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imp (Imperium Outline) 7 years 10 months ago #156

Imperium Outline

1) What is Imperium
1.1) General description
Imperium is a game of interstellar conquest and exploration that is played
by several people over a period of months over a modem or a direct serial line.
The player takes the role of a person who has just received a large sum of
money, and has chosen to venture into space to find fame and fortune. Players
choose one of several "races", and will start out at that races "home" planet.
Players will be given a certain amount of money to pay for the expenses of
operating a starship, and may try to increase their wealth at the gambling hall
or on the stock market. Beware, the more money a player has, the more likely
that they will be cheated at the gambling tables.
The ultimate goal of the game is to amass as much money and power as possible,
using whatever means you choose. Or maybe not. It's up to you.

1.2) Space
1.2.1) The Universe
The universe consists of a grid (which may or may not be square) of
"Galactic" sectors that contain 100 subsectors (in a 10x10 square). Each of the
galactic sectors is the equivalent of a solar system, and each subsector may
contain the planets or stars in that solar system. Additionally, there may be
items such as supernovas or black holes scattered throughout the galaxy, and
they take up a whole "Galactic" sector.
1.2.2) Planets
Planets range in size from 1 to 4 (by default), with each size higher
being exponentially larger. Planets can have various atmosphere types, water
contents, mineral contents, etc. The larger the planet, the more people it can
hold (if it supports life), and the more goods it can produce (and the more it
costs to increase and maintain the planets technology and utility factors). Planet production
Planets can produce various kinds of goods at different rates. For each of
the various item types the owner may specify a percentage of that planets
production that should be devoted to that type of item, including 0%. The rate
at which that item is produced depends on the percentage the owner assigned to
the item, and the ability of that particular planet to create that item.
Planets that are poor in minerals will not be able to make much of
anything without having ore brought in. Donations to race
Players can donate part of the technology or research production of a
planet to their race. Doing so will raise their races technology or research
level, and any new players of this race will have their ships created at this
level rather than level 0 (TF of 15). Donations of other items to their race
must be done by transporting goods from other planets to their home planet. New
players will then find the items there and can load them onto their ships.
Donating people on the home planet is a little different, as home planets
require a certain population to exist before any people may be removed. It is
up to the members of a race to bring people back to their home planet to meet
this minimum requirement. Planet Types
H - a home planet
A - rocky, lifeless, no minerals
B - entirely water, no land masses
C - gaseous
D - generic planet class, but no intelligent life
M - earth-type, likely to support int. life
N - rocky, no native life good min
O - about the same as N, but good gold
Q - Q should be fairly rare, maybe 1 per game
1.2.3) Stars
Stars range in size from 5-10. Stars provide the energy in a "Galactic"
sector, and this tends to show up in richer mineral contents of the planets in
the sector (if any). But too many or too large stars will also prevent the
formation of surface atmosphere and water on a planet. Stars must be navigated
around within a "Galactic" sector. Sailing a ship through or stopping on a
subsector which contains a star will destroy the ship instantly.
1.2.4) Notation
The following notation is used to express a planet or stars location in
the Imperium "space":
R = "Galactic" row of object (not required if zero)
a = "subsector" row of object (0-9) (required)
C = "Galactic" column of object (not required if zero)
b = "subsector" column of object (0-9) (required)
For example, a ship at "subsector" location 4,7, in the "galactic" sector 32,27
would be at location 324,277. Alternatively, if you choose, you can just think
of the world as one big grid, going from 0 to <(world row size - 1) * 10> + 9
by 0 to <(world col size - 1) * 10> + 9. In simpler terms, if you have a 32x32
world, the rows and columns can go from 0 to 319. Named objects
Objects such as ships, planets, and stars may have optional names added to
them. These names will show up when the item appears on a report, or in the
automatic messages the system generates. You may not refer to the items by name
when asked for a planet, star, or ship number, as the names are not indexed,
and so there may be more than one item with the same name. (Thus it is
important to remember the NUMBER of the item, so that some unscrupulous player
doesn't trick you by naming a planet or ship the same as another). Planets
Planets may be named by the player who owns them. Home planets have the
name designated by the deity when the world was created, and can not be changed
by normal players. Stars
Stars are by default NOT named, and can only be named by the deity. Ships
Ships may be named by the ship owner. Names may be changed at any time,
and more than one ship may have the same name. Suggested ship names
Because more than one ship can have the same name, and ship names are
almost always visible to other players, they can be used to communicate to
other players certain messages right away without their having to send messages
back and forth. For example, the following ship names and naming conventions
are suggested:
Rescue - The ship is on a rescue mission, and does not carry any offensive
weapons or shielding, and should be treated as a non-combatant
vessel. (Like the Red Cross)
Warning - The ship is currently infested with the plague or some other
hazard, and should be avoided.
Probe - The ship is an automatic probe ship which is designed to scout out
the galaxy, and should not be considered a combatant.
Civilian - The ship is a civilian transport vessel, carrying people such as
colonists, and should not be considered a combatant.
Merchant - The ship is used for automatic resupplying of a planet, or is a
commercial freighter hauling goods from one planet to another.

