition). They're very strong against planetary defenses; Starfrigate cannons outrange all cannon-based defenses and they intercept missiles. They're also great against jumpships; field reports indicate that TL9 Gorgos fleets win with 5-10% losses against Eldritches when outnumbered 33:1, and that it takes at least 45:1 ratio for Eldritches to beat Gorgos with acceptable losses. Starfrigate fleets take hours to move between planets, so if you use them offensively other players are likely see them coming and have time to reinforce or fire jumpmissiles.
    • Starcruisers seem to be designed to counter gunships, but suck. They have the most powerful attack and armor in the game, but they are very costly to build, use interceptable missiles, and share starfrigates' glacial speed. The TL 10 Megathere has missile protection but it can't easily be assembled into fleets big enough to achieve full protection.
    Ramjets are basically starships in nebulas. Ramjets can't leave nebulas and sometimes can't pass between different nebula types or navigate rift zones. Ramjets have the same classes as starships (gunship, starfrigate, starcruiser), but are have more armor than starships and cost more to build on a per-unit basis. Capital ramjets are 5x faster than capital starships, but are more vulnerable to planetary defenses because they have shorter weapons range than their starship equivalents. Ramjets need hexacarbide and exotic nebular resources to build; aetherium and chtholon are used to build ramjets and ramjet components and have no other purpose. Ramjets won't compete with jumpships for your limited chronimium supply.

    For a roughly equal investment of resources and WUs:
    • Basic jumpships will beat jumpcruisers, gunships beat basic jumpships and jumpcruisers, starfrigates beat everything. Explorers can decrease the casualties that other ship classes in a fleet take by acting as cannon fodder without costing very much. Starcruisers suck.
    • Jumpcruisers are pretty strong against cannon-type planetary defenses. Basic jumpships are very strong against missile-type planetary defenses. Gunships are vulnerable to planetary defenses, and starfrigates are very strong against all defenses. Starcruisers suck.
    • Jumpships need more supporting autofac planets per yard to build than starships. Explorers and gunships don't need supporting autofacs to build.
    • Ramjet fleets perform worse than equivalent starships in most kinds of combat, but don't need chronimium or much trillum to build. The TL9 Cyclops starfrigate is the best ramjet since it has Range:20. Ramjets can be purchased at Mesophon worlds, which lets players materialize fleets out of thin air (thin vacuum?).
    • High-tech ships' total cost to produce in WUs (including minerals and components) is more affected by mineral abundance than low-tech ships because minerals form a greater proportion of their total WU costs.
    • Planetary defenses are better than ships for defending a small empire but aren't a great investment for really large empires because they can't protect planets effectively against attacks by other really large empires. They can serve as a force multiplier for defending ships, especially hypersonic missiles (which have a long attack range).
    • In wars between empires of similar strength, the empire that attacks first can usually win by destroying the enemy's ability to retaliate. Jumpships are way too good at blitzkrieging.
    Ships are not balanced right now. Eldritches are easily the best attacker from a value and utility perspective. The Gorgos is the best defensive ship and all around most cost-effective ship, but very slow and vulnerable to explorer-supported Eldritch attacks if the Gorgos aren't accompanied by other ships or defenses. The Cyclops is the best warship that you can buy from Mesophon. Explorers are useful for scouting and in hybrid combat strategies for fighting Gorgos. Stingers are okay before you get Eldritches. Every other ship is a distraction or liability. You do need transports sometimes- consider buying or capturing them instead of building them all yourself. It never hurts to add more Eldritch yards. You'll need one equal-labor-producing TL9 jumpship autofac to supply each yard building Eldritches, assuming that both yard and autofac can get all minerals supplied by trade.


    Ground combat is simple. Infantry capture planets, defend against invasions, and fight civil wars. Ships can't attack infantry and vice versa. Imperial guards, built under the "Law and Order" doctrine, never defect to rebels during civil wars and might deter sector capitals from seceding. Basic infantry and imperial guards only need WUs to build; armored infantry and exotroops need special resources built at infantry autofac planets. Infantry combat is simpler than space combat and generally speaking in an invasion the stronger infantry force usually wins but the defender gets a slight advantage. The original Anacreon had defense bonuses for different planet types but I don't think that's still true.

    Basic infantry seem unable to harm exotroops directly in combat, although they may be able to force exotroops to surrender faster if they are combined with other infantry types. More testing is needed. Imperial Guards and Armored infantry fight exotroops OK.

    Warphant transports are tougher and have higher delta-v (movement speed between orbitals) than Reliants. Never use a mix of Reliants and Warphants in an attack; your troops won't all land at the same time and your attack is less likely to succeed. Keep all your invading transports in one fleet.

    Battles only last a few watches after transports land. Once the defenders start losing and are sufficiently outnumbered, the planet is captured. The surviving defender infantry surrender and can be used by the invader. If the attackers are way stronger, surrender comes faster- an attacker can end a battle with more soldiers than they started with! If the attacker's transports landed while enemy planetary defenses and/or ships were still alive, remaining defenses and ships will get captured. This includes fleets that entered the system while the transports were landing or during ground combat- even really strong ones.

    If invaders lose the battle, all their soldiers on the ground die. The invader's transports don't get captured.


