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Strategy Guide by CPalace

Version: 2 | Updated: 07/27/93

                  Hints and Tips for Barren Realms Elite


             The Anarchist's Guide to Destruction and Mayhem

                             By Crystal Palace

 Version 2

 UPDATED 7-27-93: I originally wrote this file for the locals here in
 Reno NV. I uploaded it to the systems that play in our league, and
 about three weeks later, the sysop of Heavy Metal International informed
 me at a BRE Mupt that there had been over 300 FREQ's and long-distance
 logins for my file. I had NO idea that this would happen. The file as
 I wrote it assumed the reader was familiar with what had been happening
 in our own BRE Net. At any rate, with the popularity of this file, and
 the fact that a reader in Canada would have NO idea what I was refering
 to if I mentioned a local event, I've decided to update the file so that
 anyone reading it could get the most out of it. Updates to Version 1
 are prefaced by an *] symbol. If you have any questions, I can be reached
 on the Solar Realms Echo (FidoNet) or you can contact me directly via
 netmail at Heavy Metal International (702) 825-5357 Fido 1:213/840.

*] It all started when I became inundated with accusations of cheating
 at the game. As anyone who has played the game long enough knows, there
 really is no way to cheat in this game. Some of the players started
 asking me "how do you do that" so rather than write the same thing to
 half a dozen people, I wrote this file.

 At the request of Utopia, and others I'm going to put down here
 exactly what I do to acheive, and then maintain a top-ranked realm.
 Hopefully, this should wipe clear any doubts anyone may have about
 the legitamacy of my empires. As of this writing, I'm the Planetary
 Master of every single BBS in the Net. On Music Hall, everyone
 knows me as Crystal Palace. I go by the following names on the
 other systems:

 Mostly Windows : Crayola      (Both games)
 Macster        : Dark Castle  (Game #1)
                  Blackbird    (Game #2)
 Poor Man's     : The Citadel  (Formerly ToonTown)
 Music Hall     : Crystal Palace

 At any rate, the primary reason for my success has been the constant
 support of my teammates on Music Hall, and my own experience playing
 Strategic Wargames. A lot of what you learn in these types of games
 can be applied to ANY game, including BRE. Here comes lesson number
 one. Learn and OBEY the following Cardinal Rules of Warfare:

  1. Never try to fight a two front war.
  2. Know your options. (for gameing, know the rules)
  3. Know what your forces can and cannot do.
  4. Strategy is dictated by available tactics.
  5. Never commit the bulk of your forces. (Maintain a reserve)
  6. Know thy enemy.
  7. Once commited to the offensive, STAY on the offensive.
  8. Think.
  9. Aggresivness is a force multiplier.
 10. Greed kills.
 11. Fear Works.
 12. Destroy the enemy's ABILITY to wage war, not the enemy.

*] 13. Fight on your own terms.

 Ok, now. How is it my empires rocket to the top in such a short time?
 Well, I've developed a systematic step-by-step approach to empire
 development. Here we go...

 The lazy man's way to riches!

 This method takes quite a bit longer to work, but it's guaranteed to
 bring you at LEAST 1000 regions ON YOUR VERY FIRST TURN!

 It only works when you are STARTING a new game. What you do is after
 you've named your realm, QUIT. That's right. QUIT. What you're going
 to do is keep logging in every day, and just checking your status.
 What happens is, while your realm is sitting there with only 2 regions,
 the game automaticlly gives you "gifts". A lot of times what you'll see
 is that you've "stolen" 200,000 coins from the Emperor, or you've
 received 3,000 tanks to aid your survival. Let this keep happening for
 several days. What you're trying to accomplish is letting your resources
 develope for several days until you have LOTS of cash, and a military
 you can sell off. On your first turn, follow the tactics outlined below,
 but also SELL any military that has been given you. 3,000 tanks will get
 you something in the region of 1.5 MILLION coins. (If they're only selling
 for 500 coins each, they usually sell for much higher than that.)
 Since on your first turn, regions usually only cost about a thousand each,
 you'll end up at the end of your FIRST turn with over 1,500 regions!

 Can't beat that now can you? Another tactic you can use is to INVEST the
 cash you receive. Let's say you've been given a gift of 200,000 coins,
 but you don't feel you have enough yet to start playing. Use the I-P
 Ops menu (which costs you no turns) to visit the bank, and invest any
 cash you have for 24 hours. (more if you want) Remember, every 1,000 coins
 is worth another region. Investing 200,000 for 24 hours gets you 224,000
 coins, or an extra 24 regions.