A ship with the name "rescue" should not be attacked, but may be scanned
to determine that it truly does have no weapons installed. Therefore, any
player who names a ship "rescue" in order to get near enemy planets and then
attacks them deserves to be ganged up on by other players.
A ship with the name "probe" may be attacked or boarded, but this will be
considered an act of war by most players, and you will certainly be telling
them that another player is in that location, which is probably the whole
reason for sending the ship in the first place.
Another way to name the ships that you may want to use is to place the
first character of one of the above names (if any apply), followed by a minus
sign, and the real name of the ship. This would let you give the ship a
specific name while indicating what the ship's purpose is. For example
"P-Voyager" would indicate the ship is a "probe" named "voyager".

1.3) Races
1.3.1) Description
Races, for the time being, are all considered to be life forms that can
breathe the same air, drink the same water, and eat the same food. They
originate from different planets, however, and may or may not be friendly with
other races they meet. Races can be thought of as "countries" in the USA,
Canada, Germany, etc. sense of the word. They represent a group of people of
similar genetic background, but different cultures.
1.3.2) Race Relations
Each player can decide their feelings toward the other races, and these
feelings will be the defaults for people of that race the player meets. The
player can also specify relations with players individually, so that you may
create situations where "I don't like race xxx, but player yyy (of race xxx) is
OK", or conversely "I am allied with race xxx, but player yyy is a traitor, so
I am at war with him".
1.3.3) Home planets Description
Each race has a "home" planet on which all players of that race will start
out. The home planets are assured by the galaxy building program of being a
"fair" distance apart from each other, and having a basically equal number of
"vacant" planets near them for players to take over. If the home planets are
attacked and taken over by another player, or in any other way have their
population wiped out, then there can be no more new players of that race until
one of the players of that race (if any) can repopulate the planet. Attacking a home planet
Home planets may not be attacked until there has been at least one player
of that race. Restrictions
Home planets have special restrictions on what can be done to them (while
they are acting as home planets, once taken over they behave as normal planets
in most respects, until they are retaken by a player of the race they belonged
to). Only players of the race may load or unload items from the planet, and
players are prevented from loading up all the population of the planet.

