Analysing the Thargoid Simulation

We’ve been told that the Thargoid Simulation is fully autonomous and will make its own decisions on how to fight – and with hundreds of systems under attack, how else could it be? This thread is intended as a summary of the research into how it works for the benefit of military planners fighting against it, attempting to analyse it in the style of the Political Simulation.

Addendum, 4 April 2024: while previous adjustments to the simulation have taken place in terms of incremental rule changes, the placement of 30 Alerts around Oya in complete abandonment of all previous precedents, at the same time as the other five surviving Titans operated entirely normally, suggests that the period of autonomy is essentially over. All text below should now be considered to have "unless Frontier decides arbitrarily to do something different" as a real possibility rather than a hypothetical one.

State of the War​

Titans Taranis and Leigong have now been destroyed and their remaining systems are no longer an obvious threat. Serial containment and destruction of the remaining Titans is intended with Oya as the next target and Hadad likely following that, subject to Frontier confirming that such is acceptable.

General considerations and findings​

  • As confirmed by Frontier, systems closer to the Maelstrom are more heavily defended by Thargoids, and systems (formerly) inhabited by humans are defended less. The difficulty is a set of joined linear rules for 5-LY periods, with the junction points approximating an inverse-cube relationship.
  • Thargoid expansion appears to be limited to within 10 LY of an existing control system. At the moment each Maelstrom can generate 6 Alerts per cycle, with research on how it chooses systems continuing - a reasonably accurate model for most circumstances has now been developed.
  • The strategic differences between wins in Alerts, Invasions and Controls are relatively minor compared with the benefits of winning greater numbers in total, so where a group should focus depends on more on its pilots abilities and activity preferences than on any global factors.
  • Current human forces, at the average distance of contested systems from the Maelstroms, should be capable of containing the Thargoid forces at an approximate radius of 20-25 LY at each Maelstrom - but the need to significantly reduce Thargoid Controls to attack a Titan means that this is unlikely to be applied uniformly.

Additional resources​

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Thargoid War System States​

The Thargoid War works by applying system-level states, which change on the weekly server cycle. These states follow a simple flowchart. Each system shows its progress (if any) towards the human-favourable next state. The current position is on the left side of the white progress chevron; if 100% progress is made the white chevron vanishes entirely. There does not appear to be any limit on how fast progress can be made with sufficiently focused forces, and the bar appears to update in semi-real-time.

Since U16, where an Invasion, Alert or Control is completed, Thargoid forces will retreat in real time.


The political simulation appears to be frozen with no influence or state movements during any non-default state, with existing states set to None (though global expansions from other systems still appear and affect the economic simulation). (Unknown: are inbound expansions allowed?)

(Unknown: how are systems assigned to each maelstrom? Do they act independently or is it just the closest?)

Maelstrom/Titan (red)​

The eight maelstroms each form the centre of a Thargoid invasion somewhat analogous to a Powerplay Headquarters. Maelstroms can be investigated for materials, captive retrieval, or direct attacks on the Titan, and the internal environment is extremely hazardous though survivable for prepared ships. A force effect protects the centre of the Maelstrom from inspection, but with sufficient equipment the Titan at the centre can be reached and sampled.

Maelstroms are named after storm gods from different religions. Currently all are positioned in fringe bubble systems on the “south” side of the bubble, mostly below the Sol plane. Their order in the map loosely reflects their original order of arrival.
  1. Taranis: Hyades Sector FB-N b7-6
  2. Indra: HIP 20567
  3. Leigong: HIP 8887
  4. Cocijo: Col 285 Sector BA-P c6-18
  5. Oya: Cephei Sector BV-Y b4
  6. Thor: Col 285 Sector IG-O c6-5
  7. Raijin: Pegasi Sector IH-U b3-3
  8. Hadad: HIP 30377

So far all Maelstroms have been founded in uninhabited systems on the fringes of the bubble, containing at least one Ammonia World, and the Maelstrom POI orbits that AW. There have been no signs of mechanisms by which Maelstroms can be added, moved or removed dynamically yet.

