EMPEROR OF THE FADING SUNS FAQ
By Tom Chick
VI. THE CHURCH
VII. THE MERCHANT LEAGUE
VIII. BYZANTIUM II AND THE REGENCY
E. ET CETERA
E. FIXING THE GUNSHIP BUG
XII. WISH LIST
What is Emperor of the Fading Suns?
Emperor of the Fading Suns is a strategy game developed by Holistic
Design and distributed by Segasoft. It is set in a science fiction
universe based on the Fading Suns role-playing game. It can be
described as a blend of Renaissance Italy and Frank Herbert's Dune.
What is EFS, EotFS, and EOFS?
EFS has become the most commonly used acronym for Emperor of the
Fading Suns after an early period of turmoil, strife, and confusion.
To quote Steve Yancey (firstname.lastname@example.org) from the newsgroup: "This
game seems to have more problems than most as far as its identity in
subject lines: EOTFS, EOFS, EFS, Emperor/Empire [of the] Fading Suns,
etc. I decided to go with EFS since that's the acronym the game
itself goes by when it installs. There is precedent for including
"of" though -- MOO2 (not MO2), HOMM2 (not HMM2, but why not HOMAM2??,
or since we
have C&C, perhaps HOM&M2?)." Despite Steve's gallant attempt to cloud
the issue, everyone seems to have settled on EFS.
Who is Holistic Design?
These are the guys who brought us Battles of Destiny, Merchant Prince,
Hammer of the Gods, and Machiavelli the Prince.
What's with those ads for EFS anyway?
Who knows what's going on in the hearts and minds of marketing folk.
EFS has a, umm, unique advertising campaign in print magazines. If
you've ever quickly flipped past an ad with a picture of a kitten, a
puppy, or some baby ducks under a heartwarming word like "Friendship",
you've missed the ad for EFS. Congratulations.
What are the system requirements?
Emperor of the Fading Suns requires Windows 95, a 486/66, 35MB of hard
drive space, a Direct X compatible video card, and a CD-ROM drive.
The installation routine slaps Direct X 3.0 onto your system and
reboots your computer whether you like it or not.
Where can I get a demo?
What's the latest version?
Version 1.1. Version 1.2 is currently in QA at Segasoft. Holistic
has assured us that v1.0 and v1.1 games will work with v1.2.
Are there any strategy guides available?
Online Gaming Review has a helpful article by
Where are all my Firebirds going?
There is an undocumented maintenance cost of 500Fb/year for each lab.
Why am I producing so many Singularities?
There's a bug that causes hyper production of some resources, most
commonly Singularities. Holistic says this will be fixed in version
1.2. In the meantime, many people feel this renders the game
virtually unplayable. There is some speculation that this bug may be
related to certain House traits.
How can I arrange cities to squeeze the maximum production out of my
Chris Smith (email@example.com) suggests zigging to the
left or right at the start and end of a five hex line separating
cities. Instead of merely counting out six hexes in one direction
(for instance, city-south-south-south-south-south-new city), jog the
line in another direction at the beginning and end (in the above
example, city, southeast-south-south-south-southeast-new city). Chris
says that if you do this consistently, it arranges your cities in
triangular grids with no wasted space. I'm not sure how this works
(apparently it's a function of how hexes are arranged), but just
thinking about it makes my brain hurt.
What is the formula to calculate movement costs from the figures in
the TERRCOST.DAT file?
Each hex has up to four layers. For example, you could have mountains
on top of trees on top of grass. To figure out the movement cost for
a unit into a particular type of terrain, you take the movement type
of the unit, the terrain type, and the type of planet. Reference
these numbers in the TERRCOST.DAT table. Do this for each layer in
the hex, then multiply each of the layers together to get the actual
movement cost. For instance, a militia unit on a jungle world
entering a mountain + trees + grass hex would have the following
(Mountain = 1.5) * (trees = 1.5) * (grass = 2.0) = 4.5
Since movement cost is an integer value, it is rounded down to 4.
Does the damage incurred by a Transport landing outside a city vary
with the terrain type on which it lands?
Do aircraft have to land?
Yes. They must end every other turn in a city or on a spaceship.
How do I divide up cargo pods?
Drag the pod into an empty unit window and you'll have to option to
divide the resource between two separate pods.
Where is the hot spot to load units onto transports?
Think of the icon of the unit you are loading as a cursor. The hot
spot on the cursor is the upper left hand corner. If you click when
the hot spot is anywhere in the transport's icon, you should hit it.
Is the movement of units carried into orbit and back down supposed to
be lost? If movement points are a function of time passing, then the
paradigm is broken if you can ferry units across the planet on Landers
and then have them use their movement points as well.
No. Limitations of the game engine and all that...
On a related note, is the movement of carried units in a jump supposed
to be lost? Bulk Haulers loaded with Fighters are inordinately
powerful: you can jump into a system and the Fighters still have their
movement available to attack any unsuspecting ships.
Holistic replied, "Sounds good to us. We like attacking each other
Is cargo supposed to be able to be transferable in space?
Yes, you're supposed to be able to transfer cargo in space. However,
this leads to some "Pony Express" tricks whereby a chain of transports
can carry a unit all the way across the galaxy in a single turn.
Also, if you have a waiting Lander, you can warp into a system,
transfer cargo onto the Lander, drop planetside, and attack in the
Henri H. Arsenault (firstname.lastname@example.org) takes advantage of this as a
convenient way to get around damaging your city-restricted Transports,
while landing eight units in one turn with a Bulk Hauler and two
Assault Transports: "You need to have eight units in space ships in
orbit around the planet. Let us say that you have the two landers
already loaded in space. You land and unload the two landers, leaving
four units near the city. You go into orbit to pick up four more
units by transferring them to the landers from other ships in orbit
that would be damaged if they landed themselves. Then you land the
four new units for a total of eight. Then you attack the city with
the eight units."
Is there any way to keep cargo from filling up crucial orbital slots
and restricting fleet size?
No. In response to a request that they change this, Holistic wrote:
"This is virtually impossible to code since certain cargo could be
unloaded in space. This would then produce an overstacked situation
we couldn't handle very well. Sorry. The stacking in space thing is
not an ideal thing for many reasons, but it was important to us. EFS
is supposed to stress ground combat to a greater degree. If you could
move around a few hundred bombardment ships like in many previous
space conquest games, then the ground units would be fairly useless."
What is rank?
Each unit has a rank that determines how close it stands to the battle
front, so to speak. When an attack is made against a stack, the
attacker is more likely to target units with the lowest ranks. Each
unit's rank number is in the unit.dat file. These are listed below in
Armored Bulk Hauler 9
Armored Freighter 9
Assault Lander 8
Blow Ship 2
Bulk Hauler 9
Cadiz Dreadnought 6
Carrier MkII 7
Cyber Fighter 1
Martyr Torp Bmbr 2
Meson Starbase 5
Pod Ship 8
Quick Mercy 1
Shroud Weaver 4
Space Fighter 1
Space Torp Bmbr 2
Spore Ship 3
Stealth Ship 0
Vau Carrier 7
Vau Transport 8
Veil Seeker 3
Vlad Cruiser 5
Anti-infantry Tank 2
Anti-Tank Gun 6
Armor Lgn 4
Assault Gun 5
Assault Lgn 4
Assault Tank 2
Atmos Fighter 0
Chem Shock Lgn 4
Fanatic Lgn 2
Gen Warrior Lgn 4
Heavy Inf Lgn 4
Holy Relic 9
Hover Anti Air 3
Hover Tank 2
Hover Tank Killer 3
Hvy Tank Killer 3
Infantry Lgn 4
Marauder Lgn 4
Med Tank 2
Mega Tank 2
Militia Lgn 4
Morph Divebomber 1
Morph Fighter 0
Naval Transport 8
Officer Corp 6
Pestulator Artillery 4
Plague Bomb 8
PTS Laser Canon 7
PTS Meson Canon 7
PTS Mis. Launcher 7
Ranger Lgn 4
Rebel Partisans 4
Rocket Art 5
Scout Tank 1
Shock Lgn 4
SP Anti Air 3
SP Artillery 5
Special Forces 4
Stealth Tank 3
Strategic Bmber 4
Symbiot Arcer 2
Symbiot Butcher 4
Symbiot Minder 8
Symbiot Nester 9
Symbiot Reaver 3
Symbiot Spitter 0
Symbiot Tank 1
Tank Killer 3
Tracker Lgn 2
Vau Fighter 0
Vau Guard 7
Vau Jet Bike 2
Vau Mandarin 8
Vau Warrior 3
Vau War-Skif 4
Vau War-Tower 5
Vau Worker 9
Xyll Warbeast 4
How many attacks does a unit get during each attack phase?
