developing colonies

BOTF Strategy Guide

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mspaetauf
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developing colonies

Post by mspaetauf » Tue Jun 09, 2009 12:57 pm

Hello everyone!

I am new here and I am in need of advice!

I started playing BOTF again a while ago, and my biggest problem is that i do not really know how to develop my colonies effectively.

I usually play hard-impossible, without minors and no random events.

After colonizing a planet i usually build some factories and some buildings for food production.

But, especially in the beginning, if would be good to get my colonies to "working status" asap; but pop. grows very slow and i do not have the money to buy stuff because i need to buy ships.

about upgrading: i tried building several factories, and upgrading afterwards, and i tried it the other way round (build one, upgrade, build more) - no matter how i do it it takes ages to complete.

well, I'd appreciate any advice!

best regards,
M

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Post by stardust » Tue Jun 09, 2009 1:44 pm

Short of cheating there is not particulary quick way, and I suspect you'll get a few differning opinions.

For me anyway, I buy the first factory or two, work out how many factories I can get the pop to build on their own before they grow to a point where they's start starving, so they will then have a level of industry where they can make a farm a turn.

I tell them to make enough farms to sustain the max population.

I then have differing strategies depending on colony size and what stage of the game I'm at.

A colony of 100 or less I have 5 indistry, 4 intel, plus farms, energy and special structures.
Note no research so I don't waste time building and upgrading them, ensuring the other 4 fields are upgraded quicker.

A colony of 100-250 .

Anything up to 12 industry, depending on size, then energy and farms, and again, either intel or research. not both.

250 to 350.

20 industry, gearing towards ship building, energy, farms, and a few research or intel.

350+

25 -30 industry, farms, energy and 10-15 either research or intel.

Early game, I gear more for research, later on and late games i gear towards intel.

And if i've started and early tech game and nearly finish research and my colonies aren't doing anything, then I build up the intel from level i, but i make a single intel, upgrade it as far as it can go then build more.

So quite a lot to take into acount, calculate and so on.
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Dngnmastr
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Post by Dngnmastr » Wed Jun 10, 2009 11:20 pm

Hi everyone, I'm also new here, but I've been playing BOTF (solo, Vanilla, I'd guess you'd call it) since it came out in 1999 and I've been using a method that works for all 5 races. It's not complicated, just assumes you're playing solo, on fairly low-tech levels (so no Aquaculture or Replicators yet) and have plenty of time, with little or no money for rapid building - or you just don't want to spend money if you don't have to ;) ).

It also assumes you've terraformed all of the planets in the system and are looking to maximize the population as soon as possible. The timing will need to be adjusted slightly for very large or very small (circa 100) population systems, but it works.

Turn 1) Queue up "build 2 factories, then Upgrade Farm".
On Turn - whenever-population-hits 19 - ie: almost 2 units), buy out the remaining turns on Factory #1 (around 105 credits for the Klingons, 40 or so for Ferengi, others somewhere in between).

Next turn, put Pop unit #2 into the Factory #1 you've just built, let them work it until you're about to hit the starvation point, then move Pop #2 back into Farm #2, and let the default industry (5 per turn) finish off Factory #2 (if the system has food bonuses, you'll get more grace time before you have to move, obviously).

Population 30 (3 units): By now you will have two units in Farms, 1 in Factory #1, and will be Upgrading the two Farms to level 2; as soon as the two Farms are upgraded, queue up one more Factory build, then 1 more level 2 farm (so you'll have a total of 3 factories and 3 farms).

At this point, you should have a bit of a lead in Food, so you may be able to build two Factories for every Farm (unless you have a Population # increase of around 3% or higher, if so, you may need to build 1/1 then 2/1 then 1/1, etc. until you stretch your lead out. Either way, eventually your Industry per turn (with new bodies going into new Factories), will cause the number of turns for both new Farms and new Factories to decrease until you will be able to queue up "Upgrade Factory" (be SURE you have enough lead time planned for this, it may be prudent to build two farms in a row just before the Factory Upgrade).

Once you have level 2 Factories, you're in a much better building position and will almost certainly be able to continue on building 1 Farm/2 Factories until the population maxes out.

Like I said, it's not that complicated and costs you very few credits, the rest is just time, it works for me, so I hope it helps!

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Osk
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Post by Osk » Thu Jul 09, 2009 1:53 am

that is quite some micromanagement... i usually dont bother monitoring new colonies that close. I buy 1 factory and have 1 in queue, then enough farms to sustain half the population, then some more factories, then the rest of the farms for max pop, finishing with maximizing factory numbers as apprpriate. Only with the most rapid growing super colonies will you have spare population, but that will resolve itself in the end.

