### Colony and fleet influence upkeep mechanics [RFC]

Posted:

**Mon Sep 23, 2019 1:18 am**Proposal for colony and fleet influence upkeep mechanics.

Stemming from this thread on Influence.

Colonies focused on influence produce it. Nothing else (a priori).

Techs, buildings and policies may increase de influence production (pop-based) or reduce the influence upkeep of certain assets.

At any time in the game evolution, an empire will produce IPs each turn as per this equation:

IP per turn = P*B + S

where

P is the total population of the colonies set to influence focus;

B is the total pop-based bonus, being it the sum of the species influence bonus plus any other from techs, buildings, policies or specials; and

S is the Imperial Palace flat bonus.

This is a blatant simplification of what should be the real formula, the summation for each influence colony of its local population multiplied per its local influence bonus (that might be different for each colony depending on species, happiness, supply connection, etc.). But it serves a purpose for estimation of parameters in this proposal.

Influence upkeep serves as the break for steamrolling/exponential growth.

The more colonies/ships you have, the more influence you need to pay for each asset.

It is my preconception that the increase of influence upkeep per ship/colony should grow to a maximum that, at end game (full tech tree researched) an empire that has colonised all planets in the galaxy must have all colonies set to influence and only has spare influence to pay for fleet upkeep worth a small percentage (X) of the total colony influence upkeep. It could be something like this:

Total colony upkeep per turn COL_UPK = C*(MIN+(MAX-MIN)*(C/G))

where

C is the number of colonies of the empire.

G is the total number of planets, asteroid belts and GGs in the galaxy.

MIN is the minimum influence upkeep of a colony, including homeworld. It might be zero (so that homeworld alone would not require any influence upkeep).

MAX is the maximum influence upkeep of a colony, when the empire owns all colonies. At that point, total colony upkeep paid by the empire would be G*MAX.

Similarly, for fleet upkeep, we get:

Total fleet upkeep per turn FLT_UPK = FLEET_PPS*(FMIN+(FMAX-FMIN)*(C/G))

where FLEET_PPS is the total number of PP cost of the imperial fleet, and FMIN/FMAX are minimum/maximum influence upkeep per ship PP.

Getting back to the "preconception", if we put together the equation of empire's IP production (for all galaxy colonies set to influence) and the one for end-game colony upkeep, we get

(1-X)(P*B+S) = G*MAX

We also have that P = G*PMAX, where PMAX is average end-game population per planet (say 50).

If we assume that end-game B for average species is 1.0 (let's call it BMAX), X is 0.1, and we neglect S, we get 0.9*50*G*1.0 = G*MAX, so MAX = 45. Or more exactly:

MAX = (1-X)*PMAX*BMAX

The proposed increase of colony upkeep, linear to the number of colonies, could be changed by something more sofisticated (exponential, sine wave, etc.) if balance needs it. But the idea of linking MAX to maximum number of colonies in the galaxy seems solid. This way it could work for 50-system galaxies the same that for 5000-system galaxies. However, number of systems per empire could be necessary somewhere in the equation to allow for faster expansion early game when there are fewer players, if this is deemed necessary.

At the beginning of the game, the S shall provide for all the influence an empire may need to keep initial gameplay the same we have now (i.e. no need to focus your HW to influence to get your first ships and colonies).

Only after growing enough your fleet or acquiring enough colonies (or a mix) you will need extra influence and have to set some colonies to influence and/or research/build/apply specific techs/buildings/policies (either way reducing your expansion velocity).

The actual value of MAX shall depend on PMAX and BMAX(*), that in turn depends on the species traits and tech tree. That is, if you know your tech tree, you can set MAX. One could do the reversed analysis, fix maximum colony upkeep, assume PMAX and deduce BMAX, but this way seems easier: you can tailor tech tree and species to ensure BMAX is 1.0, and the same for PMAX.

Next stop is to find a proper ratio between MAX and FMAX (colonies and ships upkeep costs). Something like "an end-game colony upkeep costs as much as 10 robo hulls with end-game gear". Assuming PMAX=50 and BMAX=1.0, average end-game IP production would be 50, and so these end-game robos would cost 5 IPs per turn each. That would mean, assuming X=0.1 and that such ships costs 100 PPs, that FMAX would be 5/100=0.05 IPs/PP. Also, that this end-game empire could maintain a fleet of G such ships (one per colony), 100 small/medium ships for 100 colonies. If that is too small (looks like it is), we reduce FMAX (0.005 instead of 0.05 to have something like 1 titan or 10 robos per colony)

Comments?