Below is the number of times a unit gets to try to hit its chosen
target during that particular attack phase. The unit will switch
targets if it kills its current target and still has attacks
Does terrain have any effect on combat?
Cities provide a defensive bonus. If a player has researched the
appropriate technologies (e.g. Jungle Environment), then his units get
a bonus on that world type. The agility.dat files were intended to
apply modifiers to agility based on what kind of terrain a unit was
in, but this was dropped. The .dat file was left in, although it's
full of zeroes.
How do I use ground units with Close Space attacks?
Marauder Legions and Symbiot Butchers can be placed in Carriers. They
will then add their Close Space attacks in a space battle. This will
only work with Carriers; they count as regular cargo in Transports.
How is the damage from a successful hit determined?
Each unit has 100 points of health (think of these as hit points).
When a unit is successfully hit (attacker's accuracy vs. defender's
agility), the attacker's modified attack strength (attack strength *
experience modifier * health * relic, attack type, and house
modifiers) is compared to the defender's modified armor strength
(armor * experience modifier * health * relic, attack type, and house
modifier). The ratio of these numbers is applied to the appropriate
column in damage.dat and a random number from 1-10 determines the
number of points done to the target's health. Following is the table
Attack Damage Table
1-5 1-4 1-3 1-2 1-1 2-1 3-1 4-1 5-1 6-1 7-1 8-1
01 1 1 1 5 10 15 20 25 30 40 50 60
02 2 3 5 10 15 20 25 30 40 50 60 70
03 3 5 10 15 20 25 30 40 50 60 70 80
04 5 10 15 20 25 30 40 50 60 70 80 90
05 10 15 20 25 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
06 15 20 25 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 100
07 20 25 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 100 100
08 25 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 100 100 100
09 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 100 100 100 100
10 40 50 60 70 80 90 100 100 100 100 100 100
What are the modifiers for selecting "Assaults" and "Feints" when
combat is initiated?
Assault: Attack strength x 1.2, Armor x .8
Feint: Attack strength x .8, Armor x 1.2
How do Psychic Attacks work?
During the Psychic combat phase, attacks take place as normal
(attacker's accuracy vs. defender's agility), but Psychic Defense is
substituted for a unit's armor when damage is determined.
Are some units immune to some attacks?
The target.dat file lists which attack types can be used against which
units. There are some very significant data here, such as the fact
that Direct attacks are useless against foot units and Close attacks
are useless against vehicles. Below are the types of attacks which
can affect a given unit type. Note that *all* units are vulnerable to
Foot: Indirect, Close
Wheel: Indirect, Direct, RangeSp
Tread: Indirect, Direct, RangeSp
Air: Air, RangeSp
Naval: Underwater, Indirect, Direct, RangeSp
Space: RangeSp, DirectSp, CloseSp
Hover: Indirect, Direct, RangeSp
Jump: RangeSp, DirectSp, CloseSp
Crawler: Indirect, Direct, RangeSp
Lander: RangeSp, DirectSp, CloseSp
What are the strength and armor multipliers for experience? The
manual has contradictory information on this.
Experience Multipliers: Green x .8, Expert x 1.0, Elite x 1.2
What's the difference between "Declare War on Another" and "War Pact"?
"Declare War on Another" means you're asking the other House to
declare war unilaterally. "War Pacts" are the simultaneous
declarations of war from two Houses.
VI. THE CHURCH
Of what use are Clergy?
Clergy are useful for increasing your Flock number, but since the
whole Sect thing is currently boogered up, Clergy are all but useless.
