Making Planetary Invasions Great Again (an idea for improvement that just popped into my head)

stellaris 8 - Making Planetary Invasions Great Again (an idea for improvement that just popped into my head)

Hey guys, small disclaimer, wall of text (but it has a picture in it!)

I'll start off by saying 2 things:

  1. I have been enjoying the hell out of Stellaris for the past couple of weeks. This means I might not be as aware about what's going on (as in the future) and how the game has changed already
  2. This post is purely a brainstorming idea thing I just came up with and then I made this post on a whim

So, what is that brainstormy idea about landbattles?

Well, the only boring aspect to Stellaris in my mind are the planetary invasions, both the bombardments as well as the land battles themselves. This is a hard break for me when it comes to the remainder of the game. I like managing my empire, figuring out the best strategy to expand, building up fleets and I still slow the game down to watch massive space battles play out as my fleets clash with, well, anyone really.

On top of this, I feel like the orbital bombardments and planetary invasions just lack… the visuals and strategy of the other combat. This idea might be able to solve both, in varying degrees.

So, the first part of the idea concerns orbital bombard and air force.

Currently the bombardment strength depends on fleet size (I think, that's the latest I've read about it anyways). I don't necessarily think this is wrong, in fact, I'd say a larger fleet, as in more ships, due to being able to hit the planet from all sides should deal more damage. I do however think this element of the game lacks realism. I think, if we were to add ship components to corvettes, destroyers and cruisers focusing on 3 things, we might be able to change this:

  1. Space to surface weaponry (weapons specifically designed to destroy armies, fortresses, etc)
  2. Hangar bays for either strike craft of 'air force' units
  3. Components for land army relief

The first one is pretty self explanatory, the second one I will get into in a minute when I introduce the air force topic but the third one I think is pretty interesting. Let's say you have medical bays, ammunition reserves, assault craft (tanks etc) bays, psyonic horror chambers. You could add bonuses to armies, debuffs to enemy armies, and more. I think this would allow for a much more specialised playstyle when it comes to planetary invasions.

Let's get into the air force now. The air forces would play 2 roles in a planetary invasion, destroy the opposing air force as well as deal damage/support the land armies. To me it just doesn't make any sense that there's no air planes or even space craft at a planet, so this would purely be a feature to further specialise invasion forces, make the fights more interesting and make it more realistic.

As the balance of power between the two air forces changes, the attrition rate of air planes changes as well as the damage/support they provide.

That concludes the first part of the idea.

The second part of the idea is focused on making the land combat itself more visual and realistic.

First of all, the army tab would be changed to the following:

Le epicly made visuals

You could still have the orbiting forces bit above this.


The planet itself is divided into zones, with the amount of cities depending on the planet size. I've chosen for a heavily industrialised and fortified planet here, with industrial zones and 4 fortresses. The amount of fortresses is also limited, but their level is not. In this case they are all level 1 fortresses with 3 armies in them. The hats show the armies, the planes the air forces (and where they are all located).

On the right side we see some data about the planet (in this case how the battle is going). The forces show the individual units and the balance of power the aggregation of those units. The lowest part of the right pane shows details on the occupation level (depends on how many tiles you have and how long you've had them, at 100% the planet completely submits).

The resources gained depends on the occupation level, the higher the more of the planet's production is earned. Finally, the resistance level shows the 'morale' of the populace. The only way to make it decrease it through edicts when you have full control over the main cities, and through having an armed force at the planet. Each tile would have it's own resources attached to it, the sum of course being all that happens on the planet. I did hear something about planetary tiles (where the buildings are) going away, so I don't know how to tie the new system in with this cause I've never seen it.

The higher the resistance level, the higher the unrest and it should also cause attrition to your troops if it is high enough (open rebellion against your occupation). Leave a planet without dealing with the occupation and the populace might take it back from you.

Combat on this map is very simple, the defensive army has a basic setup and the invading army spreads out to beat it, on every tile there can be a max of 4 forces for defense and 6 for offense. Let's say the fortresses have 3 armies at lvl 1, then 4 at lvl 2 and 5 at lvl 3, the remaining forces that don't fit are instead allocated to a city (spread out evenly). All offensive forces that don't fit are instead held in reserve in the invasion tile (the 2 armies in the circle thingy). Now, green has taken 1 fortress already and the soldiers are moving to take a city, in this case the troops in reserve will move towards the taken fortress to join up and reinforce the army there.

Per tile there is a fight, winner takes the tile and presses on to the next time, thus increasing the occupation level. When everything is occupied at max 80% of the total occupation is gained and then the struggle to completely subjugate the populate begins, thus reducing resistance and increase occupation.

Now, the main thing here is that it should be more interesting to look at the state of a planetary invasion and what's going on, I also think this makes it a lot more realistic.

That was my idea basically, please be nice when discussing it, even if you're telling me you think it's a bad idea. I'd love to get feedback on this, especially negative bits, but if you're not respectful I'm going to ignore it (shit taking my skills is fine xD).

It's just an idea though, I don't know if it is possible to do it like this, what kind of micromanagement ramifications this has (I didn't put any strategy or moving the forces around yourself for that very reason). I'd love to hear your input on this and let's discuss about how we can make planetary invasions more fun!


© Post "Making Planetary Invasions Great Again (an idea for improvement that just popped into my head)" for game Stellaris.

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