Alpha Centauri 2

Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri & Alien Crossfire => After Action Reports => Topic started by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 01:33:15 AM

Title: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 01:33:15 AM
factions at planetfall
factions at planetfall

Lady Deirdre of the Gaians will undertake, in Pacifist fashion, the coralling and indirect suppression of every other faction in the game.  Without actually killing or enslaving any of them.  The Gaians will never declare Victory.  Rather, they will permanently suppress AI activity, channelling it, hopefully reaching some kind of "interesting" steady state.  The Gaians will garden Planet in a long term sandbox style.  They will achieve technical supremacy over everyone else, and they will brook no rival.

I am currently working on version 1.14 of my SMACX AI Growth mod.  I have put 3 person months of full time work into it.  It probably needs very little additional work, before finally calling it "done".  This vision of late game activity, is the final test that proves the mod is bug free and feature complete.  I've never really undertaken a game of SMAC like this before, it is a final frontier for me.  In nearly 20 years of play, I've spent the vast majority of my time winning the game, not sandboxing the game.  The attempt here will be to create an aesthetically satisfying sandbox, a terrarium, using late game tech.  But the AIs will not be so lucky!

This is played on an Enormous 80x160 map, 30%..50% land mass with the mod's tweaked world generation parameters, average settings, Transcend difficulty, and 6 random opponents.  No Aliens happened to show up in this game.  The Pirates, who in my mod are Passive and pursue Wealth, are guaranteed to be the primary threat to Deirdre's hegemony.  They sit back and Build.  Previous games have demonstrated, they can even outpace me in late game technical progress.  The Spartans, the Cult of Planet, the Cybernetic Consciousness, the Data Angels, and the Free Drones all have plenty of potential to disrupt Deirdre's agenda as well.

Notice that compared to unmodded SMAC, the Gaians do not have a MORALE or a POLICE Penalty.  In my mod, most faction penalties were removed, unless there were strong thematic reasons to keep them.  Making factions better rounded, helps the AI.  It also helps me now.

safe from the Pirates
safe from the Pirates

Radar echoes aren't a perfect tool, but I seem to be in the middle of a crinkly, water channeled southern land mass.  A vast ocean exists in the north.  I'm willing to bet the Pirates will live there, and if so, they will never be any military threat to me.  Equally, they will be difficult to control until late game.  Perhaps I can Launch Solar Shades and drain their oceans.  Perhaps I will drop a lot of Tectonic Missiles on them.  Perhaps I'll simply build so many Super Formers ever turn, that I raise vast mountains around them, leaving only little frog pools.

All good megalomania starts at the very beginning.  I Am God!
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 01:57:35 AM
I own a small pond
I own a small pond

Mission year 2127.  I claim the Garland Crater immediately north of me.  I fish Datajak Roze's frequency out of the water.  She puts me in touch with Cha Dawn.  Roze and I trade a tech, and I buy a tech.  She signs off before I can secure a Treaty.  Cha Dawn starts off Ambivalent, but becomes Magnanimous when we trade techs.  He signs a Treaty but won't ally.  I ask for comm frequencies of the Pirates and the Consciousness, but he doesn't know them.  He signs off.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 02:16:20 AM
I love the smell of mindworms in the morning
I love the smell of mindworms in the morning

Mission Year 2128.  Joy.  A heavily modded Spartan Battle Ogre that's mindworm resistant.  Fortunately my mod didn't amount to much and they're not that tough.  That Ogre has probably been in only 1 mindworm battle and is already half dead.  I already possess the means to destroy it if need be, but I could stand to have my larva leveled up some.  I shouldn't be such a pessimist, this situation could go well.  But having the Spartans as my next door neighbor, might derail my containment plan.  Or at least make it more of a challenge than I expected.

go fungus yourself
go fungus yourself

Creep.  The good news is, I've already acquired all the military technology I need to put her in her place.  I just need to build a Recon Rover, that should pretty much be the end of it.  In one of my cities I change a colony pod to a recon rover and rush it for 56 credits.  In another city I rush a colony pod for 22 credits, so that I can get started on more Recon Rovers next turn.  That's the end of my money.

ogres have layers like onions
ogres have layers like onions

I got my wish on leveling up my mindworm larva.  Ran into another one.  Killed it; now of course mine is almost dead, and 2 squares from the Ogre.  Fortunately I have fungus to fall back on.  Shouldn't be a problem as long as I don't run into another one blocking my retreat.

I don't think I'll talk to the others about Santiago just yet.  If I give them her frequency, I can probably get a map of her territory, but she will probably gain military techs from such an exchange.  Not worth it.  I'll scout her out myself.  I can already see one of her cities to the east.  She is close.  I had a sinking feeling this crinkly land would have a near neighbor on it, but I didn't expect it that close.  Well, it can happen.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 02:22:47 AM
f337 mah powr
f337 mah powr

I just want to brag that I'm militarily better than everyone else, including the Spartans.  And oddly, the wounded Ogre didn't seem fit to destroy my Scout.  It should have.  I guess the Spartans are all a bunch of chickens.  Bwock!  Bwock, bwock, bwock, bwock, bwock!!  I will retreat my larva, heal it, then search and destory with a combined force.  I can't have that Ogre wandering around in my back country; especially, it threatens the west of the Garland Crater.  The colony pod I just completed, I'll put on the other side of the pond for safety.

I actually stirred up a mindworm trying to retreat my larva, so it had to go north.  It can probably still heal there without running into trouble.  The mindworm might provide a temporary obstruction to the Ogre, which is probably going the other direction anyways.  My Scout can give me warning of anything approaching my cities.  My newly minted Recon Rover, goes east to investigate Spartan territory.  Formers are pulled back to make Forests for production, and Sensor Arrays for warning and defense.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 02:34:22 AM
we love the easy ones
we love the easy ones

Mission Year 2130.  The Spartans settle a new city to the north, changing the border between us.  My Recon Rover meets an undefended colony pod and has 1 move remaining to kill it!  Sweet.

eat it just eat it eat it eat it eat it eat it
eat it just eat it eat it eat it eat it eat it
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 02:41:56 AM
save scumming the artifact
save scumming the artifact

Mission Year 2133.  Hommel's Citadel contains 1 Scout and 1 Alien Artifact.  Time to strike hard and fast!  The Gaian's lack of a MORALE penalty in this mod is going to help here.  I reserve the right to save scum this combat until I actually gain the Artifact.  I'm not sure why it sometimes gets captured and sometimes gets destroyed.  Smells like a bug.

It worked first try!  I have the Artifact and am 30% wounded.  We'll see if she rushes another Scout next turn.

where is my Flash Gordon music
where is my Flash Gordon music

She did not rush, so Hommel's Citadel is mine.  Their unhappy citizens will be a source of my colonists.  I will try to walk the Artifact back to my main cities unescorted.  I do have another Recon Rover completed this turn, so I can keep up the momentum.  Ordinarily at this point, I'd be asking her if she wants to surrender.  But I said I was going to sandbox everyone, so I won't do that.  Maybe she will be my first runt weenie sandboxing exercise?

whaddya want wimp
whaddya want wimp

Walking my Artifact south, I run into another colony pod.  At least now I know which way to send the next Recon Rover.  This is a shooting gallery, she's got the wrong posture.  I'm not even gonna talk to her!  I'm not slowing down, I have the momentum. I want this weed pulled. When she's got 1 city left to the north, out of my way, then we'll talk.

no use crying over spilled artifacts
no use crying over spilled artifacts

Didn't know a Colony Pod could do that.  I'll get it back soon enough.  Except... it's not in the same square as the Colony Pod now.  Maybe it has vanished.  Maybe it has mysteriously teleported itself to a different Spartan city.  These Artifacts!  So unpredictable.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 03:01:37 AM
gimme
gimme

I said I would get it back.  The AI isn't too bright about marching Artifacts around.  This time I'll tuck it away in the base and stay put, until a Former arrives with a proper road.  My Recon Rover spam will continue to cover and consolidate my small empire.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 03:17:11 AM
another one bites the dust
another one bites the dust

Mission Year 2136.  This is their punishment for stealing my Artifact.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 03:23:20 AM
tightening the noose
tightening the noose

Mission Year 2137.  My larva is next to a Spartan Scout that just popped an Artifact.  I'd attack if it was on open terrain, but it's on Rocky terrain and their high morale is likely to kill me.  So I will forbear and pop the pod next to me.  I've got 2 Recon Rovers closing in, thanks to a pod popping that completed my production.  Knock on wood, but I think I've go the Spartans under my thumb.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 03:26:48 AM
moron
moron

The AI is so stupid.  Good thing I restarted my last turn and moved my mindworm onto this opportune bit of fungus.  I got distracted while writing my last post and moved incorrectly.  Now I'll have my cake and eat it too!

Well, drat.  It didn't really work out that way.  The unprotected Artifact was immediately seized by the Scout standing next it, between turns before I could do anything.  You win this one, Sparta.  I'm popping that pod.