Holistic says that Clergy, Scientists, and Merchants are artifacts of
an earlier version of the game and they will be removed in version
How does the Church know when I'm researching proscribed technologies?
Is this automatic? Is there anything I can do to hide my labs? How
long does it take the Inquisition to strike? Is there a diplomacy
check of any kind made or is the Church equally likely to send an
Inquisition against friends and enemies?
Holistic has been a bit guarded about providing the answers to these
questions, but it seems that the Church automatically knows when and
where proscribed tech is being researched and they should immediately
send an Inquisition. Some folks have suggested that giving the Church
maps of worlds with labs makes an Inquisition more likely, but I've
been unable to confirm this. Holistic claims their intent was to
discourage early research of proscribed techs until a House is strong
enough to fend off the Inquisition. However, a bug causes the
Church's orbital slots over Holy Terra to get jammed up so the
Inquisition can't leave. Version 1.2 will supposedly fix the traffic
jam bug and "make the Church a bit more interesting".
VII. THE MERCHANT LEAGUE
What determines when and if an Agora is replenished?
A League freighter must orbit the planet. It should restock the
planet on the turn after it arrives. But there seems to be a problem
with League ships freezing up and failing to replenish Agoras.
However, there's something squirrelly about the way that resources are
available for production when you buy them from the League on the unit
building screens. Sometimes unit building is limited by the resources
in the Agora, but sometimes it's not.
VIII. BYZANTIUM II AND THE REGENCY
Why is there no starvation on Byzantium II, even with Universal
Warehouse turned off?
This is a bug that should be fixed in 1.2.
Can stacks including Spies, Assassins, and Dopplegangers attack on
Byzantium II before combat is allowed?
Yes, but this is a bug.
How does spotting work in space?
Spotting works in space exactly like it does on the ground, except
there is no provision for spotting strength dissipating with range.
In other words, if a unit's camouflage rating +/-2 is higher than its
opponent's spotting rating, the unit will remain hidden. Note that
spotted space units remain spotted until they move, even if the
spotter is destroyed or leaves. Note that this also means there is
*no* way to spot Stealth Raider Ships until they attack.
How exactly do Plague Bombs, Hospitals, and the Cure for Necrosis
If a plague bomb gets used in combat, then it infects everyone within
a five-hex radius. These folks get marked as infected, but they do
not suffer the plague's effects yet. At the end of the turn units
infected with the plague make a saving throw. If they succeed, they
do not contract the plague. If they fail, then they have the
full-blown plague and will be in trouble next turn.
At the beginning of the next turn, the computer checks each of your
units that have the plague. If a unit passes the saving throw, then
it takes no damage that turn and does not infect the area around it.
If it fails the saving throw then it takes 5-15 points of damage and
infects a five-hex area around it.
If a random number from 0 to 99 is greater than the unit's Saving
Throw, it fails. A unit's Saving Throw is its Health/2 + the
Hospital + Hospital's Health * Loyatly/3000
Cure for Necrosis + 25 and double hospital bonus
Foot of St. Ignatius + 50 for entire planet
St. Amalthea's Lancet + 100 for stack
Units can also contract the plague if their health is less than 25,
they are starving, and they fail their saving throw. Cities can also
get the plague if their health is less than 25 and they are starving.
Effects are the same as for units. Once a unit has contracted the
plague, there is no way to get rid of it. Can you say "Disband"?
I've killed five Nobles from House X, but he's still in the game!
It's possible for a House to collect extra Nobles. Rebel Nobles can
be captured and Nobles can be found in Ruins.
Are Blademasters still considered nobles for voting purposes on ByzII
and for Charismatic Leadership stack bonuses?
D. ET CETERA
How do you ID a planet's type?
By the artwork used for the terrain.
Are the Vau ever supposed to do anything?
They are only supposed to respond if you attack them.
How do you spell "scepter"?
On Holy Terra in the year 1997, scepter is spelled s-c-e-p-t-e-r.
Apparently this will change to "sceptor" sometime in the next couple
EFS is easily hacked by using a text editor to modify the .dat files
in the dat subdirectory. Almost all of the information below comes
from Tom Henderson's informative and thorough posting on the
newsgroup, much of which I've quoted verbatim. I can take no
credit/responsibility for his diligent work, so please regard the next
section as Tom's contribution to the FAQ.