 I've been using this method on every new game I start, and I've averaged
 over 2,000 regions per game on my first turn. It works, you just need
 to be patient.


 Name your realm (REALLY?)
 Don't worry about setting your industry's.
 After the start-up, your first real decision gets made at
 the Food Market. You start with 30,000 tons. You only need
 1,000 tons during your first year, so sell 29,000 food.

 Do not get any loans from the bank yet... save that for later.
 When you get to the Purchasing Menu, immediately hit * and get
 into the System Menu. Set your tax rate to 5%. This guarantees
 monstrous increases in your population, which you will exploit
 later in the game. (With higher taxes of course, same thing Clinton's
 doing. *HEH*)

*] Speaking of taxes, the highest amount you can set your tax rate to
 is 39% without suffering a popular support loss. Be careful with this
 though. People will LEAVE your realm, but eventually it will balance out.
 You can use this tactic if your food supply is just barely feeding your
 people and troops. Set your tax higher, lose some people, and you should
 be able to feed them on your next turn. Eventually you'll stop losing
 people, and start gaining them again. Be prepared to feed those people
 when that happens.

 Ok, now, we're going to purchase as many regions as possible. Don't
 worry about commanders, or your headquarters, or anything else. Those
 can come later after you're established. However many regions you can
 buy is solely dictated by how much cash you have. Let's pretend you
 managed to hang onto 100,000 coins for your first turn, and regions
 are going for around 1,000 each. You can buy 100 regions your first
 turn out. This is how I would spend that cash..

   Coastal      : 52
   River        : 10
   Agricultural : 15
   Desert       : 10 
   Industrial   :  0
   Urban        :  5
   Mountain     : 10 (purchase 8, you already have two)

 You'll end up with 102 regions total. NEVER BUY INDUSTRIAL ON YOUR
 FIRST TURN! At this stage in the game, you need every penny to purchase
 more regions. Not to throw away feeding and equiping a useless military.
 Coastal is the greatest for sheer cash production. Rivers run a close
 second, but they kick over to food production every so often, so depending
 on them as a primary cash source is too risky.

*] If you've followed the LAZY start up tactic, then I strongly suggest
 that you DO buy industrial on your first turn. If you don't, regions
 will be too expensive on your next turn to purchase them. Buy them while
 you have the cash to do it.

 Now we get booring. You have four (or) more turns left. For the next three
 turns do NOTHING. Buy NOTHING. Just let your cash build up. On your last
 turn of the day is when you'll spend your money, and it's also when you
 want to take out your first loan. Max out, take as much as you can.
 The reason is that the cost of a region increases each time you gain
 more regions. It makes sence to only purchase regions when you have as
 much cash as possible on hand.

 If you were to buy regions on every turn, you'd end up with fewer total
 regions than if you play smart, and only buy regions on your last turn
 of the day. This holds true for the duration of the game. For your
 first day, a good average would be about 200 regions total. Do NOT buy
 industrial yet. You don't need them, and they don't do you any good.
 Buy them on day two, but hold onto at least a 2:1 ratio of Coastal to
 Industrial, and an overall ratio of 3:1, so if you have 100 industrial,
 you had better have 200 coastal, and a total of 300 cash producing
 regions. Like so...

	 Coastal      : 500
	 River        : 60
	 Agricultural : 60
	 Desert       : 60        Total of 1,000 regions.
	 Industrial   : 250       Coastal : Industrial 2:1
	 Urban        : 10            All : Industrial 3:1
	 Mountain     : 60

 This mix helps to insure that you have more than enough cash to support
 your operations in grand style. You'll never need more than 15 or so
 Urban regions. Believe me, your people will breed like rabbits.
 Maintain a healthy Agricultural program, or else.

*] The above changes when your realm gets REALLY large. After I crossed
 the 14,000 region barrier, my people started to leave my realm. Just
 purchase a few Urban when that happens, and they'll start to come back.

 After you buy your industrial, you'll be tempted to expend those troops
 to gain more regions through pirate strikes. While in protection, that's
 fine. You never need more than 3000 troops, 1000 jets, and 250 tanks
 to attack them with though. Never send more than that. You'll lose more
 than you'll gain, and you put excess troops needlessly at risk. I've
 set up one of the game macros to handle it for me.