I focus on upgrading farm and factory, then energy depending on colony size: 100 to 150 = 5, 150 to 200 = 8, 200 to 250 = 10, more = 12

around this time i also start building research and intell, in various spreadings, but with a max as follows: max pop -1 (-2 or 3 for big colonies), minimum farm ever needed, -2 (or 3) for some energy. Then i divide it according to priority. I do not share the idea of only building intell untill research is done. Cardassian and Romulan intell will waltz right over your militairy, economic and science department if you do. Its useful to be able to put in some emergency intell points

i save credits for the later factory upgrades, or when i need big ships fast and to bribe minor races

this may not be the absolutely fastest way, but it is one without having to check on every planet every couple of turns

this is especially important if you set a timer to strategic and tactical turns

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WhiteCat
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Post by WhiteCat » Sun Jan 17, 2010 10:40 pm

I'm getting the sense that people prefer to build farms/factories/etc at the lower levels and upgrade them later, as opposed to upgrading first and then building better ones directly. What level is best (basic, level 1, level 2...)?

Also, what is the formula for the industry cost of each level of building, and the cost of each level of upgrade? Is the upgrade cost based on how many buildings you have, or how many are currently in use by your labour force?

(Edit: I'm referring to the "vanilla" game, if it matters.)

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Martok
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Post by Martok » Mon Jan 18, 2010 2:55 am

WhiteCat wrote:I'm getting the sense that people prefer to build farms/factories/etc at the lower levels and upgrade them later, as opposed to upgrading first and then building better ones directly. What level is best (basic, level 1, level 2...)?

Yes, it is generally faster and more economical to build a bunch of lower-level 1 structures and then upgrade them, as opposed to upgrading first and then building the higher-level structures.

With factories, intel structures, and research facilities (universities, research labs, etc.), I tend to build as many level-1 structures of those types as I feel I will need for a good while. Only then will I upgrade them.

With farms and power plants, however, you don't necessarily need to build as many level-1 structures before you upgrade. It all depends on what your food & energy needs are -- and just as importantly, what they will be in the future -- as well as how quickly you can upgrade them to the next level.


WhiteCat wrote:Also, what is the formula for the industry cost of each level of building, and the cost of each level of upgrade? Is the upgrade cost based on how many buildings you have, or how many are currently in use by your labour force?

I believe it's based on how many buildings you have. The number of buildings that are currently being used by your labor force is irrelevant to the upgrade cost (with the obvious exception of upgrading factories).
"Evil is easy, and has infinite forms." -- Pascal

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ketteringdave
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Post by ketteringdave » Mon Jan 18, 2010 4:32 am

WhiteCat wrote:Also, what is the formula for the industry cost of each level of building, and the cost of each level of upgrade? Is the upgrade cost based on how many buildings you have, or how many are currently in use by your labour force?
When upgrading buildings, you're just paying the difference in building cost. The upgrade cost is exactly the new industry cost per building minus the old cost, then multiplied by the total number of that building. So for example, if you had 8 factories, each with a cost of 250 points, and the next level is 320 points, then the upgrade cost will be 8*(320-250) = 560 industry.

If you could always set your industry output perfectly, so that no points were wasted on the final turn of construction, then there would be no difference between upgrading early or late (in total industry cost, at least).

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Post by Oskatat » Tue Jan 26, 2010 6:51 am

i'm Osk btw, i just forgot the pass, and appearantly gave an old, not used anymore mail adres for emergencies. seems i outsmarted myself.

anyway

its better to build lvl 1:

while you upgrade, any excessive workforce goes to waste
between upgrades, other structures will actually take longer

i guess its just a matter of personal preference. The only thing that maters to me is how to set the colony on a good course and not be bothered untill its worth it, especially in the later games when i have as many as 10 colonies developing, and other developed colonies calling for my attention too, plus 5 intelligence reports, 3 diplomatic and a battle

I think i also voiced this before, but small colonies should be more in the way of a defence location, not a full colony, unless it can be made that way in its free time. Large colonies tend to improve rather fast anyway. On that point i am going to disagree with my previous post and writing,
for large colonies, building a few factories and upgrading them with credits and then building more factories is preferable. Why? you'll build so many factories that upgrading becomes quite expensive, and the ability to improve production as soon as it is available holds some charm, as well as being able to redirect workforce as needed

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