A Victory Countdown is a critical step to ending the majority of games at Planets.nu. It happens in every game with Win Conditions of Diplomatic Planets or Total Planets, and in any game with win conditions of Fixed Turn if the conditions of a Diplomatic Planets win are met.
A Victory Countdown is started when the Win Conditions are initially met, and lasts for 5 turns. If it completes, the player, team, or alliance that started it will win the game.
The Victory Countdown will be interrupted if the player, team, or alliance that started the countdown drops below the number of planets required to meet the Win Conditions. If they then regain enough planets to qualify, the countdown will restart from the beginning.
The first player, team, or alliance to start the Victory Countdown and then complete it without dropping below the level needed to win will be the winner. This will be the case even if another player, team, or alliance meets the Win Conditions or even surpasses the Victory Countdown player, team, or alliance in planet count while the Victory Countdown is still going. The active Victory Countdown must be interrupted, by a reduction in planet count or a change in the members of the alliance, in order to begin a new one.
If an alliance changes (adds or drops a player), then the old alliance no longer exists, and a new alliance exists. If this happens to an alliance that has the active Victory Countdown, the countdown for the old alliance will end and a countdown for the new alliance will be started if the new alliance meets the Win Conditions.
If in a Fixed Turn game the Countdown doesn't complete within the number of turns specified at game creation, the winner will be the player or team with the most planets. A non-team alliance can only win in a Fixed Turn game if the Victory Countdown completes.
NOTE: There are no simultaneous Victory Countdowns. If two Victory Countdowns would begin on the same turn, the player, team, or alliance with more planets over their win threshold (scaled according to the number of that threshold) will start the countdown. In the event of a perfect tie, the Victory Countdowns will not begin until that tie is broken.
The following examples are provided to clarify what happens when more than one player, team, or alliance meets the Win Conditions in the same turn.
The normal (uninterrupted) process for a Victory Countdown is as follows: