Noob Questions and Confusion

I RTFM and am still confused.. So I'll just ask my questions:

1) Is there an influence cap per BGS tick? Is it possible to somehow trigger a NEGATIVE influence by over-'milking' high influence rewards? The last influence mission I turned in showed the faction's influence bar in the red instead of the blue.

2) Are there any mechanisms to weaken the controlling faction's hold on a system without becoming wanted in that system? If not, what about if I brought in my pirate ship and start blowing up NPCs belonging to that controlling faction, will that weaken them? If so, can I switch back to a clean ship and still run missions for the 'underdog' faction I want to promote?

3) If I'm looking to overthow the controlling faction, is it better to push one opposing faction or multiple factions? Obviously I have one that I wish to 'win', but I'm wondering if raising all the 'minor' factions up out of the single digits might help eat away the influence of the top dog.

4) I assumed that if I turn exploration data or commodities to a station controlled by a faction that doesn't control the system, the "points" went to who controls the station. Yet when I did this, I gained rep with the faction that controls the system, not that station. If this is the case, then what's the point of a faction controlling a station if they don't control the system?

5) Is it possible to flip a system's allegiance by changing the faction? Specifically, if an independent faction controls the system and I promote an Alliance faction to take over, will the system then show as an Alliance system? If so, will stations magically change their look and ATC messages?

That's all that comes to mind for now, but I may have more questions as I figure all this out. Thanks!
 
1) Is there an influence cap per BGS tick? Is it possible to somehow trigger a NEGATIVE influence by over-'milking' high influence rewards? The last influence mission I turned in showed the faction's influence bar in the red instead of the blue.
Yes... as far as I understand it there's a cap. Way I hear it works is:
  • If you do 10 +ve things for a faction; and
  • There are no other (+ve?)[1] actions done for any other factions in the system
... then you'll get the full amount of possible influence change directed towards that faction, for the system's given population (bigger population = smaller cap). If any work is done for other factions, then you can do infinitely more missions and constantly get smaller and smaller upticks of influence, but it'll never be the full amount because that one action will give a small part of inf to that faction.

I say "Way I hear" because I've never tested or verified that myself... but it seems an OK yardstick.
BTW: Ignore the screen which appears after handing in a mission... something something caching, odd displays. Just note... depending on the mission type, there can be negative effects for the target faction (i.e Faction A wants you to deliver cargo to Faction B, or Faction A may want you to assassinate someone from Faction B... Faction B is the target in both cases; first will give +ve effects for B, second will give -ve effects for B)

[1] I don't know entirely how -ve influence actions would affect this.... whether it just directs where the influence is drawn from or whether it's it's own separate count that can be exploited.
Say 5 factions are each on 20% influence... if you did enough work to increase a faction's influence by 4%, it'd be drawn equally from all factions as follows:
Initially: A=20, B=20, C=20, D=20, E=20
After: A=24, B=19, C=19, D=19, E=19

Conversely, a drop ... if you did enough work to increase a faction's influence by 4%, it'd be assigned equally to all factions as follows:
Initially: A=20, B=20, C=20, D=20, E=20
After: A=16, B=21, C=21, D=21, E=21

But if you did work to increase a faction by 4%, and reduce another faction by 4%, it'd draw like this:
by 4%, it'd be drawn equally from all factions as follows:
Initially: A=20, B=20, C=20, D=20, E=20
After: A=24, B=20, C=16, D=20, E=29

Thing that matters here is whether an inf reduction is just a subtraction from a single faction (which normalises out on the tick) or a -ve
2) Are there any mechanisms to weaken the controlling faction's hold on a system without becoming wanted in that system? If not, what about if I brought in my pirate ship and start blowing up NPCs belonging to that controlling faction, will that weaken them? If so, can I switch back to a clean ship and still run missions for the 'underdog' faction I want to promote?
Obligatory plug:
https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/time-to-buff-antagonistic-pve.472325/

But yes, what you suggest is one of the only reliable mechanisms for hurting a faction, and what you suggest will work unless you become Hostile... again, see my other thread. If you become hostile and there's nowhere else to dock, sorry... you need to wait for your opponent to like you again before you can keep hurting them...

3) If I'm looking to overthow the controlling faction, is it better to push one opposing faction or multiple factions? Obviously I have one that I wish to 'win', but I'm wondering if raising all the 'minor' factions up out of the single digits might help eat away the influence of the top dog.
Refer back to 1. It used to be that helping everyone else combined with hurting the enemy was a very effective strategy... I used to be able to cut 30% inf off a faction in medium-sized systems... but caps were soft back then.

