Systems can appear very complex at first glance, and the parts that are controlling stations are buried in a few small elements of the system element structure.
Random systems use a <RandomLocation or <FillLocations element to control all the stations that get built. For unique systems such as Eridani and St. Katharine's, the stations are placed directly in the position they are intended for.
I will explain how to adjust the random systems to build specific stations through modifiers, and hopefully that will help expand your understanding of the way that systems work:
One type of station placement is done like this-
In most systems this sets a station up as the "primary" station. This general selects a CW station such as a DryDock, Fortress or Commonwealth Station. If you look in those stations you will find that attributes="" contains the strings "friendly" and "primary". This enables them to make the stationCriteria. Any stations with the proper criteria are chosen for this placement.
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<RandomLocation probability="90" locationCriteria="++LifeZone,*planet"> <RandomStation stationCriteria="*friendly,*primary"/> </RandomLocation>
If you alter the criteria to match something else, such as "enemy" and perhaps "myCustomFaction" you would get a list of stations that had those attributes getting placed.
The locationCriteria is referencing the labels in the planet tables, btw.
That only places a single station, and you can add more of these to place more stations, but there is another station placement element to use for more stations, called FillLocations:
This places both enemy and friendly stations- notice that you can adjust the percentage there. stationCriteria excludes primary stations and debris ( using a ! ), and in this example places an envWater type station. Find the envType in the station attributes. There are four elemental divisions of the sovereign models for some reason I have never understood. (Why four elements as a model? Isn't that a little archaic and typical of too many games already? Just my opinion, best ignore it.)
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<FillLocations percentFull= "80" stationCriteria= "!primary,!debris,+envWater,-envAvoidsWater" percentEnemies= "65" separateEnemies= "true" />
Fill Locations place stations up to the percentFull for available labels in the system. separateEnemies allows more than one "enemy" type (again, look in the station attributes and you will find either "friendly" or "enemy" in there.)
You can adjust the percentFull to less to create a less developed system, or you can adjust the percentEnemies to increase the number of enemies.
If you want just one specific kind of enemy to appear, use the stationCriteria to choose the attribute they possess (or add a custom one).
In addition to these, there is a FillLocations for debris in most random systems.