A Thinking Player’s Guide to 0xUniverse
0xUniverse is a web-based strategy game created by 0xGames, hosted on the Ethereum blockchain. The game leverages Ethereum smart contracts and ERC-721 tokens (Non-Fungible Tokens, or NFTs) to allow players to discover and actually own planets within the 0xUniverse.
This is an initial title in a series of games, including the upcoming title
“0xUniverse: Battleships” where the planets that are discovered in the current game will provide resources to allow for the construction of Battleships in the follow-on title.
0xUniverse is a fully “on-chain” title, where all of the game actions are written to the Ethereum blockchain. This has several advantages, including the ability for players to go back through the blockchain and analyze the results of all actions by all players. Doing so can provide some significant insights into how the game actually works (versus what the player base might think about how it works), and thereby allows players to adapt their strategies over time to increase their performance.
That’s what I’ve been doing recently: building a historical database of transactions and their results associated with the smart contracts and the transactions that all of the players have made against them, and then analyzing the results in order to abstract some useful insights about the game (which I’ve been sharing along the way with the active Discord server for the game).
As I’ve played this game over the last six months or so, several things have become clear to me. Firstly, this is very much a strategy game with elements of luck, not a game of luck with some strategic elements.
This is the single most important insight that a new player to the game can take away, as far as I’m concerned. Misunderstanding this can lead some players to think that this game is simply a form of “slot machine”, where you plug in Ethereum and get some other amount of Ethereum coming out the back end of it. That kind of approach is almost certain to lead players to making bad strategic decisions which will cost them much, much more Ethereum over the long term than the decisions of someone who approaches the game (first and foremost) as a strategy game.
The purpose of this guide is to help the beginning player to overcome as many of those early game hurdles in as painless of a fashion as possible, and hopefully to allow them to avoid as many unnecessary Ethereum costs as possible along the way. I’m thoroughly convinced that this game can be played in a more-than-self-sustaining fashion starting with a fairly small
initial Ethereum budget, and getting fairly quickly to the point where your in-game actions will not only pay for your continued gameplay indefinitely, but quite possibly fund play in any number of other blockchain games as well.
I know, for instance, that what I’ve learned along the way has substantially increased my own success (and profitability) over time as I’ve paid attention and learned to adapt what I’m doing to what I’ve been learning about the game. I started into the game with about 0.4 ETH, and as of now I’m up to about 7.3 ETH (liquid) in total without additional purchases because of this game, and if I liquidated all of my in-game holdings today at market prices,
I’d add roughly another 16 ETH to my balance… so I think I’ve developed a pretty decent plan for how to make 0xUniverse play into a net-positive endeavor.
Playing the game in a “shoestring budget” fashion might not be your preferred approach, and if you’d rather play it a different way, by all means feel free to do so. But I consider this to be a strong limiting factor for many new players, so I wanted to get at least some initial information out there to help them bootstrap themselves into self-sustainability at a minimum.
Getting Started In The Game
You’ll need a Metamask extension loaded onto either the Chrome, Firefox or Brave browsers before you get going, and an Ethereum account loaded with some initial amount of Ethereum set up within Metamask. Metamask will act as the link between the web-based game client and the Ethereum blockchain, and any planets you find will be stored in your Ethereum wallet.
This gives you full ownership of each of your planets, so you can sell them to other players either through the in-game marketplace, or through third-party sites like Opensea.io in order to replenish your Ethereum wallet over time (various actions have Ethereum costs associated with them, and the sale or rental of your planets is what will lead to you reaching self-sustainability).
Once you have Metamask set up with some Ethereum in your account, it’s time to head into the game itself, which you can find hosted at play.0xuniverse.com
It takes a while to load into the game, but be patient, it’ll get there. You’ll need to acknowledge in Metamask that you want to allow 0xUniverse to interact with your wallet in order to play. Your “faithful assistant astrodog R0x” will walk you through the initial setup of the game (registering an email address, getting your first planet, inventing a ship, and your first hit and miss on ship launches).
At this point I’d like to diverge a bit and talk about a couple of important principles to playing at a low cost. Getting off on the right foot can make a really big difference in whether you perceive the game to be “worth it” to you or not.
The single biggest principle here, from my perspective, is knowing how to manage your Ethereum transactions effectively to minimize costs. This is especially true now that we’re in the post-Constantinople era of Ethereum. I recommend using the Chrome browser (for reasons that will become clear in later articles) and loading the Ethereum Gas Price Extension to your browser to allow you to see Gas prices at a glance.
Furthermore, I strongly recommend that you go into your Metamask settings (click the icon in the upper-right to get the menu), go to Advanced, scroll down and turn on Advanced gas controls. This is a change that I lobbied the Metamask developers to include as they upgraded the UI, which will allow you to directly adjust the Gas price you’re offering on your transactions without any extra clicks. Doing this effectively makes a HUGE difference
in the costs you’ll pay to play the game.
If you take only one thing away from this guide, let it be this:
You can successfully get transactions processed in Ethereum post-Constantinople (in many cases) for much, MUCH lower gas prices than you might think.
