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Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
11-05-2014, 10:29 AM (This post was last modified: 11-05-2014 10:31 AM by Yojimbo252.)
Post: #1
Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
Sorry I bet this has already been discussed and answered but I can't find it mentioned in any of the strat guides or posts that I've read.

I've just colonised a new planet and have 1 pop. Parking everything else to one side let's say my objective is to maximise that planet's Production output as quickly as possible.

My experience to date suggests that I should set that worker to Civic Funding to increase my pop as quickly as possible. But I recognise that planets production would be increased by having a EF1 which would then further the rate of Civic Funding.

So at what point (ie. How many pop) is it best for me to switch from Civic Funding to EF1? I appreciate there are a number of factors to take into consideration like the Max Pop size of the planet, amount of minerals, gravity and racial traits but has anyone run the numbers on these scenarios and/or come up with some basic 'rules of thumb'?
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11-05-2014, 09:09 PM
Post: #2
RE: Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
Just a related follow up question regarding growth rate. What does the value actually mean?

For example if I have a planet with a growth rate of +100k, how many turns will it take before I gain another pop?
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11-05-2014, 10:52 PM (This post was last modified: 11-05-2014 11:20 PM by Diebo.)
Post: #3
RE: Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
Excellent question, and no, it hasn't been discussed much. I often see people writing that they fill their populations to half full because that maximizes growth rate, and I've even heard of them doing this with civic funding.

It is all a question of opportunity costs!

I don't have time to go through all of the math, but I can put you on the right path to self-enlightenment. Open up a new game, select advanced empire, and select huge home.

Now, go to the arid planet, and notice pop growth with 1 pop on it (shift all the other pop to other planets, make sure that there is enough food on the home planet to feed everyone). You'll see +51k. That means that in 19.6 turns, a new pop will grow (1000/51 = 19.6). Put that pop on civic funding, and growth pops up to +71k. Civic funding is increasing pop growth rate by +20k/turn, and in 14.1 turns you'll have a new pop (saving you five turns).

If you continue to do this for 1-11 pop, you'll notice that growth rates maximize at 5-6 pop (+77k) without civic, and at +236k at 7 pop.

Now mix in old-fashioned, which halves growth (just cut those numbers in half), versus fertile (multiply by 1.5) or boomer (multiply by 2). Using civic funding on old-fashioned is barely noticeable, but with boomer is quite noticeable.

And now think about it in terms of opportunity costs. How much could you do with that people-power if they weren't focused exclusively on breeding? To use civic funding on a large arid world without any special racial traits, and normal industry, with 1 pop, costs 58.8 industry (you get a pop in 11.8 turns, at 3 industry per turn). An Efficient Factory 1 costs 90 to build.

With a single pop, in 19 turns you would get a new pop while building the factory. 19*3 industry = 57. With 2 pop, growth rate goes up to +63k, and industry goes up to 6/turn. In 6 more turns you would have enough industry to build an EF1. You would have an EF1 after 19 + 6 = 25 turns, and 2 pop.

Now use civic funding to grow 2 pop, then build the EF1. That would take 14 turns to grow a pop, with no stored industry. Once you have 2 pop, if you put them on industry, it would take 90 cost/6 industry per turn to build, or 15 turns. In that time. At the end, a third pop would grow. You would have an EF1 after 14 (civic) + 15 (build) = 29 turns, plus 3 pop.

If you want to carry the math out, suppose you put both planets on civic now? With the extra 5 industry and +1/worker, growth rates rise. You could carry this out for 50 turns or so, and see which is most helpful. I'll leave you to do that if you are interested.

From my own play, I usually use old-fashioned, and rely on cloning or medical to boost growth rates. Both are passive and allow for extra trait points that can be used elsewhere. With old-fashioned, it never makes sense to use civic funding.

On occasion I'll use Boomer or Fertile. I often also use Shared IQ. With Shared IQ, pop density is the driving factor to bonuses to food/industry/science, so I'll either have 1 pop on planets, or max pop -1 (to allow for pop growth). In these cases, I'll often have a couple of planets with civic funding set early in the game to boost initial pop growth. And I usually only have 1 pop. I'll build EF1 or EF2 if I can to get the passive industry, but I never run civic with more than 1 pop. And come to think of it, I'll often put a planet on civic to grow to 2 pop if I have fertile or boomer, but that was always a gut feeling.

