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"Not habitable", my foot! Sun, 26 May 2019 11:51 Go to previous message
magic9mushroom is currently offline magic9mushroom


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Registered: May 2008
Today I did some number-crunching regarding the colonisation of planets that Stars! calls "not habitable" and the player community mostly calls "red". And because I rarely get sick of the sound of my own voice (own typing? Laughing ), I decided to share it.

First, some basic refreshers on how reds and maintaining reds work:

- Reds have negative percentage values equal to the number of clicks they are outside your habitability range. Thus, they range from -1% to -45% (though the latter is rarely seen, as the race must not have any immunities and must also have fairly-narrow hab).
- Reds kill (red%/10)% of the population on them per turn, regardless of how much population is on them. This therefore ranges between 0.1% and 4.5% killed per turn.
- Reds function as 5% worlds for the purposes of population cap. So, for an average OBRM race (not JoAT, HE or AR), 55,000 population can operate installations and produce resources at full efficiency, and a further 110,000 can produce resources at half efficiency but not operate installations.
- The exception to this is AR, since AR have population caps determined by starbase hull and resource efficiency determined by habitability. AR treat reds as 25% worlds for the purposes of resource generation.
- To maintain a red, you need to have some source of population growth (usually a green planet) constantly supply population to replace the die-off. Since planets don't produce population when they're fully loaded, this means you'll have to sacrifice some production on the world you're using to grow pop in order to maintain the population and production on the reds.
- The most efficient places to grow population for non-AR, non-IS races are very-high-value greens, as the population produced at a given %hold varies with the square of hab (due to both growth rate and cap being set by hab) while resources sacrificed only vary linearly with hab.
- AR, however, grow pop equally-efficiently on any green over 25%, as hab does not affect their population caps. Obviously, they will grow less pop on lower-value worlds, but they will also sacrifice fewer resources. The reason I specify "over 25%" is because the AR resource formula bottoms out at 25% hab, so lower-value worlds will sacrifice the same amount of resources as a 25% planet while still growing fewer pop.
- IS, of course, do not need to sacrifice production at all to maintain reds, as they can simply park a freighter in orbit to overflow pop to the red. This also negates most of the micromanagement involved, so using reds is standard practice for IS. As such, I won't be speaking about whether IS should use reds - we all know the answer.
- The optimal hold for a breeder generating population to maintain a red is the hold% that maximises (growth)/(lost resources), because growth directly determines how many reds the breeder can maintain. This is at 50% for non-AR and 54.8% for AR. Of course, some adjustment will be necessary in order to compensate for the non-continuous popgrowth formula and the integer number of reds available for colonisation.

Case 1: standard race

For our first case study, we'll be examining the question for a fairly standard OBRM HG race with 19% growth, 1/1000 pop efficiency and 11/9/15 factories. Growth does matter to the efficiency of colonising reds (as it affects pop growth on greens, but not red dieoff), but for the first part of this the factory settings don't; they're just to give some more concrete numbers.

Let's first look at the case of a 100% world supplying -15% reds populated to 100%. This is one of the more favourable cases.

A fully-loaded 100% world with its full 1650 factories built produces 2915 resources. To turn the world into a supplier for reds, as noted above, we drop it down to 50% hold (550,000), reducing the resources produced to 1458 (1457.5 rounds up) and sacrificing 1457. At 50% hold, the world will grow 16/9 * 1 * 0.19 * (1 - 0.5)^2 * 550,000 = 46,444 population per turn (call it 46,400). -15% reds at 100% capacity (55,000) kill 0.015 * 55,

[Updated on: Sun, 26 May 2019 22:39]

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