    Your empire's doctrine determines what units are produced at your capital and sector capitals, plus a few other things. Change doctrines by clicking your capital and selecting the "Empire" tab.

    Fire and Movement is the default doctrine. The capital and sector capitals build jumpships and jumpship components, serving as a combined jumpyard and jumpship autofac. Capitals can build more jumpships if they import jumpship components from a separate autofac world. They also build basic infantry. Early expansion by conquering independent worlds is easiest with jumpfleets since they move fast, so Fire and Movement is worth remaining in for a long time until your empire is well established.

    Strength and Honor is unpopular. The capital and sector capitals produce starships, starship components, and basic infantry. Starships are stronger than jumpships for the resource cost (with some caveats) but move much slower. Capital starships (starfrigates and starcruisers) have lower attrition than jumpships. Don't build starcruisers. The advantage of S&H might that even if you only play Anacreon occasionally, your capital and sector capitals will maintain strong fleets defending them. Starfrigates are the strongest planetary defense. S&H players don't have to worry about losing starship yards and their powerful fleets to defection when sector capitals are captured because their starship yards are their sector capitals. You can't select S&H if your capital is in a nebula- nebular planets can't build starships. If you switch to S&H before you have a dedicated jumpship yard and jumpship autofac planet, attrition will cause you will run out of transports after a while and you won't be able to conquer new planets unless you buy transports from Mesophon.

    Law and Order is for big empires. In L&O, the capital and all sector capitals produce nothing but imperial guard infantry units. The presence of imperial guards deters sector capitals from seceding. Empires in other doctrines >100 worlds and >2 sector capitals will sometimes have a sector capital secede, taking some nearby planets with it. Seceded sector capitals turn into an AI "empires" that look like human players but won't deploy fleets, conquer worlds or establish new trade routes. AI empires have names like "Old Order of <Your Empire's Name>" or "<Sector Capital Name> Society". Guards never defect to rebels if a civil war starts, so they win civil wars automatically so long as no other infantry were on the planet when the civil war starts. Guards are stronger than basic infantry and weaker than armored infantry. Once your "secession risk" (shown under the Empire tab) is "Elevated" or higher, you basically have to switch to L&O or your empire will fall apart.

    Trade and Enterprise is pretty bad. Your capital and sector capitals act as trade hubs and don't build any units (they can still build defenses, though.) This means you don't have to maintain as many (or even any) separate trade hubs, which reduces the number of critical planets that you need to keep heavily defended. T&E empires can trade resources- but not to other players. There is an AI empire called "Mesophon Traders" with planets all over the galaxy. T&E empires can make a trade route between a capital or sector capital and a Mesophon world and sell resources to Mesophon in exchange for a currency called "aes". A trade route to a Mesophon world is like a normal trade route but you can specify exactly how much of each resource you want to send to Mesophon each watch. You can't import from Mesophon worlds.


    Players in doctrines other than T&E can still sell resources to Mesophon by manually moving cargo in transport fleets to Mesophon worlds. Mesophon also buys ships. Aes can be used to buy ships at any Mesophon world orbited by one of your fleets, allowing you to summon fleets out of thin air when they are needed.
    Trade with Mesophon is not great:

    - Mesophon only sells transports and capital ramjets (probably a bug).

    - Ships can only be bought in fleets of 1000. It's frustrating to assemble a useful-sized fleet of ships by buying them.

    - Mesophon planets are poorly defended. If your empire relies on trading with Mesophon, another player can swoop in and conquer the Mesophon world and you're S.O.L. There's no way to order your own fleets to protect an AI world aside from selling them to Mesophon, and Mesophon won't pay very well (or at all) for them.

    - Mesophon only pays aes for minerals, consumer goods, jumpdrives, infantry components, ramjet components, and the same types of ships they sell.
Last edited by Watch TV, Do Nothing on Wed May 03, 2017 5:04 pm, edited 170 times in total.
george moromisato
Posts: 2997
Joined: Thu Jul 24, 2003 9:53 pm

Super helpful! Thank you for posting this.
Posts: 26
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:53 pm

Thanks for creating that. I think it will really help people who are new to the game.
I learned a few new things too.
Watch TV, Do Nothing
Militia Captain
Militia Captain
Posts: 803
Joined: Sun Feb 05, 2012 12:22 am

Additional Guides & FAQ

The additional guides have been moved to the Beta II thread so that I only have to maintain one version of them.

Frequently-asked questions

Why does my game client crash when I press the little button in the upper left hand corner or if I try to zoom in on a moving fleet?

The button in the upper-left-hand corner creates a high-resolution image of the galactic map, but itonly works properly in some browsers. It takes a couple seconds and can cause problems on slower computers. It may work in Chrome, creating a popup which is usually autoblocked but can be seen by clicking "allow" in the upper-right-hand corner of the browser. It does not seem to work in Firefox or Internet Explorer (Thanks to Wayward Device for explaining how this works).

The game client crashing when zooming on a moving fleet is a known bug. It should rarely be a problem in normal play since there's no reason to zoom in on a moving fleet.

Why won't the game accept my inputs?

There is a short period every minute or so when the game client is getting information from the server and commands don't get acknowledged immediately. Just keep trying to enter your command until the game accepts it. There is also sometimes a slight (5-10 second) delay before changes to trade route designations and fleet travel paths show up on screen.

Why do my fleets and infantry keep shrinking?

You lose a small % of all units and most resources every watch- but so does everybody else. This is called "attrition". The only thing you can do is always be building more! Capital ships and some resources have a lower attrition rate. Notably, hexacarbide doesn't seem to undergo attrition at all. Very small fleets may not lose a unit every turn, but they still occasionally lose units and will eventually vanish completely. Attrition doesn't seem to be affected by whether a unit is stationed on a world or is part of a fleet.

I made a big fleet and I want to deploy ships out of it, but it says there "aren't enough transports in the destination." Usually I can split fleets easily. Why can't I deploy ships out of this fleet?

This results from a bug involving cargo mass. Transports have 20 kiloton capacity but some cargo is larger (e.g. exotroops are 25 kilotons, so they get split across multiple transports) or not a factor of 20. When a fleet undergoes attrition each period, both transports and cargo are usually lost, but not always at exactly the same rate. If the cargo mass can't be evenly divided you will not be able to split the fleet. Either bring a few dozen empty transports in every fleet or transfer everything to a friendly planet and deploy from that.

Can I play on a phone or tablet?

Maybe. Anacreon loads on some mobile devices, but the interface is crowded on small screens and the game doesn't recognize touchscreen commands like pinching to zoom. It will be harder to move fleets around without right-clicking, but you can use the "destination" button. The game might run slowly or have refresh issues on devices that don't have a lot of RAM or have slow processors.

Why did my capital stop producing ships?

If you increased your capital to TL 9 or higher, most or all of the ship classes that your capital can build will require chronimium. You don't have chronimium on your starting capital world, but you can't continue to build the low-tech ships that don't require it if the capital's TL is high. Import chronimium from a world that you have designated as a chronimium processor. (A world must be TL 7 or higher to refine chronimium), or destroy the quantum or post-industrial structure on your capital.

If you didn't increase your capitals TL, you may have changed your empire's doctrine. Strength & Honor doesn't build transports on the capital; Law & Order only builds special infantry; and Trade & Industry doesn't build anything! Change your doctrine back to Fire and Movement and don't even think about the other doctrines until you have a couple dozen worlds.

I designated a world as a jumpship yards, but it's only building explorers!

Your capital can build jumpship components at its Fleet HQ structure, but jumpship yards must have a trade route importing jumpship components from an autofac planet or a trade hub. You could drop off a million jumpdrives using transports but the yards still wouldn't build anything except explorers unless it had a trade route.

TL 9 and 10 jumpyards require chronimium for almost everything (except the Adamant-class, buildable at TL 9 but replaced by the chronimium-requiring Undine at TL 10) and they need to be importing from jumpship component autofacs that have high enough TL to build their required components. See the ship tables for information about what each ship requires; generally speaking generally each ship class requires components buildable the same TL.

Keep an eye on yards as they increase in tech, as they will automatically dedicate a % of their labor to new ship models as they become available - even if you don't want the new types. Manually adjust these %s to match what you want to build; don't let the game do it for you. If a yard can't get the components and resources that it needs, some or all of the labor dedicated to building ships will be wasted. You have guys in the yard on permanent coffee break unless your world is able to import all of the components and import or extract all of the resources needed to build ships in the apportioned ratios.

Starship and ramjet yards can always build gunships as long as they have the necessary resources, since gunships don't require any components. The same caution about auto-dedication of labor to new ship models applies, though. Starfrigates and starcruisers need components built at dedicated starship or ramjet autofacs.

Unlike yards, autofacs can still build low-TL components even at TL 10. This is true for every kind of autofac. Jumpship autofacs' light jumpdrives are also used by citadels to build jumpmissiles and starship autofacs' heavy missile launchers are also used to build battlestation planetary defense units on planets that have completed a battlestation program. Keep these additional component uses in mind when locating your autofac worlds, citadels, etc.

My jumpship autofac is producing a huge number of graviton launchers and pulling in too many resources!

This was a major bug that was recently fixed and you shouldn't see it occurring in normal gameplay. If you are having problems with overproduction, reply to this thread or reopen this ticket on Ministry.

This well-known bug happened with jumpship autofacs of TL 9 or 10. The autofac would sometimes try to produce -0.00001% graviton launchers, which causes an integer overflow that makes the jumpyard build something like 25500% graviton launchers.

This could only happen if the autofac is TL 9-10. There were a few workarounds:

Make sure you have at least one TL10 jumpyard importing from every jumpship autofac of TL 9 or 10 and make sure that some % of labor is allocated to building Undines, even if it's just 1%.

You may also see success if you prevent your high-TL autofacs from building any low-TL components (they should only build advanced jumpdrives and graviton launchers.) To achieve this, don't let your TL 9/10 jumpship autofacs export anything to any planet that is building Stingers, Reliants, Adamants or jumpmissiles; and don't let them export to any hub supplying such a world.

(Thanks to Stargazer and lazygun for identifying solutions to this bug.)

I built all defense structures to defend my planet, why aren't any of the defenses being built very fast?

