Exploration value formulae

UPDATE Feb 2019 - values for 3.3

Since 3.3, payouts have been tweaked. For stars, broadly speaking, the basic calculation remains:
(k + (m * k / 66.25))

Where k is:
k
Star1200
NS/BH22628
WD14057

The main star also gets a bonus for honking based of the value of all the other bodies in the system. For planetary bodies, it seems to be (applied per-body):
Code:
double honk_bonus_value = Math.Max(500,(k + k * q * Math.Pow(mass,0.2)) / 3 );
honk_bonus_value *= (isUntagged) ? 2.6 : 1;
For stellar bodies, it's a straight 1/3rd base value (with 2.6 multiplier if an undiscovered system, same as planetary bodies).



For planetary bodies the base calculation is:
k + (k * m[SIZE=1]0.2[/SIZE] * q)

(see q later)

base kterraformable k
MR21790
AW96932
GG11656
GG2 / HMC9654100677
WW / ELW64831116295
Everything else30093328


The values might need tweaking, but they're broadly correct. Terraformability is a scale, between 0% and 100%. For terraformables (and ELWs), they will receive 100% of the value calculated with base k and between 0% and 100% of the value calculated with terraformable k. If you just care about maximum value of a terraformable, you can calculated with k = (base k + terraformable k).


q seems to be a constant. It, too, probably needs tweaking - and I can't help but feel I'm missing it's significance - but it's approximately: 0.56591828

There are bonus multipliers for: First Discoverer, mapping a body, being First Mapper of a body, and mapping with efficiency bonus. Rather than describe how and when they're applied, I've written a small snippet of code to explain it better:
Code:
        static int GetBodyValue(int k, double mass, bool isFirstDicoverer, bool isMapped, bool isFirstMapped, bool withEfficiencyBonus)
        {
            const double q = 0.56591828;
            double mappingMultiplier = 1;
            if(isMapped)
            {
                if(isFirstDicoverer && isFirstMapped)
                {
                    mappingMultiplier = 3.699622554;
                }
                else if(isFirstMapped)
                {
                    mappingMultiplier = 8.0956;
                }
                else
                {
                    mappingMultiplier = 3.3333333333;
                }
                mappingMultiplier *= (withEfficiencyBonus) ? 1.25 : 1;
            }
            double value = Math.Max(500,(k + k * q * Math.Pow(mass,0.2)) * mappingMultiplier);
            value *= (isFirstDicoverer) ? 2.6 : 1;
            return (int)Math.Round(value);
        }

It also seems there is a bonus of 1000 per body for fully scanning a system, and another bonus of 10000 per mappable body for fully mapping a system.

One more additional point of note. The data provided by BlackMirror (thanks, btw) seems to correlate with other data I have (and a small handful of iain666's), and suggests there are 2 other potential multipliers. First off, if you have previously sold (non-mapped) data for a body (perhaps before 3.3) but were not first discoverer, and then later go back to map that body, then an additional multiplier of approximately 1.23524 seems to be applied. Similarly, if you were first discoverer of the body then the multiplier is around 1.89404. I've left this out of the base calculation because it's more difficult to determine this data from the journal (though not impossible, if you have a history). It's also possible this is a bug and maybe it'll end up being fixed anyway.


I've run these numbers through some old mass analysis I did, and come with with these "average" values:


Planet TypeTerraformable?Median massFSSFSS+FDFSS+DSSFSS+FD+DSS
Ammonia World0.439141434633730045977621724965
Earth-like World0.49803927029070275311262063249900
Water World0.780638997472593434156131199337
Water WorldYes0.45301126861669840011192313229773
High Metal Content Planet0.344919140703658158624169171
High Metal Content PlanetYes0.4669291639484262646831161971272
Icy Body0.01854500130015694527
Metal Rich Body0.3239333163282244131802380341
Rocky Body0.003359500130014764260
Rocky BodyYes0.1423121295043367115396011557130
Rocky Ice Body0.180686500130017525057
Class I Gas Giant69.551636384599971602146233
Class II Gas Giant476.2408752840573853118354341536
Class III Gas Giant1148.9215099952587414511963
Class IV Gas Giant2615.63537611192910466313457
Class V Gas Giant925.5758069662510402311609
Gas Giant with Ammonia-based Life170.455071774201432279312
Gas Giant with Water-based Life477.0018328832295367910616
Helium-Rich Gas Giant550.1418469002339374910818
Water Giant47.163769667173427798019

FSS = FSS but don't get first discoverer.
FSS + FD + FSS, and get first discoverer tag.
FSS + DSS = body scanned and mapped with efficiency bonus - but neither first discoverer nor first mapped
FSS + FS + DSS = body scanned, mapped with efficiency, and both first discovered and first mapped.


