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Militia

Militia

With increasing interest in local politics, civilian support for system claims and general improvements of world infrastructure, it comes as little surprise to find that players are also looking for other forms of support, especially when it looks like somebody is about to hand them their ass.

This is not an easy essay to write simply because there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to panicking base governors beseeching planetary civil authorities to muster up hard working and tax-paying civilians and turn them over to be used as cannon fodder whose role is often to delay the inevitable while the governor organises the stripping of vital assets from said base before buggering off and leaving everyone to die.

There are quite a lot of variables to consider but below is a rough idea of what factors are taken into consideration by the GM when responding to a special action begging for aid from the civilian population. Before this however it is sensible to dispel some illusions about the ‘awesomeness’ of these free troops, these unpaid saviours that apparently have the power to appear at whim, screwing over months of planning.



How good are militia compared with other troops?
A typical militia troop from a world with contemporary levels of technology will have defence and damage of 2 and 1 control factor, i.e. half as good as a mercenary and less than a quarter as good as a soldier due to a soldier’s damage reduction value of 1.

There is however some variance in these numbers based on the location where the militia was raised. Native militia are particularly poor with no control factors and as they are armed with little more than sticks and stones, their damage is almost negligible. Even a contemporary world may produce inferior militia such as could be expected from a world depleted by conflict or otherwise unable to provide ordnance.

Where they originate from martial cultures they may have improved damage and control factors though depending on the culture it is more often the case that one has been sacrificed for increasing the other. Aggressive cultures for example may have damage of 1.5 while their control factors have decreased to 0.8 or even less. Pacifistic cultures are likely to produce generally inferior militia (and fewer of them - see below).

The greatest value of militia however is their ability to soak damage that would otherwise be inflicted on trained troops. From a purely pragmatic point of view, militia are primarily a sentient shield.

In most cases militia will have a promotion route, meaning that there will be amongst the militia some that show their natural talents. During the course of combat, some will therefore be promoted, normally to mercenary status.
How much do they cost?

Militia are unique to a specific world and while they are on secondment to a base on the world, their wages are paid for by the civilian government. Should, in their infinite wisdom, governors decide that the militia can fight elsewhere in the universe; they will lose this subsidised status and have to be paid for as normal personnel.

The actual cost of raising a militia is generally free for the basic amount, though normally the amount raised can be increased by up to a factor of 3. Generally speaking this increase is around 2 stellars/militia. Offers of other goods in lieu of payment are not viable for a few reasons. Getting the goods out of the base at short notice and to the appropriate civilian location is impractical. Determining what they actually want and arguing over the price could take time. Most importantly, if a governor believes that a base will fall, they have no qualms about giving away goods that are likely to be captured by the attacker anyway – which falls into the category ‘taking the piss’. So, we require that stellars are paid with the theory that when it is all over, the stellars will be used by the civilian population in the merchandising complexes and the purchase of trade goods. Whether they are buying from old or new owners of the base is down to how things turned out.

How long can you keep them?
Militia are very much a temporary measure, raised in need and let go as soon as possible. Normally, once they are no longer needed a governor can either run a special action to release them back into society, possibly with some sort of flowery speech and some goods (yes, at this point they are more than happy to accept trade goods and other things). Alternatively the governor can simply sack them, saving themselves the cost of a special action. There is no negative effect of sacking them and unless there is something specific be it information or orbital reference to a nice now cenotaph, sacking is perfectly acceptable.

If however you enjoy having your free troops manning the walls and saving the wage bill you can of course simply keep them in the base. As the date the militia were mustered has been saved, this could backfire. The use of agents and operatives could be used to stir antipathy for being kept on long after they fulfilled their duty. It will affect future attempts to raise militia and should the amount of militia be excessive, it can have a negative knock-on to the planetary economy (at some point, once civvy trading has been launched I will be working on some code that deals with attrition of militia and future attempts to raise them, once the values have been set by the GM).

Population Size
As a starting figure a rapid response militia will be around 0.02% of the total population, i.e. 1 in 5,000. This is effectively a proportion of the planetary defence force that can be seconded to a base in trouble.

A newly established population with basic colonisation support will be able to provide at short notice around 20 militia! While a stage 3 colony with a population of 5 million will be able to supply around 1,000. Realistically it is probably not worth bothering attempting to raise a militia at a moment’s notice from the civilian population if the population is less than 5 million unless there are extenuating circumstances.