In the last few weeks, I’ve successfully gotten transactions turned around in less than five minutes with a gas cost of only 0.1111, for example. This won’t always work (for me, it seems to work best when the reported Safe Low price is at 1, and Standard is at 2 or less…) but when it does, it results in huge cost savings.
That is much, much lower than what ethgasstation.info might tell you is a “minimum safe gas price” to get your transaction processed in under 30 minutes. If you’re trying to play the game on a shoestring budget, you need to consider the possibility that you have more time than you have money, so it’s in your best interests to experiment and learn what gas prices work effectively for you based on what is being displayed by the extension (which just reads the values from ethgasstation.info and displays them for you).
Since gas cost is a multiplier to every Ethereum transaction, reducing your gas costs by 75% will reduce your overall playing costs by 75%, too. That means you’d be able to play for 4 times as long on the same amount of Ethereum. And that leads into the next most-important topic: patience.
0xUniverse is a game that rewards the patient, and punishes the impatient. In that sense, it’s like Warren Buffett’s quote about the stock market, which describes it as a mechanism that transfers value from the impatient to the patient (as a loose paraphrase).
“Winning”, then, tends in many cases to be a test of your ability to properly apply patience to several different circumstances in the game. One of the most trying for new players is what to do when Ethereum gas prices spike upward. The answer is easy to see, but for many hard to do: you wait.
You don’t launch your ships when gas prices are high, you instead wait until the “storm” passes, and launch them when you can get a cheap gas price to go through in a reasonable time frame.
Likewise, when the marketplace is flooded with people who are selling worlds (at dirt-cheap prices) equivalent to one you might want to sell off right now, it’s time to exercise patience. We’ll go over how planets become more valuable over time later, but selling into the teeth of a glut of desperate sellers is exactly the wrong move.
Instead, you want to be patient, and wait for the right market conditions to sell off any given world. I’ll talk more about this when we get into the gameplay cycle shortly, but that’s another place where eagerness to launch your ships early on can end up costing you more in the long run than if you’d chosen instead to wait.
Ideally, you want to get to a point where you have enough Ethereum in your account that you can afford to wait for things to be better before acting. That will allow you to put together a long chain of good decisions, which will tend to much more likely lead to a set of good outcomes down the road.
If your budget is so tight that you’ve become constrained (you can’t take a good action now because you lack the Ethereum to pay for the transaction)
then you’ll be forced to wait, and that can be a really bad feeling for many players. They want to play, but they can’t afford to under the current conditions. That’s frustrating, but it helps teach patience. Wait it out.
In this game, the truism that “time is money” is more accurate than in many others, because of the way that the game mechanics work… which seems like a natural point at which to shift the discussion to that topic.
How Do We Start Efficiently On A Budget?
Here’s a basic description of how game play in 0xUniverse really works. This is backed up by substantial research into the history of game transactions that I’ve performed, and many of the conclusions that I’ve already published to the game’s active and excellent Discord server (which I recommend all new players read, there is some really great stuff available there, and it’s a great place to get questions answered in a reasonably timely fashion).
In the very beginning of the game, it is necessary for a player to acquire at least one planet. Astrodog R0x will recommend that you go to the marketplace and buy one. The choice of what planet you get initially can make quite a large difference in how your early game play will proceed, so let’s go over some of the principles of how to make a good first planet choice.
(This may be a very roundabout approach… it helps, in a sense, to understand almost everything about what’s to come before we make our first few “moves” in the game, so please bear with me!)
In ideal conditions (which you’ll be able to, ironically, bring about later when you move on to “shapeshifting”), you’d want to get at least one really good “startup” world right out of the gate for free. That can happen if someone else who is already playing the game is willing to gift a world (or several) to your new account in order to help quickly bootstrap it up to usefulness in short order.
Assuming you don’t have such a benefactor (please don’t go begging for one on the Discord channel or elsewhere!), you’ll need to spend a chunk of your initial grubstake of Ethereum on acquiring one or more “good” worlds from the marketplace in-game, or from a platform like OpenSea.io in order to kick things off.
So what makes an initial world “good”? Let’s examine how the world will factor into your early play… that will help inform us about what we’d want
to have available, so we can try to have it already in place for us in advance.
Once you have one or more planets in your account, you’ll be prompted to invent your first spaceship, which will almost* certainly be a Rank 1 ship, which will use one of the common minerals from one of your worlds that you own.
( * — there are 26 or so “first ship inventions” which show up as Rank 2, which… warrants further investigation. I suspect if that happened to you, it would instead use two of the common minerals on worlds you already own.)
Your first ship is set up this way to ensure that you’ll be able to launch it, attempting to guarantee you’ll be able to meet the mineral requirements it needs (this doesn’t apply to later ships). Knowing this, along with the launch progression which we’ll go over shortly, should help inform what type of world we’d like to have for our first world:
One that has reasonably significant amounts of all the different common resources that it produces, and ideally at least a dozen or so times the population cost of our first rocket (the more, the better).
Planets with higher daily production rates for both population and minerals will also be more desirable than those with lower values, so be on the lookout for those bonus benefits when comparison shopping for your first world!