Why terraformables don't always receive full terraforming bonus is still being investigated. Read the thread for details, there's too much to cover here.



I had more working this out than I have done using the FSS, as it is implemented 3.3.

Old info (2.3)
For stars, the formula is the same:

k + (m * k / 66.25)

Where m is the solar mass and k is as follows:
Black Holes / Neutrons: 54309
White Dwarves: 33737
All other stars: 2880

So a class M with 1 solar mass would be 2923.


For worlds, it is more compliacted, and slightly tweaked from before:

k + ( 3 * k * m0.199977 / 5.3 )

where m is the earth masses and k is as follows:
Metal-Rich: 52292
Ammonia: 232619
Class I Gas Giant: 3974
Class II Gas Giant and High Metal Content: 23168
Water World + Earth-Likes: 155581
Everything else: 720 (Class III / IV / V / Helium-Rich / Water-based Life / Ammonia-based Life Gas Giants, Water Giants, Rocky, Ice, Rocky Ice)

If the planet is terraformable (including all ELWs), they get a bonus added. To work out the maximum bonus, use the formula above but with these values for k - and then add the bonus to the base portion you already calculated:
High Metal Content: 241607
Water World + Earth-Likes: 279088
Rocky Body: 223971

Remember though, that this is the maximum terraformable bonus. For ELWs, they almost always get the full bonus. HMCs frequently get the full bonus. The few examples I've seen for terraformable Rocky Bodies all seem to have the maximum bonus. WWs though seem to be all over the place - sometimes getting the full bonus, sometimes getting no bonus at all and pretty much everything in-between. There are some patterns in which bodies get the full bonus or not, but nothing definitive. I am not sure we have enough information from the journal to tell just how much of the terraformable bonus a planet gets - but I'm still looking into it.


Why 0.199977 and not 0.2 ? Good question, but just under 0.2 fits the equation better (It might not be 0.199977 - but it's closer to that than 0.2). It _feels_ like perhaps the math is done in a low precision data type (say, a float instead of a double), but it's just speculation.
Older info:
UPDATE 14/07/2016 - added a link to spreadsheet to record values here

UPDATE 25/02/2016 - See below for updated terraforming notes.

Apologies if this is widely known, and I missed it. I know approximate values exist, but thought these might be interesting.

For stars, the value when selling data is:

k + (m * k / 66.25)

Where m is the solar mass and k is as follows:
Black Holes / Neutrons: 42994
White Dwarves: 26949
All other stars: 2880

So a class M with 1 solar mass would be 2923.


For worlds, it is a bit more complicated:

k + ( 3 * k * m0.2 / 5.3 )

where m is the earth masses and k is as follows:
Metal-Rich: 8331
Ammonia: 27358
Class I Gas Giant: 1481
Class II Gas Giant and High Metal Content: 4525
Water World + Earth-Likes (but see terraforming notes): 19747
Everything else: 720 (Class III / IV / V / Helium-Rich / Water-based Life / Ammonia-based Life Gas Giants, Water Giants, Rocky, Ice, Rocky Ice)


Caveats
1) Values assume scans after 2.0. Pre-2.0 are lower.
2) Limited data for Ammonia worlds, so k might need tweaking.
3) Excludes terraforming candidates. I have spent ages looking into the values for terraformable worlds and am yet to work out what is happening here. I am still working on it, but I'm now out in the black so have no new data to work with here. My worry is that there is something not displayed in the system map that is affecting this value (but equally, I might just be being an idiot and missing something obvious). For HMCs, most of the time terraforming adds 37-41k. For water worlds, it often seems to be 35k-40k - but I see huge disparity on these, including a handful of terraformable water worlds that get no bonus. Limited data, but terraformable rocky worlds look to get ~36k bonus.
4) For low mass worlds, the value might be somewhat incorrect because we're only given mass to 4 decimal places. e.g., a metal-rich world with a mass of 0.00015 would be worth 9142 but with a mass of 0.00024999 would be worth 9229 - but I think these would both show as 0.0002 in system map.
5) Values exclude First Discover bonus
6) Although I had a decent number of samples of earth-likes (with varying masses) that match the formula, I have 1 discrepancy. It could be a case of my inability to read and/or type properly, but it might also be that there's something relating to the terraforming bonus (or potential penalty) that's coming into effect. If anyone actually bothers to use these formula and notices ELWs selling for different than expected values I'd appreciate the sell value and a screenshot of the planet in the system map.