These days with the way caps work, it might be better to just +ve work a single faction, rather than for all other factions, though I can't be sure.

4) I assumed that if I turn exploration data or commodities to a station controlled by a faction that doesn't control the system, the "points" went to who controls the station. Yet when I did this, I gained rep with the faction that controls the system, not that station. If this is the case, then what's the point of a faction controlling a station if they don't control the system?
Yes, it goes to the station controller. I can only suggest you misread something there... if you can reproduce it (in video form) probably report it as a bug, or check here first if you want (I usually do this as a sanity check, and it's usually me who's mistaken)

5) Is it possible to flip a system's allegiance by changing the faction? Specifically, if an independent faction controls the system and I promote an Alliance faction to take over, will the system then show as an Alliance system? If so, will stations magically change their look and ATC messages?
Yup. Flipping a system flips the allegience. System allegience has nothing to do with how the stations look and feel though; that's all to do with the station controller.

There are some bugged cases out there. One of the stations I flipped a long time ago belonged to an independent Anarchy faction, and even though it's now Imperial Dictatorship, it still looks and feels like an Anarchy one ("Rise up now!" messages and all that jazz). It got flipped to a different faction, and for one day it looked like it was meant to, and then flipped back to the anarchy look. In general, new station controller allegience = new look and feel.
 
Thanks! Regarding weakening the controlling faction, what if I accept missions from them and then fail those missions? I know this lowers my rep with the faction, but does it affect influence? Similarly, if I take a bunch of tourists from the faction I want to weaken, and I upset those tourists (or just space them), will that affect influence or just rep?

Follow up question number two - if I'm working in a remote corner of the Bubble that gets very little action in the way of CMDRs passing through, will my efforts "stick", or is there a decay mechanism in place? In other words, if I leave the system to go work a CG for a week, will the factions be in the same state & influence levels I left them in, assuming no other CMDRs do anything to affect the BGS?

Again, many thanks for your help!
 
Thanks! Regarding weakening the controlling faction, what if I accept missions from them and then fail those missions? I know this lowers my rep with the faction, but does it affect influence? Similarly, if I take a bunch of tourists from the faction I want to weaken, and I upset those tourists (or just space them), will that affect influence or just rep?
My understanding is yes, though you have to fail them, not abandon them. Personally, I find it more effective (or more correctly; less brain-numbing) to just actually work for the faction. YMMV

Follow up question number two - if I'm working in a remote corner of the Bubble that gets very little action in the way of CMDRs passing through, will my efforts "stick", or is there a decay mechanism in place? In other words, if I leave the system to go work a CG for a week, will the factions be in the same state & influence levels I left them in, assuming no other CMDRs do anything to affect the BGS?

Again, many thanks for your help!
If literally nobody does any work in the system, there will be no change to the system except the following:
  • States will naturally decay back to a "None" state
  • States like Outbreak/Pirate Attack may still occur, because ¯\(ツ)
  • There may be small fluctuations in influence due to daily normalisation.
In case you don't know... normalisation is part of how the BGS calculates new influence. Without going into too heavy into the detail, influence values are always meant to total 100%, and if influence values were recorded by the BGS with infinite precision, they'd equal 100% and never change. But the BGS rounds-down numbers, so in general they don't quite equal 100%... so each day there's fluctuations as the BGS tries to make it equal 100%.
 
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Please help me understand this "10 ve+" limit. I don't know what 've' stands for, so are you saying that if I do four "inf+++" missions in a 24 hour tick cycle, that's pretty much the cap for efficient influence increase? Or is it 10 missions regardless of their influence rating? Is this limit per player or per system? In other words, can I double my effect by tag-teaming with my alt CMDR?

Question 2 - what determines who controls a specific station in a system? Is there a BGS mechanic to "hand over the keys" to a different faction?
 
Please help me understand this "10 ve+" limit. I don't know what 've' stands for...
It's an unambiguous electronics shorthand for "positive". You're not the first to ask here... but slight tangent, it continues to baffle me how many don't understand this notation. I asked no short of a dozen people with no electronics/IT/maths knowledge, and then more who did have that sort of background and they all knew it meant positive. 🤷‍♂️ Not a criticism... just something which baffles me.