Structures produce disproportionately more when a larger percentage of total labor is being dedicated to them. You can see this by changing the labor assigned to a defensive structure from 5% to 10% and reducing the labor assigned to a different defensive structure from 5% to zero. After a few minutes, more than twice as many defensive units will be getting built at the structure with 10% labor, and the absolute amount of labor being used by the structure will be more than twice as much as it was when you were building two types of defenses.

A planet's labor pool is not a fixed quantity; the fewer things your world is doing, the more labor will be available in total. This is why it makes sense to import resources from dedicated extractor planets rather than have every world extract its own resources. Likewise, it usually doesn't make sense to build small amounts of multiple kinds of defenses. Instead, focus on only building one or two kinds- or don't build any, and rely entirely on ships for defense.

Most defenses need hexacarbide and advanced defenses require chronimium, as well. If your planet doesn't have deposits of these or a trade route to a dedicated extractor planet, you can't build anything but GDMs. You can assign labor to other defenses but they won't get build; the labor will all be wasted. If your world isn't importing minerals, it will have to dedicate labor to extracting them, which will once again have a disproportionately negative impact on your planet's primary industry.

I imported tech from a foundation and the planet's tech level went too high!

By default, worlds try to go up to the same level as the foundation. It's not a good idea to raise a world's TL too fast, so click on the trade route once you've established it and change it to the desired tech level.

Foundations automatically raise their own tech level to match your capital's TL, unless their natural TL is higher than the capital's. If this is the case, the foundation's TL will remain higher, but will not supply TLs higher than the capital's TL.

If you try to import tech from more than one foundation, the planet's TL will increase super fast and to a higher TL than specified. This is a bug.

I'm supplying tech from a foundation but my worlds' TLs aren't increasing / my worlds actually lost TLs!

Check the foundation structure on your foundation world to make sure it's producing enough levels to supply all the planets. If it isn't, give it more labor by either reducing defense structure allocations, building habitat structures, or importing more resources.

Foundations won't uplift other planets above the capital's TL, and won't normally be able to uplift the imperial capital.

You'll usually have the opposite problem; your foundations will produce a bunch of extra TLs that aren't needed by surrounding worlds. Allocate labor to defenses until you're only generating a small surplus of tech. Remember: if an enemy captures your foundation, all the worlds it supports will slowly revert to their original TLs or TL 5, whichever is higher. Autonomous-designated worlds getting tech from a foundation will revert to their prior TL even if it was lower than TL5.

I'm not sure what determines the amount of time it takes a world to revert a level. Worlds at TL 10 seem to revert to TL 9 almost immediately, but going from TL 9 to TL 8 seems to take a lot longer.

I conquered a planet, why did it go into civil war so quickly?

Try bringing a couple thousand units of trillum with you when you conquer a world, or don't redesignate it immediately.

Populations require consumer goods: organic food, durable goods for planets at or above TL4, and luxuries for planets at or above TL 7. Independent worlds don't stockpile consumer goods; when you conquer a world, total efficiency drops and structures operate at reduced capacity for a couple of watches. Structures operating at reduced capacity will have small white % numbers below and to the left of the larger labor allocation percentages on their boxes. If you immediately redesignate a captured world, efficiency and operating capacities will drop even more.

If the planet's consumer goods autofac structure can't produce enough goods for a few turns, people will experience shortages of durable goods and luxuries; millions will die if there's an organic food shortage. You can import consumer goods through trade routes, but it will take a couple of minutes after assignment before a trade route works at full capacity. Consumer goods shortages hurt social order every turn they occur; bigger shortages have worse effects. TL may also drop to compensate, since people on lower-tech worlds require fewer consumer goods. Efficiency also takes a hit when people die. Shortages are most likely on worlds with trace trillum deposits, since the world will have to allocate a lot more of the available labor to mining trillum to run the autofac.

See the "Social Order" section of the guide for more info on civil wars.

I can't stop people from dying from life support/radiation meds/etc. shortages on a planet and I can't import them from another world!

You're probably experiencing a trillum shortage; your world isn't producing or importing enough trillum to run both the consumer goods autofac and the habitat structure that produces the needed survival resource. Survival goods can't be exchanged with trade routes. Import trillum with a trade route; if this isn't possible, drop some off with transports as a stopgap. Stop building defenses- they all consume trillum.

This can also happen occasionally at times when recently-conquered worlds are increasing in TL and/or population; they seem to produce barely enough survival goods to get by and even slight population increases can put them over the edge.

You can use transports to move survival goods from stockpiles on worlds of the same type to the world experiencing the shortfall; don't take too many!

I captured a world within 250 light-years of my new sector capital. Why can't give it any orders or change the designation?

It takes 24 hours after a sector capital is designated before it actually begins to project influence. Planets outside the influence zone of a capital can't be given orders (you can deploy or remove fleets and infantry, and any planet TL 5 or higher can be designated as a sector capital at any time, but that's it.) You can track the progress from the overview tab; you'll see a little clock that shows you how long until the capital will start operating. Sector capitals do start building special units immediately after being designated, so the 24 hour period won't be totally wasted.

What are jumpmissiles for? Why isn't my Citadel building any?