I cannot count that high
I cannot count that high

Wow.  Santiago has got quite a scouting industry going with these things.  Is that 3 she's snagged?  It almost begs me to let her keep doing her thing, so I can keep taking them.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 03:40:29 AM
mo artifacts
mo artifacts

Mission Year 2341.  Her 3rd Artifact is about to be mine.  I could wipe out her city and make her flee in an escape pod.  I could make her my slave.  Or I could corral and garden her.  I said I was going to do the latter... now the moment of truth is upon me, way sooner than I expected.  What will it be?  I suppose, if I remain at war with her, I can cut her territory down to an arbitrarily small size by settling on it.  If we remain at war, she cannot get in my way.  So I will corral her, until I finally determine how I want my own empire to be situated.  She will become Part Of The Plan.

you were holding out on me
you were holding out on me

Joy!  One of my 2 larvae fell through a dimensional gate.  Transported to the east, it discovered that she has another city.  So I can wipe that one to the north.  It's very much in my way, I need water access to deal with the Pirates.  Next turn I hit it with 2 Recon Rovers standing right next to that 1 Scout in the city.  Can't lose.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 03:53:31 AM
all your tasty artifacts
all your tasty artifacts

Mission Year 2143.  The Battle Ogre returns to view, much worse for the wear.  There was a Scout nearby as well, hope I don't run into it, but that Ogre is dead regardless.  Sparta feeds me yet another Artifact.  Her only known city is Sparta Command, although I haven't explored east so she could have more.  I'm firmly in control though, with Recon Rovers searching in all directions to secure my borders.  I'm not producing any more Rovers, I'm starting Colony Pods again.

I found the Scout.  I'm safe this turn, don't know about next.  One of my own Scouts fell through another dimensional gate and is now far to the southwest.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 03:59:57 AM
seppuku is good for you and you
seppuku is good for you and you

Her Scout attacked a fungal tower and died.  Her Ogre walked right into my Recon Rover and will now die.  Life is good.  Death is good - for Spartans.

boy I am doing well
boy I am doing well

I discover the USS Unity crash site!  What a gift.

Marco Polo reaches China
Marco Polo reaches China

Far to the east, I fish a Unity Rover out of the water and discover Cha Dawn's border.  We have a Treaty already, I just haven't talked to them in a long time.  They used to be Magnanimous but now the sidebar says they're Obstinate.  I don't think I'm talking to anybody until I know the full extent of Spartan territory.

for those about to die we salute you
for those about to die we salute you

Do Spartan colonists make a suicide pact before strapping supply bubbles to the backs of their cars?  I'm afraid this isn't much of an advertizement for my modding prowess.  Most of my tricks are about giving the AI more land so it can build up before humans get to them.  Doesn't work if they start right on top of me, not even when they're the Spartans and I'm the Gaians.  Maybe an Alien faction would have done slightly better against me, but I have my doubts.  I've defanged them pretty hard.  I suppose this would have been a great faction if they were farther away.  Lotsa colonists and cities definitely makes sense if you have no nearby competition on an Enormous map.

slowly sail slow slow ahoy
slowly sail slow slow ahoy

Far to the west, my teleported Scout survives a pod popping and gains a Unity Foil.  I crash it into a sea pod and live to tell the tale.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 04:22:06 AM
ogres have two layers like two onions
ogres have two layers like two onions

Hm, that must be the original Ogre I met at the beginning.  Maybe it never moved.  Maybe Spartan combat sense is dumb as rocks.  Or maybe it was waiting for me to settle the west of the Garland Crater so it could ambush me.  Don't know, don't care.  I may lose my Rover, but I'll have another one along shortly to finish the job.

It didn't attack me the next turn, so yes, "dumb as rocks".  Since it's sitting on Rocky terrain, I'll decline to attack it.  I'll wait until it goes somewhere and makes itself more vulnerable.  I've got better things to do with my Rovers, like scout for more Spartan Artifacts!
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 04:33:25 AM
looky looky at little dots
looky looky at little dots

Mission Year 2147.  I know everyone's disposition now.  The Pirates are exactly where I predicted they would be, right in the middle of that vast ocean.  I gain a 150 credit reward, as the crash site hasn't sat long enough to increase in value.

whatever your fungus headedness says
whatever your fungus headedness says

While exploring Cha Dawn's coast by leaping on and off of it with a Unity Rover, he pesters me.  He's in an obstinately chipper mood and we trade techs.  Then he Magnanimously offers me a Pact, but only if I go after the Angels.  Not interested.  I ask for commlink frequencies but he doesn't have any.  I sign off.

I talk to Roze for old time's sake.  She doesn't have any tech.  I loan her money and we sign a Treaty.  I ask for comms but she doesn't have any.  She signs off.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 04:44:42 AM
message in a bottle
message in a bottle

That's just the best crash site.  I find a kinky wooden ship with a transponder in it.  He wants to know where Santiago is.  I pretend I didn't hear that.  We trade techs and sign a Treaty, but he does not ally.  He says he doesn't have any comms.  I sign off.

The Spartan Ogre moved off.  I didn't see it when my Rover went forwards, so I backed off for safety.  Possibly it went into the fungus.  I've got a healed pre-boil mindworm coming to investigate.  Between that and the Rover, it will all be over soon.

I've discovered the Spartans have at least 2 cities.  My Rover harassing their back line got badly wounded killing a Former, so it is pulling back to heal.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 04:55:54 AM
die die die die die
die die die die die

Mission Year 2150.  I found the Ogre again.  It is sitting on Rocky fungus, so again I pull back.  My mindworm got delayed on approach by a larva.

plan to surround like an amoeba
plan to surround like an amoeba

Belatedly I remember that extra Efficiency is one of my main faction powers, allowing me to pay for unwholesome social engineering choices.  I can definitely afford a slight loss of energy at my HQ right now.  This was a good trade from the Pirates.

In MY 2152 I finally destroy the Ogre with my mindworm.  It's over.  I need to bring my remaining Rovers east towards Sparta Command, to make sure the Spartans don't regroup.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 05:29:28 AM
messy city site
messy city site

Mission Year 2162.  I find the Ruins.  I've never seen them with a fungal tower before.

for the love of fungus
for the love of fungus

8 years later, I discover that there's not going to be any city settling here for awhile.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 05:58:51 AM
policing the Spartans
policing the Spartans

Mission Year 2168.  I shift from Frontier and Planned economy to Police State and Simple economy.  I want the growth.  In this mod, Simple economy gives a growth bonus.  It models the Third World agrarian concept of making lots of children to work your fields.  Frontier politics give a growth penalty due to the lack of any societal safety net.  Getting off of the Frontier habit is a way to get early growth.

I got Police State from a tech trade with Cha Dawn.  It comes with probe teams, so soon I'll have spies among the Spartans.  I will watch to see if they ever develop any military technology.  I have so badly crippled them, that probably they won't.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 06:21:56 AM
I made the AI annoying
I made the AI annoying

Mission Year 2172.  Cha Dawn is sailing a Foil Probe Team around, seemingly in my direction.  This is one of the annoying new features of my mod.  Typically they will sail all the way across the map and take over one of your sea bases, if you don't defend them with your own probe teams.  There's a chance this probe is intended for the Data Angels, whom the Cult is at at war with, but I haven't seen any sea route to the Angels yet.  I think they are fighting a long distance bush war.  So, I'll need to prepare for this.  I'm not sure if armored infantry probe teams hold up better, but it's a good time to find out for sure.  It would be good to have a ship to shoot at the halted enemy probe team afterwards, but I may not have the production time.  I could use the Unity Chopper I acquired from the USS Unity wreckage.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 06:37:55 AM
Secret Project races begin
Secret Project races begin

Well, now I know that the Cybernetic Consciousness hasn't done anything stupid.  They presumably have a perfectly viable, strong civilization that's developing in isolation.  I don't think they've met the Pirates yet, and they aren't actually all that close to each other.  Secret Project availability is much delayed in this mod, so that for instance, I can build 10 cities and have a war before worrying about this.  I myself have not researched any Secret Project bearing tech yet, but the Pirates have, and now the Consciousness has.

The Pirates are using the new Free Market economy to drive their research.  It only has modest POLICE and PLANET penalties and does not preclude expansion or war at all.  The Consciousness may be doing the same, and they have a +1 RESEARCH bonus.  That's toned down from the original game, as I didn't think they should be simply the best faction ever.  Still, it always puts them in the tech lead.

I'm seeing that my inability to use Free Market, definitely hurts in my mod.  I've been trying to get Green economy for a long time but I don't have it.  In this mod it's actually about making money, not capturing mindworms so much.  It only gives +1 ECONOMY but it doesn't tie your hands with a POLICE penalty.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 07:23:13 AM
drones meh
drones meh

At some point recently I found the commlink frequency for the Drones.  They didn't have anything useful and we signed a Treaty.

bully
bully

Mission Year 2185.  Minding my own business sailing a slow Transport around, Cha Dawn declares war.

a roze by any other name is a hack
a roze by any other name is a hack

His adversary is happy to partner with me for a stomping.  Well, obstinately happy.  If nothing else I got some good map info out of this.  All of the Pirate territory.

