Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri & Alien Crossfire > After Action Reports

Smothering The Enemy - SMACX AI Growth mod

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Detailsfactions at planetfallfactions 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.

Detailssafe from the Piratessafe 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!

DetailsI own a small pondI 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.

DetailsI love the smell of mindworms in the morningI 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.

Detailsgo fungus yourselfgo 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.

Detailsogres have layers like onionsogres 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.

Detailsf337 mah powrf337 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.

Detailswe love the easy oneswe 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.

Detailseat it just eat it eat it eat it eat it eat iteat it just eat it eat it eat it eat it eat it


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