How to Play!
VGA Planets is one of the more complex turn-based strategy games you might encounter, but its complexity allows for interesting tactical maneuvers and diplomatic arm-twisting. Unfortunately, the game isn't too newbie-friendly.
So let us start the program by running Planets4. The other programs are used to host games, which you can read about here.
The Starting Screen:
Because you will be required to download , upload, and store files in a folder that VGA Planets 4 is told to use, you need to know a little bit about files and folders. [more]
The Host sends out each player's turn to that respective player, usually through e-mail. The turn files made by Host are ..rst files and the turn files made after a player is done with his turn are .trn files. So when you're playing an online game, you'll get .rst's and send in .trn's.
Once you have downloaded your new RST file, you then need to do something called unpacking it. This will basically unzip all the game data. You only need to unpack the RST file once during the turn, if you do it again later, it will over write any of the commands you have given the game.
After unpacking you can now play the game. It will automatically bring you into the game. However, if you are returning and want to complete your turn, do not unpack it, just click on "Play Saved File".
Once inside the game this is what you are presented with. You can customize the placement and size of many windows. Be sure to check under options for more customizations that you can do to the interface.
On the bottom there are 2 parts.
Some of the first things you should do every turn is to; Check your messages, view VCR's, and check logs. Those provide you with a lot of useful information, like what happened last turn.
When you select an object that is yours, you are usually presented with
So to set a way point the the above ship, just use your mouse and select one of the planets. You should see a transparent image of your waypoint. After that use the speed slide bar to increase it's speed. You might notice as you increase the speed you use more fuel, and the ETA gets lower.
Now click the "Trans" tab. Here you can select different objects to transfer with, most if not all will be at the same location, however, you can transfer to waypoint and anvil objects. But for that to happy, you will have to reach that point. I would suggest leaving all the Troops, Food, Supplies, and Med Units on your home base. Fill up your living space with Colonists.
Do this with your other ships, but send them to other planets. You want to drop off Colonists on planets and explore the area around you.
Now you may have noticed other tabs: The Cargo tab is misleading, this is actually where pods and fighters dock with the ship. Now the Nav tab, that is where you can do a little more than very basic things. Might want to see how the game works before trying to understand and use this, but you will be using this screen.
After the ships are done, select the Base.
For switches, click on Terra Former and turn it on if your planet is nor farmable, with it on, you can change the temperature.
Once you have a government center, turn it on, and start transferring a lot of money, you will need a whole lot of money for upgrades.
Building a ship, I suggest making a ship that would make a good scout, something fast, with really good scanners. Don't spend much on the ship, because it will suck no mater what. Make a few of them. The faster you get ships out there and see where everything is, the better off you are.
Now, let us go to HQ and do some upgrades.
Finishing Your Turn:
With that, you just did your first turn. A basic turn, but a turn none the less. But you are not done yet. Click on the Files button on the top left, and you will be back at the Starting Screen. From here you need to click on make turn. This will create the file you need to send to the host. You do remember the folder you set for TRN and RST files don't you?