Since 5 October 3309 it has been possible to rescue human captives from the Titan at the centre of the Maelstrom. The effect of this has varied from week to week and is currently uncertain; there is some evidence that it may help provide progress to formerly-inhabited counterstrike systems.

Since 26 February 3310 it has been possible to directly damage the Titan using a combination of Nanite Torpedoes and conventional AX weapons. The exact mechanism is uncertain but the following has been established:
  • Titans have eight hearts which need to be removed in sequence. A considerable amount of collective damage across multiple instances is needed to remove even a single heart. The Titan system damage display shows these as concentric circles, with the current one partially completed as a dial.
  • Multiple hearts can be destroyed in a single week. Unlike other system types, Titan damage is not repaired/reinforced between weeks.
  • Once a Titan loses all hearts it becomes critically damaged and loses its defensive shield. A 24 hour timer then starts and its interceptor fleet begins to evacuate, before the Titan is destroyed and replaced by a debris field, which is temporarily inaccessible.
  • Titans have a damage resistance property which appears to be at least mostly caused by their Control system count
  • The resistance is presumed to make heart progress slower; the exact equations are unclear but data so far is provided below.
  • Destroying a Titan has the following effects on its owned systems:
    • The Maelstrom is unable to place any new Alerts in following cycles and any existing Alerts will automatically fail at the end of the cycle
    • The 33% reinforcement of existing systems stops, but existing Control systems are retained
    • Any Invasions which were already active will continue towards Control
    • Control Systems appear to retain their former distance-based strengths
  • The role of Spire sites in this is uncertain but doesn't appear to be very significant beyond their role in the wider Control system strategies.

Due to a lack of data at this early stage the exact behaviour of damage resistance and most boundaries between its text descriptions remain unknown. The resistance appears to be somewhat above linear on the number of control systems, but various polynomial, exponential and power functions are able to give a decent fit for the few data points with large error bars currently available. It is very likely that Taranis was unusually weak for its Control count and Frontier have made hints in that direction.

Safe System (white)​

The initial default state – whether uninhabited or human occupied – of all systems.

It is possible at times for Thargoid activity to appear in these systems - for example the Scythe raids after Update 16 - but in general normal pre-war conditions apply.

Thargoid Alert (yellow)​

A number of Alerts are generated each week. These Alert states last for one week and are characterised by Orthrus-class Interceptors placing and retrieving Sensors and Probes in the system. Alert states can occur in both inhabited and uninhabited systems. They can be fought by destroying Thargoids, and if the system is inhabited also by completing missions, delivering supplies, and evacuating civilians. As relatively small numbers of Thargoids are present, this makes inhabited Alerts much more practical to defend against.

If sufficient activity takes place in the system, the alert ends and the system returns to Safe. Otherwise, a Thargoid Invasion begins if the system is inhabited. Uninhabited systems move directly to the Control state.

Target Selection​

The target selection mechanism has been analysed and a model which largely explains observations so far is as follows:
  • A Maelstrom gets a number of points of Alert budget each week. Prior to 16 March, uninhabited Alerts cost 1 point and inhabited Alerts cost 4 points; now both types cost 4 points. Originally the budget was 20 points; from 7 December 2023 it became more variable, switching without particular cause between 24 and 32 several times. More monitoring is needed and the current expectation of Alert count is provisional.
  • Each Alert must be generated from a Control system within 10 LY (or very slightly more subject to rounding), and any individual Control system may not generate an Alert more than once every other week. Controls cannot generate an Alert in their first week of existence. The Titan itself does not count as a Control system (though see below), but Matrix systems work normally.
  • Systems to be selected must not currently be in Recovery (though they can be ending their recovery period to go directly into Alert) or as of 15.02 in the first clear week after a 3-week recovery
  • Systems selected must not have been in Alert or Invasion state in either of the previous two weeks
  • Systems selected must not have been in Control state in any of the previous four weeks
  • As of 7 December 2023, the Titan can also generate an Alert directly in limited circumstances: the Maelstrom must have exhausted all other possibilities to generate Alerts, and the Titan's target(s) must obey normal cooldown. As with a normal Control, the Titan can only do this every other week. It appears that if an earlier Control attack has switched the Maelstrom into external targeting, the Titan does not switch back to internal targeting even if it could. There appear to be some additional limitations on this attack but further research is needed. It is likely that the Titan's attack is only usable if the Maelstrom has fewer than 3 control systems, but the exact conditions are unclear.
The following image shows the effects of the various cooldown periods on re-attack cycles, assuming that active control systems are available to attack and the system remains high up the priority list.