As for:
so are you saying that if I do four "inf+++" missions in a 24 hour tick cycle, that's pretty much the cap for efficient influence increase?
This is the bit about the influence cap that doesn't make sense for me. Someone else might have to explain that. My understanding is it's "10 positive actions, regardless of how many +'s it provides". So, that could also be 10 exploration transactions, 10 trades, 10 bounties, or any combination of 10 of these. Again... doesn't make sense to me, but someone else could probably explain.
Question 2 - what determines who controls a specific station in a system? Is there a BGS mechanic to "hand over the keys" to a different faction?
Conflicts, being war/elections. Conflicts start when the following conditions are met:
  • At least one faction (of the two entering a conflict) owns a facility, ; and
  • Two factions equalize influence (that is, one faction overtakes another; this will lock the influence levels at an equal level); and
  • Neither faction is in a conflict in that system, or pending a conflict.
Alternately, there's "coup" conflicts, which occur when a faction which doesn't control the system reaches (65%?) influence. This starts a conflict with the controlling faction.

In a conflict, the factions most valuable asset is always put up as what they can potentially lose (or nothing, if they own no assets). Each system has a "controlling/capital" station, where the owner of that station is also the controller of the system, and that is the most valuable asset, so no matter how many assets owned by the controlling faction, or whether they enter a coup conflict or an equalization conflict, the controlling faction always stands to lose the capital, and therefore control of the system.
 
This is the bit about the influence cap that doesn't make sense for me. Someone else might have to explain that. My understanding is it's "10 positive actions, regardless of how many +'s it provides". So, that could also be 10 exploration transactions, 10 trades, 10 bounties, or any combination of 10 of these. Again... doesn't make sense to me, but someone else could probably explain.
Do you know if this is per-player or per-faction? In other words, can I double that to 20 by using my alt CMDR?



Conflicts, being war/elections. Conflicts start when the following conditions are met:
Let's say it's a war. I'm rubbish at CZs, so I doubt I can win one. Do I need to? I can go in and kill some ships and gather a few bonds before I gotta get out, is that enough to tip the scales? What happens in the BGS if there is a war and no CMDRs participate - is it just a flip of the coin, or a draw (everything returns to as it was)?

Oh, and one last very dumb noob question - does each "+" after "INF" represent a percentage point or just some hidden, unseen number? I'm assuming the latter, as I've done plenty of INF+++++ missions that resulted in only a small bump in % influence.
 
Do you know if this is per-player or per-faction? In other words, can I double that to 20 by using my alt CMDR?
Nope. Old BGS apparently scaled the cap with number of players, but (again, unless someone else can correct me) it's 10 actions. But remember, if there's any activity for any other factions, that rule no longer applies.

Amount of influence a faction gains is probably some function like:
K * (X/T) * (min(Ta, 10) /10)

Where:
K = some constant value for total influence available per the system attributes
X = number of influence "points" scored for a faction in a tick
T = total number of influence "points" scored for all factions
Ta = total number of actions across all factions.

So if X = T (i.e you only work for one faction, X/T = 1. If you take 10 or more actions, min (Ta, 10) / 10 is also 1, so you'd get K, but add a single action for any other faction, and you'll always get less than K, no matter how much work you put in.


Let's say it's a war. I'm rubbish at CZs, so I doubt I can win one. Do I need to? I can go in and kill some ships and gather a few bonds before I gotta get out, is that enough to tip the scales? What happens in the BGS if there is a war and no CMDRs participate - is it just a flip of the coin, or a draw (everything returns to as it was)?

Oh, and one last very dumb noob question - does each "+" after "INF" represent a percentage point or just some hidden, unseen number? I'm assuming the latter, as I've done plenty of INF+++++ missions that resulted in only a small bump in % influence.
Bonds, Missions, Scenarios and Resolving CZs all seem to help with the war effort for a faction, though what's more effective is relatively unknown due to how difficult it is to work out these days.

As for the +'s... nobody really knows what they represent these days... but my gut tells me they represent "points". Can explain in a bit... big pop systems have more points, small pop have less, but action values are the same.
 
Okay, well I actually prefer this as it's less work on my part. So basically if I do 10 missions or passenger runs with INF+n rewards per day, that's the best I can do. That and perhaps use my pirate Conda to blow up some enemy ships.

Speaking of pirate ships, I know we lose rep with a faction for blowing even wanted ships allied with them. Is it possible to reduce a faction's influence this way too, or do the ships have to be clean to achieve this? Or worse, do they have to be authority vessels to lower the controlling faction's inf?

