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Stellaris Dev Diary #192 : Perfectly Balanced, As All Things Should Be...

Hello!

This week we’re going to look at some more changes we're planning, as well as a review of how some of the experiments mentioned in the last few dev diaries have evolved.

Thank you for the massive amount of feedback in those threads.

Reduction in Pops

Due to the effects on performance and a desire to reduce the micromanagement burden in the mid to late game, some of the things we’ve been deeply looking into are different ways of dramatically reducing the number of pops in the galaxy.

These experiments have generally revolved around modifying the growth (or assembly required) for pops as an empire’s population grows, with some variants trying a logistic pop growth (where growth follows an S-shaped curve as planets develop, based on a carrying capacity of a planet). These experiments have reduced the end date pop count to somewhere around one half of the old numbers with the expected performance improvements.

Organic pops will follow a curve where they begin at standard population growth, increase growth as the approach a midpoint between population and the planetary carrying capacity, then slow down to zero as they reach the top of the curve. Pop Assembly, on the other hand, is generally slow but consistent. The biggest change is that producing a new pop no longer costs a static amount of pop growth - it increases as the empire population does.

A significant reduction in pops has a cascade of major implications for the overall economy, production, and other gameplay effects. As such, these also require a pass on buildings, technologies, and even seemingly minor ripple effects like what the value should be for the trade value generated by pops.

There will be a lot of patch notes.

Most buildings have been standardized to now give 2 jobs per tier rather than the old 2/5/8 progression.

1605711331057.png

Just one example of many.

We’ve also changed a few buildings to have new or additional features, such as the Spawning Pool and Clone Vats, which have had their Pop Growth modifiers replaced with the new Organic Pop Assembly. This fills the same slot on the planet as Robotic Pop Assembly, so generally you’ll want to pick one or the other. (Clone Vats also picked up a food upkeep cost to represent simple materials to break down.)

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Pops is Soylent Green!

A few other jobs got minor perks added to them, like the Medical Workers from Gene Clinics making it a little easier to live on less hospitable worlds.

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Doesn't normally produce exotic gas, this one happens to be a lithoid.

And a few new techs have been added to help compensate for lost productivity. One tech line increases both the job production of a planet as well as job upkeep - those fewer pops are still capable of producing the work of more on a developed planet.

Ring Worlds

As part of the balance pass, Ring Worlds have been bumped up to 10 segments from 5, and the jobs per segment have been adjusted.

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The Shattered Ring origin now possesses a warning that it may be a Challenging Origin for Lithoids due to a scarcity of minerals, and now also applies the Ring World Habitability Preference to your pops. We’re considering adding a similar warning for Hives selecting the origin, since the habitability preference change puts a serious crimp in their expansion.

1605711541929.png

Put a ring on it?

Their starting blockers have also been adjusted to give a more balanced spread of jobs.

Ecumenopoleis

Like the Ring Worlds, these start with all building slots open. As mentioned before, you can now use the Arcology Project decision on a planet that has a mix of City and Industrial Districts.

Note: Empire has all technologies but no traditions active.
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The ecumenopolis has a unique distinction of being able to have both the Factory and Foundry building lines on the same planet.

Habitats

The changes to Habitat modules are much smaller in scope, but here’s the list of their districts.

1605711621995.png
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Void Dwellers have gotten a bit of attention as well with some tradition swaps for those that had minimal or no beneficial effects for them.

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Replacing Public Works Division:
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And for Void Dwellers with the Adaptability tree:
1605711724002.png


Interstellar Franchising and Imperious Architecture now also function for Habitats.

Updates to Dev Diary 190

Some of these updates may not be new to people following the forum threads, but it's easy to miss things so I figured we should go over them.

Many people requested the ability to fully specialize their foundry and factory worlds. We've modified the Forge and Industrial World planet designations to shift one pop on each Industrial District to the appropriate job if possible.

1605711738324.png
1605711745816.png


We've also upgraded the Food Processing Center, Mineral Purification Hub, and Energy Nexus to provide an extra job to each of their associated resource production districts. (The Food Processing Center will also improve Hydroponics Farms.)

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One of the suggestions made in the thread was to add a civic that increases unlocked Building Slots. Sounded like a great addition to Functional Architecture.

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Functionality increased!

Updates to Dev Diary 191

We’ve explored some additional options regarding the resettlement system we outlined in Dev Diary 191, and after trying a few things, and have settled on some extensive modifications to the system.

All planets with free sapient unemployed pops that are not locked down by migration controls will have a small chance every month of moving one to another planet within their empire that has jobs that they are willing and able to work, housing, and habitability of 40% or higher. This chance is increased if there are multiple unemployed pops that meet the criteria.

