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Gaian opening on Transcend(standard map this time)

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  • Gaian opening on Transcend(standard map this time)

    Good day, let me just say I've been a long time lurker but will be posting for the first time.
    These forums helped my game to improve immensly.
    But without further a do..

    I'm playing Gaian's on Transcend, the map is random standard planet(6 bases b4 drones) and one final touch I always play with is Tech stagnation.

    I'm playing the standard beeline to IA then Fusion power then full specialist bases and then I beeline to Secrets of AC for the transcendii. While I don't have any trouble beating the game, I need to dramatically improve my first 100 turns(tech stag)

    However my opening is kind of weak. I usually hit the first road block when I build my first 6 bases. By then I start making formers everywhere, followed by scout patrols at every base cuz of the size 2 drone issue. IA is still nowhere in sight and accordingly neither is WP project.

    So I often find myself really struggling on what should I build next after I build my scout and 2 formers at every base. More pods would spawn beauro. drones, rec commons are only available if I'm lucky enough to trade the tech for them, most of the time I'm not, and deviating from the beeline with Tech Stag on, prolongs getting IA even further..

    So I often find myself starting SPs at every base so I can turn in the acquired mins for crawlers once they're available but more often then not, there are a lot of unneccessary turns of SP building before IA is finally researched.

    So if any experienced players have any tips they'd be greatly appreciated. Something like Googlie's early game tips but sadly he wrote those only about FM able factions, think he wrote them for Morgan, UoP and PK.
    Last edited by Jamess14; November 6, 2011, 18:09.

  • #2
    Howdy Jamess14 and welcome to (posting on) Apolyton!

    First comment: Since the Gaians have +2 EFFIC, their b-drone limit on a standard size map is 9, not 6 (unless you're running Police State or Planned). Does that help? Also, I wouldn't worry too much about having b-drones in the early game. Just convert drones to doctors. Eventually you'll be able to increase your efficiency rating by running Demo and/or Green and that (plus possibly Rec Commons, Human Genome and Virtual World), should take care of the b-drones. You really want to build as many bases as possible. Of course, warmongers will find other ways to acquire bases!

    It sounds like you finish your initial expansion before building any Formers. I prefer to make a Former my first build in each base (rushing when possible).

    Another point: You don't have to get crawlers before building Secret Projects. Look for a rocky tile in a base radius that has a mineral special. Mine and road that tile for seven minerals. That, plus say a forested tile (+2 mins) and your base square (+2 mins) will produce 11 mins/turn (minus any support costs). That will allow you to build SPs fairly quickly. Another technique that I use pre-crawlers is to have other bases build units and then disband them in a base that's building a SP. You only get half the mineral cost, but it's better than nothing. Probe units work well for this strategy since they have two movement points (get to the SP base quicker) and are "clean," so they don't use minerals for support while they are in transit.

    One other comment: I haven't played the Gaians recently. Can they beeline to Ind Auto (via, Ind Base, Ind Econ, Info Nets and Plan Nets) without having to choose one or more off-beeline techs? If not, then you might have a chance to go for one or more of the techs that give you Recycling Tanks, Rec Commons or Children's Creches.

    In short, I'd advise you to build more bases at the beginning and not worry about b-drones.

    "The avalanche has already started. It is too late for the pebbles to vote."
    -- Kosh


    • #3
      Thanks Petek, great advice, yup, that was right along the lines I was looking for. I did wonder about the initial number of pre-beaur. drones with Gaia, seems you get the warning regardless of your Eff rating. *edit* Nope, the warning only says 6 bases.

      I realize that to counter Gaian low energy income early game I need to be doing two things, one or the other.

      Strive to boom as quickly as possible or build as many bases as I can. Booming is trouble since you need a lot of tech advances + IA for crawling in condensers and with only a few bases early on, it can really take a while to get there.

      Gonna try a game now, building 12 bases before I stop to former up and rec common everywhere.

      That sound about right?
      Last edited by Jamess14; November 7, 2011, 04:22.


      • #4
        Tried a game, had an unfortune to spawn near Zak hell bent on my destruction with about 15 2-1-1s produced from 3 bases. Will give it another go.