Species and Culture
As pointed out above, some cultures are more martial than others and by the same token so are some species. This generally has a factor between 0.1 and 1.
Typical examples:
Wimbles are notoriously difficult to convince to pick up arms and normally have a factor of 0.3 while most humans and dewiek have a value of 1.

Relationship to Base and Affiliation
At one end of the scale there are outposts that have been happily mining ores on worlds that have never had any interaction with the civilian population at all. The civilian population may not even be aware that the outposts exist. At the other end of the scale, there may have been pre-starbase-construction special actions getting to know the population and establishing permission to build. Following this the new governor of starbase may have agreed a programme of uplifts to the population and carried them out, exhausting modules, tech, goods and stellars for the benefit of the civilian population (and yes, also increasing trade and merchandising – it’s not purely driven by altruism).

Next there is the relationship between the civilian population and the affiliation of the base. Is there civilian support for the system claim and if so, to what degree? Is the population for example the fanatical followers of the True One, do they swear allegiance to the Emperor? Do they hate the Flagritz having been liberated only a few years ago from planetary wide slavery?

Together these situations equate to a factor between 0 and 10, with 1 equating to a starbase on a world that contributes to the system claim of the starbase’s affiliation while 2 is appropriate for an imperially aligned world with respect to an IMP starbase. A factor of 10 is appropriate for a starbase that has just created a colony of 100,000 civilians and exhausted the appropriate tech, though a factor of 10 equates to only around two hundred militia! Even so, this level of loyalty is only likely to exist for a few months as the colonists find more important things to live for. A Flagritz starbase on a conquered wimble world will have a factor of around .5, presuming coercion (which equates to an overall factor 0.15 when taking into account wimbles disinclination to form militia).

Location of Base with respect to population centres
With respect to the rapid raising of militia, distance between the base and areas of high density population will play an important role. Civilian technology will to some degree mitigate excessive distance. If Transport tech have been given over to the civilian population and the world has reached stage 3 (at least 5 million), it is presumed that there is reasonably advanced and extensive transport infrastructure such that militia can get to a base that is within a few of sectors of urban and cultivated sectors. Where there are many cultivated and urban sectors with respect to the population, this equates to a lower population density. There is some degree of ‘fluffiness’ in determining this factor but for a world with 5M population and a combined total of less than 5 urban and cultivated sectors, having a base within a couple of sectors equates to a factor of 1, i.e. the basic amount of militia can be raised. If the world on the other hand had total of 15 urban and cultivated sectors scattered all round the world, then a factor of 0.5 is more realistic. Normally 1 is the upper limit, though under exceptional circumstances such as an asteroid, there is some justification of increasing it, though it is probable that this factor is modest compared to other situational modifiers.

For simplicities sake, for a world with a population in the hundreds of millions and urban and cultivated sectors on most continents, an upper limit to the base amount of 50,000 militia is considered practical (which can be increased to 150,000 with payment).

Recent Politics and Events
When raising a militia there is obviously going to be some sort of spin on the situation. Generally it is along the lines that whoever is on the horizon will not be as benign to the civilian population as those already here. No doubt tales of previous atrocities will be detailed and of course the ongoing civilian development programme will be terminated and as for those yummy unique foods from the home systems, they will obviously be a thing of the past. Together these can provide a convincing argument for increasing the size of the militia. By the same token, if this is the third militia raising attempt in as many days and the fate of previous militia is less than rosy, it is fairly clear that volunteers will be thin on the ground and even the civilian authorities will be somewhat unenthusiastic when it comes to sending more meat to the grinder.

Again, if there is little in the way of evidence that the governor is getting support from his own faction, locals will be less inclined to help out. As for the base asking for militia while stripping the base of veterans and tech… Militia may walk in through one gate, get a solid idea of that is in store for them if they fight and march straight back out.

If word* gets to civilian populations that the affiliation has a penchant for carpet-bombing their own bases after they are captured, you can be fairly certain that militia are unlikely to leap to the base’s defence.

*by this it is meant really solid evidence such as captured officers willing to testify

Perceived risk to militia and species integration
Militia know that they are no match for trained troops and no sentient creature (even hive) eagerly throw their lives away. As such militia need to be supported by regular troops in order to preserve the presumption that this is not a lost cause. As such a militia force will not normally be greater than twice the troop compliment of the base. Under most circumstances, the populations of the Peripheries being what they are, getting more than a few thousand militias to aid the cause is unlikely so this factor rarely crops up. This ratio is not exact because militia are not of the habit of counting troops and the quality of the troops may influence the ratio.