And now this leads to yet another question (it never ends, LOL) - does system state affect the controlling factions influence in any way? For example, if there's civil unrest due to a pirate ship terrorizing the system, will that erode confidence (and thus inf) in the leadership?
 
Okay, well I actually prefer this as it's less work on my part. So basically if I do 10 missions or passenger runs with INF+n rewards per day, that's the best I can do. That and perhaps use my pirate Conda to blow up some enemy ships.
If you have no opposition. If you do 10 passenger missions, and someone else does 20 for a different faction, you'll likely lose influence.

Speaking of pirate ships, I know we lose rep with a faction for blowing even wanted ships allied with them. Is it possible to reduce a faction's influence this way too, or do the ships have to be clean to achieve this? Or worse, do they have to be authority vessels to lower the controlling faction's inf?
I'd argue the jury is out on this one. There's multiple theories abound about this.

Personally, I believe destroying ships regardless of status will reduce that faction's influence. Others would argue only clean ships. Others further would argue destroying ships does nothing, and it's actually the criminal act (and subsequent bounty/fine you get) which causes the influence drop.

And now this leads to yet another question (it never ends, LOL) - does system state affect the controlling factions influence in any way? For example, if there's civil unrest due to a pirate ship terrorizing the system, will that erode confidence (and thus inf) in the leadership?
What do you mean by "system state"?

Only factions have states. States do (apparently) have an impact on the actions you perform for a faction, so for example if you trade at a station controlled by a faction in Boom, then trading contributes more to influence for that faction. No states[1] cause influence loss without commander interaction... rather they enhance/negate particular effects when commanders do them.

So, if the controlling faction was in a state of civil unrest, it'd apply whatever modifiers exist for that state to that faction. If some rando faction was in Civil Unrest, that's got nothing to do with the controlling faction. But if a faction were in civil unrest, but nobody did anything, nothing would change.
 
If you have no opposition. If you do 10 passenger missions, and someone else does 20 for a different faction, you'll likely lose influence.
I purposefully picked a small backwater system that nobody cares about in order to experiment with BGS. A small number of ships pass through daily, but I suspect it's just a leg on their journey to more interesting places.


What do you mean by "system state"? Only factions have states.
Huh... Well I never considered that. I assumed that if a "system" was in famine, it was because the entire planet was suffering from climate change or something. I guess it's more appropriate to think of factions like continents when it comes to things like this. Though in my small system, faction unrest is more like the dock workers going on strike on Babylon 5.

In my defense, when you select a system in the Galaxy Map, it shows "State" under the system description, thus my assumption of a system state. I'm guessing now that this is the state of the controlling faction?
 
Don't know why I'm so fascinated by this as I don't do BGS yet...must be because its full of information asked and given in a concise and constructive way. Was tempted not to clutter by posting but just to say, don't hold back, even if OD does know it already there's probably more than me watching who doesn't and is devouring the info given, thanks people :)


Personally, I believe destroying ships regardless of status will reduce that faction's influence. Others would argue only clean ships. Others further would argue destroying ships does nothing, and it's actually the criminal act (and subsequent bounty/fine you get) which causes the influence drop.
Not much help I know as may not even be accurate but message at damaged stations say 'No missions available but destroying ships belonging to our rivals will reduce their influence' or words to that effect. No distinction given between wanted or clean but may not be meaningful.

How do you get a system into famine? Just for the HGE, I have trouble finding them. I'd gladly hep out to achieve it and have fun learning what's actually going on.
 
In my defense, when you select a system in the Galaxy Map, it shows "State" under the system description, thus my assumption of a system state. I'm guessing now that this is the state of the controlling faction?
Yup. Welcome to one of the problems. Galmap only shows (one of the) states the controlling faction is in. It has no bearing on any overall state of the system.

Not much help I know as may not even be accurate but message at damaged stations say 'No missions available but destroying ships belonging to our rivals will reduce their influence' or words to that effect. No distinction given between wanted or clean but may not be meaningful.
Yup. I'm camp "Destroying ships of any form drops their influence". You won't find me arguing with that message :)

How do you get a system into famine? Just for the HGE, I have trouble finding them. I'd gladly hep out to achieve it and have fun learning what's actually going on.
With massive, massive difficulty. @Factabulous has done it... but it's so much effort compared to achieving the positive states. I've been linking this thread a bit recently, but it's still as valid as ever:

https://forums.frontier.co.uk/threads/time-to-buff-antagonistic-pve.472325/

... and from @Mangal Oemie 's stat's threads...

