This terminology and variables used here are carryovers from the game construction subroutine in VGAP3. Most of the options listed here are default settings at Planets.nu. Bear in mind that this is presented in the archaic format of VGAP3's configuration options, and so by definition is going to be imprecise.
Unless otherwise noted, settings described here can not be changed when a Custom game is created (they are hard coded into the Host). Custom games instead have a dedicated settings system not present in VGAP3.
The percentage of minerals used to build a starship's hull that are regained when a starship is colonized. It should be noted that the recycle rate when performed by the RECYCLE task of a starbase is 100%.
The chance that a large meteor will hit one of the 500 planets in the cluster in any given turn.
When a player drops clans on an enemy planet, they will attack the enemy colonists. Due to the nature of their races, the Lizards and Fascists have an advantage when it comes to ground combat.
When attacked by colonists dropped from enemy starships, Lizard and Fascist colonists defend better than other races due to the nature of their people.
The Evil Empire get 5 "free" fighters per starbase per turn. These five fighters are built from minerals only, and do not require any MegaCredits or supplies.
Because of their Siliconoid nature, the Crystals love desert temperatures. They have a higher growth rate and maximum population on hot planets. If this is set to NO, Crystal colonists behave like all other colonists.
In Campaign games, it is possible for Crystals to research and enable the Improved Desert Habitation advantage to give them a greater advantage on desert planets.
Starships with only one engine cannot tow other starships.
The number of Ion storms that can be present in the cluster at the beginning of each host run. Note: since up to 3 extra storms can be added on any turn there can be a maximum of 7 showing, in which case the 3 storms with the lowest voltage will disappear at the beginning of the next turn.
This is the default value, but it can be changed for Custom games.
Ion Storms can hide minefields from enemy sensors. When the center of a minefield (normal or web) is inside an ion storm, it can't be swept or scanned. The last known report will appear on your starmap.
Cloaked starships can attack starships belonging to their primary enemy. A cloaked starship with a primary enemy set will attack starships belonging to that enemy, but not their planets.
The Privateers can rob starships of their fuel and cargo, but they can't rob cloaked starships.
Except for the Privateers and Crystals, all races can clone starships specific to other races at their starbases.
Each planet has a warpwell around it, which pulls every starship within three light-years with a speed higher than Warp-1 into orbit of the planet. Hyperjump starships are only pulled in from under 3 light-years out.
Using the NUK or ATT Friendly Code, a planet can use its fighters and beams to attack enemy starships.
The amount of fuel used to cloak or stay cloaked per turn, per 100 KT of hull-mass rounded up. Starships with Advanced Cloaking do not use any fuel to stay cloaked.
The chance that a cloaking device will malfunction, for no apparent reason.
A starship with 1% damage or worse cannot cloak or stay cloaked.
Starships with 0 fuel can move a few light-years, depending on their mass. Very light starships can move relatively large distances without any fuel, while heavy starships can hardly move at all if they're fuelless. Some starships are so heavy that they can not move at all, unless they have fuel.
The detectable range of non-cloaked starships is 300 light-years. Planets, starbases and starships all automatically look for starships.
This is the default value, but it can be changed for Custom games.
The range of the sensor sweep mission. This also applies to bioscanners.
Starships do not gain mass in battles depending on their type of engines.
The Federation can use their super refit mission to outfit starships with better parts (engines, beams and torpedo tubes).
Because of the highly trained crews, Federation starships receive several bonuses in combat: extra mass, shield regeneration and full weapons usage regardless of damage.
The Lizards can use their Hisssss! mission to keep natives and colonists happy, or make them happy again when angry.
The effect of the Lizard Hisssss! mission is to increase the Colonist and Native happiness score by 5 points per starship performing that mission.
In addition to their Super-Spy mission, the Birds also have a Super-Spy Deluxe mission, which allows the Birds to control a planet's Friendly Code.
Fascist can use their starships to pillage planets, and are therefore immune to attacks from planets.
There is a slight chance that the Privateer Rob mission will fail.
The Crystals and Privateers can capture fuelless starships via boarding parties by simply towing them.
The Cyborg assimilate natives into the collective at this rate. That is, 1 clan of colonists will assimilate 1 clan of natives each turn.
The Crystals can convert torpedoes into web mines, used to trap enemy starships and drain them of fuel.
The Evil Empire's Dark Sense mission tells them everything about owned planets within this many light-years.
These races can build fighters onboard their carriers. They require minerals and supplies only, no MegaCredits.
The Rebels can perform a ground attack mission, sabotaging structures, destroying resources and killing colonists.
The Rebels can perform a ground attack mission on planets, and are therefore immune to attacks from planets.
The Colonies of Man have highly skilled fighter pilots, allowing their fighters to be used to sweep mines. Each fighter can destroy 20 mines per turn.
Because of the special nature of web mines, Colonial fighters can not sweep them as they can normal mines.