1.4) Ships
1.4.1) Description
Ships are built based upon a certain tonnage size, which determines the
number and size of items they may carry. There is no notion of a "military" or
"civilian" starship. Any ship may carry any item in any quantity that will fit,
although there are limits on how many items may be used at a time on items such
as engines or weapons. Certain items also require a minimum crew to operate.
1.4.2) Ship components Hull
The hull is the most important part of the ship. If the hull is destroyed,
the ship will explode, taking all of the items aboard with it. Of course by the
time the hull is gone, they have probably been damaged severely anyway.
The hull is the only part of the ship that can not be removed and
replaced. It has a tech level based on the tech level of the planet it is built
on at the time it is built. It may be increased by bringing the ship back to
port, however. The hull is not normally accessed by the player as an item. It
is instead referred to by the ship number itself, since the two can not be
separated. Engines
Engines provide the power for the ship, as well as the ability to move
between the stars. Engines are all considered to be the same size, but you can
load more than one (cargo limits permitting) to increase the ship's speed, the
rate the energy banks recharge, etc. Engines also have a tech level, which is
the tech level of the planet they were built on, at the time they were built.
You can have various tech level engines in each ship, but the lower tech
engines will bring down the average tech level of the higher engines. In
general a higher tech level engine will provide more power, and will weigh
less. Like most items, engines may be brought up in tech level. But bringing up
an engines tech level will not make them lighter.
There are several types of weapons available, including hybrid of a
blaster and a laser, called a "blaser", and photon torpedoes. Blasers
Blasers do less damage than photon torpedoes, but as they are guided by
the ships computer to their target and they travel at the speed of light, they
are much more accurate. Blasers take their energy from the ship itself, and so
they drain the ships energy banks, and if used too much they may make it
impossible to leave the sector until the energy banks recharge. Photon torpedoes
Photon torpedoes do more damage than blasers, but because they travel
slower than light, and occupy physical space, they are less accurate. They
require an explosive charge, which must be carried by the starship, and which
may explode if the starship takes enough damage. But they can usually destroy
an enemy ship with one or two shots, so they have some value. Sensors
The ships's sensors allow it to map out subsectors, and if it's technology
level is high enough, to map out sectors as well. Sensors are also used to scan
for ships in the area, and the higher the tech level, the more likely they are
to pick up smaller ships farther away. Teleports
Teleports allow a ship transport goods from ship to ship or ship to
surface with other ships or planets in the same subsector. The higher the tech
factor the large the item that can be transported, and the more reliably the
transfer will occur.
1.4.3) Ship defenses
A ship defends itself by firing on ships that attack it, and by carrying
some amount of ablative armor. The armor will absorb all of the points of
damage the ship should have taken until there is no more armor left, at which
point the ship begins to take damage. Armor is large and heavy, and the ship
must be brought back to port to have more armor added. Ships may also carry
small fighter craft which can be used to defend it, if the ship is large
1.4.4) Starting ship
Players start the game with a single "Class A" ship, loaded with a single
engine, a single computer, a single life support system, a single sensor array,
the equivalent of 2 fuel tanks worth of fuel, 10 civilians, 5 scientists, 10
military, and 5 officers. The ship will have no armor, and will be located on
the surface of the players home planet. All the "big" items on the ship will be
created at the tech level of the player's race.
1.4.5) Ship operations
Ships operate on "energy" stored in a toroidal Makazu field in each
engine. These fields are fed via "active fuel arrays", which hold fuel which
has been emptied out of "fuel tanks" that were loaded onto the ship. Once the
player loads a fuel tank into the active fuel array it can not be unloaded. The
engines will suck out fuel from the active fuel array in an attempt to keep the
Makazu field charged at the maximum (as per basic astrophysics). As each engine
contains a part of the field, adding another engine will increase the amount of
energy that may be stored up. When removing an engine it is necessary to drain
the energy from the engine to be removed into the remaining engines, which will
maintain the extra energy, but will not replenish it when it is used up. Thus,
a ship with more engines will be able to move more quickly from one place to
another on the same amount of fuel than a ship with less engines. Damage to the
ships engines can be cause the destruction of the whole ship if the Makazu
field collapses with a large amount of energy still contained in it.

1.5) Items
Most items are considered "small", and do not have the level of detail of
larger items such as engines or weapons. These items are not identified by a
unique number per item, but by how many of them are present, such as "10
civilians". These items do not have separate technology levels, but are all the
same level.
1.5.1) Small items Civilians
Civilians are the basic workers and population. They are assumed to have
basic skills, but can not pilot ships, make technical discoveries, or do much
of anything else besides work and reproduce. Based on the amount of production
put into a planets educational system, they may become scientists however. Scientists
Scientists are civilians that have completed more advanced schooling, and
can work to develop new technology, and can pilot ships if needed. They will
not fire weapons however. In all other respects they are the same as civilians.
Scientists will reproduce more civilians. Military
Military represent the common soldier. They may fire guns and use weapons,
but they can not pilot a ship. They are used to defend planets and ships from
attack by other players. Military do not reproduce. They must be enlisted. Officers
Officers are military that have completed more advanced training, and have
a higher intelligence than the basic military. They can pilot ships, fire
weapons, and will improve the defensive capabilities of whatever they are on
(planet or ship). Officers do not reproduce, they must come from promoted
military. Missiles
These are used for planet->ship combat, as well as photon torpedoes for
ships. Ore
Ore is used to create "production" on planets. Ore is mined from the
planets "mineral" content, and a planet having a higher mineral content will
produce more ore in the same amount of time as a planet with a lower mineral
content. Gold bars
Gold bars are produced by mining the planets "gold" content. Unlike ore,
mining gold DOES deplete the resource from the planet, so a planet with a
higher gold content will produce more gold bars rather than producing them
quicker. Air tanks
Air tanks are carried by ships to temporarily offset the loss of their
life support systems. Planets must have an atmosphere above 40% to produce air
tanks. Fuel tanks
Fuel tanks are used to store fuel for ships, and represent a pre-packaged
amount of fuel in a combustible, non-reusable container. Each tank holds 75
units of fuel, and once put into the ships' active fuel array can not be
unloaded. Fuel tanks MAY be carried by the ship as cargo, and unloaded if they
are not used for fuel by the ship. Fuel tanks require a planet to have an
atmosphere above 50%, as well as water above 25%, along with "ore" for use in
the production of the fuel tank containers.
1.5.2) Big items
Big items are listed under 1.4.2 (Ship components).

