Blog: Play with Friends - the Next Steps

Prevent home planets from being acquired by another player in the condition of a home planet:

1. Prevent ALL home planets from being abandoned

  • Disable the ‘stand down defenses’ option for home planets
  • Block a player from removing the last colonists from their home planet to abandon it
  • Also block a player from removing the last colonists from their only planet to reset themselves
  • This means a home planet can only transfer owner through an invasion; but

2. Home planets captured in an invasion are devalued in the process

  • The first time a home planet (a planet with a T3 ODS) is lost in an invasion:
    • Remove: T3 ODS, key infrastructure, a large portion of the population, a large portion of the surface resources; and randomly zero several of the unmined deposits
    • The resulting condition of the planet would be no better than many other planets that would be free to colonize and the incentive at the heart of the exploit is removed
  • We could have limited this to only happen to home planets generated with a spawn code, but thought it made sense to broaden it to all home planets because:
    • It adds a layer of newbie protection by making home planets less appealing targets
    • Home planets were intended to boost the original owner, not over-strengthen capturing players

Take this all away and you eliminate an incentive for even trying to take a HW planet given the high cost of trying to take one (invasion you lose 3/4 of the military you send down). So why bother unless you are in a “get even” type of situation where you are just doing it because you don’t like the person you are taking it from.

As an alternative, rather than destroying it completely. Force it to go inactive unless the player has the top tier ODS researched and it is dropped down to T2 level rather than destroyed completely. Then provide a 1/2 cost of reactivating the ODS as T2 when the tech is available to do so. At least it leaves some incentive to take the planet to begin with.

Why prevent someone from abandoning it or any last planet? If abandoned completely the planet already reverts back to having NO structures and only retains it’s resources. And trust me, they aren’t that good to begin with, just that all 5 exist. If the issue is the 7 day reset window, then prevent it if it falls within that 7 day reset window, not just in general. The result is the same except on the removal of population results in nothing remaining which is actually better for the game not worse. I’ve benefited well from a neighbor who reset lol. I have lots of “natives” existing on planets I want to colonize.

I’m fine with removing the “stand down” option on HW planets. But not the rest of it. You are pandering to a minority of players who commented over and over again on the same post.


Can you confirm you intend long term to do the “play with friends” in sectors? I know it won’t be in this galaxy, but at some point? @joe

Right now, as it’s been pointed out by many who have quit, players are now placed too close to one another to even make giving away a spawn code palatable unless you happen to be in an area where a lot of players already quit. This does need to change in the next iteration to be no closer than the 50-100LY distance.

Now on both skirmish and the main galaxy I have at all 4 players on my scanner in less than 50 LW from my HW. That’s too close and caused at least one of my neighbors to quit, if not two already.


I have to agree with Puma.

I invaded some Homeworlds already. Losing huge amounts of troops. If there is no gain to be had, at the end. What is the point?

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Seems like removing the t3 ods also removes homeworld status? So dismantle that and it’s treated like a standard world and no longer loses resources if changing hands?


Lol, was thinking the same.

I really think Puma’s idea is good for the long-term, though perhaps more of a pain to code hence long-term. Please consider it. Being able to selectively put planets down can crowd newbies and has already resulted in one of my fellow Alliance members quitting.

I think once a sector is full, you might be allowed to assign someone a start in that sector, though. That way they can still start near you, but since it is full, you won’t be crowding newbies, which is my main issue now. Just have a simple “Sector: Full - friend codes enabled” for when you’re looking at a system within a full sector as far as UI goes.

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Past iterations we were too far away. They just over compensated in this one.

So I have heard. I still think friend code has a potential to crowd newbies though, even once we’re further apart. So I’d prefer the solution I proposed where it’s a bit of both. It is the best of both worlds imo.

Of course even when a sector is full a person should have the option to use sector spawn still, it would just spawn in the NEAREST sector and give the inviter a warning about that when doing it with an estimate of approximate LY distance away from your homeworld.

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Destroying T3 ODS on conquered homeworlds, I can definitely agree with.

The removal of random resource deposits, key infrastructure, a large portion of the population? I think that needs some rethinking. If doing it for the sake of protection for new players, why not just implement some sort of cool-down for any invasions on any homeworld, for, say, a month? This in addition to downgrading conquered T3 ODS to a T2 instead, would be enough, in my opinion.

That seems to eliminate the expeditious nature that makes the exploit appealing. With 2 accounts, you would be able to generate 14 homeworlds over the course of 6 months. That would hardly seem worth it, given the fact that the back and forth exchange would keep either account from building up (as they would have to spawn in with friend codes), for the duration. In 6 months, deep mining and strip mining of expendable planets while being able to expand towards that planet cap, would offset any added benefit of those high-density resource deposits.

The ideal solution would be to keep the stats of every planet given via a “friend code” in a database, and upon invasion (with a warning that the planet would revert to its natural state), every single object on that planet is wiped, and reverted back to the original state.

Exploit eliminated. Homeworlds generated upon joining the galaxy the normal way remain valid targets for those looking for war, while a cooldown on homeworld invasion could still be implemented for that “newbie protection” you speak of.

Otherwise, you may as well commit to the idea of protected homeworlds that are off in the ether somewhere, and you simply spawn into your “home system” via a wormhole. Because people won’t have any desire to invade homeworlds with hundreds of thousands of troops, only to see it become half the planet that it used to be.

