17 Mar: Round 71 starts tonight, don't forget to join!
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This page is aimed at those who have little or no experience with Planetarion and its features. but it's recommended that you read material before the game starts, or in the very early stages.
Take a look at our Intro Video.
Rule the universe, Fight massive space battles, Make new friends
Are YOU up for the challenge ? Do YOU think you can do the following ?
Could you lead an alliance into battle?
Organize yourself and others to destroy a common enemy?
negotiate a peace treaty afterwards?
Can you handle the responsibility of a Planetarion planet?
Why play Planetarion
The basic idea behind Planetarion is to compete with many other players over 7 weeks of non-stop gaming to be the best. Activity, skill, dedication and team play are all huge factors, with an element of luck. Every person plays one planet, and with the help of his or her friends, alliance and galaxy plays to win, or to at least have fun. When you start with your planet, you create mines and initiate "asteroids" that are orbiting around your planet to gain resources. With these resources, you can construct 6 different classes of ship, two of which are capable of stealing asteroids from enemy planets, and one of which is capable of bombarding enemy planets to ruthlessly crush their structures to dirt. There's 5 races to choose from, with 11 or 12 unique ships in each race.
Each planet is judged by their "score" - a combination of your current planet net worth, and the experience you've gained in battle. The person with the highest score wins. Sounds simple? While you can attack hostile planets to steal their asteroids for your own personal gain, others can defend them. Sounding more complicated yet? People are grouped into galaxies and alliances, to attack and defend together. Or even just play with friends and meet new people as a small group of planets answerable to no one.
Seeing Planetarion is played by man and woman of all ages we even seen a few marriages happen.
How does Planetarion work?
As said before, every person has a planet. These planets are grouped into "galaxies". Planetarion is a turn-based game that anyone with a web browser can play. Each turn is called a "tick", and is 1 hour long in a normal round.
The standard procedure is for a round to be announced with 2-3 weeks until the turns (or "ticks") actually start. Signups are then opened on the main server, so that people can get their accounts, galaxies and alliances sorted out before the game begins. When the game begins everyone is in "protection mode" and so cannot attack each other. During the first 12 ticks (12 hours) of the game, people are placed in big galaxies with "mentors" incase people in the galaxy need help. At tick 12, people are broken up and placed randomly in lots of smaller galaxies. If you're free or paid you can placed randomly, but if you form or join a "buddy packs" with one or two friends you will be placed in the same galaxy.
Why be in the same galaxy?
The advantages of being in the same galaxy are that it's quicker to send your ships to defend each other, and you can see when another planet is being attacked.
Along with galaxies, your other main line of defense is alliances. Alliances are groups of people that agree to send each other ships when others are attacked, and attack together to make it more difficult for others to defend.
This is a space war game, so obviously combat is an important part. It includes how combat works, what ships to build, and basic strategies to winning. The person with the highest number of ships doesn't always win, as often bigger ships are more powerful and untouched by those smaller.
This page lets you research different things to help your planet.
The almost undisputed first choice is "Roid mining", so please click the START button next to "Heavy Cargo Tranfers I" research.
This technology branch allows you to mine more of the asteroids that you have collected around your planet. All of the more experienced players spend the startup bonus "initiating" (or creating) asteroids using the "Mining" screen, Most players start with "initiating" around 300 roids
The first things to research after "Heavy Cargo Tranfers I" are:
"Heavy Cargo Tranfers II" (The next research after "Heavy Cargo Tranfers I")
"Fighter Class Hulls" (If you're going to attack other people you need ships!)
"Frigate Class Hulls"
"Basic Infrastructure" (This doesn't look important, but when you realize you can't build any more constructions (see section below) you'll realize it is!)