For a moment I thought I might have to change my government model to placate my new ally.  Then I remembered that I've modded Roze to insist upon the Thought Control future society.  It's a darker version of Roze where the power to mind control has gone to her head.  It's also the only way to improve PROBE rating in the game.  I don't like the whole probe team thing and kneecapped Fundamentalist, they don't get any PROBE improvement at all now.  Instead, Fundamentalist is darned similar to a Police State, which reflects the reality of all theocratic societies I've ever heard of.

I empathize completely
I empathize completely

Svensgaard trades me Centauri Empathy, which I sorely need.  Timely too as I research a new tech in 3 turns.  Now I can go Green!  I'll want Democratic to go with it, to make money and keep my GROWTH from sucking.

pffft
pffft

Was this a good change?  I am not sure.  I make twice as much money, but I lost the use of police, so I have to spend all that extra money to keep everyone happy.  I've taken a SUPPORT hit.  My Efficiency is way more than I need.  I've got +2 PLANET, but I had a formidable mindworm army with only +1 PLANET.  My psi attacks will be better, but I'm not fighting anybody.  Well I'll try this for awhile anyways.  I rush a bunch of facilities to get everyone happy with the new style of government.

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 08:19:05 AM
spendy
spendy

Well here is the offer of a lifetime.  The Pirates are going to complete The Weather Paradigm next turn.  I've been trying to get it since forever, thinking it'll be important to my amoebic agenda.  My research just hasn't cooperated, and let's face it, I had a war with Santiago.  I could spend a big pile of cash to get the tech.  Perhaps they don't realize that I have enough Artifacts to build this thing instantly.  Problem is, I forgot to put them all in the same city, so I can't actually build a complete Secret Project this turn.  Will the Pirates really complete it next turn, or will it be 2 turns from now?  I will centralize my Artifacts and see if I can do this next year.

trendy
trendy

For some reason this guy loves me.  Whatever.  I'm just trying to get tech.

it is the little things
it is the little things

So much for that.  The Consciousness also built The Planetary Datalinks at the same time.  I thought I would have had the tech for The Weather Paradigm by now, since I've been focusing exclusively on Explore since the beginning of the game.  I had the pile of cash, and enough Artifacts in 3 different cities, to insta-build it the minute I got it.  I just never got it!  Then Svensgaard comes along to tempt me at the last minute, and I wasn't ready for his proposal.  Oh well.  I will find some other way.

It is Mission Year 2193, 3:30 AM, and I'm going to bed!  I had a great start against the Spartans, but I've failed at one of my strategic objectives, to get The Weather Paradigm.  I still have no contact with the Consciousness, so I can't try to become Governor.  I'm a distant 3rd on the votes anyways, behind both Svensgaard and Cha Dawn.  That means they're doing well.  Centauri Empathy doesn't grant The Empath Guild in my mod, it comes way later in late midgame.  So, I may be keeping Santiago secret for awhile.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 05:54:46 PM
a treaty for the weak
a treaty for the weak

Mission Year 2205.  I sign a Treaty with the Spartans as they have no ability to threaten me, I don't need the land east of them, and their growth rate is pathetic.  It saves me from having to deal with interloping Recon Rover units.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 17, 2018, 06:06:57 PM
my first secret project
my first secret project

Mission Year 2216.  Commensurate with my Explore focus since the beginning of the game, I complete the Xenoempathy Dome.

your agonizer please
your agonizer please

I've been making large numbers of Foil Probe Teams from 4 bases, having nothing better to do with them.  It is worth noting that a Foil chassis costs half as much as in the unmodded game, equivalent to a Speeder.  This makes sea spreading and ship spamming tactics more viable, although one's enemies can do it too.  Isolated Foils tend to get sunk by Cultist ships, but the greater volume of spam I produced, allowed me to capture several of his ships rather cheaply.  This has culminated in the taking of their westernmost sea base. 

I'm not in the mood to try to stabilize these pathetic wretches.  I did that in a previous game and it was boring.  It's time to put the dirt cheap Punishment Spheres into effect!  I just stole the tech, Doctrine: Loyalty, that provides them.  So thank you Cha Dawn.  Are you ready to sign a Truce yet?  Nope.  Ok.  Wet, lather, rinse, repeat.

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 01:48:43 AM
win some lose some
win some lose some

Mission Year 2244.  My Foil Probe Team is finally approaching the Consciousness capitol.  No one has made contact with them in all this time.  The Secret Project races have reached a point of stability, with the Consciousness finishing The Citizens' Defense Force this turn.  I have stuck with my pure Explore focus, hoping I might get the Maritime Control Center.  I did get the Ascetic Virtues so I have the nominal use of police now.

I have passed Cha Dawn on votes, putting me in the #2 position for Governor.  Svensgaard has more votes than I do, but I have 2 allies and he has none.  So I might be able to win an election very soon now.

My harassment of Cha Dawn with foil probes hasn't amounted to much.  Eventually they've gotten killed and I haven't made new ones.  I wiped out a just settled sea base, but it hasn't triggered any Truce.  Cha Dawn isn't bored and I am.  He doesn't have any techs, so having foil probes around him hasn't been productive.

My ambitions don't look much like containment right now.  Looks more like I need a lot of advanced tech to do that, and I'm a bit behind the Pirates and the Consciousness on tech.  My growth rate is ok but not great.  Surprisingly, I have the most territory, even though my civilization is fairly densely packed.  That seems to be my only outstanding metric so far.

Despite all of this, it doesn't seem so bad.  I think a +2 PLANET rating has helped my mindworm combat, making it pretty easy to destroy things.  When I meet the Consciousness I'm likely to get Knowledge, which in this mod gives +1 RESEARCH +1 PLANET.  That will bring me to +3 PLANET which seems nice.  Pity I don't have anyone to crush with my mindworms, nor was that ever my intent this game.  I've tromped around my supercontinent so much, that I've popped almost every pod there is.  Many of my mindworms have come home now, escorting Artifacts.  I still have a pile of them, which I've been using to complete Secret Projects as needed.

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 02:37:34 AM
police penalties grr
police penalties grr

Dangit, Knowledge imposes a POLICE penalty.  I just went through a lot of trouble to get myself to +1 POLICE, and I actually need those police to keep order right now.  So begrudgingly, I will go for Wealth.  At least I'll still have +1 PLANET after that.  I'm not fighting anybody so -1 MORALE is acceptable.  Even if I was fighting I'd mainly use mindworms, for which my MORALE doesn't matter.  Choosing Wealth has the side benefit of keeping me on good terms with the Pirates, who in this mod insist on Wealth.

My ally Domai has gone to war with the Consciousness.  It seems to be a "first contact" problem, because I think he traded with them to get Secrets of the Human Brain.  I would like them to call off their war.  I've moved my foil probe into position to get this resolved more quickly.  I've already got their commlink frequency, I just want an easy base to steal from if it comes to war.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 02:43:59 AM
need a dog collar for Domai
need a dog collar for Domai

Mission Year 2247.  Domai jumps the gun and calls an election before I've had a chance to speak with the Consciousness.  Well I hope this works out.

prettier than Sven so won the beauty pageant
prettier than Sven so won the beauty pageant

It went ok.  Domai wasn't disloyal.  Hope I can sort this war thing out.  It's not in my interest to be enemies with anyone right now.  Commerce bonuses are useful.

The Consciousness is Obstinate and has Advanced Military Algorithms.  If I can get that out of them one way or another, then it might be time to pop Artifacts and jump ahead in tech.

They don't seem to have a port city, so I may not be able to steal from them.  In any event, it's taking a long time to find any port city of theirs.  Time to negotiate.

I am really good
I am really good

She trades!  Now I have Tech Parity and can pull ahead by popping all my Artifacts.  She also agrees to end the war and signs a Treaty with Domai.  She doesn't sign a Treaty with me though.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 03:16:26 AM
races again
races again

Mission Year 2250.  With abundant Artifact popping, I'm able to begin 3 Secret Projects.  Meanwhile the Consciousness begins 3 copies of the Supercollider.  She has a Democratic Free Market Power government, which in this mod yields -1 INDUSTRY.  I have Democratic Green Wealth, which yields +1 INDUSTRY.  She has taken a long time to complete previous projects, so I expect to win the race for the Supercollider.  I'm not saving any Artifacts anymore, I'm blowing them all on new techs.  I'm making 178 credits/turn due to +3 ECONOMY and the Governorship, so I expect to buy the Supercollider quickly with credits.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 03:47:18 AM
money money money
money money money

Mission Year 2254.  With a pile of credits I complete the Supercollider in my capitol.  I immediately begin the Pholus Mutagen, which isn't the last Secret Project I have to work on.  I have offloaded the support burdens of all 3 cities around the Garland Crater, so they are cranking at full capacity.  I have not built any Genejack Factories for fear of unhappiness and eco-damage.  Also my cash is getting the job done.