Citadels use light jumpdrives to build jumpmissiles. You need a trade route importing from a jumpship components autofac or from a trade hub that is importing from a jumpship components autofac.

Jumpmissiles are single-use weapons that are useful for attacking fleets of ships that move through their area of influence (a circle 200 LY in diameter). Jumpmissiles are the only weapon that can attack fleets that are moving through space. You normally have to order them to fire, but they will fire automatically against invading fleets. They are more effective when manually fired against moving fleets, since orbiting fleets seem to take fewer casualties and can intercept missiles if they contain ships with missile protection (like Stingers or Eldritches). Jumpmissiles are devastating if you can hit a moving jumpship fleet with them. Starship fleets move slowly enough that you will likely be able to catch incoming fleets in space if you log in every 24 hours or so.

When a citadel is invaded by an enemy fleet, the attacking fleet will destroy the jumpmissiles from orbit before landing transports; unlike planetary defenses, the jumpmissiles don't fire defensively at attacking ships. In an annoying bug(?), jumpmissiles can't be fired at all if a foreign fleet of any size is orbiting their citadel.

Exotroops are 40 times stronger than regular infantry and 10 times stronger than armored infantry! Why would I ever want to build anything BUT exotroops?

One infantry autofac can supply all the armored vehicles needed for one infantry academy building armored infantry. If the same academy is assigned to build nothing but exotroops, you'll need three or four infantry autofac planets in order to supply enough exoarmor (and you'll also need chronimium.) Unless your empire is enormous, you'll probably prefer to not need to dedicate this many planets to infantry production.

Exotroops are a little weaker than their stats make them appear, because other infantry types are less willing to surrender against them. This prolongs fights involving exotroops and results in fewer enemy units captured. This might be because a small force of exotroops inflicts fewer casualties per individual combat round than a larger force of infantry with the same ground forces strength (the exotroops also take fewer casualties since they're so well armored). Groups of more than 150 or so exotroops seem to be nearly immune to basic infantry and always beat them without taking any losses in my tests.

What good are starcruisers?

This is one of the Seven Mysteries of Anacreon, along with "Where do Mesophon ships come from?" and "How do you pronounce 'chtholon'?" Starcruisers are universally reviled - they are ruinously expensive, their high-damage missiles have no logical armored targets aside from other starcruisers, they do only slightly more damage than starfrigate cannons on paper and much less in actual battles (due to range issues and the effects of missile protection), and they are unable to cause any casualties against jumpships or starfrigates except in highly contrived situations.

I set up a trade route, but nothing is being exchanged!

Trade routes only move resources produced by the primary industry of a planet. Trillum extractors only export trillum, starship component autofacs only export starship components, etc. Yards, citadels, sector capitals and academies don't export anything (exception: under the Trade & Industry doctrine, your capital and sector capitals will turn into trade hubs). If you redesignated a world and have a huge stockpile of resources just sitting on it, you can use transports to move them to a world that can use them.

If your trade route is from a supplying planet and to a hub, you may be experiencing a bug. Trade hubs won't ever seem to import or export trillum properly if they're being supplied by only one extractor. Connecting a second trillum extractor resolves the problem. This may also happen with luxury goods and jumpship components.

I captured a world but it has a really low TL that isn't increasing.

All worlds in your empire <TL5 will increase in TL to TL5 (spacefaring) - but only after they have been given a designation. You may want to give a newly-conquered world a designation that requires a higher TL than the planet has. In this case, you will have to designate it as something else (consumer goods autofac is a safe choice) until it reaches TL5. It will suffer a temporary efficiency hit every time you give it a new designation, though. Alternately, you can leave the world as an independent world and import tech levels from a foundation if you have one within 50LY.

I captured a world but I can't import from it and the import/export range is really short!

To import resources from a world, you need to build a starport on it. You want starports on every world, since they increase import/export range with no downside. Starports can be built at TL5 and are completed in about 5 minutes.

My fleet can't find a path to the world that I want to send it to!

Starship fleets can't pass through nebulas and ramjet fleets can't leave nebulas. Ramjet fleets sometimes can't pass freely between light and dark nebulas, but it's hard to predict. If there's no straight path to a target, the game will consider a few alternate paths and then give up quickly, even if a complicated path exists that could get your ships where you want them to go. In this case, you may have to send your fleets to a closer world and then redirect them from there. Fleets can path through unexplored space to a known target unless the unexplored space contains rift zones; unexplored space containing a rift zone is impassable until it has been mapped. Rift zones interfere with pathing but are not an absolute barrier. Jumpship fleets are much better at finding paths through rift zones than ramjet fleets.

If my capital gets captured, which sector capital will become the new imperial capital?

I believe the first choice will be the established sector capital that has the highest space forces AND is TL7, TL8, or TL9 AND is connected to at least one trade route. If no sector capital meets all these criteria, another sector capital (such as one that is still building the administration structure or one that has an "inappropriate" TL) will be selected, but I don't know which criterion is most important.