If you look at the numbers, you'll see that the max growth rate is in the middle of the planet population curve. However, the cost/growth is at the lowest pop. For example, on that large arid planet, it costs 42.2 industry to build 1 pop when you start out at 1 pop using civic funding. At the maximum growth rate of 7 pop (+236k) the costs shoot up to 88.9, or almost double, because you've got 7 people dedicated to growth instead of just 1.

A huge part of this game is opportunity costs. Always question what you can be doing with that population instead of whatever it is that you have assigned them to. Civic funding with just 1 pop on a planet, particularly with fertile/boomer, and even better with EF1 or EF2, is a solid investment for a planet. Usually there are a few good planets that are rich, with high population capacity. It is a lot better to fill those planets up to maximize industry/science/etc. than to have a bunch of half-filled planets that maximize growth rates, but don't have the infrastructure to build all the buildings that help concentrate industrial or scientific output.

And respect both cloning and medical techs. They are a fantastic sources of growth. If you are on a smaller system, you might not have time to research those before you are overrun. Boomer/Fertile might be the better path.

I hope this helps. Test games will help you learn the mechanics. And keep your friend Excel handy, if you are touched with a bit of the Geek. Excel, test games, and Starbase Orion go hand-in-hand.
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11-06-2014, 12:10 AM
Post: #4
RE: Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
Wow, a very extensive write up with lots of food for thought.

I'm going to need a bit of time to digest all this and like you suggest, perform some testing myself to see what I can conclude.

Thanks for taking the time.
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11-11-2014, 09:45 AM
Post: #5
RE: Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
I wondered this same thing, so I did some experimenting. Back when I played moo2, I used to start new planets with civic funding until they had 3 pop, then I'd start them building. It was a formula that served me well through hundreds of insane difficulty games. I'm thinking now that was probably a mistake. I just recently found stargate Orion, and I'm loving it. I wanted an answer to this question, so the next time I built a new planet, I saved the game and started the colonist building. When I had the structure built, I noted the turn when the structure was built and the colony hit the third pop. Then I loaded the game and started the single colonist on civic funding. I waited till he asexually reproduced into a second colonist and had him start building. I noted the turn that the structure finished building and they hit the third colonist. Then I loaded, started civic funding till the third pop and started them building. I waited until the building finished and noted the star date. Invariably, the colonist that started building immediately was the winner. Apparently he still had time for a social life, because he was well ahead of the ones that tried to reproduce first. He built the building and reached the same population or more. The race wasn't even close. I tried it in the beginning when I just wanted him to build a hydroponics center, and I tried it a little later when I had the factories researched. I also tried it with several different race builds. Try it yourself and see if you agree.
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11-11-2014, 01:14 PM
Post: #6
RE: Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
Welcome!
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11-11-2014, 09:17 PM
Post: #7
RE: Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
Thanks for the responses. I've performed some testing myself and am also coming to the conclusion that it's best to put that first worker to EF1 rather than Civic Funding.

I won't bore you with all the details but essentially a planet will hit max pop with an EF1 faster if they build the EF1 first then focus on Civic Funding rather than the other way round. This was with zero traits so it'd be interesting to see whether Boomer/Fertile influences this enough to at least start with Civic Funding and switch to EF1 at some point prior to hitting max pop.Thanks for the responses
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11-12-2014, 06:44 AM
Post: #8
RE: Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
(11-11-2014 09:17 PM)Yojimbo252 Wrote:  Thanks for the responses. I've performed some testing myself and am also coming to the conclusion that it's best to put that first worker to EF1 rather than Civic Funding.

I won't bore you with all the details but essentially a planet will hit max pop with an EF1 faster if they build the EF1 first then focus on Civic Funding rather than the other way round. This was with zero traits so it'd be interesting to see whether Boomer/Fertile influences this enough to at least start with Civic Funding and switch to EF1 at some point prior to hitting max pop.Thanks for the responses

Shared Intelligence is another trait that could possibly affect the optimal order, since it gets penalties when you have a small population.

GC ID - VanderLegion, GMT-9. Sandbox GC ID (Beta) - VanderLegion
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11-13-2014, 12:23 AM
Post: #9
RE: Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
(11-12-2014 06:44 AM)VanderLegion Wrote:  Shared Intelligence is another trait that could possibly affect the optimal order, since it gets penalties when you have a small population.

Fair point.
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11-14-2014, 07:25 AM
Post: #10
RE: Initial Build Decisions for New Planet
I only use shared intelligence now. The math works the same way for some reason.
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