I could go Cybernetic now, but once again I don't want any POLICE penalty.  When I've built all my Secret Projects, I'll reconsider, as I'll need more tech to get more Secret Projects.

The Spartans have been assaulted by the Cult of Planet.  They have enough Rovers and probe teams to take the city back, but they are undergoing a minerals collapse.  It hurt them.  I don't mind if they get hurt, but I don't want them dead.  I wonder if they'd be willing to ally now?  I should at least get them to stop their long term war with the Pirates.

Actually... I'm remembering now that as long as I pursue Wealth or Knowledge, they aren't going to give me the time of day.  They might even start an annoying war with me, and I don't want to deal with it.  They are plenty well contained as is, although I don't like the buildup of Rovers on my border.  I'm gradually deploying mindworms that require support to that front.  Independent mindworms, I've leaving in the rear to protect against other mindworms.


Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 03:57:08 AM
yawn

It's been really boring trying to remember to do anything with this city.  I've had multiple turns in a row where I simply forgot to fight, it's been so peripheral.  They kept shelling me from offshore and that was effective at getting me to remove my ship from the city.  I needed to go kill something and they've snuck in while I left it unguarded.  If they wanted to sign a Truce now, I would, but they don't want to.  So I have to go through the formalities of taking it back, or at least annoying them.

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 04:50:02 AM
Pirates get greedy
Pirates get greedy

Mission Year 2265.  The Pirates decide they want to be assaulted somehow.  Ok I'll oblige.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 05:31:34 AM
frolicking
frolicking

Mission Year 2270.  I stole Eudaimonea, popped an Artifact, and completed the Universal Translator.  It's time to pop boom.  In this mod it's not so easy to do, and this combination of choices will do it.  Alternately I could choose a Simple economy.  Pity it drops my PLANET to 0 but I need to do this for a bit.

It's also 12:30 AM and I'm beat.  Calling it a night.  From a Secret Projects standpoint I'm doing fine.  I've got 8, the Consciousness has 6, and the Pirates have 3.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 03:04:45 PM
some like it hot
some like it hot

Mission Year 2280.  My population boom has nearly put all my cities to size 16, but I am not quite done yet.  Eco-damage is rather bad due to all the Genejack Factories I'm building.  In addition to the volcanic eruption, I had a major fungal pop this year.  So it's time to reinstate my Planet friendliness.  I've changed to Knowledge, resulting in +2 PLANET total.  I hope I'm not too late to avert the damage, I really don't want to deal with global warming right now.  This unfortunately drops my POLICE to -2, so I can't use police anymore.  That's a pity as I just built the Self-Aware Colony.  I've had to temporarily adjust my budget to 20-50-30 to deal with the lack of police.

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 06:10:01 PM
glub glub glub
glub glub glub

Mission Year 2289.  I have only 1 city left that still needs to pop boom, and I'm 3 turns away from being done with it.  Unfortunately, the damage has been done.  Seas are going to rise.  I have been building a fair number of Hybrid Forests, not to control eco-damage, but just to make people happier.  My budget is 30-40-30 and I'd like to be paying less for happiness.  Now I'll have to add a Pressure Dome inventory to my things to do.

stay out of my brain
stay out of my brain

I haven't spoken to my ally Roze in forever.  I keep forgetting that she's not Democratic anymore, that she wants everyone under her own Thought Control.  So my Eudaimonia has been driving her nuts for awhile now.  I ran into a wounded artillery piece of hers in my territory, and she told me our love affair is over.

surround and conquer
surround and conquer

I have completed a land bridge to a large continent, full of unpopped pods, that the Pirates have been settling off the coast of.  Capetown contains the Merchant Exchange.  My Marines will soon deprive them of that.  I may amuse myself by raising land around all the other cities, and exerting a land claim over them, so that most but not all of their citizens starve.  Cutting off their water supply will be my first bona fide act of smothering.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 18, 2018, 07:10:32 PM
ho ho ho green giant
ho ho ho green giant

Mission Year 2294.  I have completed my pop boom.  All bases are now size 16.  I have gone back to Green and switched my budget to 30-30-40.  I'm not sure if becoming even more Planet friendly undoes eco-damage that's already been done, but it should keep any new damage from occurring.  I have started The Living Refinery so that will take care of the annoyance of SUPPORT.  I will switch to Cybernetic as I don't need either money or growth, and I am nominally at war.  My siege of Capetown is slow as I haven't made all that many Marines, too busy making people happy.  It will fall shortly though.

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 19, 2018, 01:09:19 AM
the pirated stock exchange
the pirated stock exchange

Mission Year 2295.  Capetown falls.  I won't be putting a Punishment Sphere in, because I want to profit somewhat from The Merchant Exchange.  I have a ridiculous +7 Efficiency, which might keep me from losing too much to corruption and waste at this distance from my capitol.  Looks like I'm losing 1/3rd to graft, and that's with a Children's Creche.  I immediately raised the city out of the water in order to exert a land claim on the region.  That doesn't actually hurt the Pirates much because they have fully developed sea squares.  I could raise those squares if we go to war again, but for now we have a Truce.  I will build along the coast, so that my Marines can conquer another city at will if they get uppity again.

I will extend another tentacle to Cultist territory.  That 1 base I took from them eons ago has been pretty stagnant, and I'd like to have a land claim over there.

I complete The Living Refinery next turn.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 19, 2018, 02:58:33 AM
should have built with floating isles of the deep
should have built with floating isles of the deep

I'm not averse to a little drowning, long as I don't have to do it.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 19, 2018, 03:48:55 AM
so nuke me
so nuke me

Mission Year .  I didn't know anyone had Orbital Spaceflight.  I don't.  Must not be an Explore tech.  Maybe I should change that, because you can use extremely long range missiles to scout with.  In this mod you can't launch planet revealing satellites yet, those come later.

nah nee naa nee boo boo
nah nee naa nee boo boo

I'm vastly ahead of everyone in all other respects.  I think she's just trying to get stuff out of me before she declares war.  I'm not falling for it.  Actually she didn't, probablye because she's Feeble.  But feeble with a nuke ain't that feeble.  As it happens, no sooner did I get done talking with her, than I researched Orbital Spaceflight myself.  I'm making it into a partly Explore tech.  Same with Advanced Spaceflight.  It allows Orbital Defense Pods, which reveal all of Planet.


Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 19, 2018, 04:53:11 AM
those pesky cyborgs
those pesky cyborgs

Mission Year 2308.  I obtain Nanometallurgy, which allows Habitation Domes.  The Cybernetic Consciousness is competing with me for a few Secret Projects.  I am about to win the race to the Cloudbase Academy, but they have researched Homo Superior.  In this mod it is a pure conquer tech, allows Thought Control, and allows The Empath Guild.  Secret Projects that double one's votes are considered conquer techs in this mod, because Diplomatic Victory is abbreviated conquest.  The Consciousness doesn't have the votes to get elected, even with doubled votes, but they could try to throw an election to the Pirates.  Perhaps it is not a substantial threat because nobody else will have Habitation Domes for awhile yet, and the AI doesn't make good use of them even when they do obtain them.  Still, I'm building a Destroyer Probe Team to try to go steal the tech.  It may take too long to get there, or get sunk.

The flooding is really getting on my nerves.  It keeps wrecking terrain that I've improved by hand.  It ties up my Formers so I can't make a tentacle to get to the Cult of Planet.  At this rate I might have orbital insertion before I have a rail over there.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 19, 2018, 05:04:01 AM
the Trumpain diplomat
the Trumpain diplomat

Mission Year 2310.  So much for theft.  They built that in a few turns and I didn't even have a chance.  I guess that's what happens when you stick to an Explore research focus.  I suppose the relative purity of my tech categories actually works.  Hey I did get Habitation Domes first, which is the ultimate growth technology.

The Consciousness just tossed a Conventional Missile at my capitol, proving that planetwide missiles do work.  That's a major feature of this mod: nowhere on Planet is safe from missile attack.  Many things can be hit in 1 turn and anything can be hit in 2.  I haven't had time to build any Flechette Defense Systems yet.  They only stop some of the missiles anyways.  The main deterrent to missile spam in this mod, is I made them more expensive.  That's justified because they're so much longer range.  Such attacks don't really matter all that much because I've got extremely cheap units in almost all of my cities, like Police Scouts and Synthmetal Sentinels at most.  But they are annoying and do require me to re-garrison.

go hammer yourself
go hammer yourself

My buddy Domai ain't my pal, friend.  He's still at war with the Consciousness.  Seeing as how I don't have to keep him happy anymore, and I'm Cybernetic, maybe the Consciousness will consider a Truce?  Nope, they're ignoring my hails.  That Destroyer Probe Team may be useful for forcing a conversation.

I just researched Homo Superior this turn!  It is only a 300 mineral project.  I do have 834 cash lying around, so if I can disband enough marginally useful units, I can probably do this.  Disbanding all of my old Probe Teams was sufficient.  I don't need them as I've got the Hunter-Seeker Algorithm.