Having established the targets which may be attacked, the prioritisation for which will be attacked is approximately as follows:
  • Start by attacking - closest target first - the nearest system to the Titan, using the nearest control to the Titan which can reach it. As each control can only be used once, this may result in the targets hit not being the five closest, if one of the close targets can only be attacked by a previously-used control. There is no global optimisation here: if A and B are controls (A closer to the Titan) and X and Y are targets, where X is closer to the Titan and A and B can both attack X but only A can attack Y, then A will attack X, nothing will attack Y, and the attack will move on to targets after Y.
  • If all Alerts can be placed this way before the Alert-Titan distance exceeds the highest Control-Titan distance at this location, the process ends. If, however - which may sometimes happen before any Alert is placed - the next Alert would be further out than the furthest Control, a change in priorities occurs. Changing priority in this way to "nearest attacks furthest" costs a fractional attack (say 0.1 attacks; under the current circumstances determining the exact value or indeed if this is the precise mechanism seems impossible).
  • Following the priority change, select the nearest control to the Titan which has targets remaining. Attack the most distant of those targets, unless some but not all targets are inhabited, in which case attack the most distant inhabited target. Where nearer targets that this particular control can attack were skipped over by this process, add them to a "backtracking" list. Unknown: if more distant targets are skipped do they also get added to the backtracking list?
  • Targets on the backtracking list cost 0.1 attacks fewer than normal, though do not appear to be prioritised on this basis unless budgeting makes them the only choice. [1]
  • If at any point, a Maelstrom runs out of targets - generally due to cooldowns and losses of "perimeter" controls - then the unspent Alerts are wasted.
There appear to be some minor details not yet finalised on this algorithm: since the likely change to it around 16 March, some weeks with "outside" attacks have not quite followed the above - either placing an Alert at a closer system than the furthest possible, or making use of an unexpected Control. Further research continues, though these exceptions are relatively rare.

[1] The consequence of this and the fractional switching cost is that a Maelstrom which switches will lose an Alert unless it can place a backtracking Alert at some point. As this requires at least two Alerts to be placed after the mode switch (one to set up the backtrack and one to use it), a Titan which switches late will always lose an Alert (and even an early switch may do, depending on the perimeter)

Thargoid Invasion (orange)​

In a Thargoid Invasion state, the system is under intense Thargoid attack. Supercruise traffic may be interdicted by Thargoids, hyperdictions will occur, and stations in the system will become AX combat zones. Stations will gradually (unknown: in what order, and when in the invasion process?) become damaged and abandoned via this process, and it appears possible from detail in the system map to tell if a station is at risk this week.

In inhabited systems, this state lasts for at least 2 weeks and often more, depending on the number of ports in the system, and can be resisted by destroying Thargoids, delivering supplies, evacuating civilians to rescue ships, and completing missions. The variety of support activities available will change during the course of the state - with a much smaller selection available at "abandoned" ports compared with active or damaged ones - and may have differing effects.

