GalCiv2 - strategy

Well, been playing this a bit since I got it, and I still really suck.

I’ve learned not to let the AI grab all the choice planets (that I can get to) - but a good planet build/research path still seems to be a little vague.

Do you do the min/max thing where you have a research planet/production planet/economy planet?

Do you always have the appropriate starbases overlapping these worlds?

How do you balance all this infrastructure development with military development?

I’m having trouble too, so is it a good idea to grab all available planets, even pq 4?

Does having a greater population affect build rates, or only taxes?

And as I said earlier, the food mechanic seems to be completely broken. My main planet in my current game has 10 billion people, living on 10 megatons of food. That’s enough to feed 10 million people, according to the manual.

None of my other planets have lots of farms either, so where is this food coming from?

Backov, it couldn’t just be a typo in the manual, you think?

Pretty much. As I understand it, the planet bonuses are multipliers on the final output. So you definitely want a lot of factories on your manufacturing capital, lots of research centers on your technological capital and high population (within reason) on your economic capital. The thing is you need factories on every planet in order to be able to build the other stuff quickly enough.

Do you always have the appropriate starbases overlapping these worlds?

If you have enough manufacturing tech, an economic starbase is a nice boost. Not needed, though.

How do you balance all this infrastructure development with military development?

So far, at least playing on small maps, I haven’t found it very hard to fill up the planets pretty quickly. Are you moving the slider to 100% spend? I don’t know why it starts at 50%, I’m always forgetting to adjust it the first couple of turns.

Unless you are planning on attacking someone right away, you don’t need much in the way of fighting ships to start. I’m usually well on my way to filling up my planet slots by the time I build my first fighting ship.

Possibly, but they did do a pretty good job. So 1 megaton = 1 billion people fed? Seems high.

Population doesn’t affect build rates, just income and I think, influence. I’ve found it worthwhile to grab the quality 4 planets. Or at least, it’s very annoying to have the AI grab them. That colony maintenance fee hurt in the early going though…

I found out the hard way that I need to have defense ships in orbit of my planets. :) Stupid transports.

Well, population helps there, too. Harder to take a planet with 20 billion.

I guess I’m being a bad dictator, but I’m hardly ever leaving combat ships in orbit. I’ve only had people sneak invade twice, and both time they were turned back. Both times, I think the escort fleet would have taken out any defence ship I was likely to leave there. I just try to be able to see them coming.

When aiming for a lot of influence, it’s a bit useless to waste a colony ship on that cat4 in your own solar system. Let some other chump colonize it and build factories, and you’ll get it in half a year.

What is the computer trying to do when he slaps down an influence starbase right beside your capital?

I always just blow them up.

I’ve been playing this all day and I’m starting to get a feel for it. Farms will ramp up the population and ramped up populations will make mega money. Huge populations are almost impossible to keep happy though. In my last game my capital planet had like 4 farms and was putting out ~40 megatons of food. Which was supporting ~40 billion people. All of whom hated me.

There’s some sort of overcrowding factor I haven’t figured out. When population passes a certain point it gets really hard to keep morale up on a planet. Might be related to planet quality.

Incidentally factories seem to be a waste of time to build. Planetary output for military/social projects seems irrelevant since things can just be bought outright for cash in 1 turn. I’m sure there is a penalty to doing things this way but I build lots of economic buildings in my colonies so I’m always awash in cash and don’t care too much about penalties. I do build a factory or two on my biggest planets but generally I just build farms, econ buildings, and a few happiness buildings.

Yes, I noticed the entertainment buildings don’t have at all the effect I’d like. I think maybe their multiplier only applies after all the other stuff is done. So +100% approval working on a base of 20% only show up as +20%?

Incidentally factories seem to be a waste of time to build. Planetary output for military/social projects seem to irrelevant since things can just be bought outright for cash in 1 turn. I’m sure there is a penalty to doing things this way but I build lots of economic buildings in my colonies so I’m always awash in cash and don’t care too much about penalties. I do build a factory or two on my biggest planets but generally I just build farms, econ buildings, and a few happiness buildings.

I’ve never tried going whole-hog on money, but I really don’t think that’s efficient. From what I can tell, it’s not a x2 penalty to buy, it seems more like x10. So if you buy a 500bc ship, it’s like 5000bc. A good planet can kick that ship out in 3 turns for 500bc, saving you 4500bc. The difference between that planet’s tax income in an industrial build and the income in high-pop, high-econ bonus I don’t think can be as high as 1500bc a turn.

I have to say I feel really lost with this game. I’m not a hardcore 4x’er but with GalCiv2 it’s as if I stumbled across a graduate level text on organic chemistry and I’m forced to wade through it all by myself :{

I watched some of the tutorials but they’re mostly on how to navigate about the UI, not on how to play the game itself. And that tech tree, HOLY SHIT Batman where do I start with that???

One thing that gets me is that my military is rated at 0. So the tax slider itself has nothing to do with my military rating? It’s just the #number of ships that matters the most?

Oh well I’m not going to give up on it though. It looks like there’s a really cool game here, I just need to give it more time dicking around with it until the light goes on.

Well… of course the slider isn’t going to affect your military rating if you have no ships. Without a military, you’re not going to get much of a rating ;)

Most of it is self-explanatory. The manual covers much of the rest. There’s just a few confusing bits here and there. And yes, the manual covers what the sliders mean, how it breaks down, etc :)

I too am having trouble managing a large population. I just can’t keep them happy. Researching and upgrading the entertainment complexes help but not enough. I’m a bit lost on what to do. Lowering the tax rate works but not enough to keep a realistic tax rate. Is it the factories on the planet? It’s not completely clear.

Yeah I have to admit I haven’t read the manual much. I hate .pdf manuals and so I’m just wating for my box to arrive.

Oh is there a way to watch the tutorials outside of the game?

The military graph is a very rough estimate of capability. It’s fairly easy to fool it and the AI by building a bunch of cheap, basically worthless fighters and defenders. This can buy you the respect needed to take your time as long as nobody sees through your house of cards. Worked great for me in one game, by the time the drengin figured out I had been bluffing most of the game I had such a superior economy and research buildup that i quickly churned out a real fleet at the first sounds of war.

In an earlier game I had a small fleet, but they where tough, and while the graph showed me as being one of the weaker civs I had no problem mopping up the rest of the galaxy.

Ignoring factories and going pure econony just sounds crazy to me, but then again I didn’t try and use 4 farms either. Keeping that many people on a planet means of course a super low approval rating, which as long as nobody starts exerting influence on you might not mean much. I don’t really understand the ramifications myself outside of influence.

After playing the crap out of galciv2 the past couple of days I decided to give Civ4 another try, but I just keep thinking about galciv. The only reason I am not playing galciv is I want to wait on some UI updates. I was getting really annoyed near the end of a game with the whole stacks and selection nightmare. I was constantly somehow ending up with multiple selected units from seperate stacks and fleets and sending them all off in crazy directions. The UI frequently misreports what’s selected for me leading to some pretty big whoops moments.

I’ve read the manual and unfortunately GalCiv II seems to suffer from a few obfuscated mechanics, which is a pretty big no-no in this type of game. A good 4x game should make the mechanics intuitive and visible so that players can make intelligent decisions and pursue whatever strategy they formulate. Presenting players with some sort of problem like massive unhappiness empire wide and no obvious workable solutions is a bit frustrating.

I still think the game is quite good, it’s just one of those games that needs an outside FAQ or strategy guide to cover for some of the problems in the design.

I dont disagree with that - I just draw the line at people claiming issues with the more understandable stuff that’s explained in the manual.

… Oh wow, that sounds all serious. Heh.