I hope someone finds this useful. If anyone has any bright ideas on terraforming (or their own data!), I'd be glad to hear it. Also, if someone has a decent data set of planets and their masses, we could generate highly accurate scan values, say +/- 2 standard deviations... (this would obviously be more useful if the terraforming puzzle could be solved!)

UPDATE 25/02/2016 - TERRAFORMING
Previously, I gave Earth-Likes their own value for k. I think this was wrong, and they instead share the value of k with water worlds but are also classed as "high quality" terraformables. Assuming we've worked out the base value (v) using previous formula, terraforming bonus is as follows:

(v * j * z / 34)

Where j is:
Water worlds / Earth-Likes: 1.31043
High Metal Content: 5.7186 (this might need slight tweaking but is pretty close to the mark - perhaps k needs tweaking too)
Rocky World: 35.93261 (this value should be treated with scepticism as it is from 1 source only and assumes that source had z = 34)


The problem here is z. z is an integer value between 0 and 34 (inclusive). I believe it's some sort of quality rating - the water worlds that seem most like Earth-Likes have 34 here, and Earth-Likes themselves are almost always 34 it seems. Majority of HMCs also have 34. I have many examples where z is not 34 though, particularly in water worlds. I also have an Earth-Like that only scores 33 for some reason. Unusually, it has a small Argon content in the atmosphere so perhaps this is a factor, but it can't be solely down to atmosphere as I have Water Worlds that will disprove it (in fact identical atmospheres across similar water worlds but different z).

Still not fully solved - but getting closer!
 
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No no no no no, it's turtles all the way down. ;)

[edit before mod]
Those figures tally with what I've seen recently. Basic 1M ELW is roughly 70k + 35k 1st discovery bonus.
 
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Apologies if this is widely known, and I missed it. I know approximate values exist, but thought these might be interesting.

For stars, the value when selling data is:

k + (m * k / 66.25)

Where m is the solar mass and k is as follows:
Black Holes / Neutrons: 42994
White Dwarves: 26949
All other stars: 2880

So a class M with 1 solar mass would be 2923.
Really interesting thanks! One thing though. According to Wikipedia Sag A* is 1300 solar masses, so shouldn't it be tremendously valuable? In fact I work it out as 886,000 credits. It's not actually that valuable is it? I haven't been there yet.
 
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Really interesting thanks! One thing though. According to Wikipedia Sag A* is 1300 solar masses, so shouldn't it be tremendously valuable? In fact I work it out as 886,000 credits. It's not actually that valuable is it? I haven't been there yet.

Pretty sure it's over half a million solar masses in game, actually (or it used to be). And pretty sure there was a bug fixed over a year ago where selling Sag A data was leading to people hitting Elite in exploration (I might be mis-remembering), so maybe it was using a similar formula back then until it was fixed. However, Sag A* is identified as a super massive black hole rather than a black hole so will have it's own formula, or static value given it's a unique object.
 
Really interesting thanks! One thing though. According to Wikipedia Sag A* is 1300 solar masses, so shouldn't it be tremendously valuable? In fact I work it out as 886,000 credits. It's not actually that valuable is it? I haven't been there yet.

It was over 600K prior to 2.0, so it could be worth about what you suggest now.

Pretty sure it's over half a million solar masses in game, actually (or it used to be). And pretty sure there was a bug fixed over a year ago where selling Sag A data was leading to people hitting Elite in exploration (I might be mis-remembering), so maybe it was using a similar formula back then until it was fixed. However, Sag A* is identified as a super massive black hole rather than a black hole so will have it's own formula, or static value given it's a unique object.
Indeed. I just looked and it says 516,608, so the number probably don't work. However, I'm guessing that Sagittarius A* is rather a special case anyway. Seeing as it's a unique object in game, there is probably a unique price value.
 
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Really interesting thanks! One thing though. According to Wikipedia Sag A* is 1300 solar masses, so shouldn't it be tremendously valuable? In fact I work it out as 886,000 credits. It's not actually that valuable is it? I haven't been there yet.
Here you go. Post 2.0.
 
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By the OP formula, Sgr A* would then have a mass of 901.9 suns? Hmm. The black hole calc is definitely not a straight line of the mass.
 
Really interesting thanks! One thing though. According to Wikipedia Sag A* is 1300 solar masses, so shouldn't it be tremendously valuable? In fact I work it out as 886,000 credits. It's not actually that valuable is it? I haven't been there yet.