Wayward Device's Diplomacy Guide
This section was written by Wayward Device, leader of the Republic of Reason

"The Comm-Burst is mightier than the Basilisk Cannon"- Nameless Rumourmonger

So, you've set out to build an empire to make the very stars tremble. You've read the facts and the figures, you know how to to set up your economy, what ships are worth making and what simple but devastating errors to avoid. Maybe you even have a plan for your star-straddling imperium, some cunning strategy nobody has thought of before or, better yet, maybe you begin things with an advantage, a giant remnant fleet under your command or a small pocket of independent worlds ripe for the taking. But when you start to look around the tiny portion of space surrounding your new homeworld a feeling of dread starts to seep in. You are surrounded on all sides by enormous empires that smother your chances for growth and could crush you like a toddler in a hydraulic ram if you tried to take what's theirs. What's a young upstart empire to do in an overcrowded galaxy?

Well, first of all, both giving up and trying to attack everything in sight have historically had a 0% success rate in establishing a galaxy-spanning empire. So put those plans aside for now. The first and most important thing to understand about diplomacy in Anacreon is that it slow game. This is also true for war and economics but particularly so for this catch all term Diplomacy under which we will discuss the rise and fall of empires and how they relate to each other. As of the writing of this guide, the game year is Cycle 4374, 353 real days since the server started running this version. A lot has happened and the galaxy is very, very full. And unless you happen to start a new empire at the same time as a server reset there is always going to be somebody out there with way more power than you. Probably many someones. Since I've already told you that giving up or trying to take on empires with many orders of magnitude more forces than you could hope to muster is out of the question, that means we are finally going to start getting to the point:

New Beginnings

Surrounded? Incredibly Weak? Massive Empires? Creeping Despair Feeling? Ok. Here's what you do. First, in the next few Cycles you probably won't be doing much epic space conquering. Maybe a little if things go well, but going full space Mongol is currently out of the question. For the purposes of this guide I will assume that you have had the worst possible start, say surrounded completely for hundreds of light years by the most powerful empire in the galaxy.

First, set you homeworld production to 25% Explorers, 25% Stinger Jumships, 25% Transports and 25% Infantry if it's not already. You won't be using to those Jumships, Transports or Infantry for a while but it's important to have them ready. Lucky people who haven't had the worst possible start and actually have some independent worlds next to their homeworld with low enough defenses to take, this is the bit where you take those and properly use them to your economic advantage.

Anyway, start sending out your Scouts in all directions in groups of 200. It can be a little boring but you need to do this until you have explored the whole galaxy. You don't have to go nuts and remove every fog of war hex but you do need to find as many empire Capitals as possible, especially those of the empires that surround you. Once you've found an empires capital you can send them a message by clicking on the capital, going to the Empire tab and clicking the Send Msg button on the right, pretty simple.

Assessing the Situation

As you start to get a rough picture of the galaxy and can send messages to the empires with any real power (I'm assuming you didn't just give up after only exploring a few thousand square light years) start asking them question and try and figure out what's up. Introduce yourself. Somewhere out there is a patch of worlds just right for you to expand into. It might be the empty space were an old empire has just collapsed, the remnant worlds captured in an ancient war, even a gift freely given by a larger established empire for reasons of their own. It doesn't matter how, you need to find the best likely candidate. It may not be perfect, you may even have to accept somewhere hundreds or even thousands of lightyears from your homeworld. But everybody has to start somewhere, so start asking people things. There are definitely going to be places that seem safe to expand into but are really are not. Some empires will hold claims over certain territories and be aggressive about it and most established empires will be quiet annoyed if you take a world that they use that happened to rebel while they were sleeping.

Why would anyone help me?

Well, there are a multitude of reasons. Empires die all the time, as much to players getting bored and quitting as to war or economic disaster. Some players are in it for the long haul though and often want to keep up friendly relations with empires that might potentially visit them with a few million ships in 30 or 40 cycles time. Maybe they need fresh blood to keep their alliance strong. Maybe they want a puppet state to act as a spy for them. Doesn't matter. You need to find out what people are offering and take whatever you can get.

The Might Lord of Two Dozen Worlds

So you've arrived. Nearly 50 billion people call you emperor (well, except those pesky rebels, damn them!). You've got a jumship world and a starship world, even some dedicated ground forces production! But you're still weak on the galactic scale and can't take on anybody with something you actually want. Sure, you can laugh at the small one world empires, but you know in your heart that you are barely better than they. So kept up the diplomacy. By now you should have a good picture of the current state of the galaxy and have some resources to actually take advantage of a fortunate situation. Cultivating your diplomatic ties will also help you know when an opportunity to expand happens. It's one thing to join the scrabble for independent worlds when an established empire abdicates and another to find out that your invincible neighbor has been weakened by a recent war and couldn't stop you pushing their borders.

A Great Emperor This Way Comes

So you're a power now, a real one. A million swift jumships answer to your command, legions of soldiers shout your name, zappy shooty space guns without number (ok, with quiet a big number) protect your worlds. I knew I could write a good guide.

Now, if you want, you can rampage across the galaxy with fire and explosions and megadeaths and all that stuff. Or you could forge your own alliances, seek to corrupt galactic institutions, raise up fledgling empires as your puppet spy false flag minions, seek to promote peace and harmony in the galaxy, try to ban the use of jumships, try to get empires to agree to a naming convention for different types of world, spread rumours and lies that leads to a war that engulfs the galaxy, create your own galactic institutions or, you know, whatever.