Add to this the species of the militia and the species of the troops they will be fighting alongside. Kastorian militia may not be overly keen to work with wimble mercs while human militia may not be overly fond of marching into combat with aquaphids, especially if it is on a water world.

When the militia is needed
So far the above has only dealt with the rapid response element of a militia force, this being available and added to a base as a result of a special action requesting aid and before any form of combat has been initiated. This is important as moving large numbers of civilians around is much easier if it is not under combat conditions. It is presumed that the base will handle the organisation of the militia as they turn up piecemeal at the port. These are rapidly equipped and assigned to troops stationed in the base.

Where a battle has already commenced it is a very different story. The militia will normally take a couple of days to organise and be outside the base, possibly in the nearest urban sector. As such pre-emptive request for militia is vastly superior to post-conflict request to muster.

Summary
Due to the generally sparsely populated nature of the Peripheries, militia rarely play a significant role and generally by the time a governor asks for aid from the civilian population the battle is already over. Where the governor is aware of an impending attack, is on one of the heavily populated worlds and had good relations with the civilian population, the raising of a militia may be enough to turn the tide of a battle.
When attacking a base, a cursory population scan will indicate if militia could play a significant role in any forthcoming conflict.

Worlds with the best levels of technology have the best militia. Security and Transport techs play key roles for small populations. Military and Naval techs are only effective for populations in the hundreds of millions.




Generally there will be two parts of raising a militia, a free element and a paid-for to muster element. As the second element normally requires confirmation by the player, it will arrive at the base a day later. This can in theory be superseded specifying a maximum budget for the second element (which may or may not be spent).
Where a conflict has already started, militia will form up in a nearby urban sector a few days after the request for aid.

The amount that can be raised is based on the population. Consider, all other factors being typical that a militia of around 0.05% of the population is a reasonable estimate. For a heavily populated world 50,000 free militia is considered the upper limit (150,000 including paid to muster militia).

For a typical world of 5,000,000 civilians, where there is support for the affiliation and species are similar to the starbase’s troops but little in the way of infrastructure investment, the base could raise around 2,000 free militia and a total of 6,000 for a cost of 8,000 stellars.

The maximum militia to troop ratios is around 2, therefore on Earth for example, the Imperial Services will need 75,000 troops in a base to maximise their call for militia.
Raising additional militia while inadvisable can be done. Results are likely to be poor, highly expensive and will have negative impacts on relations.

Militia on secondment from the civilian population and are free to the base while they are on their origin world though may convert to mercs, quit or negatively affect planetary infrastructure if not released in a timely manner. It is strongly advised that they be released ASAP.




 
News
Is open for business...
 
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***** Inter Galactic News *****

Huge fleet skirmish at the London/Crossley wormhole

A large fleet of over 700 DEN warships responded to the EMP action in Crossley, where a 4000 hull DEN platform was destroyed. Reports show the DEN ships caught a group of CIA ships napping and inflicted significant losses on the humans. IMP and GTT fleets moved to assist the CIA, matching DEN fleet numbers, but the arrival of over 1200 Hexamon ships seems to have tipped the battle in favour of the DEN-HEX alliance.

The combined DEN-HEX force pushed through the wormhole into the Heartland area of human space and retaliated, attacking several CIA platforms in response. The outnumbered Empire fleets abandoned the area and fled, they are currently waiting for the larger alien force to make their next move from their hiding places.
 
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***** Inter Galactic News *****

Admiral Lord Simms killed after a long and distinguished service to the Empire.

The Imperial Services have intercepted and serious damaged several DEN ships on the way to the Empire’s home systems. Unfortunately during the action Admiral Lord Simms was injured and reports from the Viceroy indicate he has passed away, fighting the enemies of the Empire like any true Imperial Officer.

The Viceroy has stated that the officers and crew of the DEN ships have been captured and are now awaiting trial at a secret IMP base.

DEN continue to strike at the Empire

Reports are coming in of multiple engagements between the Empire and the Dewiek Elder Nation over the last week. With several battles taking out Empire ships in the Heartland of the CIA.