If sufficient activity takes place in the system, the attack is repelled and the system enters the Recovery state. Otherwise, it either moves to Control or the current battle to protect stations is lost, extra stations are damaged or abandoned, and the progress to repelling the attack resets to fight over the next set of targets. Invasion is generally best thought of as a series of consecutive one-week battles to defend stations, rather than an N-week battle to defend the system.

Duration in inhabited systems: the duration for invasions appears to be one week per targetable port (non-Odyssey dockables), plus an extra week with no ports left, in most cases. However, some but not all systems with many ports show a shorter duration than this: there are examples of 5 port systems taking 4 weeks while 4 port systems take 5 weeks. There may also be an upper limit on invasion duration regardless of the number of ports.

The system population gradually reduces as the Invasion state progresses and stations are lost (though in the final week with no active stations, some population still remains). (Uncertain: stations appear to be selected for attack in reverse order of Political importance, leading up to the Main Station in the final week. Is this accurate?)

Thargoid Control (green)​

Thargoid-controlled systems are occupied by Thargoid forces. If they were previously inhabited, the population is zeroed, all political factions are removed, and any stations are abandoned.

Recapture attempts are made weekly on these systems, requiring the destruction of a large number of Thargoid ships. If the recapture attempt is successful, the system returns to Safe (if previously uninhabited) or Recovery (if previously inhabited)

Control systems on the "front lines" gain combat zones to make it easier to find Thargoids. The definition of "front lines" is not currently clear but seems based on observations at Oya to require both a minimum distance from the Maelstrom and a maximum distance from some other point (possibly Sol). These systems are marked as "Counterstrike" on the map and vary somewhat from week to week.

Powerplay Exploit systems under Thargoid Control appear to stop generating CC (though this only appears on the Power's CC total, not on the per-system data). (Unknown: what happens if they take over a Powerplay Control system?)

From Update 15, Odyssey Military settlements in Control systems generate on-foot infiltration missions, which must be taken from an incomplete populated Alert system within 20 LY. These missions appear to provide a small benefit to both systems. Due to luck of targeting, these currently can only appear at Oya, Indra, Cocijo and Raijin, and may be unavailable at times due to Alert distribution.

With Update 16, some Thargoid Control systems gained Barnacle Matrix presence, which evolved into Thargoid Spires in Update 17. So far the requirements for this are unclear - it requires a landable atmosphere planet and an uninhabited system, but there are far fewer Matrix systems than those criteria alone would allow. Systems containing a Spire cannot be progressed directly - see "indirect progress activities" below - but can be indirectly recaptured which puts the Spire into a dormant state. It is unclear if further systems can gain this presence (and immunity). A recaptured Spire system becomes eligible for Alert on the normal timescale, though this does not immediately reactivate the Spire site, and the Alert can be defeated normally.

The Spire site does apparently reactivate if the system is recaptured, but the system appears on early inspection to behave as a normal Control - it can gain progress even if not peripheral. It is not clear exactly what actions cause progress gains and this may be a bug.

(Unknown: can a faction whose home system is under Thargoid control be retreated from its last remaining inhabited system?)

Recovery (purple)​

Systems in the recovery state have a request to deliver construction materials. The state lasts for multiple weeks and lists the number of inactive ports, with the outcome of the state listed as returning to full human control. Unlike Invasion, this is a genuine multi-week state, and the progress bar is carried forward from previous weeks. The progress bar will also gradually advance automatically - it is unclear if it is possible to speed it up, but it appears to require immense effort if so.

Stations under repair have a special Repair economy requesting a range of industrial and personnel supplies, and offer source-and-return missions for many of these goods. They have a very limited set of services while repairs are completed.

If the state was entered from Invasion, stations successfully defended during the invasion do not need to be repaired. If the Invasion was defeated in the first week, the system will still enter the Recovery state, but this will last only 1 week and instantly complete its progress bar. Otherwise, the process appears to take 4 weeks regardless of the number of damaged and undamaged stations. The 4-week timer can be shortened by a week (unless already in its final week) by restoring power to all Odyssey settlements in the system ... but this seems to exhibit as the system getting a 3-week visible timer, which may then be followed by a surprise additional 1 week timer in some situations, which makes determining future system state difficult.