The system now prefers to move higher strata pops first, so rulers and specialists will move before workers, and this system also functions for gestalt empires. It will not relocate non-sapient robots or slaves. It will generally prefer to move pops to the planets with the most free jobs.

After some experimentation we’ve chosen to keep the Transit Hubs as Starbase Buildings that provide a system wide buff to the chance of auto-resettlement occurring. (Rather than being essential to have it occur in the first place.)

1605711834820.png

Doubles the chance the pops choose to resettle themselves.

Greater Than Ourselves has been rewritten to also massively increase this chance when the edict is active, with a +200% bonus.

We initially had these pops considering destinations available through Migration Pacts as well, but decided against keeping that since it introduced a new Migration Controls micromanagement element that we didn’t find desirable.

We’ve also done a minor update to the Authority bonuses that seemed a little bit weak.

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Democracies now have a bonus encouraging their pops to seek their dreams, and Dictatorships have a bit of an easier time holding things together when they’re a bit overstretched.

Closing Thoughts

One other little quality of life improvement that was just added is this filter on the colonization interface.

Colonisation QoL.gif


That’s probably long enough for today. We’re looking forward to your feedback on these as well.

Next week w̷e̵'̸l̸l̴ ̴b̸e̴t̵̮̄ǎ̸͈l̷̠̈k̴͔͂i̴̞͒n̷̪͊g̸̳͗ ̸͚̎a̵͉̐b̵̤̿ȯ̴̲ṵ̵̀t̸͇͂ ҈҂▒©╛⅜

1605711927580.png
 
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Lorenerd11

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Many people requested the ability to fully specialize their foundry and factory worlds. We've modified the Forge and Industrial World planet designations to shift one pop on each Industrial District to the appropriate job if possible.

1605711738324.png
1605711745816.png
Note: Empire has all technologies but no traditions active.
1605711566787.png
1605711585016.png
1605711593479.png
1605711601512.png


The ecumenopolis has a unique distinction of being able to have both the Factory and Foundry building lines on the same planet.
Aw, I had hoped that we would be able to shift jobs with planetary decisions, and that Ecumenopoli would be a bit more like my Ecumenopolis rework concept, with merged Industrial arcologies and new arcology types like Commercial added.
 
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Echo 418

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I don’t see Thrall Worlds mentioned in the dev diary, have they been changed in regards to pop growth?

As mentioned before, you can now use the Arcology Project decision on a planet that has a mix of City and Industrial Districts.

If I’m not mistaken Thrall World require you to destroy all mining and achriculture districts before you can turn it into a Thrall World, only to rebuild them afterwards. It would be nice if they would get the same treatment as Ecumenopoli.
 
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Yagami913

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So if i understand correctly the next meta is creating full housing planets without any jobs + resettle hub. This way creating a breeding ground for other planets?
 
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zheldor651

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This is one of the things that is still in balancing, but currently it's total housing but we include a bonus for undeveloped districts. People living off the land and such. Some planets, like Gaia worlds, get more carrying capacity for their undeveloped districts.

This is almost all I've ever wanted from a pop fix. I love you. Please keep the scaling based on housing, a value with player agency behind it.
 
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Jman5

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Is the chance to migrate different depending on the strata, or is it all the same and higher strata just get ahead in the line?

If the chance of triggering automatic migration is based on strata, isn't the upcoming demotion time decrease going to present a problem? I just worry that this will actively harm empires that pick up civics like Shared Burden or go Harmony tradition early.
 

Troyen

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In the current version:
* Gene Clinics give 2 medical workers.
* Cyto-Revitalization Centers give 5 medical workers.
That's 2% and 5% respectively. And if the extra growth speed works on both regular growth speed and pop *ulgh* assembly *puke* that's basically double the value. But I suspect that pop *retch* assembly isn't affected by growth speed modifiers.
It's 5 workers with the upgrade today, but they're also changing three-tier buildings to be a 2/4/6 pattern. I don't know if they said if the two-tier buildings would stay at 2/5 or also drop to 2/4.

I'm worried about the impact of the Industrial district on Ring Worlds, especially on Ecumenopolis.

An Ecumenopolis is very long to create and was until then THE alloys factory/cons. goods. Now... I can build as many ring world as I want... Faster... Have one more ascension perk without the Ecumenopolis one... So what the point of Ecumenopolis ?
It reads like Ecumenopolis are the only planets that can have both an alloy and a CG extra job building. All other planets those are mutually exclusive. I _think_ that means Ring Worlds also have to pick between one of the two, and if so, Ecum could still come out on top in regards to industrial districts.
 
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Deshiba

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Wait a second ... can you not actually cheese that quite easily with vassals? Like say you have an emprie with 2 sectors. Tehn you conquer stuff off of another empire and put it in a new sector. You release one of your initial sectors as a vassal and start building up your new sector. Rinse and repeat.
Sounds like a strategy that might involve a good use for Feudal society?
1605791091640.png

Gateway jump to all them vassals you created. Throw them in a hegemony federation for good measure. Their power is your power.
 