 Once you're out of protection, do NOT attack the pirates unless they
 attack you first. You gain more regions in retaliatory strikes than you
 do if you attack them first. It's a waste of your military for a small
 gain of 1 to 5 regions. You'll gain 8 to 16 (or more) in retaliation
 strikes. The most I've ever hit a pirate for was 23 regions.

 On day two, you can start spending money on industry. Also get your
 headquarters started, and grab some commanders. For every 5,000 troops,
 you'll need 100 commanders. You'll rarely need, or use, more than 10
 Agents. If you have extras, sell them. This brings me to another point.
 Don't be afraid to sell your military. If you're in a cash crunch, or
 just want to buy a ton of regions, sell off your military. Think this
 one out though. It'd be really silly to sell your military if you've
 been subjected to recent attacks. Remember rule number five of warfare 
 is to maintain a reserve at all times. I sell my military only if I have
 not been attacked, and want to take the Planetary Master spot. I did that
 a couple of days ago on Mostly Windows. Crayola sold everything and spent
 it all on regions. Devil's Dungeon was threatening to take the PM spot,
 and I wanted to hang on to it. The cash I gained enabled me to purchase
 an extra 100 regions on my last turn, guaranteeing me the top spot. I
 spent those 100 regions almost exclusively on industrial, to make up
 for the loss of the military in the shortest possible time.

*] Here's a useful hint. The more Agents you have, the harder it is for
 enemy terrorist ops to succeed. If you can afford them, keep as many as
 you can on hand. If you're being hit with a LOT of terrorist ops, buy
 a bunch of 'em. (like, a thousand or so). Fewer and fewer terrorist ops
 will succeed against you if you have an overwhelming number of agents
 at your disposal. I was wondering why that option to attack enemy agents
 existed in the I-P menu, and I believe this is why.

 Military strategies and tips:

	Ok, now, what's the best military, and why? Well, Missile Bases
 are probably the best thing to have in large quantities. They shoot down
 Jets, Blow up tanks, and vaporize troops. They are the all around best
 thing to have for defense. Tanks run a close second. If you're going to
 be throwing your weight around in attacks, you need LOTS of these.
 When I'm on the offensive, (which is ALWAYS), I set my production as

 Offensive Military Mix    Defensive Military Mix
  Troops        : 30 %       Troops        : 10 %
  Jets          : 20 %       Jets          :  5 %
  Missile Bases : 15 %       Missile Bases : 40 %
  Tanks         : 30 %       Tanks         : 40 %
  Carriers      :  5 %       Carriers      :  5 %

 Strategic hint: Jets are useless for Defense, so when calculating
                 how much military to commit to an IP attack, always
                 send 100% of your jets. If you're worried about being
                 attacked while your forces are out attacking someone
                 else, holding your jets back in reserve does you NO
                 good what-so-ever.

*] I discovered that success breeds emnity. If you are starting a new game,
 and you KNOW you are going to be targeted with attacks as soon as you're
 out of protection, then set your industry like so:

 Troops          :  0%
 Jets            :  0%
 Missile Bases   : 60%
 Tanks           : 40%
 Carriers        :  0%

 This is actually the best thing to do while you are in protection. You can
 always buy as many jets or troops you'll need to attack, but Missile Bases
 and tanks are much too expensive to be spending your money on.

 If you want to use your industry to produce coins, DON'T! It's MUCH
 more profitable to set your industry to produce 100% carriers, and then
 SELL them! With an industry of 500 regions, you'll produce roughly
 1,000 or so carriers per year. They sell for over 1,000 each, so
 you'd get around 1 million coins per year. Quite a bit more than if
 you set your industry to produce coins only.

 Remember, MAINTAIN a reserve at all times! If you launch an IP attack
 without maintaining some type of reserve force means you have NO
 defense against incomeing attacks. This type of situation assumes one
 of three things.

    1. You don't have sufficient forces for a reserve, in which case
       there's not much you can do about it.
    2. You've just made a stupid, terrible mistake, and are about to
       lose massive numbers of regions because you have no defense.
    3. You've taken a calculated risk that you wouldn't be attacked
       while your forces were elsewhere. If you calculated correctly,
       then you succeed in your efforts, if not, go back to item 2.

 Ok, now that we have the basic strategy for empire development out
 of the way, we can move on to the real reason you're reading this file.

                             The I-P Wars.

 Rule number four of warfare states that your strategy is dictated by
 available tactics. The difference between the two is that if Tactics
 are what you do in detail, strategy is what you do on the whole.
 Music Hall has been screaming our strategy over the Message net for the
 last several weeks. Our Strategy is total, complete, TEAMWORK.