2) What are the components of Imperium
2.1) Server
The server does all disk I/O relating to the private Imperium files. It
also is responsible for player-player real-time communication.

2.2) Shared library
The Imperium.library, which lives in the LIBS: directory contains all the
Imperium code used by the game that does not have to be duplicated for each
"client". This includes all game logic, the code to talk to the server, and
memory management functions. Having this code in a shared library allows the
clients to be very small, and to make it possible to run several users even
when memory is tight. Additionally, by removing all the game code from the
client, it allows the game to be upgraded without requiring any change to the
clients (in most cases), a benefit to people using special "clients" for which
they do not have the source code such as BBS doors.

2.3) Clients
The various clients are responsible for all user I/O, and any disk I/O
that relates to the specific user (such as recording a game session or printing
out a map to the printer device). The standard clients provide an interface to
the console, the serial port, C-Net BBSs, and several network systems. You must
run one client for each user of Imperium that you wish have log on at the same
time. There is no limit to the number of clients that may be running at the
same time, except for memory constraints and the number of active players
allowed in the game (if you have a 32 player game, you could theoretically have
32 simultaneous players).

3) Features of Imperium
3.1) Features in pre-release version
3.1.1) Support of Universe sizes from 10x10 to 256x256 galactic sectors.
3.1.2) Unlimited number of simultaneous players.
3.1.3) Shared library.
3.1.4) Client/Server architecture.
3.1.5) Ships that can be programmed in a simple manner
3.1.6) "Standard" linkable module for easy creation of specialized "clients"
such as BBS doors.
3.2) Features expected to be in first released version
3.2.1) Support for play over a network.
3.2.2) Support for play as a C-Net BBS "door".
3.3) Features expected soon after first release
3.3.1) Graphic front-end (support to be added at first release)
3.3.2) Built-in C-like compiler for programming ships.

4) Movement of goods
4.1) Description
Goods are moved in Imperium by loading them onto ships and moving the
ships from one location to another and then unloading them. Each ship may be
"programmed" to move in a certain path, unloading and loading items at various
points in that path.