Anacreon is what you make it to be. One thing is for certain, treating it like an rts instead of a grand strategy with real opponents will leave you bored pretty fast.
Last edited by Watch TV, Do Nothing on Sun Mar 05, 2017 7:58 pm, edited 65 times in total.
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Are missile weapons too weak? I captured a level 7 world with so much hypersonic missile sites that their power exceeded my 20,000 stingers by a lot. The world was captured pretty quickly while my fleet suffered about 5% loss.

On that note, are jump cruisers useless? From what I can see, most high-tech defenses and ships are missiles-based. Jump cruisers and other ships without missile defenses would be at a major disadvantage to the jumpships and other ships with missile defenses when fighting high-tech worlds. Even the Undines, the best jump cruisers, don't have any missile defense and use missiles themself. I would predict them to lose against Stingers of equal number.
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I still have problems to counter civil wars or make factories
why can't they change the reputation system or just remove it
wouldn't make me burn from the game 2 months ago ;)
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still have a question: when i quit anacreon I had 10-15 worlds and this is how my empire looked like:
4 food 3 tritium 2 chromium 1 hexacarbite and 1 infantry + foundation + starship factory
what's the perfect designations to begin an empire because I think my one sucked (excually I was still learning the game)
do I have to conquer a lot of worlds for food and tritium or do I go for starship and infantry
i had a lot of food and luxury problems and i couldn't make trade routes very well
I don't know why but when i made a trade route I would get other problems like i don't know
can anybody help me please
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pensaer wrote:still have a question: when i quit anacreon I had 10-15 worlds and this is how my empire looked like:
4 food 3 tritium 2 chromium 1 hexacarbite and 1 infantry + foundation + starship factory
what's the perfect designations to begin an empire because I think my one sucked (excually I was still learning the game)
do I have to conquer a lot of worlds for food and tritium or do I go for starship and infantry
i had a lot of food and luxury problems and i couldn't make trade routes very well
I don't know why but when i made a trade route I would get other problems like i don't know
can anybody help me please
Hi Pensear,

I am sure people might have different suggestions / strategies on this point, but I will offer you mine. When you the start the game your really need to start building ships [actually that's the goal the entire time] - but I suggest you start by making your capital far more efficient - since it is already building ships/infantry. If you examine it’s structure tabs - you are likely to find something such as follows:
FleetHQ: 10 %
Jumpship autofac: 10%
Consumergoods: 32%
Trillium extractor: 28%
Hexacarbide: 10%
GDMs: 5%
HEL Cannon: 5%
(I am just guessing at the exact percentages / every planet would be somewhat different).

So you need your base to stop building its own autofac, consumer goods, hexacarbide and trilium. The quickest way is to first conquer a planet with major or abundant trillium and then designate it as a trillium world. Get your HQ to start importing from that planet. Watch as your trillium extractor percentages goes down and fleetHQ percentage goes up [click on FLeet HQ and you can see the exact number of ships your planet is making - you can also adjust those percentages and build the ships u prefer - for example set the vanguard explore production to zero, which will increase production of other ship types].

Then conquer another planet (hopefully with a decent population size) and designate it as a consumergoods planet [ideally you will want it to advance to biotech so it can also produce and export luxeries that your HQ and all biotech planets require]. Get your HQ to import from there, but also make sure your consumegoods planet is importing trillium and the trillium planet is importing consumergoods. Then just keep expanding your empire from there. Build a hexcarbide planet and a jumpauto fac - that export to HQ. And make sure they import trillium and consumer goods.

You really need to look at production levels of all your planets and their percentages for each production. A trillium planet might be able to support 5-10 other planets with trillium (but that depends on how much trillium it can produce as well as the needs of the planets its supporting - and those numbers are not static - they change as population increases and as the planet gets more effecient - for example as your Fleet HQ percentage increases - it is likely going to consume a lot more hexacarbide and trillium.

The goal in my mind - is your want a planet that produces ships - to have all its production building ships - have other planets specialize in builing and exporting the resources it needs.

In response to your other questions. I don’t think you need to build infantry or starship base right off. Startships are too slow for early expansion and your HQ will build enough infantry once it starts importing all the raw resources it needs [once your empire has expanded say beyond 10 or so worlds, then maybe look at designating those types of production]. Personally I like to have lots of food and trillium planets, as I like to ensure I easily have enough excess supplies to support all my planets, their future population and efficiency increases, and future expansion.

Trade Routes are tricky to get the hang of. Again, you really need to look at each planet connected to a trade route and understand what it is producing vs consuming. Production - consumption = surplus (export). If you make a trade route, your planet will export its surplus, but if you connected it too many planets (or possibly even one planet) demand can easily outstrip supply. This can lead to problems, for example if planet A has been importing all of it consumergoods / durable goods / luxuries from planet B and then you add planet C to also start importing from planet B; planet B may not produce enough for both planet A and C. Planet A will therefore need to adjust its own production to make up for the short fall. However, there will be a delay to make that adjustment, and likely a watch or two will go by before Planet A can make up for the shortfall in resources and therefore will likely experience starvation or unrest due to a lack of resources. Not a big deal if it happens once. But once trade routes get much more complicated and interconnected, it needs to remain stable. If the trade between planets is constantly in flux and unstable, planets will continually be readjusting their production for various resources, and you will keep getting shortfalls, which eventually lead to massive starvation / rebellion.

