Skotos Forums Closing: September 30

The Skotos Forums are officially closing on September 30, 2020. They will go read-only on that date, and will be removed entirely sometime afterward.

We encourage the games that spun off of Skotos to create new discussion mediums of their own, and some have already done so. But the centralized discussions for Skotos will soon be a thing of the past (just as the centralized Skotos site is).

We've also posted a goodbye message to the community on our main page, which you can find here:
See more
See less

Advice for Newbies

This is a sticky topic.
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Advice for Newbies

    I am making this thread for more experienced players to post advice and protocal for newbies. This advice would go above and beyond the thread on treaties, alliances and NAPs. I am considering making a web page for newbies for GE. When I make the site, I will credit any advice, tips or whatever to the appropriate player if they wish.


  • #2
    Buy factories, factories, and even more factories. Best investment you can make in a standard game.

    And of course, make sure you talk and make treaties with people. Very few people (from what I have seen) win without at least one friend.


    • #3
      Here are some pointers that reflect my own preferences and style of play ...

      (1) Always, always, always, always honor treaties to the letter, regadless of any other agreements you have (of course, this also means that you should not make contradictory agreements). Do not push the envelope or be intentionally ambiguous.
      (2) Be clear about whether you have entered into a treaty or not. Use terms like "I offer" and "I accept". If someone says "A NAP would be nice" you still do NOT have an agreement.
      (3) Make contact with every player in the game as soon as possible, with at least just a "Hello". If you wait until the game actually starts to begin diplomacy, you are behind the curve and you may already be dead but just not know it yet. Also, people like to attack players who they have no contact with.
      (4) Even if you do not enter into any agreement with your neighbor, TELL HIM what worlds you plan to take in your initial expansion. Players rarely want early conflict, and if he takes worlds that are closer to you and that you told him you were taking, then you know he is gunning for you and probably is allied with another one of your neighbors and about to kill you unless you also have an ally. Do NOT believe him when he says it was an accident.
      (5) Offer an Alliance right away to one or two players who are either your neighbor or are on the other side of your neighbor. Alliances with far off players are useless, and you will find yourself teamed-up on by your neighbors while your ally watches from afar.
      (6) Make Non-Aggression Pacts whenever you can. This may prevent you from being the target of choice, and if you later decide that you want to attack then you can give 24/48 hour notice. However, try to avoid making a NAP with a player if your ally does not also have a NAP. Try to include your ally in a NAP whenever possible, and pressure your current NAP partners to also make NAPs with your ally. Specify that the NAP will automatically terminate with respect to both you and your ally at the same time if the other player gives notice to just one of you.
      (7) Be generous with your allies, and they will be generous with you -- the trust that you create with your generosity will more than pay you back.
      (8) Do not limit yourself to standard Non-Aggression Pacts and Alliances. Feel free to offer a modified or beefed up NAP and make up new agreements to fit the situation. Make agreements between alliances. Use 72 or 96 hour withdrawal or termination only if your alliance and theirs controls 80% of the galaxy, agree to mutual defense only against specified common enemies, agree to share Battle Reports.
      (9) Lastly, be as nice and fun-loving and joking as possible with your enemies even while you attack them. This makes the game more fun, and your enemy today may be your ally next game.

      (1) Spend most or all of your money on factories for at least the first half of a Regular game. Do not spend any money on factories in the last 2 days -- as long as you have at least 400 ships in total, then Battle Power at this point is a better investment.
      (2) Do not spend your money to build factories as soon as you get it. Wait until the last possible moment before the next production round -- you never know if your enemy has a fleet scheduled to attack just before production. Of course, if you are buying something other than factories, then buy it as soon as you get the money.
      (3) Place your factories as close to your front as possible. This way you can gather invasion forces on the same world that you are defending your factories, and your new ships will be produced closer to where you need them. However, this is modified by ...
      (4) Place your factories on as few worlds as possible. This will reduce the number of stars that you need to garrison, leaving more ships free to invade and allowing larger garrisons on your factory world. This also makes it cheaper to guard your factory worlds with Spy Shields and Death Shields. Even if your enemy knows that you have factories on a world, a Spy Shield prevents him from knowing how many ships are guarding it. You can also consider building a Spy Shield on a non-factory world as a decoy --although I usually decide to build more factories instead ... see number (1). In an ideal world, your initial 60 factories would be on one world, and ALL of the rest of your factories would be on another world as close to the center of the galaxy as possible.
      (5) Place your factories on your homeworld only if you plan to remain small and play defensive.