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 19, 2018, 05:35:58 AM
I got The Empath Guild!

unkoolian unpirate
unkoolian unpirate

This is most uncool.  I just loaded a Destroyer Transport with an Artifact and mindworms in Pirate backwaters.  Perhaps if I conquer a Pirate city immediately, I can end this affront before it even begins.  Problem is, I'm using the Transport that was supposed to carry the Marines.  Hmm, I did build a rail to 2 Pirate cities though.  After all this flooding, are they still intact?

die and drown
die and drown

I was able to seize Land Lock immediately, but Svensgaard isn't ready for a Truce yet.  That Transport with the Artifact may be toast.  It's tempting to save scum something like that.  A nominal excuse would be that I did get 5 dialogs I couldn't respond to, before Svensgaard declared war.  Shouldn't I have my chance to put my $0.02 in?  But to be honest I would have told him to shove it anyways.  I probably shouldn't be worrying unduly about bringing an Artifact home at this point.  I get a new tech every 3 years.

Next turn I took Pirate's Siege, and it still wasn't enough to bring him to heel.  Oddly my Transport did not get attacked though.  I unloaded the mindworms and will try to make a run for it with the Artifact.

Eventually my Destroyer Probe Team ran into the Consciousness.  She talked but still wanted war.

I did actually get that Artifact home and cashed it for a tech.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 19, 2018, 06:09:22 PM
orbital facilities
orbital facilities

Mission Year 2321.  I can build the Space Elevator now, giving me many new options to terrorize my opponents.  Drop Marine Probe Teams are particularly effective against Pirate backwaters.  Drop Scouts will also help me clean out this northern continent full of supply pods.  I can build all the orbital facilities now.  In my mod they come much later in the tech tree, on the premise that they're large, elaborate logistical facilities compared to just shooting down nukes.  I have the means for infinite wealth at my command, if only I can build them.  I'm actually in the middle of 4 Secret Projects, so everything feels like delays, delays, delays right now.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 20, 2018, 02:51:00 AM
mah projs
mah projs

Mission Year 2324.  I've completed my big glut of Secret Projects, and I've started the Nethack Terminus.  The Manifold Nexus now makes my fungus squares rather productive.  I'm having to build Centauri Preserves and a few Temples of Planet to ward off eco-damage.  I've got Robotic Assembly Plants in all non-conquest cities.

pop like popcorn
pop like popcorn

Using the power of the Space Elevator, I launched 7 Orbital Defense Pods last turn.  I now have plenty to destroy the Consciousness' 1 pod and gain orbital supremacy.  For my next space salvo I'm building 10 Orbital Power Transmitters, which will be completed in 1 turn.  I don't think I will bother with Sky Hydroponics Labs for now, as I have a lot of terrestrial food which hasn't been consumed yet.  And I certainly don't need space minerals.  Once I have space under control, I will finally begin my true mission of smothering my enemies.  I'm not exactly sure how I'll go about it, but I have a lot of tools at my disposal.  For instance I just completed a Tectonic Missile prototype.

drop it like its on
drop it like its on

My 1st Drop Recon Tank goes into service.  It will start on this long peninsular arm and work eastwards, eventually cleaning this continent of pods.  The Consciousness has 2 bases far to the east but hasn't done any exploration.

I suppose its good
I suppose its good

Wouldn't you know it, my 1st drop and I've already got an Artifact.  Fought a mindworm going onto the fungus.  I prevailed due to Empath Song but got badly torn up.  My unit was untrained and it's time to rectify that, by building Command Centers everywhere.  Or taking over the Command Nexus maybe, need to look at that possibility.  I did just complete the Cyborg Factory, so in the future my units won't completely suck, but I'd like to have the Command Nexus. 

One thing that surprsied me about this drop, is I was able to move immediately.  Is it a hovertank thing?  It isn't a Morale thing, my unit was Green. 

this could be pink
this could be pink

I would also like to seize the Manifold Nexus, for aesthetic purposes.  I just think as the Gaians I should have it.  You know what would really be funny?  A Drop Hovertank Colony Pod!  I wouldn't even have to conquer anything, I could just garrison it.  I bet noncombat units have to stop their movement though, that I can't settle instantly.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 20, 2018, 06:12:33 AM
noahs ark
noahs ark

Mission Year 2330.  Building the Bulk Matter Transmitter seems to have triggered too much minerals production, eco-damage, and global warming.  This was already a chore.  I can never get my inland rivers under control, they keep changing course and wiping out improvements I've made manually.  I'm starting to wonder if the idea of gardening this planet is a good idea, or inevitably and unnecessarily tedious.  I believe I could have won long ago with an Economic Victory, although I'm not certain because I never found out how many credits per turn I could make if I went full throttle on that.

noahs idiot child puts a hole in the boat
noahs idiot child puts a hole in the boat

That says it'll drop the seas as much as they were going to rise, so hopefully it's a wash (pun intended).

slowest boringest conquest ever
slowest boringest conquest ever

I had some cash lying around after buying all my stuff, so I finally took over the nearest Cultist land base, using the hovertank probe team I built eons ago.  My sea base finally has resources it was forever deprived of.  Fungus productivity from the Manifold Harmonics is very helpful here.  I scrapped my Punishment Sphere as I have the Telepathic Matrix nowadays.

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 20, 2018, 07:10:21 AM
I plan to be green
I plan to be green

MY 2331.  I finally got enough garrison units onto the Manifold Nexus, and Formers to remove the fungus where I wanted to settle, and dropped a colony pod on it.  The Consciousness never knew what hit them!  This allowed me to switch to a Planned economy and still have +3 PLANET.  I make an obnoxious amount of money per turn even now.  All I really need to do is get a probe team over there and start buying cities with Secret Projects in them.

I had mindworms from hell this year.  That's pretty much why I have 5000 credits.  I beat them off with Police Scouts, Recon Rovers, and a few unleveled mindworms.  I captured a huge stack of them a few years ago, there must have been 20 juveniles.  I spread them out, 1 per base as a garrison unit.

It's after 2 AM and I'm going to bed!
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 20, 2018, 07:11:24 PM
do not kill me
do not kill me

MY 2334.  The Consciousness assaults my city with a mere strength 8 Chaos gun and kills one of my extremely expensive to manufacture Neutronium garrisons.  This is out of whack.  I know that they get a 25% attack bonus for infantry against a city, but that would only make it an effective strength 10 gun against strength 8 armor.  Both of our units were Commando strength so there's no Morale difference.  I don't think they should be prevailing in this encounter 60% wounded, I think they should be 90% wounded or dead, maybe inflicting 50%..70% wounds on the defender.

This is going to trigger a readjustment of the capabilities and costs of weapons and armor.  Many people have commented over the years that armor isn't worth anything.  Maybe I didn't notice it much in the past, because I wouldn't be spending any time using late game units. Now in this mod I do, and they cost buckets to manufacture, due to the Fission engine most of the game.  It's gotta change.

orbital spam
orbital spam

I am deeply unhappy about the number of Orbital Defense Pods the Consciousness and the Pirates put into orbit every year.  It's spam.  It ties up 95% of my cities making my own ODPs just so I can destroy them.  The combat odds in orbital warfare seem pretty bad, with attackers seeming to lose many more ODPs than defenders.  Basically the computer is being rewarded for not ever getting bored with this.  I want to make the game reach a sandbox steady state, but this is *not* it.  I am not going to play a game where I have to babysit spam constantly.  When the AI spams terrestrial units, usually I can just ignore them, because they'll mill around on the map somewhere unimportant.  Not so with orbitals.  I have to prune them, or else they'll eventually build up and overwhelm my ODPs.  If they do that, they can nuke me.

That's weird... having complained, I destroyed all enemy forces and only lost 1 ODP.  I wonder if odds are determined by how many ODPs you have vs. the enemy?  I will keep making massive numbers of ODPs for now.  I still don't like having to do this babysitting every turn, even if I win easily.

The obvious "victory" solution is to intervene on the ground.  But if I want to sandbox, how is that any different from just conquering someone outright?  I could probe team their factories into oblivion, so that it takes them forever to produce ODPs.  I could carpet their civs with fungus, which will keep them poor on minerals until they discover advanced technologies.  But there's a point at which this is not "steady state" stuff, this is conquest.  Maybe it is not possible to make "spawning AIs" reach a steady state.  There has to be a way for them to destroy their own outputs, and all they seem to do right now is put their outputs into space, where I have to destroy them.

send in the Marines
send in the Marines

Parrot Landing contains the Weather Paradigm.  Last year, I landed a Marine Probe Team in a patch of fungus next to it.  I was not detected, so now I'm ready to buy.  I have 10,000 surplus credits, mostly from killing epic mindworm spawns.  For the low low price of 1539 credits, the city is mine.  This demonstrates that the economic vs. military balance of the late game is seriously out of whack.  Their capitol, Safe Haven, is not that far away and I'm getting off awfully cheap.  Meanwhile a military solution would take gobs of production and units to get done.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 21, 2018, 02:42:58 AM
pops and floods
pops and floods

MY 2335.  I don't know why Planet is so pissed at me.  I'm doing almost no eco-damage and I'm at +3 PLANET.  Seems unfair.  I think I'd look at toning down the eco-damage model if I could.  Not sure I can though.  Yitzi's patch offers those capabilities I think, but it's not worth it to me to require that patch just for that.  Having my mod work with the official game binary is a major selling point IMO, and more likely to get players interested in trying mods.