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@Eladrin If "Planetary Carrying Capacity" is based of housing, then pre-building housing capacity will become the new meta and building speed bonuses are also pop growth bonuses indirectly!!! :cool::p

Yea that would be weird. And you would end up turning half your planets into Ecumenopoleis just for breeding pops because they have a ton of housing.
 
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Are the Ecumenopolis's and some of the Habitat's resource production districts supposed to have a bit of surplus housing? Currently, and for most of the post-tile planet economy, resource production districts have provided only enough housing for the jobs they create, meaning you need housing districts to house pops for buildings.
 

fabeto

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!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THIS. IS WHAT THE GAME NEEDS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Not more content. But rebalancing what is already in. Changes like that would actually bring your playerbase back and keep it in for longer than 3 hours. Focus on fixing the grind and making the game more fun after the early game.

You are losing so much potential by not making the game more engaging in mid and late game. I'm speaking not only for me, but also for my friends who barely touch the game due to the reason I mentioned.

I would actually come back and play when you realease this. I don't touch content DLC's anymore.
 
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Yea that would be weird. And you would end up turning half your planets into Ecumenopoleis just for breeding pops because they have a ton of housing.
As if someone not mass-ecu'ing already due to +50% ecu buff.
 
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GeorgieBest

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All planets with free sapient unemployed pops that are not locked down by migration controls will have a small chance every month of moving one to another planet within their empire that has jobs that they are willing and able to work, housing, and habitability of 40% or higher. This chance is increased if there are multiple unemployed pops that meet the criteria.

It's happening!!

Can't wait for this change, definitely the kind of change I've been hoping for.

Great dev diary with lots of great changes. My only feedback is that the gene clinic jobs still seem a bit underwhelming.
 
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Fjolsvid

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@Eladrin, Please consider just moving "pop growth" from medical workers to buildings themselves. Have them provide society research and amenities and that's all that is needed to solve their problem.
That's an easy fix.

The harder fix is adding a health policy with a per pop cost, just like food. And having the med buildings improve that effect.
 
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These changes look like a great start.

I'd also suggest taking a look at the Habitat Cap mod which gives a starbase-limit style limit to the number of habitats you can build - currently the ideal is to build a habitat around any body that can have them, which balloons the number of pops the galaxy can potentially support, as well as the number of "planets" the player has to manage.
 
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GnoSIS

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So if i understand correctly the next meta is creating full housing planets without any jobs + resettle hub. This way creating a breeding ground for other planets?
Yea that would be weird. And you would end up turning half your planets into Ecumenopoleis just for breeding pops because they have a ton of housing.

You can take advangate of that as long as you have the colonies to place those pops! otherwise, it shuts down. It also shuts down as you get more overall pops, so no worries!
Making build speed important is really adding depth! And empty housing needs upkeep, so this signals that a strong economy will grow pops faster! And that is correct!
 
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Red Death

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This may change to be a simpler formula largely based on planet size, since there are a couple of quirks I'm not totally happy with right now.
I'm guessing building a lot of housing districts as soon as you colonize to maximize pop growth, replacing them later is one of those quirks?
 
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As if someone not mass-ecu'ing already due to +50% ecu buff.

I wasn't because I enjoy playing Hiveminds despite them having the least amount of content, no Horizon Signal, no Ruler traits, no Agendas, no special Federation type, no access to Nivlac, no ability to get free rapid breeders + strong on my organic pops, no ability to compete with organic pops created by non-Gestalts due to all the missing events, missing Nivlac etc..

Idk why I am even playing Hivemind honestly, the amount of missing content is so annoying. Also never going to get Necrophage dlc unless they make it compatible with Hiveminds.
 
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After reading a lot of comment i think, planet carrying capacity must be tied to planet size mostly and not to housing, preveting gimmicky meta gaming.
 
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I'm guessing building a lot of housing districts as soon as you colonize to maximize pop growth, replacing them later is one of those quirks?
If you can waste the building time and the resources to that effect, then yes. If you do replace them and have less housing, pop growth will stop completely on that planet!
 
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Archael90

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Organic Pop Assembly
This is the best thing in this dev diary :D (Yet im worried that this will not be available to psionic spiritualists, as much as robots are not designed for them :( )


But i still have a question tho:
Will now migration works when planet will be full? In the current version the migration is stopped when there is no growth (someone sais this is due to chance of building being destroyed via declining pops), so will this will work in new version with buildings not being tied to pops? I would love to see my pops migrate from overcrowded planet and boost growth on underdeveloped ones.
 
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