4.2) Ship movement
Ships (or fleets) may be moved manually, or automatically by means of a
pre-programmed course and set of actions.
4.2.1) Manual movement
Manual movement involves giving specific commands to move some quantity of
ships from one place to another. You may type the entire course in at one time,
type one movement at a time, or a combination of both.
4.2.2) Pre-programmed movement
Ships may have a "course" preprogrammed into them (only the flagship of a
fleet needs to be programmed, the other ships in the fleet will follow
automatically). The course may also included "actions" at various places along
the path, as well as a "loop" operator that says to repeat the course over and
over. Actions
A certain number of actions may be created by the player, and shared among
many different ships. For instance, an action could be created which unloaded
all non-essential items of a ship, and the action placed in the "course" of a
ship which was used to supply planets with goods. By combining this action with
another action which loaded up the ship and the "loop" operator the ship would
operate automatically as a supply ship. Load
Loads a set amount of items (up to the number on the planet and the ship's
capacity to carry them). Percentages can not be used since loading one item
affects the number of other items that may be loaded. {use percent as percent
of planets items?} Unload
Unloads either a fixed number of items (up to the number on the ship and
the planet's capacity to hold them) or a percentage of the number of items on
the ship. Long range scan
Do a long range scan from the ship's current position. Short range scan
Do a short range scan from the ship's current position. Visual scan
Do a visual scan from the ship's current position. Land on planet
Attempt to land on the planet in the current subsector. Take off from planet
Attempt to take off from a planet the ship is on. Teleport items down to planet
Attempt to use the ship's teleport system to beam smaller items down to
the planet without landing. You must be in the same subsector as the planet,
and must have a functional computer and teleporter. Works the same as the
unload command otherwise. NOTE: You *must* own the planet to use this command. Teleport items up from planet
Attempt to use the ship's teleport system to beam smaller items up from
the planet without landing. You must be in the same subsector as the planet,
and must have a functional computer and teleporter. Works the same as the load
command otherwise. NOTE: You *must* own the planet to use this command. Loop operator
The "@" character indicates that the course should "loop" around
continuously. Note that this does NOT reverse the DIRECTIONS in the course, so
you must code both TO and FROM direction commands to create a loop. This also
lets you code a different FROM path (faster, but less protected) and TO path
(slower, but more protected since carrying goods), or create a path which is
not a simple 2 destination path (such as a circle).
You may place navigation or action commands BEFORE the loop character, but
they will not be saved. You can use this as a "lead-in" for one-time actions
that get the ship into position to execute the loop. For instance:
would execute action "a", move down two subsectors, down and right one
subsector, then execute the loop. Assuming the ship went through the entire
loop once, the programmed course would look like this:
You may *not* have more than one loop operator in the program. You will not be
prevented from adding one, but it will not work as you would expect. "Count" operators
All movement commands may be preceded by a "count" of the number of times
to do the action. This must be of the following form:
where "cur" is the number of times the action has already been done (needed, as
the ship may not have enough fuel to move all the needed moves in one action,
and you would not want to have to reprogram the ship just because it ran out of
fuel). "end" is the number of times to execute the item (inclusive). For
instance: [0,2]4 would move the ship left 2 times, while [1,2]4 would move the
ship left once (resetting the count string to [0,2], if the course was set to
repeat). You should normally not set the first character of the count to
anything other than 0, as this will result in a "slew" in the course that will
not bring the ship back in exactly the same sectors next time through any loop
(since the count will be reset to 0 when the ship has executed the move however
many more you have specified). Also, this should obviously only be used when it
will save you room in your path. Since using a count operator is uses up, at a
minimum, 5 characters of your available path, you should probably only use them
when you want to move more than 5 times in a single direction. Note that only
MOVEMENT commands can be prefixed by a count operator. You can not put count
operators in front of actions.

4.3) Item movement
Items may be moved on or off ships by either landing the ship on the
surface of a planet and using the "load" or "unload" commands, by orbiting the
planet and using the "teleport" command, or by moving into the same subsector
as another ship and using the "tend" command.
4.3.1) Teleport warning
Teleporting items is somewhat risky compared to just physically moving the
item from one location to another. Until your tech level is high enough there
is a very good chance that a teleport operation will result in damage or
complete loss of the items you are trying to move. In addition, you can only
teleport "small" items such as people or gold bars. You can not teleport "big"
items such as engines or weapons. What good is teleporting then? Well, it
allows you to exchange items with a planets surface without having to land,
thus allowing you to remain in orbit and ready for a speedy getaway if the need
should arise, plus saving the extra fuel needed for another takeoff and
4.3.2) Plague warning
Note that putting any item onto a ship or planet that was previously on an
infected ship or planet will contaminate the new ship or planet with the

5) Trade
5.1) Description
Players can trade goods at a set price per item by landing on a planet (or
orbiting the planet and using the teleport system) and buying or selling goods
at the price the planet owner has decided (if any). The planet owner may set
the price for each small item (big items are their own lots), and a lot will be
created for the planet. The planet owner must set a selling price for you to be
able to buy anything, and likewise a buying price for you to be able to sell
him anything.
5.1.1) Buying and selling prices
The owner may set separate buying and selling prices for each item,
including a buying price of 0 (not buying these) and a selling price of 0
(these aren't for sale). The prices are independent of each other, so a planet
may be buying ore at $10, but selling it at $20. This allows the owner to earn
some money by buying goods from ships that have items for sale and reselling
them to ships who want them, automatically.
5.1.2) Trade after landing
Trading after a ship has landed insures that all items desired will safely
reach the correct party, and not be damaged or lost via a malfunctioning
teleport system.
5.1.3) Trading via teleports
It is possible to trade via teleports, if your ship has them. Doing so is
riskier than directly landing on the planet, but depending on your relation to
the planet owner, may be the only way to get the items. The planet owner can
decide if the person who teleports the items is responsible for all damages
that the teleport process might cause. For instance, if the planet owner has
decided that the ship owner is responsible, and you teleport up 10 items, but
only 6 arrive, you are still charged for all 10. Conversely, if you teleport
down 10 items but only 6 arrive safely, you will only be paid for the 6. This
is probably the most common situation. However, sometimes a planet owner may be
desperate for a certain item that they will be willing to accept all damages.