Sgr A* is at least ~4 Million solar masses by several earth and space telescopes, in radio, xray, and IR. Not sure where you found the 1300 figure. The rl mass is still 10x the figure in ED, but maybe they lowered it based on less accurate older data? Or maybe the Thargoids found a way to accelerate hawking radiation to leech energy to power their Witchspace hovering capabilities? It's a mystery.

Mostly likely, they lowered it to keep the fake helmet cam spatial distortion from making people completely sea sick. This effect is currently dependent on mass, and to a lesser extent on the distance. Apparently ED can't render things too far away however so effect ends being rendered as if though you were wearing a fish bowl on your head. Needs fixing asap. Then they could get the spatial distortion and the masses fixed as well.
 
If I recall correctly, Sagittarius A* is a special case and was worth a lot more money when Zulu Romeo (o7) first got there.

Edit: Looked it up, it was 139 MCr. Back than, that was enough for instant Elite, that's why they lowered it.
 
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If I recall correctly, Sagittarius A* is a special case and was worth a lot more money when Zulu Romeo (o7) first got there.

Edit: Looked it up, it was 139 MCr. Back than, that was enough for instant Elite, that's why they lowered it.
That's the payment, but the mass itself didn't have to be altered. The mass is currently too small by an order of magnitude. I would guess that the mass ties into a bunch of calculations, and rather than keeping it scientifically accurate, they dropped it to better fit the games needs, which is unfortunate.

Personally I am kind of glad that it was such a high cash value to start. Discovering Sgr A* when we could only plot 1 jump at a time was worth at least 139 million imo. But I am also glad it didn't stay that high.
 
That's the payment, but the mass itself didn't have to be altered. The mass is currently too small by an order of magnitude. I would guess that the mass ties into a bunch of calculations, and rather than keeping it scientifically accurate, they dropped it to better fit the games needs, which is unfortunate.

Personally I am kind of glad that it was such a high cash value to start. Discovering Sgr A* when we could only plot 1 jump at a time was worth at least 139 million imo. But I am also glad it didn't stay that high.
I only remember the 100 LY plots, everything else was before my time. :) But yeah, the mass is wrong, I know. Just wanted to say that whatever calculation determines the value of black holes, and whatever in-game mass it has, Sagittarius A* is a manually adjusted exception. When Zulu got there, the the system map solar mass value was "1.0000", strangely enough.

The 1,300 solar masses seem to come from confusion with GCIRS 13E, btw. (Not the first time I saw it confused with Sag A*'s mass, either.)
 
If I recall correctly, Sagittarius A* is a special case and was worth a lot more money when Zulu Romeo (o7) first got there.

Edit: Looked it up, it was 139 MCr. Back than, that was enough for instant Elite, that's why they lowered it.

Just want to point out that using the regular black hole formula, and the figure of 516,608 solar masses, the formula spits out ~335,304,040. However, most objects were believed to be increased by about 20% in value for 2.0, and they were double before that when they "buffed" exploration payouts.

335304040 / 1.2 / 2.0 =~ 139,710,000 - that's 139MCr.

Interesting to know if Sag A* showed up as a black hole back then, or was still showing as a super massive black hole but had the same value for k as normal black holes. Based on CMDR Sapporo's value for post 2.0, the value of k for a super massive black hole is ~80.565. Shame there's not another one out there to verify this ;)

I agree it was worth 139M for the first discoverer back then, and also happy it was lowered afterwards.
 
The 1,300 solar masses seem to come from confusion with GCIRS 13E, btw. (Not the first time I saw it confused with Sag A*'s mass, either.)
Now you made me curious. Haven't been to Sgr A* yet (next on my list, though - after I return from the North America region), but the Wikipedia article puts the existence of GCIRS 13E in doubt. So the question is: is it there in in the game? Has anybody seen it? Should be worth half a mint at least (unless the value is also manually fixed).
 
Personally I am kind of glad that it was such a high cash value to start. Discovering Sgr A* when we could only plot 1 jump at a time was worth at least 139 million imo. But I am also glad it didn't stay that high.
I agree but for the different reason. Back then it was very dangerous around the core, many commanders were stuck and couldn't move any further.

I'm almost always manually plotting 1 jump at a time, I'm very rarely using the automatic route plotter. I don't feel I'm handicapped because of it, quit the opposite, I find it the best way to explore. Using the route plotter is only good for travelling fast, in my opinion.
 
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