Command Point Management

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Managing your Command Points in the heat of battle or even before is potentially, if not the most crucial aspect to master in this game. The way you control this aspect will make or break you in most combat or peacetime situations. The reason it is so crucial is because it can be turned against you or put into your favor in so many different ways. However, lets look at what Command Points are. Command Points or CP as they are commonly known are your unit control points. These points determine how many units you can control on the field while maintaining order in your colony or while in the heat of battle. In most RTS games you have seen them before, they could be referenced in other games as your food limit. However, unlike other RTS games you can break this limit infinitely if you are willing to pay the price to keep it going. Remember that this game has no hard limits and your CP is no exception.

Before we get started let us discuss the penalties and what they can do to you. The first type of penalty you may be given is if you build more than your colony can handle. You will be notified of this by a flashing red message and your CP bar will be a crimson red. The second type of penalty is if you declare war on a lower ranked empire. For example, an Emperor declaring on a Magistrate will result in a CP penalty. If you get one of these penalties you will be hit economically until and potentially you will see friendly fire among your military until the incident is corrected.

300 CP Limit

At the start of your empire building you will want to keep a very good eye on your CP. This is because you only have 300 to start with and since each unit costs 10 it is very easy to break. The key to controlling it at this level is balance. You do have a little running room but it is tight. You can bend your limit to 450 and not incur any penalties. Once you go above that you either have to leave it to your economy or dock units in any building with hangar space until you get back to a safe level. Overall it is recommended at this stage of the game to not try to mine every mineral cache you see and instead stick to only the ones you will need to help defend yourself. Remember mining facilities are public and you can most often always go back once you raise your CP limit when attempting to expand your empire. However, at the 300 starting point it is advised that you build up your defenses and starter army instead of trying to strip the planet. Also at this stage in the game you do not have many options for decreasing your CP. However, you have a friend and that is the veteran system and it is the best ally you could ever have. As your units gain combat experience they will acquire bonuses and one of these bonuses is a decreased CP cost. Once elited a unit will cost 1 CP instead of 10, allowing for more units to be produced. Potentially, if you had all of your units elited in a 300 CP situation you could effectively have 300 units continuously on the board and for a starting player that is a huge advantage! Aside from ranking your units up the only other alternative you have at this point is dock your units until they are needed. However, remember for every unit you keep docked in your facilities you will be charged a small fee.

500 CP Limit

Once you get to the 500 CP limit things start to get easier and despite having to still keep tabs on your CP you will find yourself not having to do it quite so often. Also your CP bending limit has increased to 750. By now we will assume you at least have Escort class ships if not higher in your arsenal or at least fighters of some sort. At this stage you will probably start using tanks more as an invasion defense rather than an invasion force. This is simply because it is assumed you do not have the capability to build a decent transport fleet. In turn at this CP level it is now safe to start expanding to other minerals that could be useful for advanced research such as new weapons, etc. As for your new army you now have access to advanced options of control. Since most likely your fleet mainly comprises of aerial units you can now send them into space and start to use that CP. Keep in mind that Space CP is universal to a solar system, and therefore must be kept in check if you own more then one planet.

800 CP Limit

When you finally get to the 800 CP level you will probably look back and wonder how you survived at 300 CP. At this level you will finally be able to stretch and relax a bit. We will assume you have at least three to four colonies and various planets and that you have moved onto something bigger than an Escort class ship. Also it might be safe to assume you have a space station or two built. From here on out it will come down to what your situation of play has been like. If you have had to fight for your life this entire time then this is part of the guide you have been waiting for. If you have had nothing but good will shown to you, take these next steps as a back up plan. If you have noticed each planet has its own CP and to help increase your chances of survival we will need to take full advantage of this. The best thing you can do is provide a nice balance to your colonies to the point where you have enough defenses that your fleets can be mobile should the situation call for it. The worst thing you can do is have your CP setup in a way that you cannot be mobile and adjust to different battle scenarios. This especially becomes clear when you are in a situation and realize that it will take hours for reinforcements when you only have minutes. Also figure out what your empire can handle if you should need to break your CP. Remember there are no hard limits to this system and it can be bent without penalty and broken if necessary. Situations will come up and you will be thankful the system works this way. It should be noted that despite there being an invulnerability curtain when you log off on your homeworld. The downside is that the shield takes an hour to charge and therefore your homeworld is vulnerable for that duration. In turn it is recommended that your homeworld be defended the heaviest with not only stationary units but also with a portion of your total fleet. This should be common sense, however, there have been too many good players that thought stationary defenses alone would save them when in actuality a fleet in combination with those defenses was called for.

Overall, at this level of command points you need to start thinking of how you are going to manage and control your fleets. For at this level you will be seen as a possible threat to numerous smaller empires, or a threat to a larger empire. At the 800 limit you have more freedom but you also have more eyes watching you.

1000 CP Limit

You have made it the top of the food chain, 1000 Command Points. This obviously has its advantages and its disadvantages. It should be noted that you have power in flaunting this and hiding this from other players. On the one hand if you are in a very peaceful community and you absolutely hate it, you now have the ability to make a for sure run at changing things. However, if you are in a warmongering society then it might be wise to speak softly and keep that big stick for back up. One major disadvantage at this level of Command Points, which started at the 800 level but has become even more noticeable at this level, is the ability to hide your growing fleet. Most people will not notice small increases on a few planets. However, if certain empires find that there are the same number of ships on every planet and they cannot count them on a single or even ten hands. They may become alarmed and start to talk. Now at this point it all comes down to what path you chose. If you chose to flaunt it then the talk will only aid in your goals. However, if you wanted it a secret, well you going to have to either play a very big diplomacy card or hope you can silence the gossip before it spreads to “larger” ears that might become an even bigger threat. With all that aside at this point you have made your choices and will follow them. Thus, depending on the choice will depend on which section you will pay attention to. I will try to break them down by classification to make reading and looking up faster.

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