 Now, here are the various Tactics we use.


	Ok, you all see the Tradeing Menu on every single turn. Hardly
 any of you use the damn thing though, and this is perhaps the single
 most powerful tool in the game. On Music Hall, we have an elite group
 of players, totaling perhaps 6 to 8 people at any one time. If you think
 Music Hall is powerful, it is the direct result of these people. To gain
 access to this group, one must have proven their total commitment to
 seeing Music Hall as the number one BBS in the BRE net. To give you an
 idea of just how powerful this collection of Empires can be, I'll give
 you an example. When the new game started June third, I was doing rather
 well. I had about 500 regions built up, and on my first turn of freedom,
 year 0, I sent out a request for trade deals. Since it was my last turn
 of the day, I waited until the next day to see what happened.

 I logged in for Year One of my freedom and had FOUR trade deals already
 sent to me. Most of it was cash. From those 4 deals I had over 10 MILLION
 coins sent to me. Regions only cost 25k each at the time, so you can
 see what happened. I went from 500 regions to 900 regions in ONE TURN.
 I spent the next four turns on that day generating enough cash to COMPLETELY
 PAY BACK EACH TRADE DEAL. So what was the net result?
 I gained 400 regions at ZERO COST TO ANYONE! The four people who sent me
 the cash got their money back, and I was well on my way to dominating this

 A powerful tool, yes? Here's another example of raw power. On Music Hall
 we have a lottery. Each one of the "elite" group draws a number to see
 what place in line they get. At the time of this writing, OSCAR is the
 current lottery holder. Now, every single empire in the group is
 currently tradeing over half their total military strength to Oscar.
 The results? Oscar's Net Worth just took a MASSIVE jump. There are
 perhaps 8 realms in the current group, and with the combined strength
 of 8 Empires, there is nothing and no-one that can stand up to any attack
 Oscar wants to make. The trade deals also consist of Cash, Food, and
 Commanders. Everything neccessary to support Oscar's troops while she
 has them. After Oscar is done, she'll trade everything she has to the
 next person in the Lottery. (as of this writing, that person is none
 other than myself. *GRIN* ) This tradeing program will continue for
 the duration of the game, and as each empire gains in size, so too
 the size of the military gains. It perpetuates itself indefinitely,
 as each empire still trades half of what they have to the lottery
 holder. During the last game, the trade value reached something like
 700,000 troops, 500,000 jets, and 100,000 tanks, plus food, cash, and

  Single attacks like this gain MASSIVE quantities of regions,
 and they are used TWICE PER DAY! How? Simple. The person with the troops
 first sends out their individual attack. They then have to log in later
 that day and collect their regions and military back. When they do, they
 usually schedule a GROUP attack against an entire planet, that way everyone
 can get involved. The Empire with the troops gains twice in one day, and
 helps insure that everyone on the system that joins the group attack will
 gain something as well.

 Now, this is where things start getting really mean, and if you ever want
 to take down Music Hall, pay attention.

                           Planetary Tactics

 Ok, you and your team want to take down an entire planet. Well, here's
 how. Let's say we're going to target Poor Man's. This is how we took
 them down during the last game.
 Everyone on our team started Bombing the Planetary Food Market. If
 you can't feed your people, they'll launch into civil war, and your
 empire is reduced to nothing in a day.

 We also started sending Terrorists out, 10 at a time, to individual
 empires. Remember, in warfare, if you want to win, you must destroy your
 enemy's ABILITY to wage war. In a nutshell, whoever can sustain the fight
 longest is going to win. Bomb their coin banks, food stores, cause
 dissention and aid rebellions. The targeted empire finds itself constantly
 haveing to pay massive amounts of cash to keep his Popular Support and
 Military Morale high. If the empire is dumping cash into this endeavor,
 it won't have cash left at the end of the day to afford any more regions,
 or any more attacks. If popular support is low, then Coastal regions
 don't produce NEARLY the same amount of cash that they do when support is
 at 100%. If you bomb their Coin Banks, and Food Stores, they then don't
 have the cash neccessary to buy food, which should be non-existant through
 planetary Food Strikes. If they don't have the cash to raise their
 popular support, the coastal regions still won't produce. If they have
 also been attacked regularly, they may have lost enough Agricultural
 regions to keep them from feeding their people. What this boils down
 to is an Empire in serious shit. Power Planet felt the brunt of this.
 Imagine 80 or more terrorist attacks in ONE DAY. Eventually it became
 too much to sustain, and his empire went into Civil War. He lost 3,000
 regions in ONE TURN.