5.2) Trading "big" items
Because "big" items can not be moved via transporter, you must land on a
planet in order to transfer them. Items for sale on a planet may not be loaded
into a ship. In the case of weapons, items that are for sale will not be used
to defend the planet during attack. Items for sale on a ship may not be
unloaded or installed, and can not be installed at the time they are put up for
5.2.1) Buying from a planet
"Buying" a big item automatically loads the big item into your ship, and
so you must have enough cargo space free to buy the item. This requires no
contact with the owner of the planet, assuming that you know the checkpoint
code or the owner does not require the checkpoint for you to land.
5.2.2) Buying from a ship
To buy something from a ship requires that you send the owner a message
indicating that you are interested in the item, and have them navigate the ship
to a planet you own and land on the surface. You may buy the item without
waiting for a message when the ship is on the surface of a planet you own. The
main reason for putting things up for sale on the ship is to indicate to other
players that you have the item available (via the trade report), and the
general location of your ship (so that someone on the other side of the galaxy
doesn't try to get you to bring the items to them).

5.3) Selling ships
You can sell an entire ship as well. Any items (large or small) on the
ship will also become the property of the new owner. The price set on a ship is
"per ton", and so will change depending on what is loaded in the ship. Ships
that are for sale can not be in a fleet when put up for sale, and can not be
added to a fleet while they are for sale. When purchasing a ship, the new owner
takes possession of the ship wherever it is. Also, ship locations will not be
specified exactly unless the ship is on the surface of a planet, in order to
prevent pirates from finding the exact location and stealing the ship.

5.4) Trade report
There is a trade report which will list each lot and it's location, for
all players that are at least "neutral" to you.

5.5) "Giving" items away
If you wish to give items away for free, you must allow people to land on
your planet and use the load command. Alternatively you can give away an entire
planet or ship with the "grant" command. Wholesale giving away of planets and
ships is not usually looked upon with kindness by other players (after all,
when was the last time you saw anyone give away a multi-million dollar oil
tanker or cargo vessel, much less an entire country (planet)). But creating a
planet on which your allies may load up their fleets for free is a good and
fair idea, and crucial for any long-term interplanetary conflict.
To this end Imperium makes it fairly difficult to just set up "giveaway"
planets, and makes it impossible to create lots with a price of $0. If you
TRULY want to set up a planet on which anyone can just pick up items for free,
you have to load up all the population and abandon the planet so that anyone
can land upon it and take it over (thus being able to load up their ships),
trusting that they will also abandon the planet when done. Alternatively your
deity, if they sanction this type of thing, may create a "dummy" player which
is not used by any real person, but who owns the planet and has declared an
alliance with everyone, thereby allowing everyone to land on the planet(s) they
own without taking them over or abandoning them. Again, this is not normally
encouraged. The most common use is to only allow allies to land on the planet
and load items, and all you have to do in this case is give out the checkpoint
code to players you wish to be able to land on the planet.

5.6) "Giving" money away
While not as unlikely as giving away an entire ship or planet, Imperium
also restricts how you may give money away. If you wish to give money to
another player, the "lend" command will allow you to do so, at a certain
interest rate (which may be 0) for a certain number of days (which may also be
0). If you specify a rate of 0%, then the person only has to repay you what you
lent them, no matter how long they wait. Specifying any other rate will add
that percent of the original amount to their balance EACH DAY (48 ITUs) until
the loan is paid off.
If you specify any length other than 0 the player will have that many days
to repay the loan, plus interest (if any). At the end of that many days, you
can foreclose on various items of property the players owns, if they are valued
about the same as the amount owed.
If you do specify a length of 0, then the loan will never go into default,
and the player has the entire game to repay you (and you can never repossess
any of their property due you by this loan). By allowing you to set a rate of
0% and a duration of 0, Imperium will allow you to "give" money to player,
while still keeping a record that the player owes you some money. Imperium will
also take into account a players outstanding loans when calculating their
standing in the power report. For instance, to be fair, a player which "seems"
rich because they have a lot of money on the power report is not really all
that powerful if they got the money due to the graciousness of other players.