Five percent of all mines plus one additional mine vanish from each minefield each turn as a result of natural causes. This includes mines becoming useless due to component failure, and mines being rendered non-functional due to damage from debris or cosmic rays.
Five percent of all web mines plus one additional mine vanish from each web minefield each turn as a result of natural causes. This includes mines becoming useless due to component failure, and mines being rendered non-functional due to damage from debris or cosmic rays.
The chance of hitting a mine for each light-year of mines a starship passes through. This is independent of the starship's mass, speed or size.
Cloaked starships run a lower risk of hitting a mine per light-year than other starships. This is independent of the starship's mass, speed or size.
The chance of hitting a mine for each light-year of mines a starship passes through. This is independent of the starship's mass, speed, size or cloaking.
The maximum radius (not diameter, radius) of a minefield is 150 light-years. This is also the maximum radius for webmine fields.
In Campaign games, a player can limit themselves to a maximum minefield radius of 100 light-years in order to enable other Campaign advantages.
Starships on a minesweep mission will detect minefields within 200 light-years.
Overlapping minefields of non-allied races will destroy each other.
Minefields laid over webmines won't destroy the webmines (nor the other way around).
One laser type beam on a starship will sweep four mines per turn from a minefield. Higher tech beams sweep more mines, depending on their type.
One laser type beam on a starship will sweep three mines per turn from a web minefield. Higher tech beams sweep more webmines, depending on their type.
A minefield can only be swept from within five light-years of the edge of the field, or from inside the field.
Webmines can only be swept from within the web.
Starships with a hull of tech level seven or higher are not slowed down by minehits. Starships with lower tech hulls slow down immediately upon hitting a mine. All starships come to an immediate halt when hitting a webmine.
Starships equipped with a hyperjumping device can make jumps through hyperspace. The Cyborg-built B200 class probe, the PL21 class probe built by the Evil Empire and the Falcon built by the Rebels have these hyperjumping devices installed.
Two Firecloud Class Cruisers (built by the Cyborg) can create a Chunnel through space in which an unlimited number of starships can be moved over a distance of 100 light-years to 5,000 light-years, burning only 50 KT of fuel on the Firecloud initiating the Chunnel.
The Fascists can build two starships with glory devices built into them (the D19 Nefarious and the Saber). Those starships can be set to explode after movement or upon detection of cloaked enemy starships (also after movement).
The Federation and Lizards can build the Loki Class Destroyer, which can decloak enemy starships.
Due to their sophisticated cloaking technology, cloaked Birdmen starships are not decloaked by Lokis.
The Privateers and Colonies can build the Lady Royale, capable of producing one MegaCredit per turn for every clan onboard.
The Super Star Destroyer, built by the Evil Empire, can take over an entire planet by simply dropping ten or more clans onto that planet, as long as the starship is not damaged.
The Cobol (built by the Colonies) scoops up fuel from space while flying, at a default rate of 2 KT of fuel per light-year traveled.
This enables the alchemy functions for the Merlin Class Alchemy Ship and the Neutronic Refinery Ship. They can convert supplies into minerals (Merlin Class Alchemy Ship) and supplies plus minerals into Neutronium fuel (Neutronic Refinery Ship).
The Aries Class Transport (built by the Colonies, and available to the Evil Empire in Campaign games) makes Neutronium fuel out of minerals without needing supplies. This is an improved version of the Neutronic Refinery Ship.
The Brynhild, the Cobol and the Pawn have bioscanners which scan for natives and temperatures of all planets within scanning range, as long as this is set to YES.
This setting enables the terraforming functions of the Eros, Bohemian and Onyx
On colonized planets thought to be devoid of native lifeforms, new natives may be discovered.
Colonists and natives living on planets can be taxed for money. The Federation is very good at making friends with the natives, natives just love the Federation and will pay them 200% of normal taxes. Federation colonists also pay 200% of normal taxes.
Natives and colonists can be taxed for money. The maximum amount that can be earned from natives and colonists combined per planet per turn is limited by this setting.
Normally, on planets with a temperature below 15 degrees or above 84 the number of colonists that can survive is limited. The exact number depends on the Climate Death Rate and the colonist race.
On planets with a temperature below 15 degrees or above 84 degrees the number of colonists that can live there is limited (see above). This is the rate at which excess population dies.
A planet's maximum population is based on it's temperature and the race. If enabled, part of a planet's overpopulation can survive a harsh climate by consuming supply units.
Due to their environmentally-aware nature, the Federation mines planets at only 70% of the speed of most other races. The Lizards are very strong and mine twice as fast as other races.
The rate at which new minerals are formed inside a planet. For the actual number of KT that appear, this rate is multiplied by the mineral density. As an example, on a planet with a 60% density of Duranium, 3 KT will appear every turn.
The number of mines, factories and defense posts is limited by the number of colonist clans on a planet. When there are insufficient clans to support the number of structures, they will disappear each turn until the maximum amount that can be maintained by the colonists is reached.
This value changes from time to time, so an ongoing game could have a setting of 1.