        P.S. Sorry for double post.


        • #5
          So you get the first b-drone warning when you build your seventh base (and not running Planned)? If so, that's not right. If, in game, you press the "E" key, does the SE screen show +2 EFFIC? Also in game, press Ctrl + F4 to show the version number. If you're playing SMAC, it should show version 5.0 or for SMAX version 2.0. Also, another way to generate ECs with the Gaians is via worm harvesting. Move your initial scout into fungus. You should soon encounter a worm. Attack it. You will always capture the first native life unit (of each form) that you attack. Now use the captured worm to move through other fungal tiles, revealing more worms. Attack them and you will either gain ECs or capture more.
          "The avalanche has already started. It is too late for the pebbles to vote."
          -- Kosh


          • #6
            One common problem during expansion seems to be your size 1 bases should obviously harvest a 2nut square, and only rarely does the said square come with a min attached.

            So in absense of a monolith the chooses has to choose between a 1-2-1 forest tile or fungal/farm tile.

            First leads to immediate hunger on size 2 growth as the second worker has to become a doctor and leads to slow growth before that. The other however gets you to size 2 faster however your pod progresses 1 mineral at the time.

            Is the solution to let the base use the forest tile for 3 turns then switch over?(10 mins) This is also very micro intensive if worth it, having to constantly keep track of the 3 turn expiring over multiple bases.

            At this point during a Tech stag game rec. tanks seem to be almost prohibited considering the investments in time to build them and lacking energy to rush them, let alone that deviating for Biogenetics could mean 10+ turns more on IA time. Also the expansion seems to take precedence at that time, since the bases in question are size 1 pod builders.

            One alternative seems to be making a scout a second build in every new base, so the base utilizes both squares as it grows to size 2.
            However, I can't quite determine if this be even worth it considering it slows us down even more, and we're not short on slow

            on similar note, how does Police state perform with the Gaian early game?
            Could it be of use during the condenser farm planting and borehole drilling that ensues on WP completion for that 3rd former in each base?

            The prefered time, for me atleast, to build commons and rec. tanks seems to on getting 10-15 mins per base that follows after the first 15-20 turns of crawler churning.
            Main time constraint is Morgan(usually) finishing his HGP right around this time, a project I'd really like for my 5th worker so I save up on still low yield nodes that I need to otherwise build(w/ VW).

            Once the initial core empire booms to 7 with more cond. farms,boreholes and crawlers being added the game's pretty much in the bag. Till then however I'm very stuck at finding the optimal route....

            **You're a champ if you read this far**
            Last edited by Jamess14; November 7, 2011, 09:38. Reason: Highliting--


            • #7
              The situation you describe (slow research, no crawlers, insufficient tech for pop boom) is quite common. It can happen to say Miriam even without tech stag. The only way around it is to expand like hell even though that makes some of your problems worse (bureaucracy drones, inefficience).

              Having said that your early game does appear to be not that strong. If you lack 2-1 tiles if is often better to rush a former and build a farm on a 1-1 tile. Prioritize research under social engineering (hotkey E). Typically, (60/10/30) for (research/psych/economy) is good. Gaia can easily go as high as 70%. Get money by farming worms. This is vital. Use your own worms for the task. They are the most efficient units for this by far. Use the money to rushbuild stuff, mainly formers and pods. Don't build so many formers. Before Ecological Engineering two formers per base is excessive. Build more pods instead.

              Bureaucracy limit for Gaia is 9 bases on standard size maps. You are probably using Planned economy which makes the limit drop back to 6. However, Planned is the correct choice for Gaia. Just endure the drones.
              Last edited by Hagen0; November 10, 2011, 11:45.


              • #8
                Sorry to ressurrect this from the dead but I was reading it and I wanna know: what the heck are b-drones? Are they, like..... drones?
                === Jez ===


                • #9
                  The term b-drone is an abbreviation for bureaucracy drone, drones caused by exceeding the bureaucracy limits.
                  "The avalanche has already started. It is too late for the pebbles to vote."
                  -- Kosh


                  • #10
                    Check the datalinks (F1) - advanced - bureaucracy.
                    With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion.

                    Steven Weinberg