6) Exploration
Exploration is accomplished by moving your ships away from the more
explored regions near your home planet and into the darker regions of space...
6.1) Limits
You can not move left past column 0, right past than the number of columns
in the world minus 1 times 10, plus 9, up past row 0, or down past the number
of rows in the world minus 1 times 10, plus 9. There is no "wrap around" and
all players/races use the same coordinate scheme (after all the stars are the
same for everyone, and by comparing what you see to what another player sees it
would be possible to deduce the coords anyway (doing this in Empire requires
that you trade the coordinates of one of the weather centers with another
player), so not allowing this would just be an arbitrary restriction). For
instance, in a 10x10 world, you can't go right or down more than 99.

6.2) Moving safely
There are many hazards in the reaches of space, and you must take care not
to make obvious mistakes that can be fatal to the crew on your ships.
6.2.1) Hazards Black holes
Black holes take up an entire galactic sector, and moving into them may or
may not be fatal. There is a chance that a ship that moves into a black hole
will reappear somewhere else in the galaxy completely unharmed, it may reappear
with no energy left in the banks, possibly stranding you if you have no fuel
left. And of course, the ship may disappear for good, never to be seen again.
You should avoid black holes in all but the most desperate cases, such as when
you are being attacked and are certain to be destroyed anyway. Supernovas
A supernova also takes up an entire galactic sector, and moving into one
of them will turn your ship(s) into rapidly expanding vapor immediately. Stars
Stars only take up one subsector, but moving through them will almost
certainly destroy your ship(s).
6.2.2) Prevention
The best prevention for all of these is to avoid moving out of the area of
your last sensor scan. As at most 12% of a galactic sector will be occupied by
planets or stars, and only stars are dangerous, you stand a good chance of
being safe while moving WITHIN a known safe galactic sector. If you always make
sure and scan when moving near the edge of a galactic sector the first time
(the subsectors ending in 0 or 9), you should be able to detect the black holes
or supernovas before you move into them.

6.3) Taking new planets
You can take over new (currently unowned) planets by putting some of your
people on the surface, either by teleporter or by landing the ship. Be aware
that if a planet was recently vacated due to the plague that it may still be
able to infect your landing party.
6.3.1) Setting up a planet
When you take over a planet, you will be able to set things such as the
planet name, the work percentage, etc. Planet names
Planet names do not have to be unique, but you should probably try to keep
them this way, either by adding a number after the name such as "Invictus II"
or somesuch, to avoid confusing yourself and others. Planet work percentages
You can adjust the amount of the total planetary production devoted to the
various types of construction to fit the planets ability to produce the items,
your need for the items, greed, etc. Any work not assigned to one of the other
types of production will be assigned to "cash" and will earn you money
directly. You may also donate a portion of the "technology" and "research"
productions to your race, and any new players of your race will start at a
higher tech level, thanks to you. Planet stats
Planets are of different sizes and classes, both of which affect what you
should try and put on them. Planet size
A larger planet will hold more people comfortably, and will have a higher
birth/death ratio. This means that without any outside interference the planet
will create more people before it finally reaches the point at which it's
population will not increase. Additionally, a larger planet will not become
polluted as quickly (but conversely will take longer to clean up) and is easier
to defend (more places for people to hide). Planet class
There are several "classes" of planets, each with their own general stats.
For instance some planet classes have no land mass, and so you can't land on
them. Others have no atmosphere, and you must be careful not to unload people
on them. And their have been rumors of planets with tremendous riches just
waiting to be found. Planet Atmosphere
A planets atmosphere is fairly simplified in Imperium. It basically
represents how "suitable" the atmosphere is to player-controlled life. You can
consider it as a combination of things like density, gas combinations, vacuum,
etc. The higher the number the better the atmosphere is, up to the maximum of
100%. Players can live comfortably at 60% and above, can get by with 45% and
up, and will die on planets with an atmosphere below this point. The planets
atmosphere is reflected by the "gas" entry in the census reports. Planet surface
A planets surface is also simplified. The surface is either "land" or
"water", which can be considered "unsuitable" land such as lava flows, acid
lakes, etc. Ships can land only on the "land" portion of a planet, so a planet
that is 100% water can not be landed upon. Attempting to do so will destroy the
ship(s). The amount of the surface area covered by water will also affect
population growth. Each percentage of water on the planet will reduce the
maximum number of people by 1/2%. So a planet with 40% water would hold 20%
less people than a planet with no "water". Pollution
Pollution occurs from industrial development. Every time something is
built on a planet a certain amount of "waste" is produced. "Waste" is also
produced when increasing the planets efficiency level. All this waste is
represented by the "pollution index" of a planet. This is a number from 0 to
100 which indicates just how polluted the planet is. The higher the pollution
index, the higher the chance of the planet developing the plague, civilians
revolting (if the planet was acquired by hostile takeover), and the slower that
civilians reproduce. A pollution index of 100% will increase the planets odds
of catching the plague by 50%. The pollution index can be reduced by devoting
some of the planets production to research (which will also cause research
breakthroughs on the planet).