AFT turn to piracy

The Association of Free Traders have, after a long history of neutrality, turned to piracy this week. AFT Drake boarded an IND ship in the Halo periphery, killing several of the crew in the process.
Independent trader Jarlebanke Langhofdi immediately took to the public communication channel demanding an answer to why supposedly peaceful traders had killed his crew and taken his ship.

The AFT remain silent over the attack.
 
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Combat Special Edition

Since the DEN started shooting at those lovable FEL fluffballs things have certainly been heating up. So we through it would be prudent to bring you, gentle beings of the peripheries, a special edition in order to keep you updated with all the latest action in regards to who the DEN are shooting and who is shooting them.

Felini strike back at Dewiek

Reports have come in of the FEL striking back at the DEN in the Kallisan system. A huge FEL force supported by the IMP and CIA assaulted DEN positions taking both the platform and base called Lucien. There was much rejoicing in the FEL camp as the Felini proved they were not such lovable fluffballs after all!

GTT get sucked into the war

A passing fleet of GTT warships got caught in the fighting and this saw the GTT enter the war. When asked about this CEO Fox pointed out they are not warships at all, they are trade defence ships. So how they came to be in the DEN system of Kallisan is a mystery to us. But the GTT CEO was clear that they only engaged using support and defend orders to protect allies. Needless to say, the CEO commented “We found ourselves on the Dewiek Nation’s enemy lists pretty soon after.”

Dewiek Nation attacks GTT positions in Orion Spur, breaking DOM system rules

A fleet of DEN warships has engaged and destroyed a significant number of GTT cargo ships and escorts in the DOM system Monument. The GTT immediately took to the public channels to ask why the DOM were not doing something. In reply the DOM issued a statement to stop, which the DEN ignored.

The DEN newssheet "The HOWL" published a completely unbiased review of the attack shortly after.

DOM make a choice

After the above incident and then further raiding by the DEN, taking out a few GTT cargo ships in the DOM system of Coptuv, the DOM seemed to have been faced with a choice of stopping drinking their tea and doing something or just hoping it would go away. Instead they seem to have decided to abandon the whole idea of being an active affiliation and we have since folded. The lengths some people will go to not to have their elevenses disturbed is truly staggering. We asked the DOM for a statement on their new system rules to share with our readers but have received no replies.

DOM positions share out

Just as we were going to press news has come in of various DOM assets being given to other affiliations or sold. Hopefully we will have more on this story in the next issue of your favorite factual newsheet. Yes, that's us at the SSS.

*** Affiliations ***


AFT Association of Free Traders (54) - Marion Tweedy
CIA Combined Intelligence Agency (64) - Laton CIA
DNA Displaced Natives Asylum (66) - DNA people
DTR Detinus Republic (58) - Morley Decker
DEN Dewiek Elder Nation (67) - Urd
DOM Dominion (57) – we believe the DOM are now inactive
FCN Falconian Republic (70) - Bacran
FEL Felini Tyranny (49) - Juris
FLZ Flagritz Republic (47) - Kayxaer
FET Frontier Exploration & Trade (56) - Cu Chulainn
GRC Gracians (13) - HG1
GTT Galactic Trade & Transport (52) - Xavier Fox
GCE Garcia Enterprises (4) - Neil
HEX Hexamon (23) - Ando
IMP Imperial Services (51) - Jack Jones
KRL Krell (30) - Namica
KRT Krell of the Reverence Temple (37) - Kal Torak
KST Kastor Kastorians (12) - Kastor
MZC Mizuchi Combine (86) - Mizuchi
MOH Mohache (73) - Listens
MIC Mohache Independent Commune (76) - Sleeps with Dragons
NLF Naplian Liberation Front (38) - NLFHQ
RIP Regularly Involved in Piracy - Githyanki
RRH Roy Robert Holdings (39) - Roy Roberts
SMS Stellar Mining and Smelting (53) - MikhailM
USN Ulian Stellar Nation (34) - Oeipus Prime
WMB Wimble Nations (25) - zz

* Leader MAY be inactive, affiliation may be active
** Affiliation has no leader but this is the only known contact

NPC / FoC: ARC, CIV, CGT, FRE, HBO, HEF, IND, ISP, JCN, MEK, MRC, PIR, PRV, TCA, TRN, KAS

Inactive: ANT, BHD, COD, HVE, IDC, RIP, RCF, SKW, TAG

Deceased: CAL

*** Submission ***

By private message to The Editor or via Mica if you prefer to remain anonymous.
 