Stemming from this thread on Influence.

Colonies focused on influence produce it. Nothing else (a priori).

Techs, buildings and policies may increase de influence production (pop-based) or reduce the influence upkeep of certain assets.

At any time in the game evolution, an empire will produce IPs each turn as per this equation:

IP per turn = P*B + S

where

P is the total population of the colonies set to influence focus;

B is the total pop-based bonus, being it the sum of the species influence bonus plus any other from techs, buildings, policies or specials; and

S is the Imperial Palace flat bonus.

This is a blatant simplification of what should be the real formula, the summation for each influence colony of its local population multiplied per its local influence bonus (that might be different for each colony depending on species, happiness, supply connection, etc.). But it serves a purpose for estimation of parameters in this proposal.

Influence upkeep serves as the break for steamrolling/exponential growth.

The more colonies/ships you have, the more influence you need to pay for each asset.

It is my preconception that the increase of influence upkeep per ship/colony should grow to a maximum that, at end game (full tech tree researched) an empire that has colonised all planets in the galaxy must have all colonies set to influence and only has spare influence to pay for fleet upkeep worth a small percentage (X) of the total colony influence upkeep. It could be something like this:

Total colony upkeep per turn COL_UPK = C*(MIN+(MAX-MIN)*(C/G))

where

C is the number of colonies of the empire.

G is the total number of planets, asteroid belts and GGs in the galaxy.

MIN is the minimum influence upkeep of a colony, including homeworld. It might be zero (so that homeworld alone would not require any influence upkeep).

MAX is the maximum influence upkeep of a colony, when the empire owns all colonies. At that point, total colony upkeep paid by the empire would be G*MAX.

Similarly, for fleet upkeep, we get:

Total fleet upkeep per turn FLT_UPK = FLEET_PPS*(FMIN+(FMAX-FMIN)*(C/G))

where FLEET_PPS is the total number of PP cost of the imperial fleet, and FMIN/FMAX are minimum/maximum influence upkeep per ship PP.

Getting back to the "preconception", if we put together the equation of empire's IP production (for all galaxy colonies set to influence) and the one for end-game colony upkeep, we get

(1-X)(P*B+S) = G*MAX

We also have that P = G*PMAX, where PMAX is average end-game population per planet (say 50).

If we assume that end-game B for average species is 1.0 (let's call it BMAX), X is 0.1, and we neglect S, we get 0.9*50*G*1.0 = G*MAX, so MAX = 45. Or more exactly:

MAX = (1-X)*PMAX*BMAX

The proposed increase of colony upkeep, linear to the number of colonies, could be changed by something more sofisticated (exponential, sine wave, etc.) if balance needs it. But the idea of linking MAX to maximum number of colonies in the galaxy seems solid. This way it could work for 50-system galaxies the same that for 5000-system galaxies. However, number of systems per empire could be necessary somewhere in the equation to allow for faster expansion early game when there are fewer players, if this is deemed necessary.

At the beginning of the game, the S shall provide for all the influence an empire may need to keep initial gameplay the same we have now (i.e. no need to focus your HW to influence to get your first ships and colonies).

Only after growing enough your fleet or acquiring enough colonies (or a mix) you will need extra influence and have to set some colonies to influence and/or research/build/apply specific techs/buildings/policies (either way reducing your expansion velocity).

The actual value of MAX shall depend on PMAX and BMAX(*), that in turn depends on the species traits and tech tree. That is, if you know your tech tree, you can set MAX. One could do the reversed analysis, fix maximum colony upkeep, assume PMAX and deduce BMAX, but this way seems easier: you can tailor tech tree and species to ensure BMAX is 1.0, and the same for PMAX.

Next stop is to find a proper ratio between MAX and FMAX (colonies and ships upkeep costs). Something like "an end-game colony upkeep costs as much as 10 robo hulls with end-game gear". Assuming PMAX=50 and BMAX=1.0, average end-game IP production would be 50, and so these end-game robos would cost 5 IPs per turn each. That would mean, assuming X=0.1 and that such ships costs 100 PPs, that FMAX would be 5/100=0.05 IPs/PP. Also, that this end-game empire could maintain a fleet of G such ships (one per colony), 100 small/medium ships for 100 colonies. If that is too small (looks like it is), we reduce FMAX (0.005 instead of 0.05 to have something like 1 titan or 10 robos per colony)

Comments?