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Old 02-25-2012, 07:25 PM   #1
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This seems like it should be obvious, maybe I'm just a bit stupid, but I'm having problems with fuel in this game. I really want to get into it but all my ships keep running out of fuel and dying, and if i send tankers along with them the tankers give away all their fuel then die..

Planets (spaceports I think?) generate a small amount of fuel, but no-where near enough to supply a fleet so all the ships in my fleet are constantly rushing back and forth to planets to get miserable little drops of fuel and eventually running out and dropping dead

How does one keep ones ships in fuel? What are the different ways of generating it?

Thanks very much for any help.
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Old 02-26-2012, 03:03 PM   #2
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Personally I would either not worry about fuel (use bussard ram jets as engines and solar power) or not worry about fuel (use thrusters/ion thrusters (when available and fusion generators or antimatter generators), and have enough fuel storage that by the time fuel runs out the vehicle is obsolete anyway).

To generate fuel, there are 2 components: Bussard ram scoop and the matter generator (ridiculous tech level requirement). By the time the matter generator would become relevant for non-combat ships, the bussard ram scoop will generate sufficient fuel that it is more cost and ship space effective to use ram scoops. The matter generator may then only be useful for reloading combat ships - if you use energy weapons it may as well not exist.

As you increase the scale on ships the bussard ram scoop will become significantly more effective - it may be worthwhile to use them with antimatter generators and ion thrusters to produce designs that don't need refuelling if you are so inclined in the late game environment.
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Old 02-27-2012, 02:30 AM   #3
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Hmm ok, thanks for the tips. I'll try out ramjets and solar power! I was put off ramjets by the miserable acceleration.

So would you say the standard designs you start with are rubbish then?
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Old 02-27-2012, 11:57 AM   #4
Firgof Umbra
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How does one keep ones ships in fuel? What are the different ways of generating it?
Just slap a Fuel Depot on any planet you'd like to serve as a fuel dump and lead your ships to systems which have those fuel dumps in them so that they can refuel.

All fuel is made from Food but it's normally in small enough quantities that it shouldn't matter to the population of the planet.
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Old 02-28-2012, 01:53 AM   #5
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Oh right. Thought there must be something like that.. do you have to research it?
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Old 02-28-2012, 03:38 AM   #6
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Have to research chemistry to access the fuel depot, something you will likely want to research at some point anyway for the chemical bomb - but it does have the downside that it will take up a planetary slot, which could be used for more economy (metals, electronics, advanced parts, or star ports, farms, luxury and general goods), research.

Researching other technology lines is expensive right at the start, as the cost of researching them is about the same as level 5 in a relevant field, researching the technology they are linked from can unlock some of them as early as level 3-6 based on random chance, but even if it doesn't it will reduce the cost of the research by a significant percent.

I would say that the standard civilian designs are a bit naff, but that the military designs are about right for what is available. Some changes you could make to the designs:

Scout: Reduce scale to 0.00011 (essentially the minimum scale permitted by the game) to reduce costs with little impact on the ships functions, remove all components and just add ramjets to fill the ships capacity. It should end up moving about as fast and have an indefinite duration, whilst also being cheaper than the original scout.

Hauler: Reduce scale to 1, replace hull with fighter hull, remove all components except cargo holds and replace engines with ramjets. Now the ship will have infinite duration and can be used before star ports can move enough resources from your homeworld to stop wasted resources, but at the same time not cause your economy to crash (balancing act of developing your first off world colony against starting a second, etc). Once the game has developed, you can replace the fighter hull with a light hull and scale up as required.

Tanker: Remove all components except ramscoops, ramjets, and fuel storage. Still probably won't use these designs though.

Drydock: Remove all components except cargo bays and 1 or 2 construction bays. Reduce scale to 5 initially, can upscale as technology and economy allow.

Colony ships: This is perhaps the most contended ship design because simply it has pros and cons (and seemingly plain exploits). Personally I like to design the colony ship so that:
Reduce scale to just over 6 (I think it works out as 6.07).
Replace the 1 colony module with 2 scaled to 0.25 so that the colony ship can make 2 structures.
Replace the single life support module with lots of scale 0.25 life support modules until you have the earliest slight excess of life support.
Replace the power plant with a scale 1 solar power plant.
Add a scale 0.25 capacitor.
Remove the engine and fuel cell. Replace with a scale 4 bussard ramjet. All together this will allow you to remove the bridge and crew quarters. This should leave the ship filled to capacity with a red figure for the net power generation. As long as the solar power plant makes enough power to power more than 1/10th of the number of life support systems you will be fine.
This design is significantly cheaper than the starting colony ship design - but slower also. The benefit is however that by spending about half as many advanced parts you can build 2 science labs, a shipyard, a dry dock, then replace the 2 shipyards on your home world for 2 more science labs, research general science from the start, and be able to put out 1 colony ship about the time you finish researching general science - so you can almost instantly renovate the science labs and have maybe twice the research of your competitors, whilst researching a level of metallurgy to help catch up potentially with economy. When the colony ship lands, get it to put up a city, electronics fab, advanced parts fab, then metal mine and it can be left to its own devices (I like the balanced governor, it will build farms so blockades don't kill your population, it gives a respectable balance of metal/electronics/advanced parts (given that each later uses each former and the relative costs spent from each on ships/structures) and will later allow you to spread construction everywhere, without needing to micromanage the economy that early metal/electronic/advanced parts worlds might cause.)
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Old 02-29-2012, 12:45 AM   #7
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Wow, great info bravomjra, thanks! Looking foward to playing around with designs this weekend now.
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Old 02-29-2012, 06:19 PM   #8
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I accompany large fleets with 2-3 tanks, or even 1 large one.
Combat fleets I use more. The AI doesnt seem to preferentially target them, and tbh its rather easy. Even on the hardest. Only hard bit is there seems to be no limit on how many things the AI can control at once, so if you play fast.... then... yeah...

You can support entire systems with this, its great to use.
Know those asteroids? You can send 2-3 of these with them and you have endless supplies, if you have a metal processing factory in the ships.

I make them have endless fuel supplies, i.e. they regen more than they use by:
  • Once you've unlocked them put solar pannels on your tankers,
  • Use a solitary Bussard Ramjet, scale to the size thats needed to keep up with the fleet.
  • Jack the ships full of Bussard Ram Scoops
  • Add a small capacitor
  • Rest of the space should be taken up with fuel cells.

Additionally put a few research points into particle physics and energy sciences.
You can do this from the 1st minute, and it negates the need for putting a fuel dump on a planet.
Why's that good? Doesnt waste a building spot! Hurray!
Make sure on the template for this you put auto-upgrade for the AI rules.

Last edited by GrandmasterYoda: 02-29-2012 at 06:22 PM.
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Old 03-21-2012, 04:18 AM   #9
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In ship design its important to have redunant systems and excess in all fields, ie flight time, control, power, ect. This can remove hard counters from most of your ships, and provide you with a strong early game and mid game.
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