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***** Inter Galactic News *****

New pirate threat rocks Corward Arm.

Several large pirate ships have been spotted in outer rings of Corward systems. Reports forwarded to us at the SSS allow us to exclusively tell readers that traders should keep their wits about them when moving through these areas.

No existing pirate menace has yet claimed ownership.

In a possibly unrelated event one of the FET cartel members claimed nothing was happening in the outer ring of Coptov shortly afterwards. But it could be that they are still trying to catch Empire backed pirates and have nothing to do with the new sightings.
 
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DEN continue to shoot innocents

The Dewiek have made themselves busy shooting at the peaceful and innocent traders of the SSL. Leader of Solar Spices and Liquors Mr TOAD has been vocal pointing out that the Beast-DEN are being totally unfair. News of a go-fund-me appeal are yet to surface though.

This office is sure that it must have provided the DEN light relief after picking on the equally defenceless Felini. Word is that the DEN faced such an uphill struggle in these recent actions they had to take up Felini inter-breeding to provide some entertainment as the battle reports were rather boring.
 
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Return of the LiQuans

A close associate of the Baron LiQuan has been haunting the Corewards periphery and like the old Baron it is said he has a meklan connection. It's unclear whether he obtained his meklan nanites via the CIA but there are rumours that the DEN may be helping the Liquan relative in a bid to sow discontent in the Stellar Empire. Exactly why they would start in Corewards is unclear although with DEN allies, the DOM, having strong positions both in the Sol system and the old Harcorp systems of Harlong and Coptuv they may be the linking factor.


 
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Meklan Unleashed on Mobile Bay

Mad Dewiek scientist Dr Kala released a number of Meklan on the busy world of Mobile Bay in the Yank system. Thousands of civilians have been killed in what is treated by DEN warlords as an amusing practical joke. Rather than take any responsibility for their affiliation’s reckless behaviour, a DEN lord rumoured to be half-meklan himself quipped he would nuke the planet whilst another merely saw it as an opportunity to test some of his greener troops in combat. Surprisingly, the KAS planetary defence force was up to the job of repelling the insidious incursion. Questions remain whether further meklan are stored elsewhere on the planet and whether anybody will challenge the Dewiek’s lack of care for the lives of innocents. Probably not, given how even the mighty IMP are now cowering from a fight with the DEN (see inside this edition).


 
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Who is behind the AFA?

Following the large scale holiday attack by the AFA against the FET the question of who is behind the attacks has been raised once again. What is clear is that the AFA is using ships that were transferred from the GTT to the IMP. The organisation and expertise of the operation also reduces the pool of potential candidates. Few can go from commanding a handful of broadswords to half a thousand warships and significant army logistics without a long stint in one of the more combative affiliations. With the DEN’s allies the HEX in close relations with the FET and no recent history of animosity between the aliens and FET, at least since the departure of former one-eye big-bun Norozov, it would be a bizarre turn of events if they were behind these attacks. Frankly, there’s no point dancing around it. The IMP are clearly behind the AFA. The question is what can anybody do about this move of significant Imperial resources to a black-flag agency?


 
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***** Inter Galactic News *****

Fox Effects Fantastic Turnaround

With his feet barely under the table, Xavier Fox has managed to dramatically turn things around at the GTT. With year-on-year sales figures up by 23%, manufacturing up 42% and ship production increased by 36%, the megacorporation is running at full steam with noticeable impact on local economies across the Stellar Empire. Political analysts also note that after a period of retrenchment following the disastrous leadership of Ike Krieger, investment in defence is at a five-year high. After such bullish growth, the trick will be for Mr. Fox to recruit C-level executives fast enough to match his ambitions. It is notable in temperament, the current crop of GTT politicals do not exhibit the monomaniacal xenophobia of their predecessors and have resisted repeated provocations by the DEN to enter a pointless spar before they have re-established superiority against the foolhardy aliens.


 

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I’ve played on and off for approximately 10 years, over a 20 year spell. After some interesting debate on the in-game forum, I did wonder what, exactly, has kept drawing me back to the game, when for so many others I’ve generally lost interest after a few months.

Ultimately, I think it is a combination of automation (that allows the game to handle thousands of positions to interact on a daily basis) coupled with Special Actions (that allow the story arc to develop in a way that could not be catered for by a set of predefined list of available orders).
-Zigic