I can kill the mindworms no problem.  In fact it makes me piles of money.  It's the flooding that's getting really old.  I've hand terraformed everything in my empire.  There are rivers that keep shifting and wiping everything out.  I don't like it at all.

When did I last call a Planetary Council?  In another game I came to realize that if you're the Governor, you can call a Council every 10 years.  If you're not the Governer, every 20.  So for launching solar shades, better darned well be the Governor!  Consider that means as an Alien, you couldn't even do it.  Anyways, last Council was 2230 so I can't even do it yet.  With my luck I'll find out that I can't do that same action for another 20 years.  We'll see in 2240, if the world is still in one piece.

energy and orbitals
energy and orbitals

I seize Crow's Nest with a probe team.  It contains the Planetary Energy Grid.  Now I have all the Pirate Secret Projects.  Onwards to the Consciousness.

I am fed up with Orbital Defense Pod spam.  I will not lift another finger for it!  I'm embarking on a draconian solution: piles of Fungal Missiles.  I finally discovered Fusion Power so my blast radius is a bit larger.  Next year, a lot of the Consciousness is going pink.


Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 21, 2018, 03:30:27 AM
before 1 turn of fungal missiles
before 1 turn of fungal missiles

All of the Consciousness' Secret Projects are contained in 4 cities in the center of their empire.  My plan is to buy 6 cities including those, making a contiguous pocket with the Manifold Nexus, and cover the rest in fungus.

anti missile spam
anti missile spam

Hmm didn't realize they could defend themselves.  No matter, I've got piles of these things.

sacrificing for the lesser good
sacrificing for the lesser good

In fact, if they have to lose an ODP every time I launch, this is a complete mouseclick win over bothering with the Orbital Attack interface.  Well except for the amount of futzing I did to fly the missile over there.

devastation of Alpha Prime
devastation of Alpha Prime

Notice that each of the 5 missile impacts has raised a fungal tower.  I'm not sure if the mindworms were already there.  Any more missiles hurled would actually improve the land around Alpha Prime.  I wonder why they've been so slack at terraforming?

Drones before impact
Drones before impact

The Drones declared war on me this turn, so they're going to get the same treatment.  I will take Freidman's Park with a probe team as it contains the Longevity Vaccine.  I'll plow the rest under with fungus.  Unfortunately they had 3 ODPs.  I used the Orbital Attack UI to destroy them, losing 9 ODPs just to kill 3 of theirs.  If I didn't have the Space Elevator, that would not be a good trade at all.

Drones after fungal attacks
Drones after fungal attacks
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: Geo on July 21, 2018, 01:56:20 PM
Did you use fission fungal missiles? Because I'd expected to see the land around those bases all pink after a bombardment of those.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 21, 2018, 03:46:47 PM
Yeah the 1st wave was Fission.  I've jumped to Singularity in like 2 turns though, partly from finally bringing back 2 Artifacts by orbital uplift.

I knew you would see it my way
I knew you would see it my way

MY 2338.  Buying the last of the Consciousness bases containing Secret Projects, finally triggers a Truce.  Of course she could surprise attack me next turn, but it won't matter.  Thanks to my modding skills I have strength 20 Antimatter Plate armor!  And that's just what I've deployed, I have strength 30 Singularity Shield armor available as well.  My weapons, armor, and costs are still a mess as I try to figure out how to make a sensible progression out of all of this.  I'm tempted to take Quantum and Singularity engines out of the game entirely.

Drones are almost mushrooms
Drones are almost mushrooms

I've devastated the island that Freidman's Park sits next to.  It contains the last Secret Project, the Longevity Vaccine.  Singularity fungal missiles give a pretty good fungus spread and this project has rapidly come to conclusion.  Problem is, I still haven't figured out how to get a probe team over there to take the base.  Orbital drop pods aren't helpful against distant sea bases because you can't drop anything on water.  The island is too small and cramped to drop a Marine probe team in there, as the Sensor Arrays will spot me.  I could take a nearby land base, then a sea base, but I'd rather not.  At this point I want to keep my civilization "clean of foreign influence".

sneaky technique
sneaky technique

The answer is to use the 1 Fission Tectonic Missile that I built in the game to make a land bridge.  Now I have enough space to sneak up on the sea base.  The irony is I just put that fungal tower in the way myself, when I thought it might be good to create fungus to give me an on-island way to sneak up.  I forgot that the site of impact creates a fungal tower.  So now I have to blast it next turn with my own drop troops.  I'm surprised that I was able to move after I dropped, I still don't understand how the rules work for combat units.  I could swear that when I only had the Space Elevator, I couldn't move after I dropped.  Maybe it's a Graviton thing, when you get to be able to do orbital insertions without the Space Elevator.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 21, 2018, 10:12:08 PM
smothering Meergard
smothering Meergard

I had to sacrifice a lot of missiles to wear out the Pirates' ODP screen, but I have a lot of missiles.  Almost my entire empire produces them now.  Nothing else really to do, just smother and wait to research the last tech in the tree.  The fungal attacks are especially effective against the Pirates because they haven't yet researched the techs that give you minerals on a fungus square.  Meergard is out of action.  It remains to be seen how long I'll want to keep doing this, as it's a lot of mouseclicks to spend on a city.  It is, however, satisfying to see a city go down like this, and also to wear out their ODPs without great tedium on my part.  I think 1:1 exchange with missiles is much better than 3:1 I was getting attacking with ODPs.

1 of my missiles asked me "Do you want to keep moving?" right as I arrived on site.  It's not easy to tell but there are lots of mindworms on the water where I detonated the missiles.  Can't tell if there are any fungal stalks, maybe not.  These create a physical barrier to more missiles moving in, and the pathfinding of the missiles can get confused.  When I answered "YES" to the question, the missile moved rapidly back and forth between 2 squares, expending all of its movement!  It's not a crisis, as if it doesn't get shot down I can still use it somewhere else next turn, and it's cheap for me now anyways.  But if it were earlier in the game and expensive to produce, I'd be irritated.  The moral is you need to be careful when moving your fungal missiles.

Followup attacks with this turn's missile output, put a 2nd Pirate city out of commission, and all but smothered a 3rd.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 21, 2018, 10:58:55 PM
how may I smother thee let me count the ways
how may I smother thee let me count the ways

Do fungal bursts work on deep ocean?  I want to bring the Pirate capitol, Safe Haven, to heel.  It's a pathetic enclave, is totally undeveloped, has hardly any minerals or food.  Still it can be worse!  The AI is stupid enough for not looking for a better site at the beginning of the game, nor for ever relocating the Headquarters.  It should be punished further, and I just want to know if I can actually make it worse for them.

Yes, at their current tech level, it's making it worse.  No resources coming from the tiles at all.  Can I destroy a Pirate sea base with enough fungus around it?  Maybe.

Also interesting, is I think it's converting deep ocean to shelf, without having to do any real terraforming work, and seemingly no Planet unfriendliness!  If true this is an excellent discovery, a side effect worth using much earlier in the game.  Next test commencing.  Yes, a fungal missile converts deep ocean to shelf.  That's a powerful capability!

I'm not sure that a Singularity engine on a fungal missile does any more damage than a Fission engine though.  I'm often only seeing 1 or 2 squares of fungus.  Sometimes it's 4; it seems random.  Something to keep in mind, that the cheapest missile is where it's at.  I haven't looked into the costs because my current mod settings have rendered them trivial, below what almost all of my cities can produce in 1 turn.

a capital clod of fungus
a capital clod of fungus

At least as of this turn, I've suppressed all resource gathering.  Maybe they'll shift their squares next turn, or maybe there's nothing to work.  I can't exactly tell.

it can harm and heal
it can harm and heal

The Longevity Vaccine is mine.  I also dropped some Behemoths with strength 30 armor while I was at it.  They make a delicious sound when they vaporize entire stacks of units at once.  I used the fungal missile "convert to shelf" trick to turn 2 nonproductive deep ocean squares into usable fungus.  I couldn't get it to work with a 3rd because I have to drop it 1 square away, to keep from harming my kelp square improvements.  The randomness just didn't work out this turn.  I'll try again later.

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 22, 2018, 12:04:07 AM
[Limit reached]
MY 2340.  So we all get reset this turn.  Fine, I'll stop strategic bombing everyone with fungus and make some more satellites.  Whatever.  I clearly don't care.  It has one benefit: all of my fungal missiles will get through this turn.