 This is where teamwork can help out. During the last game Power Planet
 caught on to what we were doing to him, and started returning the favor.
 What happened was that Crystal Palace started getting hit with over 80
 terrorist ops every single day. The reason why Crystal Palace kept
 increasing in size and never went into Civil War?

 TRADEING! My teammates started sending me massive amounts of cash every
 day. With that cash, I was easily able to feed my people, raise their
 support and morale levels, and continue to operate normally. Tradeing
 also helps to lower the COST of sustaining an empire. I traded my entire
 military force to another player, and instructed him to IGNORE the deal
 until I asked for them back, which he did. He then refused the deal, and
 I had my troops back. During the time they were out, it was much cheaper
 to maintain my empire. I didn't have to feed or pay for those troops.
 It was cheaper to raise my morale levels. While the other empire was
 ignoring the deal, NO one had to pay for those troops, or feed them.
 They were in limbo until the need arose.

 This is another trick to hide your real Net Worth. If your forces have
 been traded, but the deal is ignored, neither empire's Net Worth
 increases, and the person who sent the deal actually has theirs decrease.

                            Cash Operations

 Investing is another ignored facet of this game. If you want MASSIVE
 amounts of cash, it only takes 15 to 20 days to do it. Simply invest
 half of everything you make in a day, (or more), for 120 to 240 hours.
 ( 5 to 10 days ) If you do the 120 hour option, and you do this daily,
 here's what happens. In five days, your first deal comes in. Take that
 cash, plus the regular amount you normally invest, and re-invest it for
 another 120 hours. Do this EVERY DAY. In 20 days or so, you'll be
 absoloutely amazed at how much cash you'll have available at the end
 of each day. To use myself as an example, I was earning over 60 million
 a day after 20 days. It -WORKS!- Do it! After 20 days, you can do anything
 you want to do. ANYTHING. With 60 million, you can buy over 500,000 
 troops. EVERY DAY! 
  Think about it. As of this writing, I'm into day 4 of my investing.
 I'm taking the 240 hour option, so my investments are going to come in
 starting 6 days from now. I'm earning more cash, and on my fourth day
 into "round two" I'll take in 12 million. That will get me over 25 million
 5 days after that if I re-invest it.

*] As of this writing, Music Hall has gone down. However, My last
 investment went through, and I had 1,000,000,000 coins sent me on
 my last day. ONE BILLION coins. And that was after only 4 weeks of game
 play. Investing 1 billion for 240 hours will get you 2 billion, but
 according to the news about the new version, soon to be released, this
 may change. Also, be careful with taking your cash above 2.5 billion.
 According to rumor, the game can't handle the number, and resets your
 cash to 0 or LESS. I'll update this file again after the new version is

 With that kind of cash, you can really do some damage to an entire BBS
 all by yourself. You can Nuke anyone, Chemical Raids, V-39 Skyrunners,
 Bomb their Coins bank 6 times, or bomb their Food Bank FORTY TIMES
 in one day. Or you can do like umop apisdn did and BUY A GOOIE KABLOOIE

 Ok, here's the summary.

	Teamwork is absoloutely essential for success.
	Tradeing is the most important aspect of Teamwork.
	No single empire can survive against a team of empires.
	No BBS can survive against a united BBS unless they too unite.
	Investing is the way to true individual success.

  Above all, THIS IS A GAME! Don't take is too bloody seriously.

 If you have any questions, or want a better explanation of the tips
 outlined here, you may leave me mail on Music Hall addressed to
 Joseph Harris. I hold nothing back. I like a game that's lively, and
 tough. It's no fun to stomp everyone in the dust if they aren't fighting
 back. That's what makes this game so much fun is the competition. It's
 much more rewarding to win against long odds than it is to run away with
 the game because no one else is in the same league as you.

*] Music Hall has gone down. (-Sniff- :( ) I ended the game with 14,000
 regions after about 4 weeks of play. Regardless, I can be reached on the
 Solar Realms FidoNet Echo at 1:213/840. You can also send mail or login
 and check out the action at Heavy Metal International (702) 825-5357.
 We are playing in League 001, a West Coast Inter-State league including
 Nevada, California, Oregon, and Washington.

 Crystal Palace. 6/12/93
 Joseph Harris. 7/27/93

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