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16 Technology

Frantically researching away in their laboratories, the scientists of the academy are desperate to provide the empire new technology with which to gain a foothold in the unforgiving world of Battle Mines. Advanced buildings and special abilities, senors to spy on enemies and forecast the weather, even the almight doomsday device. All fall under the domain of technology.

Tech research is a very tangible goal, unlocking many new toys to play with. It is also a measure of one's maturity in the world, but don't get too cocky. Any n00b with enough steel to buy a handful of cannons can lay low players with tip top tech. Technology brings not so much raw power, but rather flexibility.

Tech research is carried out in the academy; without at least one academy research cannot be performed. Anarchy governments are unable to do research. On the tech screen, the tech tree outlines all available technology, and the structure of prerequisites that pins them together. There are several categories of technology:

Tech category Description
City size One of the most important avenues of research, opening up your city size allows you to experiment with more luxurious building configurations. Remember: Larger cities have advantages and disadvantages.
Basic buildings Some basic buildings are not initially available to the fledgling battle miner, but they should be low hanging fruit at worst.
Advanced buildings The meat-and-potatoes of the tech tree, advanced buildings open up many new strategies.
Detection Researching these techs allows you to get more information about your neighbours, guiding your actions with or against them.
Espionage Informants are freely available from the start of the game, to access more advanced spies research must be done.
Abilities Some tech levels give you whole new abilities or augment existing ones.
Blasted Almanac, Hypermeteorology: +1 forecast
Quantum Metallurgy: 1 perma-cannon
Atomic Reconditioning: 1 URO yields 10 reactor fuel (up from 8)
Terraforming: See the Terraforming section
Diabolical Machinery The ultimate technological marvels, diabolical machines defy all reason with their overwhelming scope and power. In order to advance up this tech path, the previous machine must be built and tested before the next can be researched. Bonus tech is unavailable once you reach these levels, though technocracy governments gain the omniscience ability.

Most of these technologies are discussed at length in other sections. Researched buildings have their full descriptions in Appendix B.

Note that you do not need to research a building's technology to make use of the building, only to have one in your city. Technology can be stolen during land exchange, see Land Exchange for more details.

16.1 Tech Level

While technology can be researched in any order the player chooses (as long as prerequisites are met), tech level is a measure of the total number of techs attained so far. Upper and lower tech trees meet at the terraforming technology, once a player passes this point they will never fall back to the lower tech tree again.

The order in which you research tech (visible on the tech tree) is important, as any game factor which causes you to lose tech will follow this order in reverse. If you are hit by a doomsday blast for three tech levels, you will lose the last three researched. One tech level may be stolen by a master during land exchange. Switching to the theocracy government, while not actually removing any tech levels, causes you to lose the powers of the upper third of your current tech tree. Instant tenure and terraforming are never lost by any means.

When these losses of technology happen, your city size may be forcibly contracted. This is called city shrinkage. All buildings which overlapped now unmaintainable tiles are lost, putting scrap directly into your inventory. Scrap from rubble and lost crops are also collected automatically.

You can see your neighbourís tech level after you research detection in the academy, but you cannot see their tech order.

16.2 Bonus Tech

It is possible to gain access to unresearched technology through governmental bonuses. When you change to a government which offers a tech bonus (technocracy or syndicalism), go to the tech screen to select which bonus tech you want.

Note that tech gain and loss due to government effects are not permanent. Having a bonus tech does not change your tech level, nor the techs you are able to research. It simply gives you access to the powers of the chosen bonus tech. Losing a bonus tech has the same effects as losing a tech level: If a city size category tech is lost, buildings overlapping the lost area will be destroyed for scrap.

Once you have picked a bonus tech, you cannot change it until you research a new technology, or lose and then regain it (by changing governments). If you do research a new technology, your bonus tech will be unset, so be sure to choose a new one.

Bonus techs cannot be used after diabolical machinery is researched. When technocracy governments reach this stage, they trade in their bonus tech for omniscience. See Technocracy for more details.

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