Hope it helps. I am sure someone else it can explain it much clear than I. I am still on my first cup of coffee this morning, so my thoughts are a bit jumbled - but wanted to at least try to answer your question. I hope you keep playing!
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Good advice!

My best rule of thumb when it comes to trade worlds is to never import consumer planet goods*. Just use it for trillum, hexacarbide, autofac stuff, chromium, aetherium, chotholon. It'll save you in the long run, especially the morning after. Don't want to see people starving when comsumption outpaces imports.

*You can still do it but know what you are doing first. Make sure that imports are more than sufficient.
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The strategy I've been trying to run everything through trade hubs and as a result I've needed a lot of worlds dedicated to making consumer goods. I'm running a very high tech empire. This seems to require a ton of tweaking, so I'm not sure I would do it again if I were starting from scratch (too late now, though!). It's probably a stronger strategy when there isn't anywhere to expand, but since there are still plenty of unconquered worlds (at least until Dorne gets to them) it's probably not the best one to pursue from the get-go.

Dorne, if you take all the planets there won't be anywhere for new players to grow into ;). I know that you haven't launched unprovoked attacks against your neighbors (unlike me), but I'm concerned that when new players see the size and contiguity of your empire (an entire sector with only one player in it that grows by dozens of worlds a day), they assume the worst.
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Watch TV, Do Nothing wrote:but I'm concerned that when new players see the size and contiguity of your empire (an entire sector with only one player in it that grows by dozens of worlds a day), they assume the worst.
As they should.
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Dorne wrote:
Watch TV, Do Nothing wrote:but I'm concerned that when new players see the size and contiguity of your empire (an entire sector with only one player in it that grows by dozens of worlds a day), they assume the worst.
As they should.
You are getting consumed by the Dark Side... :twisted:
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sun1404 wrote:Are missile weapons too weak? I captured a level 7 world with so much hypersonic missile sites that their power exceeded my 20,000 stingers by a lot. The world was captured pretty quickly while my fleet suffered about 5% loss.

On that note, are jump cruisers useless? From what I can see, most high-tech defenses and ships are missiles-based. Jump cruisers and other ships without missile defenses would be at a major disadvantage to the jumpships and other ships with missile defenses when fighting high-tech worlds. Even the Undines, the best jump cruisers, don't have any missile defense and use missiles themself. I would predict them to lose against Stingers of equal number.
Sorry for not seeing this and responding to it sooner.

Anyway, I think the effectiveness of missile defense is intended to encourage mixed fleet tactics. A fleet that consists only of ships with missile weapons won't be effective at all against big groups of jumpships with missile defense, true- but missiles are much more effective against certain kinds of strong defenses and ships: gunships and plasma cannons in particular eat jumpships alive. Defending planets exclusively with missiles is not practical, but it's difficult to defend planets against gunship attack without them; likewise, I suspect that it isn't easy to amass enough jumpships to attack a highly-developed planet.

Distributing industry evenly between defenses results in weaker total defense against mixed fleets, so you have to match your defenses to the kind of attacks you are anticipating. Worlds deep in your empire get autocannons or hypersonic missiles and plasma towers, while worlds near other players get mostly armored satellites and battlestations, .

Note: This is old advice and has been mostly disproven.
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I've tried mixed fleet many times myself, and I always see them get destroyed by mixed defenses. For some reason, ships with missile defense would engage cannons, and ships without missile defense would mostly engage missile sites. I guess this is because they want to destroy the defenses that threaten them the most, but they should realize that they have allies more suited to the task. Even better would be to have formation options before each battle, so we can, for example, get missile-defense equipped ships to fly right above the heavy armored ships so the heavy ones would take the blunt of the attacks but still get defenses from the ships above them. My fleets never go the way I want them to, and I can't micro control them one squadron at a time fast enough, so mostly I just look at the planet's defense scheme, if it's missiles-heavy, I throw in a lot of missile-defended ships and if it's cannon-heavy, I throw in a lot of cruisers. :?
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Watch TV, Do Nothing wrote: If the enemy doesn't have any sector capitals, it appears that some other world (jumpyards?) will be picked to be the new capital; I'm not sure how this can be predicted.
I have never seen that.
Watch TV, Do Nothing wrote: In some cases taking an empire's capital might destroy the empire entirely, without any worlds defecting. This is based on observations of other players' wars, as I have never had it happen in any of mine.
In my experience, empire is destroyed if their capital is taken and no sector capitals is left.
Watch TV, Do Nothing wrote:Your war can stagnate or end when one combatant's imperial might drops below around 50% of the other's. This seems prevents further planetary conquests by the stronger player, but the weaker can continue to fight if they want. It may be possible to retake captured worlds from weaker players, however, or to take planets if the enemy is attacking yours. More research is needed. Alternately, the belligerents can just stop attacking one another.
If weaker empire attacks, the stronger one can attack its worlds and conquer them without any penalty for some time. I don't know definitely how long, i think it's one day. But it's enough to destroy other empire using jumpships if it is small enough.
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