Jul 16, 2004 - 3:18 pm
Dignitaries can have both great benefits and pitfalls. The following write-up will help you mitigate risk while maximizing intent.
Dignitaries in a Nutshell
Dignitaries enhance the planets performance by fulfilling certain roles. You can place up to 10 Dignitaries on a planet. Once placed on the planet your dignitaries will report as "Awaiting" in the dignitary screen. They will automatically begin selecting jobs to do on the planet. Sometimes it take a few hours to have all your dignitaries select jobs and sometimes it takes days. There is nothing you can do (as of AAT version .22) that will force your dignitary to choose a job or a specific job role. Finally, if you lose control of a planet with dignitaries stationed on it, the dignitaries on that planet are all killed.
Dignitary Job Roles
Dignitaries when placed on a planet will take up 1 of 6 roles. However you will only ever be able to see 5 classifications as the 6th classification (Embezzler) is hidden from you by falsely putting on a different title. It will be up to you to root out embezzlers (this will be discussed later).
Dignitaries jobs roles are as follows:
Birthrate Increaser - Increases colonists birthrates by a percentage of what the natural birthrate would have been. One of Colonists favorite past times is to "make" new colonists (babies!). You can think of this Dignitary as the guy who goes around making sure no one is using birth control, passes out lots of Viagra and gives away gift certificates for romantic dinners.
Birthrate Decreaser - Decreases colonist birthrates. This is actually accomplished by "killing" off a percentage of colonists after the birthrate is applied. So it is very possible that if you have too many Birthrate Decreasers your population will steadily be going down. Depending on the birthrate variable on a server if you have one Birthrate Decreaser for every 250M colonists you will have a chance at a very small increase or small decline in the planets colonists population.
Credit Booster - Increases the amount of credits colonists produce by a small percentage per game "tick". The percentage of the boost is randomly picked by the Dignitary and is generally .01% to .06%. Considering your all allowed 10 dignitaries on a planet you have a good chance of seeing a good boost to your planets credit production.
Production Builders - Increases planet production. When these Dignitaries first take up the job of Production Booster you can check in your log to see that they produce a small amount of fighters or torpedos or energy, etc? They continue to function in that capacity as they sit on your planet.
Spy Hunter - This Dignitary runs around your planet looking for enemy spies that may have been placed on your planet by a highly cloaked ship. If he finds an enemy spy he will kill it.
Embezzler (Hidden!) - . An important caveat about dignitaries is that sometimes they embezzle credits off of the planet. These stolen credits will be donated to a random player that has more than 10,000 turns used in the game. If there are no players with more than 10,000 turns used in the game yet then embezzled credits are turned into Debris.
The percentage chance that a dignitary will become an embezzler is an admin defined value. The percentage of money that is embezzled when the dignitary steals from you is also an admin defined max percentage where the actual value will be a random percentage between 0% and the max value. Embezzlers attempt to steal money from the planet every 1.5 to 3 days.
Catching embezzlers requires that you place spies on your own planets. The spies will monitor the dignitaries and report an embezzler to your spy log if they see one of your dignitaries taking money from you. I suggest ALWAYS having 10 spies on your planet whether using dignitaries or not. Another strategy from handling embezzlers will be discussed a little later.
Once a Dignitary has selected a non-embezzling job role they will not change into an embezzler.
Embezzler Check #1 - Logs
One of the first things you want to do when you log into the game server is check your log. In the log there is a special spy and dignitary section. Check the spy log and look for reports that your spies spotted a dignitary embezzling funds. If you see such a report note the dignitaries id number, leave the log and then jump into the dignitary menu and dismiss them. This will force the dignitary back to the "await" state where they will once again pick a new job. It is important to note that they very well could choose to become an embezzler again!
Embezzler Check #2 - Level Method
Another way of watching for embezzlers is what I like to call the "Level" method. At the end of the my gameplay and just before I log out I like to use the IGB (the Bank) to set my planets to a certain credit level. This gives me a base point to work off of. If all my planets are sitting near 60% of max credits (as viewed in the planetary overview screen) I now have a reference to self detect embezzlers. So tomorrow when I log in if ALL my planets are at 95% of max credits but one is sitting at 71% or even something lower than my reference point of 60% then I know that planet has at least one embezzler. If the spy log doesn't show that they found a specific embezzler and there wasn't a planetary revolt that could have reduced my credits, then I jump into the dignitary screen and dismiss all dignitaries on that planet.
Embezzler Check #3 - You shouldn't be there
A recent method I came across of finding embezzlers is a "You shouldn't be there" check. As of AAT .22 dignitaries react to assignments on planets based on the game DEFAULT settings and not to the settings that the admins have set. This means that dignitaries assign themselves based on 100M colonists limit for a non-based planet. Armed with this knowledge you can weed out embezzler dignitaries.
At about 75M-85M colonists Birth Rate Reducers start to show up in your dignitary assignments. Conversely, Birth Rate Increasers STOP showing up. So if you have a new planet that has grown to a population of 10M and all of a sudden you see a BRR in your list; he is an embezzler! On the other hand if you have a planet with over 200M colonists on it and all of a sudden a new BRI on the planet you can be assured you have spotted an embezzler.
Team Play, Tournaments and Dignitaries
Special Note: Thanks to Max Griswald for a few ideas to put into this section.
Do create a topic in your team forum and paste "Recieved Embezzled Credit" messages that you find in your Dignitary Log into the forum. If you uniquely name your planets you should have no issue picking out Embezzled funds notices that another player on your team found in his/her log and pasted into the team forum. Note the embezzler ID number and when you go into your dignitary screen SORT the screen by ID by clicking on the ID header. Your Dignitary numbers will then be in numerical order and you can just go down the list dismissing dignitaries.
Do put enemy embezzler messages as well as teammate embezzled messages into the log. Putting enemy embezzle messages in the log may help other players on your team. First off all the amount of credits embezzled is often a sign of the wealth that can be found on that planet. Secondly, you or a teammate can sometimes get lucky and use your Nav Computer to locate enemy planets with the information in the embezzler log.
Don't put dignitaries on your team banks or money transfer planets. It only takes a split second for an embezzler dignitary to grab half of your team funds and whisk them away to the enemy.
Don't put full sector numbers in the name of your planet if you are going to use Dignitaries. One embezzler from a planet with your sector number in it will tip off the enemy to exactly where your planet is if you are in Real Space. And even if you are deep in a Sector Genesis lair an opponent may search you out with a good Nav Computer (which is your Fighter tech) level.
Managing for Intent
Your dignitaries will only produce results for the field they are working in - So it does you little good to have a production boosting dignitary on a planet that is strictly making credits. However, it is extremely useful to have a production boosting dignitary on a planet that is acting as a defense mechanism (aka door or gateway). The extra energy that gets produced by such dignitaries can allow for 15-20% more sector defense than without.
So what do we do? Once you have let your dignitaries sit for several days and you are finally no longer seeing indications of embezzlers its time to start the firing and hiring process all over. If you are looking for only credit boosting dignitaries on a certain set of planets then fire all the production dignitaries on those planets. Wait for these guys to pick new jobs and then watch again for embezzlers. Once you feel confident that you are clean then let the next round of dismissals begin!
It takes a little time (about a week) but you usually can get exactly what you want your dignitaries to do if you just keep at it.
Jump Starting Your Planets
Once you have a few planets built up through the traditional methods (see past Tempest's Blog entries) then you are ready to jump start some new planets. But how do you maximize the planets colonists level while retaining turns? The solution is to encourage the game to give you Birth Rate Increasers.
I like to force the game to give me BRI's by keeping the initial colonists level LOW. Keeping your colonist level between 4 million and 10 million will get the game to spit out BRI's left and right. What I like to do is make about 20 planets, throw 10 dignitaries on each. Then go back and put 4 million colonists on each planet. Leave the planets alone for 12-24 hours and when you come back to them you will notice that you most likely will have 5-6 BRI's on each planet. (Note: As mentioned earlier in Embezzler Check #3 section - if you see a Birth Rate Reducer on a planet with under 75M colonists it is an embezzler!). Now go back to those planets and put 20M - 100M colonists on those planets and watch your colonist breed like little rabbits. In just a few days you will have maxxed out populations on those 20 planets without having to waste a bunch of turns moving colonists around.
Credit Making Planet:
1 Spy Hunter
2 Birth Rate Increasers
7 Credit Boosters
1 Spy Hunter
1 Birth Rate Increaser
5 Production Booster
I personally fire all Birth Rate Reducers in AAT .22 (that strategy WILL change for .25) as they are pretty useless. In this version of AAT you just want your planets to recover as quickly as possible after a Planetary Revolt due to over-population rather than try to spend time preventing it.
Doing your own research
I highly suggest that people do some forum rummaging about Dignitaries (aka Digi's or Digi) as this is where I mainly found information to augment what I learned from personal experience.
Last Edit: Wrote up "Jump Starting Your Planets" & "Embezzler Check #3" sections
Future Add: Info about Digi's self selecting
Entry Edited 21 times - Edited on Jul 24, 2009 - 5:56 pm