"Advanced Core Extraction" (This gives you a bigger resource income apart from your asteroids)
This is the next page to visit. Arguably, the best construction to do first is the "Research lab". This increases your research speed by up to 20% and so is important. As you have to have at least 20% of your structures research labs to get the full bonus, constructing it first means that between constructing your first and your 6th structure you have the full 20% research bonus. If you build one every 5th structure, you can therefore get quite a bonus.
This leaves you 4 structures between the research labs (at least!). You need to make sure you have factories to build ships, but you only need 2 or 3 of each. Without ship factories and the correct research, you cannot build ships. For information on the other constructions, see the in game descriptions or the manual here.
IRC... Internet Relay Chat is probably *THE* most useful tool planetarion has at the moment. It is likely the one item who's presence will make or break your galaxy's effectiveness. It can act as a meeting place for your galaxy members, and it'll allow you to get to know them a bit, make some friends, and above all, it can greatly increase your chances of survival. Should you get incomings in your galaxy, IRC will allow you to organize some collective defense in order to save your poor, besieged planet! IRC is also probably the one thing above all others that will help you get into an alliance. Most people are quite fun to talk with, and you may learn some interesting tids and tidbits on how planetarion works, or better strategies for attacking that one mean person who keeps trying to steal your asteroids. IRC is quite the useful little program, as it allows you to meet other people... whether it be in your galaxy, in an alliance you wish to join, or if you're just looking for a bunch of really weird people who enjoy having fun!
Races in Planetarion
The Terran race is one which bases itself on brute force. Its main assets are its ability to construct new buildings rapidly, almost 50% quicker than the average, and its heavily armoured ships. On the other hand its ships normally fire later than all the other races so if you're a Terran you are going to take some losses in battle. They also have a moderate bonus on salvage from ships destroyed in combat. While a Terran may come under attack often in the early part of the round they normally become extremely powerful defensively by the end.
Cathaar is the most advanced of all the races. Technologically its research times are superior to all the other races and its ships always fire first in combat. A Cathaar planet's main problem is the fact that they only EMP or "freeze" enemy ships, preventing them from firing but not destroying them during the battle. Due to this Cathaar planets frequently come under attack but they are also capable of attacking much bigger planets for no losses, as EMP is very efficient. "Caths" can also build a small number of weaker than average "kill-ships", get a large salvage bonus on ships destroyed in combat and have slightly slower construction times than the other races. If you love attacking Cathaar just might be the race for you.
The Xandathrii race possesses two attributes, both unique and both rather lethal. The first of these is its development of cloaking technology, which mean all of its non-astropod ships only show up on the most advanced scans, in turn making it difficult to discover a "Xan's" exact fleet location. Secondly a Xan possesses early firing ships, many of which are the first "kill-ships" to fire in any battle. The price to pay for these advantages is that a Xan planet is slower at researching new technologies. However with the many attacking and defensive options Xans can have they are often a popular choice and you can become a very valuable player for your galaxy and alliance.
Zikonians are a race built on the backs of others. Operating with only average research time for new technologies and building time for new constructions Ziks, in exchange, have perhaps the most unique feature in the game. During combat many of their ships are capable of stealing enemy ships, albeit only after they have fired, and then assimilating them into the Zik's own fleet after the battle. Because of this a Zikonian can develop very unusual and highly effective fleet combinations. Ziks also have a few normal "kill-ships" and are one of the more effective races at carrying out covert operations on other planets. Not the easiest race to get used to but they can be the most rewarding.
The Eitraides race are the traders of the universe. Thanks to this position they are capable of building EMP, cloaked and steal ships, as well as conventional ones, borrowing from all the other races in the universe. Often because of this their ships are not as effective as those belonging to the race which created the technology involved originally. However they have other advantages as well, notably a faster than average building time for new constructions and a reduced loss when converting one resource into another. Along with Zikonians "Etds" are one of the most capable races at covert operations against other planets. With their highly varied ship types this race has something for everyone.
For more information visit the manual pages
Special thanks to JBG, Appocomaster and Monroe for the help
Last updated: Wednesday 17th March 2010