      (1) Send brief "Launch" notices to your allies at the same time that you dispatch your ships, so they always know where you are going and avoid collisions. The message can be as brief as "LAUNCH: Ujugur" and can include the estimated time of arrival if you know it. Check for your ally's LAUNCH notices *before* you launch. Launch notices are the most important messages you will send in a game of GE, potentially saving hundreds of ships and making the difference between vicroty and defeat.
      (2) Make sure that you and your allies are bigger than the target and his allies BEFORE you decide to invade. Diplomatically isolate your target as much as possible.
      (3) Keep your factories guarded if they are close to the front. Do not assume that your target is going to sit still and wait for your attack, even if the target knows it is outnumbered. Even as you invade, his ships may be passing yours going the opposite direction.
      (4) Search out his factory worlds and take them. Do not waste time or ships trying to hold onto nonfactory worlds that you have taken -- you can mop up later. Find his factory worlds and ships concentrations with small "disposable" (2-5 ship) probing attacks against all of his nearby worlds. Then send all of your ships as fast as possible to take the factory world.
      (5) Do NOT waste ships guarding your own non-factory worlds or those that you take from your target. In the short-term, factory worlds are all that matter. Let your target move his ships off factory worlds and waste time moving around in non-factory space while you take his factories. Do NOT siphon ships away from your attack on his factory world to respond to his attack on your non-factory world. Just laugh at his foolishness, take his factories, and then send the ships newly produced from his factories to retake that non-factory world tomorrow. Are you worried that the enemy is getting the income? What do you think he is doing with it? He's building more factories for you to take later! Isn't that nice of him?
      (6) When attacking a guarded world, do not be afraid to send a fleet that is destined to lose the first battle, as long as it will not be outnumbered 2-to-1 and suffer the outnumber penalty. Hitting him hard will make him more likely to stay put (which you want) and quivering at the knees, even if he does survive the first blow.
      (7) Use a Death Probe as a LAST RESORT. If you take a world with ships, then you will (a) increase your Battle power, (b) gain control of the opponent's factories, and (c) save the $200 you would have spent on a Death Probe to buy even more factories. Remember the factories that you are blowing up are YOUR factories, because you presume that you are going to win the war. I have only ever wasted money on a Death Probe when the target was defending its homeworld and third parties were potentially threatening me on other fronts so that I did not have time to take the homeworld.
      Last edited by SteveBrent; 09-25-2002, 06:49 PM.
      Suudal of the Golden Horde

      "A victorious army wins its victories before seeking battle; an army destined to defeat fights in hope of winning."


      • #4
        Suudal has produced a fairly complete set of rules for basic game play.This will help the Newbies get started and make far fewer mistakes than I did when I started, damn

        The Koalas have developed their own rules for playing this game, and not everyone of them is in total agreement with Suudal's analysis, but hey, there is more than one way to skin a wannabe warlord

        The First of Koala's rules is that you buy factories, factories and more factories, just as Suudal advises.

        The Second of Koala's rules is never put all your eggs in one basket.

        The Third of Koala's rules is that your home world is a target (Ronin could take note of this one).

        The Fourth of Koala's rules is that DP's are for Dummies (except when it is for Ronin's home world).

        The Fifth of Koala's rules is to NAP with all of your neighbours and never break an agreement.

        The Sixth of Koala's rules is that every rule has exceptions (except the 5th).

        The rest of Koala's rules are secret.

        Have fun!!!

        Lord of the gum trees
        May the eucalyptus be with you


        • #5
          Ok. What I need now is a definitive lists of the different types of games and their definitions. Anyone help me with this?



          • #6
            Suudal's strategy is... about a 180-degree about face from my own.

            I'm not sure which works better, but I've used both. (His didn't work for me.)


            • #7
              There is no doubt that Suudal's strategy can be successful. However, I do not believe in putting all my factories in one spot and it is very rare for me to spend money on Death Shields and even rarer for me to spend money on spy shields. This has served me well in many close skirmishes. It prevents the enemy from focussing on one star, thus splitting his forces. I also prefer to have less than 40 factories on a star as this means that a DP is hard for the enemy to justify. A DP basically costs 40 factories.

              I also don't like to tell the Galaxy who my allies are in advance.

              Generally I would spend all my money on factories for the first 7-10 days unless there were strategic considerations that required extra range. Rarely would I buy speed early, it is too expensive. This only happens if there is some overwhelming need for speed.

              I don't like having factory worlds close to the front line unless I am on an offensive roll. If there is little chance that the enemy can counter attack then you can break most of the rules even put many factories in one spot.

              Suudal's rules appear to be based on the premise that he is the aggressor. That is fine until you come up against another serious aggressor.

              Lastly, for those more timid players. Koala's 999th rule. There is no defensive strategy that can work reliably. If you hunker down and defend you just become a target. In Game 250 I ended up in a battle against 4 experienced enemies (including Suudal) and I applied this rule (and a few others) to survive for the last 7 days. If I had been defensive I would have been out of the game much earlier and not enjoyed losing some much.

              This brings up a rule you should know about too. Pick your allies with care! Otherwise you are on your own and the survival rate for that is just about nil.

              When a game is announced read the Bio's for all the players to see how experienced they are and what other players have said about them.

              This game has room for a lot of different strategies. Some players concentrate more on the diplomacy that the fighting, others more on fighting than diplomacy. How you do these things can vary too. That is what makes this game such addictive fun.

