First Turns: The Empire Of The Birds

Most wars are won or lost long before the fighting starts. This series concentrates only on those critical few turns leading up to the Ship Limit as a key to achieving long-term goals necessary for victory.


The Bird Empire, like the Crystals, has the weakest economy of any race in the Echo Cluster. For their survival they rely on the justly dreaded Dark Wing, the only cloaking battleship; however, absent extreme luck, they will rarely produce enough before the Ship Limit — and, even if they do, the ability to cloak gives a battleship no extra survivability against heavy carriers. The Birds have little hope in direct combat.

Which is why their ship list and abilities were designed to excel in indirect tactics.

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A Modest Proposal: Race Balance In Standard


If you haven’t heard the term “Nerf Crystal” by now, you haven’t been listening.

The recent change in Standard and League games that has resulted from the removal of friendly codes and Safe Passage options from web fields has created a race without diplomatic options. Their ship list is inconducive to trading, being composed largely of overpriced minelayers and understrength warships — plus one 5-point terraformer. Now that they can’t trade their webs as currency, the Crystals have gone from one of the dominant races to something just slightly too sad to be considered a joke.

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Threat Assessment: The Empire of the Birds

This is the third in a series of anonymous reports that mysteriously appeared overnight on the desk of the Editor. These redacted versions were approved by the Senate for immediate publication, so they can be read by commanders of each respective race in order that they can review their own vulnerabilities in the face of the unknown external threat that commissioned the studies. In this dispatch we focus on that faction known as the Empire of the Birds: its strengths, its weaknesses, and how best to defeat it in battle.


Ease Of Command: Master
Difficulty To Defeat: Moderate
Style: Aggressive

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ACTION NEWS: Failed Ambush In Wormhole Space

This is Planets Magazine Action News, coming to you live with a special report: The Capricorn War — Conflict in Echo Cluster!

Good evening; I’m Jim Chancellite. The top story for today is that of a failed ambush in wormhole space by Cyborg saboteurs. Ace reporter Pat Patterson is reporting. Pat?

PP: Good evening, Jim. Ladies and gentlemen, I’m coming to you live from the planet Continue reading

The Importance Of Staying Hidden

(written by Bacchus)

It was early in the game, turn 3 to be precise, and the Colonies were expanding rapidly, putting all of their resources into building freighters and sending them forth. He could spy a cluster just out of range of a one-turn jump with his warp 9 engines.  To reach it hidden would take 2 turns and he really wanted to continue pushing his planet count upwards. So early in the Continue reading