So you want to play around with idea of running a Necrocracy (not to be mistaken with Necromancy) which throws hordes of undead at people? Perhaps you picked Necrophage and want to terrorize 2 civilizations living on your guaranteed habitable worlds, letting them realize just what the heck awaits them?
So you start a game. Pumped up and ready to make some zombies. Oh right, you gotta build the building so you can recruit them. What’s that? You need to actually research technology in order to build the building given by your civic?
Oh well, at least it’s permanently available research, maybe there is some discount even? Nope, you have to pay full price. Full 5000 research needed to unlock the thing you picked your civic for. For the same price you can get Colonial Centralization, or Doctrine: Fleet Support , or Doctrine: Space Combat , or Interstellar Fleet Traditions for 80% of the price. Basically at every step something more valuable comes up and as your neighbors are dumping all of their alloys into fleet (because AI lacks long term thinking) you are forced to focus on the fleet during early stages.
You are basically picking civic that is dead until you research specific technology, which competes against much better ones (for the same or similar price) all the damn time. But hey, maybe Zombie horde is worth it? These armies can fall off ridiculously fast. Their main benefit is the fact they cost energy instead of minerals, which often times will make them easy to spam, but holy heck, do they look bad when compared to Robotic Assault Army, which everyone can get by researching Droids. Yeah, they deal double morale damage, but Robots have twice the health, letting them pump out more sheer destruction.
Okay, maybe comparison is not fair as Robotic Assault Army requires more investment into tech tree. Let’s look at something zombies will directly compete against most of the time, Slave Armies. Slave Army deals the same amount of damage, but almost a third of morale damage, 25 percentage points more collateral damage…. And honestly, compared head to head, Slave Army wins anyway. 50 mineral cost is dirt cheap, but that’s not the main issue, energy mineral comparisons vary from game to game, sometimes you get better numbers with energy, sometimes better numbers with minerals. Problem is the fact that these two have the same exact health: 200, Slave Army doesn’t require civic and it’s locked behind absolutely amazing technology of Neural Implants, giving you access to Slave Processing Facility, which will let you milk even more resources from enslaved citizens. Undead armies having no morale is nice, but that’s about it. You are wasting too much going for undead horde.
But that’s just Robotic Assault Army/Slave Army comparison. Undead armies have one fundamental flaw, they stay the same the whole game. You are paying a civic slot to have access to okay army type, which will be completely overshadowed by stats of Xenomorphs, Psionic Armies or insane production rate of Clone Armies. Civics should be things that define your playthrough, not “Okay I ascended, I guess I’ll discard zombies now”.
Warrior Culture is great due to the flavor Entertainer job creates, Private Military Companies will become obscenely strong once armies will start to matter, Strength of Legions and Warbots are flavorless, but would become valuable if army combat mattered. On the other hand, zombie army basicaly handicaps you by giving no direct immediate benefit, forcing you into researching technology IF YOU WANT TO USE THE CIVIC YOU PICKED (which no other millitary civic does) and result is just okay.
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