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Player Questions for the Far Horizons Game Moderator - GrimFinger - 03-26-2011

Q. When doing research, if I spend points on a given area of research, and my tech level in that area of research does not increase in the next turn, do those points that I spent matter, anymore, or does the program only consider what you are spending for research in a given area for the turn in question?

Q. At game start, how many points would you recommend that players spend to research a single area of research?

Q. How many points would you consider to be excessive or unwise for a player to devote to a particular area of research at game start?


RE: Player Questions for the Far Horizons Game Moderator - paway - 03-26-2011

Most of this information can be deduced from "How Research Works" in the "Getting Started" section of the moderator's website:

http://fh.binaryelysium.com/How_Research_Works

This is only my first game of Far Horizons, but I'm guessing that there is no upper limit to how much you should spend on research, as long as you have enough resources to do other necessary things, such as building scouts, building planetary defenses, etc. Since Research is most effective at lower tech levels, it would make sense that the best value for your Research dollar is at the beginning of the game, when your tech levels are relatively low.


RE: Player Questions for the Far Horizons Game Moderator - GrimFinger - 03-26-2011

I looked at it, but I don't deduce answers from it.


RE: Player Questions for the Far Horizons Game Moderator - paway - 03-26-2011

My best answers to your questions from reading the Game Manual, Getting Started, and Strategy Guide, and playing a few turns of this game:

In short, the program does not "remember" what you spent on research on the previous turn. The only way those points have an affect on your future research is either by increasing the tech level (which makes it harder to do future research) or with the leftover points in the research bucket which will carry over to future turns. If you have Mining at 10 and you spend 35 points to Research MI, it will spend 10 points to have a 1 in 10 chance of improving Mining, if that fails, it will spend another 10 points to have a 1 in 10 chance of improving Mining, if that fails, it will spend another 10 points to have a 1 in 10 chance of improving Mining, and the remaining 5 points in the research bucket will be carried over to the next turn. If any of those attempts are successful at improving Mining, that tech level increases to 11, and successive attempts now take 11 points from the bucket and have a 1 in 11 chance of working.

As you can see, it is much easier to research lower tech levels than higher tech levels. This leads one to believe that you get better value for your Research points at the beginning of the game when tech levels are low. With or without Research, there is also a flat 1 in 6 chance of improving any given tech at the end of a turn. Basic strategy would seem to dictate spending as many points as you can afford on early research and then your future 1 in 6 tech increases are now "more valuable" as its better to randomly get an increase from 14 to 15, than from 4 to 5.

Following the advice of the Hints for Beginners section and the Strategy Guide, your top priorities should be to build a 2nd shipyard using the SHIPYARD command (which costs 10 x Manufacturing tech level, so its best done earlier than later), build TR1 ships to jump to nearby systems and scan them for habitable planets, and devote a small amount each turn to Planetary Defense. I would imagine that all remaining points would be well-spent on Research.

Once you have found a habitable planet to colonize, your priorities will likely shift to building larger transports, colonist units, colonial manufacturing units, and colonial mining units, and research may fall largely by the wayside for the time being.


RE: Player Questions for the Far Horizons Game Moderator - ixnay - 03-26-2011

Good write-up, Paway. I would add that (according to my reading of the manual and the player aids on the site), there is an upper limit on what it costs to move to the next level. If you pay that much, you automatically advance. There is a spreadsheet available for download that has many player aids on it, and one of the tabs on that spreadsheet shows you the basic cost to have a reasonable chance of success at advancing from any given tech level to any other tech level. Quite useful.

I myself plan to bring up a number of my lowest techs early, since they are so cheap.


RE: Player Questions for the Far Horizons Game Moderator - Ramblurr - 03-27-2011

paway already gave a good explanation, but I'll try and answer each one succinctly.

I'm assuming here by points you are referring to RMs or Economic Units, and not the points you spend before gamestart, creating your species. If it is the latter, do tell Smile

(03-26-2011, 12:37 PM)GrimFinger Wrote: Q. When doing research, if I spend points on a given area of research, and my tech level in that area of research does not increase in the next turn, do those points that I spent matter, anymore, or does the program only consider what you are spending for research in a given area for the turn in question?

In short, no.

When you spend resources on research, they are all used up that turn for the research, if, of course, the amount of resources you spend is a multiple of your current level. If not, then it would be left over. To maximize your potential gains from research each, you want to spend resources in multiples of the current tech level you're researching.

E.g., if your current MI level is 11, then you want to spend 11, 22, 33, 44, 55, ...