Source: https://i.imgur.com/bHNMm7P.png


Basically, the ability to cause the "negative"[1] states is grossly under-represented compared to the ease of creating positive states. The only ways to do this that I'm aware of are:
  • Taking missions that cause a negative economic effect against the target. This relies on finding missions which A) Randomly select the correct target faction, and B) Have the associated negative economic effect. There's no ability to reliably select this sort of mission... but plenty of ways to reliably select missions which offer positive effects.
  • (Probably) trading for a loss on a target faction's market.
  • (Probably) trading on a black market owned by a non-anarchy faction. This is highly selective, as not all factions allow black markets.
But you're competing against vastly-more available positive actions. It's just not feasible to reliably do. Unfortunately FD's last attitude about this was one of "Player success results in positive states, player failure results in negative states"... so you basically have to fly like a potato, and even then it's not likely to happen.
 
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OH OH OH, big question I forgot to ask!

I've got bounties for the faction I'm opposing. I want the credits, but I don't want to give them INF. So if I go to a neighboring system and cash those bounties in there, will that limit the INF to that system rather than the one I'm currently working?

Also, INF goes to the faction paying the bounty rather than who controls the station, correct?
 
OH OH OH, big question I forgot to ask!

I've got bounties for the faction I'm opposing. I want the credits, but I don't want to give them INF. So if I go to a neighboring system and cash those bounties in there, will that limit the INF to that system rather than the one I'm currently working?

Also, INF goes to the faction paying the bounty rather than who controls the station, correct?
Yup, and yup. Alternately, if they don't exist elsewhere, or you don't want them to get inf anywherego cash them in at an IF. -25% of the value, but there's no influence effects when you cash via IF.
 
Regarding destroying enemy ships.... There are wanted ships in this system from factions that are not in this system (they must be from neighboring systems). So how would destroying THOSE ships work? Isn't faction influence system-specific? In similar vein, if I go to a neighboring system and destroy wanted ships belonging to the faction I'm fighting in my home system, how does that INF -- get applied?
 
Basically, the ability to cause the "negative"[1] states is grossly under-represented compared to the ease of creating positive states. The only ways to do this that I'm aware of are:
  • Taking missions that cause a negative economic effect against the target. This relies on finding missions which A) Randomly select the correct target faction, and B) Have the associated negative economic effect. There's no ability to reliably select this sort of mission... but plenty of ways to reliably select missions which offer positive effects.
  • (Probably) trading for a loss on a target faction's market.
  • (Probably) trading on a black market owned by a non-anarchy faction. This is highly selective, as not all factions allow black markets.
But you're competing against vastly-more available positive actions. It's just not feasible to reliably do. Unfortunately FD's last attitude about this was one of "Player success results in positive states, player failure results in negative states"... so you basically have to fly like a potato, and even then it's not likely to happen.
That’s the thing I’ve been most disappointed in, post-3.3 BGS wise. My general BGS strategy was manipulating faction states to make the faction I was opposing unappealing to random commanders. It’s one of the reasons I’m in no hurry to bring my Commander home from her exploration trip. “Grinding” influence isn’t nearly as interesting as being an Imperial Agent who messes with Federation factions by trying to create famine, outbrakes, and economic collapse while building up the local freedom fighters.
 
Regarding destroying enemy ships.... There are wanted ships in this system from factions that are not in this system (they must be from neighboring systems). So how would destroying THOSE ships work? Isn't faction influence system-specific? In similar vein, if I go to a neighboring system and destroy wanted ships belonging to the faction I'm fighting in my home system, how does that INF -- get applied?
Nothing happens in either case. If the shipsyou destroy aren't from that system, there's no inf gain or loss... except from any bounties you hand in (Which has the usual rules)
 
YEAH IT'S WORKING!!

Ok, next question. One of the "smaller" factions I've been helping has switched to Boom state. Did I do that? Regardless, is Boom a kind of INF multiplier, and if so, how do I take advantage of it?

Also, is it possible for more than one faction in a system to be in Boom at the same time? The faction currently in Boom is not the one I've been trying to push to the top, but I did help them out in an effort to erode the controlling faction. If I can swing my 'pet' faction into Boom (how did I do that?), it would be great.
 
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