I dunno the multiple T3 City centres still have value? But fair point.

@joe as ever THANK YOU first of all;that said. NO!

Again we have IDA running from one side of the Paddock to the other like a Star Trek Bridge scene!

As was pointed out above now the only reason to attack a HW will be coz of intense War of Annihilation Dislke of a player And-that-is-not-good-foe-virality either sir!

  • The 5 day cool down is Ok by me.
  • The non abandon idea I believe I mentioned or at least agreed with, so yes absolutely!
  • The part wrecking of the planet Okay with qualifications: Make the damage RANDOM so there is at least a chance of some good prizes for the loss of a massive troop investment please! If you keep say the ODS3 then the City centres all go etc self balance so you only get one random good thing tops.

DO NOT prevent a player from population evacuation of their home-world. When they do this the world is toasted as a Tactical advantage so if they are prepared to make that sacrifice AND HUGE logistics need then let them. Again you are pulling an idea outta thin air NOBODY Mentioned here and when you have done that in times past its been 100% Disastrous. Just don’t do it friend, follow your own maxim of developing for the community not deciding we had no idea and coming up with a tangent like this!

So yes something like you propose ASAP please but moderate your more extreme (un asked for!) ideas and make it clear sectors will happen eventually.

Meanwhile please consider a date for winding this now flawed galaxy up! Or at least opening another (perhaps with the closure of Pre Beta to save server load?)

And above all: Post something like this BEFORE you make a patch of this sweeping magnitude! We’d have told you what was gonna happen (Some of us had some absolutely spot on misgivings after all!) had we this level of detail! Joe Guys if you wont take my money at least take the advice! Its free and I don’t get too bent outta shape if you don’t follow all of it as long as you can show you listened!

Not listening to your community is the number one Killer of your precious Virality sir! If everyone turned their reviews neutral or dissatisfied then we are DOA! As it is you ought to be proud we are so close to “Overwhelmingly positive” on steam (90% needed I believe we are at 89%!) If you’d not overreached i cant see how we could not have gotten that extra percent and you would have had the publicity explosion you were aiming for.

Right rant over carry on!


It actually makes no logical sense given that ODS is in space and you are invading the planet, not taking out anything in space. I can see that the ground forces that kept it functional could be wiped out so it ceases to function and the invading force doesn’t have the ability to convert it any higher that what we would consider T2, since I can’t build anything higher than T2 on any of my own worlds. And not functional at all until I complete the tech associated with the T2 version. Why would I bother invading if I get nothing for it.

As far as population goes, you already lose native population at invasion do to the fighting that will occur, so this isn’t really anything new.

Now “giving” away a HW is entirely different. No HW should come with an ODS if it is given away, as per Joe’s information. Conquering a planet should give you some reward for doing so, otherwise why bother. I can see limiting it to T2 and requiring the tech to be done. But no gain, why bother at all.

Rather then tie the home-world designation to any existing building create a new one just for the purpose.

This building can be used in two manners.

If it’s dismantled (72 hour deconstruct) by the player the home world resets to a unoccupied base planet. This is the only way a home world can be abandoned. If a planet is under invasion when the timer reaches zero on deconstruction the planet reverts to the invader with the applicable home-world destruction’s applied.

In any invasion this building is destroyed along with whatever key buildings and resource reset the devs feel comfortable with.

In theory the devs could create two home-wold designation buildings. One for original random spawns and one for friend code spawns. When conquered by invasion the original random spawn worlds could retain more then the spawn code worlds. Has a potential for exploits for those willing to wait and travel to them though.

Again why bother invading a HW at all and losing 3/4 of your troops if there is no gain from doing so. I certainly won’t if they don’t make the HW worth invading. Invading vs gifting are two different issues and should be treated as such.


My preference has always been to remove home-worlds from the map altogether. Let them be nothing more then a save point for game data and a wormhole launch point for a seed fleet to start with.

With the planned independent colonies they could just have those randomly scattered around unclaimed with player populations and some base infrastructure. These could become the basis for dual populations and home-worlds.

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I think you missed the mark here. The players who commented over and over again were doing it because they KNOW the system was being heavily abused. And because they have made no indication they are going to reverse the exploited systems in any way, those players are going to continue benefiting long after this issue is patched sometime in the next couple of weeks.

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And now if we take these spammed HWs we will be rewarded by trash. lol
We need a server wipe as well

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I don’t disagree with the portion of the change that addresses the abuse. I object to changing the invasion results.

To quote what I said “Now “giving” away a HW is entirely different. No HW should come with an ODS if it is given away, as per Joe’s information.”

For the current server at least, they have to factor in entire systems currently overrun with HW-class planets in their ‘fix’. People are giving their alts codes to every single planet in the system, then taking them back. Repeat.

To take out a system with 8 HW each full of T3 ODS is going to take massive numbers of troops, or bombing on a currently unprecedented scale. Factor in Mountain Giant HWs, or whatever else, and it just gets stupid.

But, carry on.


I don’t disagree with anything you said, but at this point it’s too late to go backwards. But it’s wrong to change the entire mechanics of the basic game because of what they did wrong. It will stop when they change it and the next iteration of the game won’t have the feature or the results. But if they change the invasion mechanics, that changes the entire game going forward, that is just as wrong as the change they wrongly implemented @joe

I believe the compromise of downgrading the ODS to T2 addresses the issue others had and improves the situation that was wrongly created when they allowed HW’s to get created.