Following are the files and their contents:
agility.dat Terrain modifiers to agility (not used)
arborium.dat Arborium production by terrain type
damage.dat Table used to determine combat damage
farm.dat Farm production by terrain type
mine.dat Mine production by terrain type
prod.dat Resource production for non-harvest cities
profile.dat Some kind of AI routine?
relics.dat Relics and their effects
res.dat Resource descriptions and League prices
roadcost.dat Cost of building roads (not used)
stock.dat Resources kept in Agoras
strbuild.dat Data on each structure type
target.dat Determines which attacks affect which units
tech.dat The technology tree
tercolor.dat Terrain color schemes
terrcost.dat Movement costs
traits.dat Default traits for each House
unit.dat Units stats
unitrulz.dat Hmm. Dunno this one.
unitspot.dat Terrain modifiers for spotting units
well.dat Well production by terrain type
To modify a units stats just go to the unit.dat file. For the most
part the values are self-explanatory. The few that aren't are:
Cargo = cargo carrying capacity, max. four, three may not work
CanBcargo is a flag: 1 = can be carried; 0 = cannot be carried(just
one little change and you can load your freighters full of
!Combat is a flag for combat capable or not: 0 = can fight; 1 = can't
fight (! is the negative symbol in C hence the !combat)
Crd/turn is upkeep in firebirds (I guess somebody on the design team
still likes credits!)
Cred is the one time credit cost to build. This is not shown ANYWHERE
in the game (NOTE: Holistic says, "Like the agility table this was
stuff we were playing with in the design stage. However, this code
was removed since it affected the interface.").
Unit is the id# of a prerequisite unit. -1 = no unit. Otherwise use
the # at the start of the unit records.
Bldgs- this specifies where a unit can be built: -1 means it can't be
built (this is used for special units like Inquisitors); the rest are
7 Hive (symbiots)
10 Vau city
16 Alien ruins
ReqdTech uses the tech id# from the tech.dat file; you can specify up
to 4 different techs.
Tax and Flock are either toggles or values; they are, respectively,
tax income from a unit and the amount of voting flock it provides its
Range is "used internally", according to Holistic. Whatever that
Rank is the order units in a stack are attacked during combat; it
ranges from 0-9: 0 being first and 9 being last.
RoP is uncertain: 1 (true) is used for every unit but Relics,
Sceptors, and Cargo Pods. It may have something to do with being a
live unit. Perhaps it represents vulnerability to plague or
Lastly the .flc file is listed. This is the FLIC animation file from
the FLC directory that will appear when you view the unit.
Tom says "I've changed pretty much all the above to a game in progress
without any crashes, but it's too soon to say what the effect is on
the AI if you radically change his force structure."
You can change the existing units and also use the existing "dummy"
slots (Scientists, for instance, aren't of any use in the game). To
add a completely new unit you need to add a new line under an existing
icon record. Each of the numbered unit records corresponds to a
particular icon or piece. If you look at record #83, you'll see
militia and tracker; in the game these two units have the same icon.
To add another piece just copy a line from any record and insert it
before the "}" of the icon you would like to use. Tom recommends that
you either make the new units upgrades or use very different movement
rates that will show up on the icon; otherwise, you'll go nuts telling
them apart. Change the animation file field to any of the files in
the FLC dir. If you have access to something that can read/write FLIC
format animation, then you can write your own. The Tech codes are a
little more problematic but if you add numbers to tech.dat's records
in sequence you'll come up with the 113 id#'s.
Obviously the values for engineers will have a very large impact on
the game. Increasing the movement rates of space ships can change
things quite a bit as well. Changing Cargo Pods to Crawler movement
type will prevent players breaking them off into impromptu "hover
The tech.dat is fairly straightforward. It lists the tech's name,
prerequisites, the cost in Research Points(RPs), where it can be found
in the archives, and the text that will be displayed when the tech is
viewed. The techs are numbered from 0 to 113. All references to tech
requirements are indexed by these numbers. The required tech fields
can also contain codes. The 900 codes are used to show categories and
they remain on the tech screen after being researched. The "Nothing"
code of 900 is a special case, of course, and is always available.