I need this game to further fuel my imagination somehow.  I can buy anything, I can destroy anything.  I had originally thought I was going to do the smothering with Formers, not fungal missiles.  I had imagined raising land or some such.  The orbital spam dynamic has disrupted whatever my game plan was.  Maybe all the strategic bombing will cause it to abate.  But it had better abate soon, otherwise I think I'll just push the "I win" button.  My out-of-game agenda is to figure out how to balance weapons, armors, costs, and engines, and I could stand to do another test game about that.

[Limit reached]
Goody.  Don't need Cybernetic anymore.  Fungal minerals are now maxed.  And I'll be finishing the Singularity Inductor next turn, giving me a free Quantum Converter in every base.  What could possibly go wrong?  This is the year that I'm going to try to propose to launch another solar shade.  Seems I last thought about doing that an awfully long time ago, but it's only been a few turns.

[Limit reached]
Seems that only complete fungus coverage will suppress the Pirate capitol.  This is a vanity project on my part.  I want Svensgaard to really suffer in his home enclave.

[Limit reached]
Heh, clear that!  Too bad the Pirate AI doesn't evaluate this as getting its ass kicked.  I'd take a Truce but they aren't even talking.

[Limit reached]
I have launched so many missiles at this city, that I can't even get to the last square producing food.  There are so many mindworms in the way.  I wonder if they all just sink?  Can I make a Sea Fungal Tower?  That would be a good improvement, although I don't think there are any genuinely amphibious units in the game.  Checking... yes, I can make a Sea Fungal Tower.  I don't know if I can get the game to create them when fungal missiles hit water though.  Worth a try.

New strategy: any city building Orbital Defense Pods, gets smothered hard.  A further refinement would be to start building Conventional Missiles to blow apart the Formers trying to un-fungus things.  Maybe if I'm more selective about my targets, I can get ahead of the orbital spamming and end it.  Then my system might reach a steady state.  Previously I was tending to smother the bases closest to my own.  That isn't a bad idea, but this is more strategic.

[Limit reached]
So it's possible to Increase Solar Shade every 10 years.  Gonna need it!  Next year I complete the Singularity Inductor.  I could start selling off my factories, starting with the Genejacks, but part of me thinks I shouldn't have to bend to the absurd anti-minerals rules.  I mean, there are enough factory facilities to destroy Planet many times over, and I only built through Robotic Assembly Plants.  What is the point of having so much manufacturing capacity available?  In the standard game, you can't get those factories without also getting the tech for Fusion engines, Quantum engines, etc.  It's just not needed.  Well, more modding conundrums to contemplate.

Did the original developers want to create factories so powerful, that you eventually don't have to do any terrain improvements at all?  That would essentially seem to be, faclities so you can stop playing the game.

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 22, 2018, 01:47:41 AM
[Limit reached]
The apparent conversion of ocean deep to ocean shelf by a fungal missile impact, may only be a temporary overlay.  I'll need to look at other sites to see what happened to the fungus I sent them.

[Limit reached]
This is not exactly the same issue, but the map says one thing about what's been plowed over with fungus...

[Limit reached]
...and the city popup menu says something else.  I hope those square improvements in the city menu are phantoms.  Since the city is starving and has no minerals, it could just be a display error.

I was mistaken to fly a missile here anyways, as the square the missile is on is an Ocean square.

[Limit reached]
What happened?  You saw the previous screenshots, I had this whole base completely covered in fungus.  It took multiple turns to do it too, so fungus doesn't just automatically disappear in Ocean or Ocean Trench squares.  Maybe increasing the Solar Shade did it.  I didn't think that was going to be greater than the global warming taking place though.  Maybe that doesn't even matter, maybe it's the computational act of forcing an update to the simulation.  Whatever.  For now, I will leave Safe Haven alone, since it was a bit missile intensive to completely cover it.  Later I will cover it up again and see if it sticks.  I'd also like to get some sense of whether seas are rising or falling now.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 22, 2018, 03:35:14 AM
[Limit reached]
I realized I can burn money like it's paper, or barrels of oil, so there's no reason to wait multiple turns to shift to a new societal engineering model.  I'm keeping my PLANET rating because it runs the Manifold Harmonics.  I'm keeping my SUPPORT rating just 'cuz it amuses me to have such large cities that can support so many units without needing Clean Reactors.  I don't need RESEARCH anymore.  I don't know if I'll ever buy another unit or base, but if I do, I prefer Dos Equis I want 'em cheap.  Money is no object but Thought Control is the only way to improve PROBE in my mod.  Might as well try it out.  The MORALE boost is amusing on top of already ridiculously overpowered weapons.  "Did I feel a fly land on me?"  If I were just 1 point more Efficient, I wouldn't have to waste money on a 40-30-30 Labs budget, but there's not a way to do it and keep the bennies I want.  All of these shenanigans make me a little heavier handed on POLICE than I need.  Which doesn't matter because I built the Telepathic Matrix awhile ago.  My citizens might look a bit happier until they make the nutrient transition to a fat and happy, full Transcendii society.  Although that's a misnomer, as we never will.

[Limit reached]
I've decided that I'm done pushing fungal missiles across the map.  There are way too many units in the way and I keep having to steer around all sorts of obstructions manually to get to target.  It has gotten old.  We're going full bore drop Formers instead.  These at least will not need a flight path to get to target, I can just drop them.  Their limitation is I can't drop them into the sea.  Fungal missiles do have an advantage that way, but it's not presently worth the mouseclicks to me.

Bases that need local improvements, make Cloaked Formers or Cruiser Formers instead.  Cloaks are useful for smothering enemy territory as they can ignore Zones of Control.  Compare Partisans in Civ II.  This is a variant on the strategy of Pillaging.  One thing nice about planting fungus is it's not considered a hostile move, unlike Pillaging.  I think that's a bit of an exploit, but I'm willing to do it to someone I'm under a Truce with.  After all, you can sit on top of a square in Truce territory and deny the enemy the use of the resource, so why not cover it with fungus and move on?  Seems fair.  You want me to stop terraforming harmfully?  Sign a treaty.

My Cruiser Formers are actually equipped with Drop Pods.  No you can't drop them into the sea, I checked, but you can drop them in a coastal land base.  Then you can sail out to wherever you need to go.  It's basically more convenient than the bottleneck of a Psi Gate, and also available earlier in the game with only the Space Elevator.  This is all because I allow Drop Pods on sea units in my mod.  It's only useful in a few situations, but strategic redeployment of a fleet of Formers is useful.  It means you don't have to build the darned things everywhere, you can shuffle them as you complete areas.

All these Formers are also sporting Singularity Shield armor.  Defense 30, not to mention the hit point benefit of a Singularity engine.  I think mindworms might still be able to damage them but nothing else will.  We'll see.

Let the rain of Former terror begin!  Double pun intended.  Let the reign of formal terror begin!
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 22, 2018, 05:07:56 AM
[Limit reached]
I spent a long time, possibly an hour, upgrading almost all of my units to modern Singularity designs.  I kept old 1-1-1, 2-1-2, and 1-2-1 units to fight mindworms, because it amuses me that they work just fine for that.  I now have a nearly invulnerable standing force that can destroy anything I really want to.  Much of it is highly mobile, able to go anywhere on Planet.  Those which are not, mainly some Behemoths, are already in place in theater.  I have no need to capture any new cities, only to smother anything bothering me.  The one kind of unit I don't have is Gravship anything.  I've wondered if I can terraform with them.  I don't remember Needlejet terraforming actually working.  I will experiment once I get my rain of terrorformers underway.


Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 22, 2018, 05:09:39 PM
[Limit reached]
I love hearing Roze spout off about how great it is to be under the thumb of 1 ruler.  We sign a Pact.  She has 2 cities left.  I'm going to put a fungus buffer between her and the Cultists.  Fungus actually helps the Cultists fight, but I'm guessing their tech level isn't high enough to eat it.  I might actually just leave the Drop Formers there as a physical barrier to movement while I'm at it.

[Limit reached]
I'm realizing it doesn't really matter what I drop at this point.  Things take me either 1 or 2 turns to build.  If I want to collect pods for instance, it can be anything.  I'm going to spend the same number of mouseclicks on dropping regardless.  I would probably get the job done faster, if I cared about that, designing a cheap modern recon unit.  Something that any city can produce in 1 turn.  I think my cities vary in output from 30 to 120 minerals.  I have no reason to build any more factories.

Actually upon reviewing my cities, I think I'll just make a few Cloaked Psi Tanks.  I've hardly ever used the Psi Attack weapon and I'm curious how well a psi attack, psi defense hovertank will hold up against popped mindworms.  These tanks will take some cities 2 turns to produce, but I could just produce them in my most minerals heavy cities, cutting it down to 1 turn.  A side effect of that, is my cities most likely to be hit by mindworms, will have the appropriat anti-mindworm weapon always in production and available.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 22, 2018, 07:54:35 PM
[Limit reached]
The Psi Attack weapon does not perform particularly well against mindworms.  I took 40% wounds using it to attack, with an Elite unit no less.  Oh good grief, a 2nd such unit took 80% wounds attacking.  I will try a conventional weapon with an Empath Song and an R-Bolt to really stack the deck.  Maybe that's why they added R-Bolts, maybe they realized that the Psi weapon doesn't basically work.