The population of a system in recovery is reduced significantly, even in the 1-week version of the state, which may involve further reductions from its previous week in Invasion. It returns to normal, as do all markets, once the state completes.

It does not appear possible for systems to be attacked again during Recovery, but they do not necessarily need an intervening full Safe week in all cases either.
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Indirect Progress Activities​

In addition to the per-system progress activities, certain activities also count towards indirect progress mechanisms.

Rescuing Human Prisoners​

Rescuing human prisoners from a Titan provides a small boost to any formerly-inhabited counterstrike Control systems in the maelstrom. This doesn't appear to be capped - but is also nowadays a fairly weak effect: recent measurements by YTEC and ReAegis pilots suggest that each rescued pod is worth about 1/10th of a Thargoid Sample taken directly in the system. Unlike the Spire boost, this effect is dependent on the system's defensive strength, so more significant against more distant systems. It is unlikely that many maelstroms will obtain enough inhabited counterstrike Control systems to make this an efficient progress method - but nevertheless, it does provide some effect.

(Earlier in the war, the progress granted from this effect also applied to uninhabited counterstrikes, and was far more generous; significant damage was done to Indra and others before it was changed)

Spire Attacks​

  • Killing the Orthrus (and possibly other targets) at a Spire site
  • Stealing refined materials from the Spire
  • Returning sabotaged materials to the Spire (does not have to be the same spire or even same Maelstrom that the materials were obtained from)
This indirect progress applies a flat percentage boost to the "periphery" - the outer ten [1] Alert+Invasion+Control systems of the Maelstrom by distance from the Titan. This is the only known way to cause progress in Matrix/Spire systems. If the Maelstrom has fewer than ten systems, all systems are affected. It is possible to remove a Maelstrom's entire system set other than the Titan by this method and this has been done at Taranis and Leigong, though it is not usually necessary to go this far.

The boost here is applied evenly to all systems, up to a cap of 85% for non-Matrix systems, but uncapped for Spire systems. The magnitude does not depend on the conventional difficulty of the system and does not appear to depend on the collective difficulty of the set of ten, or whether any of the ten have been completed by any means. If all ten are completed, further indirect action appears to do nothing for the remainder of the week other than pile up >100% progress in the Spire systems.

Note that due to the way the cap works, 15% early conventional activity followed by 85% periphery activity will leave a peripheral Alert/Control at 85% ... whereas 85% periphery activity followed by 15% late conventional activity will complete the system. Due to the high requirements to achieve high percentage completion this way, this is generally only efficient if the goal is to remove a spire system which has become peripheral, or if the periphery contains systems very close to the Maelstrom. Beyond 15 LY other ways to clear systems are considerably quicker and have the advantage of allowing targets to be chosen by the human side rather than the Thargoid side.

Retaking of previous Spire systems by the Thargoids does not seem to restore them to their original state. It is not clear if this is intentional but it has implications for future compression attacks.

[1] There seems to be a minor anomaly where systems are extremely close together in distance to the Titan that they can sometimes end up out of order - a possible mechanism is that the distances are first rounded to the nearest 0.01 and then the sorting is applied.