The other 900s are: 990 Microbiology, 991 Physics, 992 Psychosocial
Engineering, and 993 Applied Technologies. Note that with the
exception of Applied Tech, these are *not* just headers. They're in
the tech tree and must be researched like any other tech.
The 800 code basically "comments out" the tech from the game. These
were apparently techs that were discarded during the design process.
The useless 800's are:
Plague Bomb Cure
Holistic says Vau Psychology should have been removed. They had
intended to allow a Vau unit (like the Xyll Warbeast, which is a
Symbiot unit), but never got around to it.
You can change any of the values of the existing tech but be careful:
remember that unit.dat and strbuild.dat might need to be adjusted.
Unfortunately can't add new tech but you can use the slots used by the
"useless 800" techs, Vau Psychology, and the Applied Tech slot, which
is just a header.
The archive text files can be modified as well. Tom has been
modifying them by adding hard data so they provide bona fide online
help rather than just flavor. These files can be found in the
manowitz subdirectory. For instance, v1chp006.txt is volume 1 chapter
6. You can even change or edit the associated illustrations. These
can be found in the pcx formatted files in the same subdirectory. The
text files include a tag listing the appropriate illustration. To
create your own chapter, you can add a line to the volume#.txt file
were "#" is the volume you want to modify. To avoid changing all the
following references in tech.dat, add new chapters to the end of the
file. After you add the chapter title at the end, create the
appropriate file name and add any text you want to show up, as well as
an optional illustration tag. The easiest way to do this is to copy
an existing chapter. Make sure the name of the file is correct.
Tom gives the following example:
"To add a chapter about "Excrement Launchers" to volume 5 you'd open
the volume5.txt file and add the line 'Excrement Launchers' to the end
of the file (actually you should add it between 'Plague Bomb' and
'Conclusion'). Save this and open v5chp001.txt (or any of the other
vol 5 files). Change the first line to 'Excrement Launcher', change
the text, modify or delete the illustration tag (the mind boggles at
what that picture would look like!), and save it as v5chp048.txt
(Plague Bomb is v5chp47.txt). You're done!"
To add your own volume, just create a volume file like those already
existing and the appropriate chapter files. Unfortunately it's
uncertain how to get your new volume to show up on the pull-down menu
from the main screen, but vol\chapter references in tech.dat work
Strbuild.dat is the key file dealing with structures. It lists the
name of a structure. If you number these sequentially, you'll get the
water = a flag indicating if the structure can be built on water.
land = a flag indicating if the structure can be built on land.
road = a flag that indicates whether a structure includes a road (?).
barren = a flag that indicates if a structure can be built on a barren
neutral = a flag that perhaps indicates whether a particular structure
retains it's neutral color even if occupied (e.g. a "fertile" space).
build = a flag that indicates if a structure can be constructed.
Tom notes, "The build flag is kind of neat. If you set a non
buildable flag to 1 it will show up on the build list (Arborium will
get pushed down on top of the road button in the lower left corner).
This is kind of cool as you can build agoras, ruins, etc.,
unfortunately these are seeded during setup with goodies so you don't
area = the area around a structure that is used for production. This
can be changed, but remember that each one point increase increases
the no-build radius by two. Existing overlaps when this value is
changed seem to cause no problems. If you want to increase production
though, Tom recommends increasing yields in the harvesting city's .dat
file. Another intriguing possibility is adding an area to all the
other cities. This negates the "megacity" strategy of surrounding
your palace with layer after layer of cities. If you do this, be sure
to increase the width of your shield accordingly (this is a variable
Crd/Trn = number of credits the structure costs to operate. Using
this you can assign cities a maintenance cost. Also if you put in
negative numbers, a city will generate income. Oddly enough, while
Labs cost 500 to run, the value doesn't show up here. This is
probably because the code that charges the 500 also turns the lab off
if it isn't paid. This can't, however, be done from within this
field: you just get the normal low cash warning. By the way, if you
don't think labs should cost 500 just set this field to -500 for labs.
