Welcome to this week's edition of the Civics Expanded+ dev diaries for Stellaris. The large update to the mod is now entering phase IV, and like mentioned previously, this phase will focus on something other than the origins.
Phase IV: Civics
Good old civics; you can never get enough of them. The update will include five new civics for default empires, with a large majority of already-existing mod civics receiving either minor changes, major changes or a complete rework.
Only a few civics are being added once again, and this is due to the focus of the update being on improving already-existing content. However, due to a sudden flurry of ideas from both the community and the mod team, it was decided that a minor number of new ones will be added.
New Civics: Machine Cult & Nihilist Cult
Two of the new civics will be similar to one another. They are the Machine Cult and Nihilist Cult civics, both for spiritualist empires. The two are mutually exclusive, due to their similar, yet conflicting, effects.
As seen above, they provide a considerable amount of changes, one of which changing the spiritualist faction being neutral about machines/in support of machines. Also, the AI Worship policy option (for empires with the Machine Cult civic) provides some effects by itself.
If the empire has the Machine Cult civic, then the spiritualist faction will have a new issue: Worshipping AI. To please the faction, the above policy option must be chosen.
Furthermore, as the Full Citizen Rights option prevents an AI Uprising, the AI Worship option also does so.
New Civic: Crystalline Energy Grid
A bit of a different one; this civic greatly increases the output of technicians, doubling the amount of energy received from them. Of course, there must be some catch.
Like shown above, your homeworld will start with a deposit which allows two crystal mine buildings to be built on the planet. The type of deposit (Crystal Reef, Crystal Forest or Crystalline Caverns) depends on your homeworld's planet class, but they will all allow the same amount of crystal mines.
Due to not having the technology to construct crystal mines at the start of a game, the empire with the civic will begin with that very technology, so that they're able to make use of the civic.
The empire's homeworld begins with one crystal mine already, providing two rare crystals, and another can be built once a building slot is unlocked.
Keep in mind, however, that you will begin with a deficit of 0.5 rare crystals, more if you have the Prosperous Unification origin (as your homeworld starts with another generator district). This is intended, to act as something to balance your start.
New Civic: War Industry
A new civic for militarists, the name really says it all. The economy of the star nation is focused on war and preparing their military, meaning that alloy output is increased, with the tradeoff of less consumer goods being produced.
Also, you will not be able to choose the Civilian Economy policy option, though you can still remain neutral. However, there is also another special feature: an exclusive edict, only available when at war.
When the wartime exclusive edict is activated, it allows you to convert consumer goods into alloys with 50% efficiency, meaning that one unit of alloys is equal to two units of consumer goods.
The largest conversion is 10,000 consumer goods into 5,000 alloys, while the smallest one is 10 consumer goods into 5 alloys. Although every conversion option is visible above, the larger options will only be visible if you have enough consumer goods in the stockpile.
New Civic: Peacekeepers
Another civic for militarists, though it includes aspects of pacifism and peace, but by force. The civic itself does provide many bonuses, though these are not very significant, nor very useful. However, like the other new civics, there are some special effects.
The more minor effect only prevents the militarist faction from demanding war, invasion and rivalries, keeping in line with the idea that this empire isn't keen on expanding and growing, but rather, keeping the peace and preventing wars.
The major effect, perhaps the most ambitious addition in the mod I've ever attempted, is allowing the empire with the Peacekeepers civic to form a special type of federation, otherwise unavailable.
As it is a new type of federation, there are perks for members, though it is worth noting that the majority of the federation perks are actually already existing ones, just in a different order.
But there is one custom perk: the passive effect of the federation, which is the Peacekeeping casus belli on empires which are a threat to galactic peace, mainly militarists (without the Peacekeepers civic), xenophobes and empires with either the belligerent or supremacist diplomatic stance. However, those empires that are currently in an offensive war (without the Liberation Wars or Defensive Wars policy option chosen) can also be targeted.
The casus belli is available to any empire in the peacekeeping federation, and if the war is won, the empire which chose the casus belli is faced with an option: either force the defeated empire to shift ethics towards pacifism and xenophilia, replace one of their civics with the Peacekeepers civic, or demand the defeated empire joins the federation, so that the members of the federation can keep an eye on the threat.
Existing Civics: Changes
Like mentioned previously, many already-existing mod civics have gone through (or are currently going through) dramatic changes. Not only will many civics receive a negative aspect (also leading to stronger benefits), but many will provide the empire with special effects.
For example, the Strategic Resource Cache civic, now named Planetary Cache, no longer simply provides an extra two volatile motes, exotic gases and rare crystals; rather, your homeworld has a special Strategic Cache deposit, which produces one unit of volatile motes, exotic gases and rare crystals.
However, this production can be increased with the correct technology. The amount of exotic gases produced can be increased by 0.5 with the technology that allows the exploitation of the strategic resource, and another 0.5 with the technology that allows the construction of the building which converts minerals into exotic gases.
This is the same for the other two resources, with their technologies respectively. Finally, the Nanite Transmutation technology, which allows the construction of the Nanite Transmuter (which produces 2 of each strategic resource with nanites as the cost) increases the deposit's output of all three resources by one unit.
Of course, several other civics will have large changes too, to make gameplay with the mod just a bit more interesting. Perhaps the icons of some civics will also be changed, as many are from the time when GFX modding was a pain, thanks to my previous inexperience in Stellaris modding.
That's it for this dev diary! The previous plans to not include any new civics was changed, like mentioned at the start.
The following major update to the mod, after the Flavour Update, will focus on adding new civics once again, as that is the main feature of the mod. I just felt that the execution of the mod origins was poor, especially considering that the Quest for the Seeders origin was added many months ago, near to the mod's creation. It severely needed an overhaul, and the Plagued Society origin had so much potential, though it was previouly quite bland.
This update is necessary, as it will ensure both replayability and a lengthy storyline. Keep in mind that along with the many new civics that will be added in the 1.4 update (after the Flavour Update), the origins' storylines may get an expansion of some sorts...
The next dev diary will be in a week, which will mark the beginning of the final phase, as well as the one week countdown to the release of the update, planned to be on 15th of July.