It really doesn’t matter how powerful your mass drivers are or how many ships you can call into action, you’re never going to conquer a galaxy without a strong economy. The latest Galactic Civilizations III developer update details how galactic rulers can manage their economies, promising that it will be more intuitive than before while still offering the customisation options and hands on experience you’d expect.
The most obvious new addition to economic controls is a unified production wheel that takes the place of the plethora of sliders from Gal Civ II. There’s a unified slider at both the colony and empire level, and moving the cursor around lets you see the impact of the changes in real time. Interactions with this wheel will affect research, manufacturing and wealth.
It’ll be nice to see the back off all those specialised sliders if it does, as promised, still allow for a great deal of control over an empire.
Different races and planets will have bonuses that will have an impact on the economy, as well. A world might have a bonus to manufacturing, meaning that at the micro level you’ll want to use that for the construction of fleets and the like, or you could used your increased manufacturing output to enhance wealth or research at the cost of the speed of ship and project construction.
Population is the production unit, with a billion people equalling one unit, which generated one production point per turn. Those production points are then allocated to the unified slider, where you can change where you send them. They then generate wealth, manufacturing and research, all three of which are augmented with racial, technological and planetary modifiers.
Here’s how the equation works out for a specific example:
"Population * AllocationPercentage) * (1 + ImprovementMod + PlanetMod + StarbaseMod + RacialMod) = Output
Let’s say we have a Drengin (no production bonuses) colony on a world with an Active Core (50% increased manufacturing), in range of a starbase with an Economic Ring (10% increased manufacturing/research/wealth), with population 10, with two basic factories and three labs (10% bonus manufacturing each) and an allocation of 30% manufacturing, 40% research, and 30% wealth.
(10 * .30) * (1 + .20 + .50 + .10 + .00) = 5.4 Manufacturing
(10 * .40) * (1 + .30 + .00 + .10 + .00) = 5.6 Research
(10 * .30) * (1 + .00 + .00 + .10 + .00) = 3.1 Wealth
Aside from this general concept, you can also dump your manufacturing output into research, wealth, culture, or growth at a reduced rate via planetary projects that boost those numbers rather than producing an improvement or starship directly."
It might not be as flashy as blowing up spaceships or subjegating alien races, but 4X economics really floats my boat.