Gilmoy's 0.42 Journal: Cultural "Influance" 101

Posted on Tuesday, September 9, 2014

GC3 influence was a mystery to me.  So I'm delving into the numbers.  This is my attempt at a "Culture 101" thread.  I will break up my findings into (many) replies, and edit as I improve the upper and lower bounds.

My goal is to reverse-engineer the cultural influence equations.  We did that for economy, so our collective players' knowledge on this forum exceeds the "Econ 101" thread.  As a by-product, I plan to influence-flip many AI planets.  I don't care about actually winning the game; I probably won't even get that far.  eviator's Not Culture Flipping thread made me curious.  Since then, I have been enthralled by the beauty in numbers

I debated whether to put this in the Early Feedback sub-forum, but I think this topic is more general than a Beta 1 issue.  We regular users cannot post in Journals, which I guess is restricted to Stardock dev staff.

A. Test game parameters & methodology

Altarian, Large galaxy, Scattered, vs. 3 Godlike.  Considerations:

  • Racial traits are the first choice point.
    • Drengin have =0% Influence.  This is the only way to plot the hex radii for influence values < 37.5)
    • Terran, Altarian, Iridium have +25% Influence.  They're all equally good for this test.
  • Iridium's -25% Growth make them very intriguing, since they probably won't win a straight conquest race.  But ...
    • [0.42 opt-in bug] Iridium Constructor crashes to desktop on Build Starbase command.
      • Fixed in 0.42-09/11!

I micro-manage (all queues, every turn).  For Influence regression, I also jot down:

  • for every turn
    • for every colony
      • all of its Influence-related parameters (as described below)

For my 1st test game, I also wrote simple Excel macros to double-check for consistency, and through 38 81 turns my predictions fit the data perfectly.  I hope to use this data to tighten the bounds on the influence-to-radius function's staircase-like thresholds.