Miscellaneous Notes​

  • Relying on there only being 33% reinforcement between weeks in the same state as a way of defending a system is very inefficient - if the weekly effort is less than 50%, more is being spent fighting the reinforcements than on winning the system over the entire period. It should be considered a consolation prize when narrowly failing to defend a system.
  • The tracking of cargo origin introduced for Thargoid sampling is very comprehensive - samples may be collected by one player, sold to a second player's carrier, and bought by a third player for transfer to a rescue ship and still count towards the system progress. Samples collected in one week may be used in the following week (and possibly later) which may provide ways to stockpile progress more effectively than the 33% decay. (does this also apply in the political BGS to mitigate carrier laundering?)
  • The difficulty of fighting in a system in terms of actions-per-progress appears to be based on a set of linear relations in 5 LY bands, which loosely approximate an inverse-cube curve, becoming entirely flat after a certain distance (and also within 5 LY, though that is of less importance). Control System data is available in more detail.
  • Control systems do not need to trace a 10LY-hop path through other Control systems back to the Maelstrom to be able to launch Alerts - however, disconnected groups such as these can be effective targets for attacks as it will take the Thargoids substantial effort to recapture them.
  • The interaction between interior and exterior Alert placement and the definition of the "periphery" zone introduces some interesting strategic considerations when the aim is to place specific Spire systems into the periphery in a future week.
  • Signifcant research has been done on the relative impact of activities in Alerts by CMDR Carpets. The proportions for Invasion or Control will be somewhat different, and rebalancing may change the values in future.

Wider Strategic Considerations and Research Areas​

Some remaining questions to be answered (with current information):
  • What happens if a system of unique importance (engineers, rescue ships, production of regional commodities, plot significance, etc.) is lost? (currently: Indra has taken out a small amount of Ion Distributor production, though this is duplicated elsewhere; nowhere else is likely to be threatened anyway)
  • Galnet has hinted that the loss of systems may have wider economic impacts. What are these?
  • Galnet has hinted that exobiology may play a part in defeating the Thargoids. How?
  • What is the Thargoids' strategic objective; Seo Jin-ae implies that it isn't purely destruction of humanity, or at least there are things they want to do before that point, though this may just have been telling her slower Aegis colleagues that the near-simultaneous arrival of 8 Maelstroms probably involved some planning. (Capture of human prisoners appears to be part of it, and the Spires appear to be refinery infrastructure of some sort)
  • What happens if a Maelstrom runs out of Spires? So far, apparently nothing
(None of these should stop anyone trying to protect systems personally important to them, of course: people doing that may end up being the factor which decides the war)
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With regards to invaded (orange) systems, I found a little extra bit of info if you view the "thargoid war" panel accessible from inside the system map:

I suspect there's some text missing here and the damaged stations are meant to be listed, which will change state to abandoned at the end of the attack cycle (which possibly looks aligned with weekly maintenance). This matches up with what happened during last week's maintenance where many stations in invasion systems were lost because we hadn't really had a chance to fight back since the update went live.
Also the bar seems to work like standard conflicts: one purple notch equals with one day win (HIP 23716 has two now).

About the Ortrhus:
You can find them at the "Alert" state systems spawned NHSS4 POIs. One worths 50M bonds. Can emit anti-guardian EMP, and can call for reinforcements. Reinforcements are arriving usually in 10-20 secs. Mainly scouts, but no accurate stats available yet.
Basically an Orthrus is jumping into the POI, scan the probe for ~15 secs, then leaves, without any combat. There is a caustic trail behind, where its moving, so be careful.
I suspect there's some text missing here and the damaged stations are meant to be listed, which will change state to abandoned at the end of the attack cycle (which possibly looks aligned with weekly maintenance). This matches up with what happened during last week's maintenance where many stations in invasion systems were lost because we hadn't really had a chance to fight back since the update went live.
There's a similar screenshot for a different system in which does have a station listed - as the Invasion process tends to last for more weeks than the systems have non-Odyssey stations, it's possible that some weeks nothing specific is at risk of loss.
It's going to be interesting to see how the various anti-Xeno tasks are balanced against one another. Will it be more beneficial to destroy large amounts of Scouts ("Destroy Thargoid Craft"), finish AXCZs to 100% ("Support Human Forces in Conflict Zones") or complete missions ("Kill 50 Scouts")? Do different missions have different values for progression (e.g. will "Kill 2 Medusa Interceptors" count more than "Kill 92 Scouts" or "Source 90t of [random good]")

As for xenobiology helping with fighting the Thargoid. Has anyone checked if there's an atmospheric world in Thargoid controlled space and if this world (preferably with an Ammonia atmosphere) has new biologicals?
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Today I tried to find nhss 4 in the alert systems but couldnt find any, they were simply non existent. I went to an invasion system (of maelstrom nr 2) and did not find them either nor did I find a large number of nhss, in fact they were very sparse. Dont know if this is by design.