If you spend 12 on MI, then the research process would take 11 and one would be left over.

(How's that for succinct?)
(03-26-2011, 12:37 PM)GrimFinger Wrote: Q. At game start, how many points would you recommend that players spend to research a single area of research?
Again, assuming you're not talking about creating your species:

This is a complicated question, because there are many playing styles, and strategies, not to mention RP possibilities.

Research is cheaper at lower levels, so, I would put quite a bit into research in the beginning, while scouting nearby systems for a habitable colony and building up PDs on my homeworld. But that is just my thoughts, as I said there are many different strategies and RP possibilities.

(03-26-2011, 12:37 PM)GrimFinger Wrote: Q. How many points would you consider to be excessive or unwise for a player to devote to a particular area of research at game start?

See above answer.

It depends on what you're researching. Having super high LS means you'll be able to colonize anything, but you'll have low MI and MA, which means you can't produce enough to make those colonizations happen.

In general though, if unsure of what to do researching or building PDs is always a good idea in the beginning of the game.




RE: Player Questions for the Far Horizons Game Moderator - GrimFinger - 03-27-2011

Q. When scouting nearby systems for a habitable colony, should a player who is new to the game use a starship which is empty, or should they use a transport loaded with colonist units (CU), mining units (IU), and manufacturing units (AU)?


RE: Player Questions for the Far Horizons Game Moderator - paway - 03-27-2011

Q. Can you Build a ship and then use the Develop command with that ship on the same turn? For instance, will it work correctly if I issue:

START PRE-DEPARTURE
Name 1 2 3 4 PL Colony
END

START PRODUCTION
PRODUCTION PL Homeworld
Build TR5 Colonizer
Develop PL Colony, TR5 Colonizer
END

I'm operating under the assumption that this will work (that things are processed in order, rather than all at once).


RE: Player Questions for the Far Horizons Game Moderator - paway - 03-28-2011

Q. My understanding was that CU (Colonist Units), IU (Colonial Mining Units), and AU (Colonial Manufacturing Unit) each take up 1 cargo space. So if I built a TR5, which has a cargo capacity of 60, I can only put, say, 30 CU, 15 IU, and 15 AU on board.

I question this belief, because the Game Manual routinely seems to break this rule. From section 6.2 TRANSFER ORDERS:

"START PRODUCTION
PRODUCTION PL Earth
; Enter your production orders for planet Earth here.
; Build 120 colonist units and transfer them to a transport.
Build 120 CU TR6 Belly Laugh"

It shows the loading of 120 colonist units onto a Transport that has a carrying capacity of 78.

In section 7.3 STARTING THE COLONY:

"START PRE-DEPARTURE
; Place pre-departure orders here.
Name 13 24 7 3 PL Dickory Dock
Tra 50 cu TR5 No-one Here, PL Dickory Dock
Tra 22 iu TR5 No-one Here, PL Dickory Dock
Tra 28 au TR5 No-one Here, PL Dickory Dock
Inst 22 iu PL Dickory Dock ; Mining base will be 2.2
INst 28 au PL Dickory Dock ; Manufacturing base will be 2.8
END"

It shows unloading 100 total units (50 CU, 22 IU, and 28 AU) from a TR5, which can only hold 60 units.

Am I incorrect about how much stuff I can fit on a TRx or is the Game Manual cheating when it issues these commands?


RE: Player Questions for the Far Horizons Game Moderator - prozenfeld - 03-28-2011

(03-27-2011, 11:40 PM)paway Wrote: Q. Can you Build a ship and then use the Develop command with that ship on the same turn? For instance, will it work correctly if I issue:

START PRE-DEPARTURE
Name 1 2 3 4 PL Colony
END

START PRODUCTION
PRODUCTION PL Homeworld
Build TR5 Colonizer
Develop PL Colony, TR5 Colonizer
END

I'm operating under the assumption that this will work (that things are processed in order, rather than all at once).

YES, your assumptions are correct.


(03-28-2011, 01:31 AM)paway Wrote: Q. My understanding was that CU (Colonist Units), IU (Colonial Mining Units), and AU (Colonial Manufacturing Unit) each take up 1 cargo space. So if I built a TR5, which has a cargo capacity of 60, I can only put, say, 30 CU, 15 IU, and 15 AU on board.

...

Am I incorrect about how much stuff I can fit on a TRx or is the Game Manual cheating when it issues these commands?

Your understanding is correct, each of these takes 1 cargo space. It seems that Game Manual and examples are not checking that while illustrating other topics.