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Populations refers to the presence of Major and/or Minor Factions on a planet.


The population(s) on a player's planets are the life blood of an empire's operation. Considering individual planets, the population size will determine how many structures can be supported at any one time, as well as the size of the Home Guard that planet can muster in the face of invasion. Taxing the populations of the player's planets is the only form of credit income currently in the game. Hence, keeping populations happy and growing is a matter of primary importance.

For the pros and cons of colonising a planet with a secondary population, see the Colonization page.

Primary Populations

The first population on any given planet is always considered the primary population. If the player colonizes a planet with an existing population, and their chosen Major Faction becomes more numerous than the existing faction, the original will remain listed as the primary in the Galactic Overview screen.

Players may increase the population a planet can support by building Farms. Planets can support a fixed maximum number of each player race's population, which can be calculated using the formula given at the end of this page.

Secondary Populations

A planet with both a Primary and Secondary population.

Each habitable planet can support up to two separate Populations. There is currently no restriction on which types of race share the planet, provided they can both tolerate the planet's hydrosphere (land/water balance) and temperature. Climate and Hydro Adjustment Stations may be constructed to terraform planets, in order to allow two populations to survive and grow. City Centers may also be constructed to increase the population growth rate on a planet.

If the secondary population is of a different race to the player's chosen Major Faction, then it will generally grow happily alongside a colonizing player's race. The secondary population can be taxed independently of the primary population, and will automatically add to the planet's Home Guard. They will be affected by structures the player builds, such as Bio-farms and Entertainment Centers. If the player colonizes a world that already has a secondary population of their own Major Faction, then they will simply be absorbed into the main population upon colonization, becoming part of the now-primary population.

Some world are occupied by a (non-playable) Minor Faction. A full listing of these is detailed at the Minor Factions page, and each typically grants some unique advantages to the owning player. Beyond this, they behave as any other secondary population detailed previously.

Currently, no secondary populations can be transferred or removed from the planet which they inhabit.

Transporting Populations

Populations belonging to the player's chosen Major Faction may be freely transported using ships fitted with the Passenger Transport or Assault Troop Carrier ship module. There is no restriction in moving your own race to or from a planet. If the player removes all of the population belonging to their chosen Major Faction from a planet, the colony will immediately leave their control and all structures built will be lost. This is colloquially referred to as "dropping" a planet, and is used when a planet has been fully mined and is no longer useful, or by an invader in order to enact a "scorched earth" policy.

Secondary populations are not currently transportable by any means.

Formulae for Initial and Maximum Population Size

Initial Size

Each planet has some initial population size it can support, without needing the construction of Farms. This initial size is calculated as follows:

Initial Population Size = Planet Diameter (KM) * 3 (for populations of the player's Major Faction)

Initial Population Size = Planet Diameter (KM) * 6 (for populations of all other Factions under the player's control)

Example: A newly colonized world with a diameter of 12,000 KM may support a population of 36,000 colonists of the player's Major Faction.

Maximum Size

The maximum population size that a planet can support for a particular Faction is calculated using the following formula:

Maximum Population Size = PlanetDiameter * PlanetUsableSurface * MaxPopMultiplier * GlobConst

  • PlanetDiameter: The planet's diameter, in KM.
  • PlanetUsableSurface: The land or water fraction of the planet (in percent), expressed as a decimal between 0.0 and 1.0. Which one is used is dependent on the land/water affinity of the Faction in question.
  • MaxPopMultiplier: The maximum living density for that Faction. These values are detailed on the respective Faction pages.
  • GlobConst: A constant for all planets, currently set at 75 (this may change in future or on a per galaxy basis).

Example: For a planet of size 15,000 KM, a 50:50 split between land and water and with a Mankind population (Land affinity):

15,000 (planet size in KM) * 0.5 (50% land mass) * 1.0 (Mankind population multiplier) * 75 = 562,500 max. population.