Credits = possibly a one time credit cost. It doesn't work, however.
Turns2Bld = possibly meant to be the number of turns to build a
structure. This also doesn't work
Tech = prerequisite technology. Note that unlike units and techs,
only one tech prerequisite is allowed. This is straightforward; just
put in the tech code you want. Techs are arranged sequentially in
tech.dat with "Nothing" counting as 0.
Value = probably used by the seeding algorithm that sets up the
initial game. All the values are 100 except "unknown" which is the
generic city icon you see for unspotted cities.
Tom notes, "I don't believe it's possible to add new structures
because of several key things that aren't listed on this chart. In
particular there's no link to the art (probably stored in the
struct#.bin files in the bin directory), no way to set if a structure
"pops" when entered, or whether a city produces, harvests, or does
neither. This leads me to believe that the order of structures is
Prod.dat holds the core of the economics system. It is a set of
records indicating by city what and how much of one resource generates
What you can change: the types and the amounts of both input and
output resources and whether a particular resource is needed at all.
All these changes will show up correctly on the build screen and
What you can't change: you can't have more then one output and you
can't add new records (e.g. making your palace produce monopols).
Farm.dat, arborium.dat, mine.dat and well.dat contain the production
values by terrain type and tile set for harvest cities. Each type of
terrain can produce up to 3 different resources. Farm.dat has
instructions on how to change these values. You can change the
amounts and types of existing production.
Tom's ubiquitous hacking disclaimer reads as follows: "ALWAYS back up
your original .dat dir before making any changes. This info is from my
own personal investigations and I am not affiliated with Holistic or
Segasoft or anybody else. TRY AT YOUR OWN RISK!!!!"
E. FIXING THE GUNSHIP BUG
As of version 1.1, there is no way to build Gunships. There was
apparently some confusion when the game mastered: the unit chart says
that Powered Csteel Armor (tech #54) should allow Gunships. But the
unit.dat entry links to Gunship to Ceramsteel Armor (tech #38), which
has been "remmed" out of the tech.dat file. Therefore, to reinstate
Gunships, simply change the "Req'd Tech" field in unit.dat from "38"
Below are a listing of bugs, some of which I haven't been able to
personally corroborate(labeled "unconfirmed"), some of which Holistic
claims are fixed in the next patch (v1.2), and some of which Holistic
says they may address in a later patch (v1.3).
* An AI House won't declare himself Emperor after holding the Regency
for the time required. Holistic's playful, but rather alarming reply
to this was: "If you are losing that bad, why are you still playing
* On some machines, an intolerable slowdown starts to kick in after
5020 or so. Holistic says it is addressed somewhat in v1.2, but they
will continue to look into it in v1.3.
* Singularities and other resources can mysteriously start
hyper-producing. This may be connected to certain House traits.
Holistic claims it will be fixed in v1.2.
* Even though an Agora's resources have been depleted, you can still
buy goods from the Merchant League from within the "build units"
screen. Holistic claims it will be fixed in v1.2.
* Sometimes units can be built without having the necessary resources
and sometimes the resource cost isn't deducted from your stores.
Holistic claims it will be fixed in v1.2.
* Removing technologies from the maintenance queue can cause odd
problems, including negative research numbers. Holistic says they
haven't seen this one. If anyone has a saved game with this, please
forward it to them.
* Assigning techs from multiple labs that have completed research on
the same turn can cause odd problems, such as some labs researching
"Nothing" instead of the assigned tech. Holistic says of this bug,
"There are some display glitches but nothing that affects game play to
* Naval units cannot be disbanded.
* No score is tallied at the end of the games (unconfirmed). This may
be addressed in v1.3.
* AI houses, Rebels, and the Symbiots have been known to declare war
on themselves. Holistic claims this has no effect on gameplay, but
may be addressed in v1.3.
* Resources can be shuffled around without moving cargo pods by
instructing a city to build something and then canceling it. No
matter where on the planet the required resources were located, they
will be deposited in cargo pods in the city that received the build
orders. Holistic says they don't have a good idea how to fix this
without disabling the cancel build feature.
* If you enter a Ruin with Ministry units and discover "lost" units,
the Ministry units convert to House units (unconfirmed). Holistic
says this is legit.