The alert systems seem to be some sort of behind the frontline hub.

  • You can transport refugees without risking constant hyperdictions or direct attacks outside of the station yet you still have to evade hyperdictions once in a while.
  • You can get missions with payouts up to 50 millions for destroying interceptors in the invaded systems. (Dont know if the alert systems all have stations with large pads or stations that have refuel,repair,rearm,shipyard active)
  • You can do delivery missions to help the system repell the imminent thargoid threat.
  • If you get hyperdicted on the way to these alert systems it seems that there is always just one interceptor chasing after you so this is like the perfect method of starting to learn how to fight them. Due to the fact that I did not have a thargoid proof ship I did not scan the interceptors - what if its always the weakest one?

FD is giving us breadcrumps to figure out how this entire maelstrom thing works. So lets make one like it should be and the other two not so bad - few systems affected :)

Another question:

Are there predictions where the remaining stargoids are going to strike the bubble?

I have a feeling that ua#4 is going to stop in either HIP 15415 (-93,84 36,13 -83,91) or Lyncis Sector UZ-P b5-4 (-91,81 66,97 -98,03)
I suspect there's some text missing here and the damaged stations are meant to be listed, which will change state to abandoned at the end of the attack cycle (which possibly looks aligned with weekly maintenance). This matches up with what happened during last week's maintenance where many stations in invasion systems were lost because we hadn't really had a chance to fight back since the update went live.
The text is broken if you're viewing it from the galmap - it works if you're in the system you're viewing.
Noone knows this yet, that is something we need to figure out. What activity is moving the bar towards succesfull defending the most, how are the activities balanced or does it matter how many people paticipate.

AXI managed 6 pips in less than a week with bug killing alone. Somewhere on reddit a cmdr said he rescued over 1000 people from an alert system - zero pips. Did axi kill 1000 bugs or 500 or 5389 ... ?

There is lots of testing ahead.
The threat levels in the new types of signal sources in the thargoid war systems seem to work on a different scale than the old pleiades etc ones - an eventual writeup on what those are and what to expect might help too.
There's a similar screenshot for a different system in which does have a station listed - as the Invasion process tends to last for more weeks than the systems have non-Odyssey stations, it's possible that some weeks nothing specific is at risk of loss.
I'm pretty sure they match up with at-risk stations. Systems with multiple damaged stations show multiple blank red lines.
I wonder if people realise they can help Alert systems? They seem to be getting no attention compared to the Incursion systems, despite the Alert systems having the most.. err... urgent? Situations?
So we thought it would be a good idea to focus on Orthruses in alert systems for now, as it is probably better to avoid an invasion than to fight it off. Also a system from where they cannot expand further is a good system, right?

Alas, in none of the alert state systems we have visited, a single NHSS was to be found.

Do we happen to have any intel on how the alert mechanic really works? Does it work at all, or are we wasting our time and better focus on systems at war?
Any bit of helpful info greatly appreciated.
So we thought it would be a good idea to focus on Orthruses in alert systems for now, as it is probably better to avoid an invasion than to fight it off. Also a system from where they cannot expand further is a good system, right?

Alas, in none of the alert state systems we have visited, a single NHSS was to be found.

Do we happen to have any intel on how the alert mechanic really works? Does it work at all, or are we wasting our time and better focus on systems at war?
Any bit of helpful info greatly appreciated.
Only what's in the game... which for the most part is "we've got 3 days before they become invaded systems... to prevent that happening we can do most of the same things that help an invaded system. "
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