              Have fun,
              Last edited by Koala; 09-28-2002, 04:54 PM.
              Lord of the gum trees
              May the eucalyptus be with you


              • #8
                Originally posted by Koala

                When a game is announced read the Bio's for all the players to see how experienced they are and what other players have said about them.

                This is true, but part of my reasoning for starting this page is to let GE become more friendly for newbies. I wouldn't suggest someone making allies with someone who has been disloyal, but everyone learns from their mistakes unless they are foolish. In order for Skotos to justify keeping GE, we need to generate new players from both the other games (which may draw in outsiders due to networking) and from new subscribers. Keep in mind, you win some, you lose some. Taking a chance on a new or developing warlord will eventually help Skotos and GE stay viable. I think it is a justifiable sacrifice for all the experienced players.


                • #9
                  Some of GE's many strategies were also discussed in earlier threads...for example, look for the discussion "Random Thoughts" a few months ago.

                  There is no one way to play, and no one way to win. For every strategy, there is a counter. That is one of the joys of the game.

                  A lot of what works depends on the player's personality type, and what they like to do. Some folks like to spend on speed at the beginning; it gets them into the game faster and more rapid gains...this can work; this can also result in fewer ships and becoming more of a target for other players early on. Some like to invest purely in factories and have a lot of bulldozing to do. Others really, really like to blow things up.

                  Try 'em and see. Most people adopt a mix.

                  My best recommendation for any new player is to try a regular game, allying with an older, more experienced player who is willing to be communicative and share thoughts with you. It worked for me, years ago. In my first few games, almost all the other players...even those who were fighting against me...were willing to share observations or give advice. This is because most of the players are here to fight a good fight, not conduct a massacre. (My third regular game, an opponent, who I ended up having an almost game-long war with, told me that another player would make a good ally; he was right).

                  The first rule of any game is to have fun.

                  The second rule, for GE, is to realize that most games have 2 - 4 big winners; that means 8-10 people are at least somewhat disappointed. Getting wiped out in your first two or three games doesn't mean you're not any good at it. Don't get discouraged because you don't become a Galactic Hegemon the first few times around.

                  Rule three: engage in diplomacy often. I strongly recommend an ally in every game; going it alone is something that is very, very hard to do, even for an experienced player. Keep whatever agreements you do make, because people do check the comments players leave on one another.

                  At your service,



                  • #10
                    I generally try to ally with the people near me. A tight bunch to start with works best for me. It doesn't matter if they are experienced or not, just honourable.

                    The most important information you can get from the Bio's is about the quality of the opposition, whether they migh break NAPs, who they tend to ally with or would like to ally with etc.

                    When I first started at SE experienced people did not tend to help the inexperienced too much. I only succeeded in getting a real start here. My first practice game here I found another player (his first ever game) to ally with, I coached him and together we took over the Galaxy. He is Cyberw. We then teamed up in our first ever Regular game and he brought a friend along (Samari). We ended up taking over the Galaxy (Game 110).

                    It enabled me to get a good score on the board and that made getting allies in future games a lot easier. It did the same for these two players too.

                    I can see where you are coming from in trying to get players to stick. Maybe you need to do an intermediate step here. I would be happy to play in a game where there were say 4 experienced players and 8 newbies and the experienced players must only ally with newbies, maximum of three players per alliance. They could be rated games or not but I think rated is better. Call the first one "Training Day"!

                    I am always happy to share the Koala's rules with my allies, they actually started when I was explaining basic game play to Cyberw and then Samari. I was lucky with those two, they actually paid attention (and they are now developing their own styles and doing well), others do not. I play with them periodically if things work out. I am sure I could interest them in a 'Training Day' game.

                    Lord of the gum trees
                    May the eucalyptus be with you


                    • #11
                      The 'Training Day' game thing is a good idea.

                      I would also like to add an important note. When the game is over, make sure that you actually use the review system. Heck, for me personally, I use it as a personal tracking list, to determine who works well with others and praising (or commenting on bad moves) a persons actions. The more people that use the system, the better it is as a tracking system.


                      • #12
                        HW defense bonus

                        Just a question: Do you get the defense bonus for your HW only when you hold it and are attacked or as well when you'r attacking your own HW.
                        The word is mightier than the laser sword.


                        • #13
                          Re: HW defense bonus

                          Originally posted by Prcval
                          Just a question: Do you get the defense bonus for your HW only when you hold it and are attacked or as well when you'r attacking your own HW.
                          The HW defense bonus is exactly and only that, a defense bonus. If you are attempting to reacquire your HW, you will NOT get the bonus on that attack. (If you do regain your HW, though, once you have a garrison, the bonus will apply to anything that attacks YOU while your HW is in your own hands).

                          At your service,




                          • #14
                            I've noticed something running in the back ground and as I did a search for a file, I seen this file come up called (Help Assistant!) It has a copy of just about everything that's on my comp! I've tried to delete it but it says some file named are to long and it will not delete! I've ran Malwarebytes and nothing came up. What is this and how do I get rid of it? It's in my Documents and Settings folder.


                            • #15
                              Disturbing that someone has been waiting since march for a game to start.



                              Debug Information