Grav Formers do work!  However land and sea units have a major advantage: with a Singularity engine they can be cheaply armored.  Grav units by comparison are ridiculously expensive to put armor on them.  I could change that, but I need to figure out how armor and chassis cost actually works for air units.

I'm quite shocked that a simple Spore Launcher attacked and destroyed one of my Singularity Artillery pieces.  Psi attacks are a vulnerability no matter the tech level.

Dropping Formers has its own kind of tedium compared to pushing missiles around.  You don't know who's got an Aerospace Complex and who doesn't.  If you drop on an AC or next to an unseen unit, you get the "can't drop" dialog and are recentered on your active unit.  Then you have to scroll back to target all over again.  I don't think there's any solution for this.  If you click on a city to see what it's got, once you exit the UI recenters over the active unit, and you have to scroll again.   This gets real old real fast.  Maybe the "Don't center on units with orders" option can eliminate the base inspection problem, but it can't eliminate the hidden unit problem, so some tedium will never go away.  My compromise is just to drop the Former on some land away from where I want to cause trouble, then move in next turn.  I think it's all going to get pretty old pretty soon, and then I'm not sure what I'll do.  Declare victory?

Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 23, 2018, 07:57:39 PM
I kicked version 1.14 of my mod out the door.  Some of the changes didn't get playtested before I did that.  Some of those, I justify because I'm actually returning to how the game originally was.  Others, well I hope for the best and that people other than myself will playtest them.  I only accumulated a steady tricke of very minor setting tweaks, until I got to the Fusion / Quantum / Singularity era and realized that huge jump just isn't any good.  I could either take them out of the game, or spread them out like the original game did.  I chose the latter.

I now have a strong incentive to start a new game to test the major changes I didn't expect I'd be making in 1.14.  I'm also not feeling any love for these Drop Formers at all.  Too many mouseclicks.  I think I'd rather build railheads, tedious as that can get.  I don't know exactly what I would actually do, with a clean slate, but I know I feel no point in doing anything now.  Nobody can touch me; they're in a steady state in the hand wavy sense that everyone is "thoroughly suppressed".  I did keep the strength 30 Singularity Shields for 1.14.  I could put blocks and blocks of that stuff down on the map now, but why bother?

[Limit reached]
Ah crap, for the love of...?  I can't hit the I win button.  Grr, well, what are my options?  Damned if I'm gonna Transcend.  Economic Victory takes 20 turns, sunspots will have lifted before then.  Well since I have no enthusiasm right now, I'm gonna back seat this until I decide what to do.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 23, 2018, 09:14:03 PM
Lying around in bed, not really having the energy to do much else for the next X minutes, I got motivated.

[Limit reached]
MY 2343.  Since I'm morally opposed to Transcending, I decided the fastest way to win the game (turn-wise) is to manually buy everything.  I probably have the credits / turn to do it.  If I don't, then I can just make as many Orbital Power Transmitters as needed.  I'll know I need OPTs when I run out of money buying cities.  I've ended Drop Former production, switching all of those cities to Drop Hovertank Probe Marines.  They're very effective against Pirate sea bases touching land.

[Limit reached]
I've decided to use my forward positioned military units to do some outright conquest as well.  That can stretch my money farther.  The most efficient use of troops is knocking off enemy capitols.  City buyout costs are a lot cheaper when a civ doesn't have a headquarters.  I haven't made much progress this year, but then I didn't start this turn with this idea in mind.  I just came back to a saved game, expecting to hit "TURN COMPLETE" and instead decided to use as many garrisoned units as possible for my cause.

[Limit reached]
I've taken a few Consciousness cities by Total Thought Control.  Haven't tripped their radar yet.  These cities were relatively far away from their capitol so were under 2K credits to buy out.  I am mainly limited by the lack of good rail networks to anywhere.  My hovertank probe teams are stumbling around trying to get to targets.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 26, 2018, 03:00:11 PM
[Limit reached]
MY 2351.  I take over the last Consciousness base with a probe team.  My money wasn't remotely enough to buy all the very expensive bases on Planet, so this has become an outright conquest.  Probe teams do some of the work where they can.  They have a disadvantage compared to combat units, in that their movement ends after they drop.  Combat units can attack immediately and do not require me to plan ahead.  Drop Wave Hovertanks did the heavy lifting while I was making war on land.  Drop Marine Hovertanks killed the coastal bases once I ran out of land.  They're not as effective as Wave units but I had piles of them.  Drop Cruisers are now going after the few remaining out-at-sea bases.  Yes, it's useful to have drop pods on a ship.  You can't drop into the sea, but you can drop into a coastal land base and sail out to sea.

The entire planet is sinking.  I am thinking the idea of reaching a stable system was a pipe dream, unless it's all underwater.  Or unless I've conquered everybody first.  I get fungal pops every turn and now they've become gigantic stacks of Locusts.  I haven't built any air units to deal with something so massive, so I might experience casualties next year.  I'm shifting production to Drop R-Bolt Rotors to fight back.  I definitely don't need more land or marine units, it will take ships to finish off the last of my enemies.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 26, 2018, 03:01:29 PM
[Limit reached]
MY 2352.  The Cult of Planet succumbs to a Hovertank Marine.  One of my cities was completely wiped out by a stack of Locusts.  My R-Bolt Rotors are not terribly effective, they only get 1 or 2 hits before being too wounded to continue.  I am creating a new "Sprayer" unit, basically air mounted artillery.  Such a unit is enabled in this mod; hope it helps!

[Limit reached]
The Drones die.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 26, 2018, 03:03:10 PM
[Limit reached]
MY2353.  I've gone the whole game without this happening.  Indeed, I've gone many games.  Why now?

Drat, air mounted artillery doesn't work.  When I try to hit "F" to initiate indirect fire, it thinks I'm trying to terraform.  There is no menu command to let me do it either.  Oh well, I'll try making defensive units.

[Limit reached]
What an interesting skill!  A Drop Cruiser can land on an Airbase.  I suspected that I could probably land on inland cities, although I haven't tried it.  Now all I have to do is sail off of the airbase into the water.  Pretty neat huh?  Good for rounding up those pesky distant Pirate bases that I can't drop directly on top of.  Heck, the Airbase just keeps me from taking wounds!  I can land on any coast and just sail off it.  Didn't realize that, would have saved me some time before.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 26, 2018, 03:04:36 PM
[Limit reached]
MY 2354.  I just want to point out the absurd costs I've been dealing with.  I don't understand how this stuff is formulated. 

[Limit reached]
Goodbye Pirates!  Other than my ally Roze, the Spartans are the only one left.  We have a Treaty and I've left them alone since the beginning of the game.  It's time to buy them out though.  I have so many cities it's difficult to find my probe teams now.  I could just crush them militarily but I'm going to be polite.  Although, once it's down to their capitol, maybe I'll just do a polite invasion.  Wish these sunspots would lift.
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 26, 2018, 03:07:37 PM
MY 2355.  Having redeployed what probe teams I could find, I take 3 Spartan cities by Total Thought Control.  The 4th eludes me because a screen of troops is in the way.  I take 1 of the troops in preparation for next turn.

[Limit reached]
MY 2356.  How did Santiago figure out that I was about to whack her to bits?  Well hey I'm all about the pretext.  I savor my Noble reputation in the face such infamy.

[Limit reached]
I am obsessively building Flechette Defense Systems at every base, even now, out of the perceived fear that "someone could hit me with a missile".  Now who could that be at this point, eh?
Title: Re: Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod
Post by: bvanevery on July 26, 2018, 03:09:25 PM
[Limit reached]
And now the moment of truth.  Do I take the Spartan capitol, stop the sandboxing exercise and win the game?  I think so.  If nothing else, being pestered by so many cities has gotten to be a drag.  I think I'd rather play a new game with the 1.14 rules.  This game didn't get the major changes in Fusion, Quantum, and Singularity engines until the very end of the game, so I don't actually know what that progression is like.

[Limit reached]
I have enjoyed your pensive company, Santiago.

[Limit reached]
In celebration of our victory we erect a giant floating flower in geosynchronous orbit over Gaia's Landing.

[Limit reached]
I never know if my scores are any good, but this is less than I was spending to buy out size 1 bases at the end of the game.

[Limit reached]
So what am I 452% of?

[Limit reached]
The replay movie was abrupt, with a sudden splotch of green exploding at the end.  The area in the center without green was a Pirate enclave with only sea bases ringing the coast of the continent.

[Limit reached]
Yes go away!  Quit smothering me.  The moral of this story is no matter how much you think you're going to sandbox, you're going to conquer everyone eventually.