* Ministry engineers produce House cities. Holistic says this is
* Spies in a stack allow the entire stack to attack on Byzantium II.
Holistic claims it will be fixed in v1.2.
* The Regent can switch Ministry assignments mid-turn, taking
advantage of all three Ministries in one turn if he so desires.
Holistic claims it will be fixed in v1.2.
* The Church suffers from traffic jams by having 20 ships parked in
orbit over Holy Terra. This prevents Inquisitors from being ferried
to offending labs. Holistic claims it will be fixed in v1.2.
* The computer players do not change their planets' Sect. Holistic
says, "No fix planned as yet. We would like to add more features
there, but haven't come up with anything that doesn't disrupt the game
* Even after changing the Sect of a planet, newly produced units are
always Orthodox. Holistic claims it will be fixed in v1.2.
* There is no way to build Gunships. See HACKING: FIXING THE GUNSHIP
BUG. Holistic claims it will be fixed in v1.2.
* The Church Diplomacy screen always registers hearts for each Sect's
standing with each House. Holistic says, "This is correct. The art
is mostly meaningless."
* Landing Assault Landers brings up a warning that the ship will be
* If you select "None" in the unit build queue and then at the yes/no
dialogue box press "No", it asks you yes/no a second time.
* With the insanity trait, loss of production extends to singularities
such that no singularities can be made (unconfirmed). Holistic says
this will be addressed in v1.3.
* Someone reported being able to disband a newly captured unit
multiple times while in the stack info screen. The unit finally
disappeared when he exited the screen, but the resources from the
multiple disbandings remained (unconfirmed). Holistic says they
haven't seen this one. If anyone has a saved game with this, please
forward it to them.
* Required units (e.g. an officer is needed to build a spy) aren't
required when you auto-buy resources from the League. Holistic says
this will be addressed in v1.3.
XII. WISH LIST
Note that I haven't just thrown in willy nilly every suggestion I've
received on the wish list. I've only included upgrades and changes
that seem reasonable and fairly simple. I've gotten slews of
suggestions that I didn't include for various reasons (e.g. ideas
contrary to the spirit of the game, complicated interface changes,
minute changes to unit data or the resource chain, etc). Currently,
Holistic is aware of all the suggestions below and those that aren't
listed as being included in v1.2 are under consideration for v1.3.
* There should be overview screens of what units are being produced
where for better unit management. Holistic has included a City
Production screen in v1.2.
* Cities should have a "continue to build" option or an auto-queue.
Holistic says that the previous unit built remains highlighted in
* The interface for Bombardment (repeat attacks require excessive
scrolling and clicking), Landing (we know that some ships will take
damage), Unloading (an "unload all" button would be convenient), and
Building Units (confirmation for selected unit to be built is
unnecessary) should be streamlined.
* Some record of promises made to other Houses (specifically in terms
of votes and Ministries offered/promised).
* Passwords should be added for PBEM turns. Some sort of insurance
that players aren't using hacked .dat files would also be nice.
* There should be an option to toggle cities on and off for better
control of production, particularly cities that suck up mid-level
resources like Electronics that might be needed elsewhere.
* There should be a better breakdown of the budget (i.e. unit
maintenance, lab maintenance, taxes/planet).
* Being at war with the Church should inflict a loss of planet
loyalty, equal to or greater than the penalty for being
* There should be a way to access the research screen when you get an
offer for a tech trade. Also, the tech screen should be more
convenient to reach (as it is, you have to hunt down a lab).
Thanks to Ken Lightner and Andrew Greenberg for providing answers to
almost *all* of the above questions. They've exhibited the patience
of Job as I've pestered them and flooded their inboxes with questions.
Special thanks to Tom Henderson for letting me include his excellent
posts on hacking the .dat files. And certainly thanks to all of you
Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with Holistic. I cannot be held
responsible for any injuries sustained due to reading this FAQ or
excessive time spent playing EFS. If your monitor blows up and blinds
you, sue someone with more money than me.
Please send any comments, corrections, and additions to
*** No .sig for me, thank you. ***
The Spoiler Centre