6.4) Taking planets owned by other players
Taking planets owned by other players will usually require that you bomb
the planet enough to reduce the number of military on it, and then assault the
planet from several ships. If the planet has no military on it, you can simply
assault the planet and take it over. Taking a planet like this, even from an
ally (who probably won't be after this) will always cause the civilians to
resent you, which has many consequences.
6.4.1) Civilian revolt
Since your new "comrades" will consider you lower than the muck on the
bottom of a septic tank, you will have to keep a fair amount of military on the
planet to keep them in line. Usually 15-20% of the population, or the people
will revolt, decreasing the number of your military on the planet, possibly
enough that they take the planet back.
6.4.2) Reduced production
Since you have to watch over everyone's shoulder to prevent 6.4.1, the
planets production will not be as high as it normally would.
6.4.3) Inability to load civilians
Since these people want nothing to do with you they will resist the
request to get on your ships (where they are afraid they will be tortured), so
you will have to use quite brutal "persuasion" techniques, thus causing a loss
in people actually loaded. For example, loading 100 people may result in only
75 or so actually getting on board, the rest not surviving your "readjustment"
6.4.4) Inability to unload civilians
Being resentful of your aggressions the population will try and eliminate
any one they feel might be a sympathizer to your cause. Thus unloading
civilians will result in the deaths of some who are "found out", and civilians
you previously unloaded may have to take part in these assassinations just to
maintain their cover. Plus, when your own people find out what you have done on
the planet, they will most likely resent you as well. So it is impossible to
gain control of a planet no matter how many civilians you unload.
6.4.5) Snipers
The civilians will take any opportunity they get to kill your military if
they can get away with it, so you can expect at least one soldier per day to be
killed on larger planets.
6.4.6) Increased military pay
Enlisted military get 1/3rd more pay for duty on hostile planets.
6.4.7) Decreased enlistment rate
Enough said.
6.4.8) Stopping civilian revolt
There are only two ways to stop civilian revolt. By killing every civilian
on the planet (before you take it over), or by giving the planet back to the
original owner (or if they win the planet back). A player who takes a planet
from (or is given it by) a player who took it by force will still have to deal
with revolt.

6.5) Universe formation
The Imperium universe is modeled after the "big bang" theory, with
subsequent collapse of the matter spewed from the center into "clusters". This
means that there will usually be galactic sectors that contain neither planets
or stars, and others with a high density of stars and planets. The world
creator uses heuristics to verify that the spread is "fair" however, so each
race 'in theory' should have just as many planets nearby that can be taken over
as any other *at the start of the game*.
Obviously once the game starts there is nothing preventing a player for
taking planets near the home planet of another race, so entering the game later
on and picking a race that nobody else is using may not be a good idea... On
the other hand, planets near the home planets of other players may already be
taken over, so picking a new race has it's merits.

7) Suggestions to players
7.1) Planets near your home planet
If you take over a planet near your home planet you may want to consider
using it as a "general store" for other players of your race. Many players will
want to pick up more supplies, such as fuel, before venturing out far from
their home planet, and if yours is the nearest planet, they may have no choice
but to pay your prices :-).

7.2) Towing service
You may want to offer some kind of "towing" or "rescue" service to other
players near planets you own, by agreeing to bring them fuel or supplies if
they get stranded near you, for a fee of course.

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