We just reached 50k total signups for Starpires with nearly 20k of those players active within the past month.
This is a notice to players that a major algorithmic change affecting the top 20-30 empires, less than 0.2% and will go into affect within the next 24 hours.
The formula used to compute research affects for researched over level 10 is going to be changed. In it’s current state it’s creating a situation where empire growth among these large empires is becoming exponential due to it’s affects on planetary income. Without the change the game will quickly become unsustainable and cease to be playable for these players.
What this will mean is a drop in planetary income for planet types with a research level above 10. The higher the research level the larger the drop on a percentage basis. For the top few players who have research levels in the 15-20 range this drop will be substantial.
A chart showing the percentage change in planetary production at a given research level due to upcoming algorithm change.
Yes, it will cause some cosmic upheavals to a few empires which will have to adjust. But these are the same empires who’ve also benefited greatly from the existing algorithm. This also affects research effects on Anti Pollution, Government and Urban Planets which can cause some flux in population migration, civilian mood, air quality, etc. This may require things like lowering tax rates or increasing the quantity of these planets to bring it back into balance.
I have tried to limit making large algorithm changes like this but without these changes a reset of the game would be required. Though there are still plans to spawn up additional Starpires servers in the near future.
Now that I’m able to devote my full effort to developing Starpires, there’s lots of features, enhancements and game play adjustments in the pipeline. Here are some of the recent and upcoming ones. Going forward there will be much more detail on this blog about newly launched changes to the game.
During the previous week I’ve had a few complains and caught several people creating multiple accounts on Starpires with the clear intent of cheating in the game. They were either creating fake accounts to receive bonus turns from the referral system in place, or using multiple accounts to coordinate attacks against other players.
This type to gaming the system is cheating, affects the game play experience for other Starpires players and will not be tolerated. We’re monitoring accounts and if we find this occurring will not hesitate to delete the offending accounts without warning.
That said we realize there are times when there maybe multiple people creating accounts from the same IP Address (computer) legitimately. Multiple accounts on the same IP address won’t automatically get them banned but if there is a clear pattern that shows it is most likely the same person and is doing it in an attempt to “game” the system they will be removed.
Feel free to ask any questions via the comments or using the Starpires contact form.
We just finished putting live a ton of new research items, which we’ve been spent the past week adding to the game. This include a few dozen more “permanent effect” items which which do things such as increase the strength of particular military units/attacks or the production of planets.
Additionally we added a new class of “temporary effect” research items which should add a whole new level of strategy to the game. The items have effects that last for a period of time, either in turns or in time and provide a much greater boost.
Some of the new “temporary effect” items:
There are more besides these that appear later in the game. Enjoy…
One observation and frequent feedback item from initial players of Starpires was that the way alliances were functioning was affecting game play. They made it very hard to succeed in attacking even much smaller players that had several larger allies.
To even out the game play and keep alliances from dominating the game the following changes were made.
1. The amount of support an ally can provide in an attack is limited to the strength of the defender. That means an ally that is 10 times the size of the defender can send a maximum of 1/10th of their available forces to help defend.
2. The amount of support an ally can provide is additionally limited by how many alliances they have. This limits the benefit of allying with someone who’s just randomly allying with lots of players.
3. Previously your empire could defended by up to 3 allies during an attack. Now either one, two or three allies are chosen at random to defend.
You probably noticed we just put up a new home page for Starpires, that actually tells you something about the game (gasp) instead of simply having a login button. We had been so busy making improvements to the game play that we really hadn’t taken the time to work on the other important stuff like marketing and getting more players into the game.
Next up, we’re working on some game play tutorials for both new and advanced players. While we’ve tried to make Starpires easy to play, it is a very intricate strategy game with lots of things to do, so I think the tutorials are critical for new players. Nenad (graphic designer) has also been working on a really cool 3d animated game trailer, which I’m really looking forward to seeing.
Other game play items currently under development:
We just added a new “Enemies” tab to the attack and special operations screens in Starpires. When you have dozens of empires in your universe this will help you easily find the empires who you are currently engaged in combat with.
The enemies tab will display empires who have attacked you or you have attacked. Empires which you currently have some type of alliance or treaty with will be excluded from this list. We will continue to make improvements to the game based off of feedback from players.