Sins of a Solar Blogger

Sorry for the lack of screenshots with this, I wasn't thinking of doing this while I was playing the game.

Anyways, what I'm going to do is write a an overview of a scenario I'm currently playing in SoaSE. To start off with, I used a Large Random Map, it contained 3 star systems, I missed the planet total, sorry. 8 players, myself and seven default normal level bots. I was Advent, my favorites, they tend to do less damage, but have a vast selection of support abilities. I've found they work best if you shy away from using masses of the same ship, and instead use well balanced groups focusing on carriers and light carriers.

First thing I did once getting in game was zooming out and getting a feel for the map. I was on the far left, of the furthest right of the three systems. The systems were in a relatively straight line, and I would later find out that we were seperated into four players per system with the furthest left being completely empty. I had two scouts and five light frigates under construction immediately, on the building side I just began on some planetary upgrades and a military research station.

While my early attack fleet was building, my scouts revealed that I had asteroid belts to the north, two, and east, one, of me, two volcanics to the south, and north past the asteroid belts were two Terra worlds. Asteroid belts are always protected by one light frigate and one planetary bomber, volcanic worlds are protected by an small assortment of light and medium frigates and aren't colonizable until I research something only available with two civilian research staions. Terra worlds are tempting, but are protected by a pair of heavy cruisers, big hitters, and about twice as many light/medium frigates as the volcanic worlds. My first goal then is to take the asteroids belts so that I can get resources rolling in to build my capital ship yard, which comes with a free capital ship.

As an aside, A capital ship has roughly three times the hp, shields and firepower as a heavy cruiser at first level with no upgrades.

My five light frigates moved to the Eastern asteroid belt and handily dealt with the frigates there in about the time it took me to build a colony frigate. A colony frigate can take a long time to colonize a place since it uses up all its energy, Antimatter in the game, jumping and needs to recharge before it can colonize. In the time it took to recharge I had finished saving up the cash for a capital ship yard. I like to take a mothership for my first ship since it can colonize, my first point goes into an ability called malice though. Malice attaches a psychic connection between enemies ship within a certain range, so any damage dealt to one carries over to some extent to all the other connected ships.

This small fleet easily tears through the nothern asteroid belt, but doesn't quite level up the capital ship. I start building some more light frigates and send the missionary ship to colonize the belt I just cleared, my mothership fleet continues on to the next belt.

On a strategy note, I'm noticing that I'm not taking any systems with more than one crystal asteroid, the market price of crystal over the next hour or so skyrocket from 400 to 1000 credits. It's a major factor in the game when one of the resources grows too expensive, there are a lot of times when you need a timely upgrade or extra ship and are missing more minerals than you can mine in the next ten seconds. It also means that if you wind up taking worlds rich in that mineral you can easily play off that to fix mineral and credit shortages on the fly.

After taking all the belts I immediately turned to the Terra planets. I lost all five frigates pretty quickly, but luckily a replacement fleet of three light frigates arrived in time to take out the last of the protectors. My cap ship made it out with only 1/3 hull, but I wasn't in any hurry to go after the next Terra planet without picking up some more frigates. I'd built three more research stations by now, two civilian and one military, so I could research volcanic planet colonization. My fleet turned around and headed south to pick up those, my colony ship got to head one more system east into a plasma cloud to pick up a metal extractor, but the next system east of that was the Pirate base so I did so cautiously.

Back on the strategy face, I had sent a red TEC player a couple hundred metal as part of a diplomatic mission. I had no idea at the time where that was going to lead me. It would eventually get me the trade deal that would prove the most lucrative across the length of the game so far, and place me in a diplomatic mire of epic proportions.

After taking the two volcanic worlds I felt I had the firepower to take on the last Terra world, and sent my fleet. To make a short story shorter, it fell easily. What was more important was that Red sent me another diplomatic mission, destroy some of oranges civilian structures. I backed out and surveyed my system now that my scouts had discovered the majority of it. Red was to my North, Orange was a TEC player to my South and Light Green was an Asari player on the far East. I failed the mission, but still managed to get a trade treaty with Red. I then built a Battlecruiser, capable of learning vengeance, which causes damage to any ships attacking it, concentration, which increases the attack of friendly ships in range, and vertigo, which just generally decreases incoming damage. With a bit of building and research and I had a medium frigate ready to go and was feeling good to head South and take on Orange. Red and Green had both sent me new diplomatic missions to destroy Orange's ships, and Orange was starting to move light frigates and a battle ship around my volcanic worlds somewhat listlessly.

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