As we repeatedly launch a rocket, the population cost for each launch of that rocket will remain steady. If it has a 100 population requirement, it will always cost 100 people to launch it each time.
The mineral costs, however, will grow by 50% from whatever their current value happens to be after the launch completes (whether it’s a success or a failure). That’s why we want some reasonably large amount of every common resource that our planet makes… if one of the three resource types is very low, you might be unlucky enough to have that be the required mineral to launch your first ship, which may well slow you down unless you buy (or are gifted) an additional world once you know what’s needed, or you might need to wait to invent more ships and hope you get one that needs your more plentiful mineral type instead.
It’s this 50% increasing mineral cost which keeps you from just endlessly launching and relaunching the same ship and therefore what drives your need to invent additional ships. Let’s say your ship starts off requiring 24 Iron to
launch the first time. On later launches it would cost 36, then 54, 81, 121, 181, 271, 406, 609, 913 and 1369 or so on the 11th launch. Those first 11 launches will cost over 4000 Iron to complete. You can see that the costs begin to get prohibitively expensive even for the cheapest starting values, so we’ll want to plan accordingly.
Armed with that info, go and try to get as “good” of a world (or even a couple) as you can find at a bargain price. Make sure you shop for Common worlds, and focus on those with all 3 resources being Common as well. Higher population may be of a bigger benefit in a first world than having more minerals, if you’re looking for tie-breaker criteria. Try to avoid spending more than a third of your budget if you can. If you buy multiple worlds, try to get ones that have as many different resources as you can, to provide coverage for later ships (you might want to wait on multiple planet purchases until you see what minerals your later ships will need… more on that later!).
When you do, you may have to hard refresh your browser to get the game to detect that you actually have a world after the transaction confirms… you can do this with the key combination Ctrl-F5.
Astrodog R0x should prompt you once the game recognizes that you have your first world, and will prompt you to invent your first rocket. Do so, and that will open the door for you to start launching if you choose to (you might want to wait and invent other, better ships, and launch those instead!)
What Ships Can We Get?
So what are the possibilities for what we might get as our first and later ships? Each of the relevant values (engine size, radar and population required) can take on one of three possible value within each ship rank. Here is a useful
chart I’ve put together to show all the relevant info at a glance:
This should help you determine how “good” any given ship you might invent is, when compared to the possible values it could have been assigned.
But what do these values actually mean to us as players? What do engines and radar do for us when it comes time to launch our ship? That’s where subsequent charts that I’ve created through analyzing the blockchain records come into play.
Ship engine size determines a couple of things: how likely we are to find a new world on the next launch, and to a lesser extent which sector that world might be found in. (Recent findings point out that another factor tends to
override the likelihood of a particular destination more than engine size — that being the relative population of the possible target sectors. More on that in a later article). Radar will affect the rarity of the world we’ve found.
First things first: how likely, on average, is any given ship to find a world on its next launch? More charts!
This might call for some explaining. I’ve broken out the contents of my database by ship rank, then by engine size. The next two columns show how many times in the history of the game a ship with that exact combo has found a world, versus how many times they have been launched. Dividing those two gives us a feel for what we should expect as the AVERAGE for how often that ship will find a world… but be aware that there can be some quite large variance in the exact results you’ll see for your first ten launches or so.
Variance is what most people identify as ‘hot streaks’ or ‘cold streaks’ in a luck-based event. Especially for low-engine ships, this can lead to an unfortunate circumstance where a large number of your initial launches might end up being misses. If that does happen to you, try to soldier through, and focus on trying to invent more ships (which might be better than your first one, or at least have better luck!) If it helps, you can share your bad luck story in the #space-confessions Discord channel and commiserate with others about how dastardly the random number generator is being to you!
This is also a good opportunity to point out possible alternate strategies that you can bring to bear before it gets to that point. Inventing additional ships can really help out, because with your second and later ship inventions, you
start getting the chance at higher ship ranks, which have better engines, which will increase your odds… this is also part of why you want to consider getting a first planet with a decent population already on board, because as we’ll see shortly, that’s the key to driving your invention cycle forward: having lots and lots of population.
The remaining columns on that chart are how many ships in the database match that combination, the average number of launches per ship, the “share” of that combination appearing within that rank (all roughly 33%), with Frac being the fraction of all ships invented which happen to be that particular combination.
The big takeaway from this chart is the simple conclusion that the higher your ship’s engine is, the more likely it is to find a new world on the next launch. This goes from just over a one-in-four shot for Engine 1, crosses the more-likely-than-not mark at Engine 10, and gets to a 3-out-of-4 shot at Engine size 20 and above. The clear strategy then should be to get to ships with the best engines you can as soon as you reasonably can, and try to focus your launch efforts on your ships with top engines.
The fact that people have learned about this is reflected in the launch-per-ship column. It’s not that people tend to stop after a few launches each on the low-engine ships… instead, it’s that many people have learned to simply not
launch these ships at all, when they can, and instead will wait for ships with better engines and launch those ones instead.
Be warned, however, that much weaker ships still have the chance of showing up on any given later invention (yes, even your last one!) This is something that will happen to everyone from time to time, it’s just one of many things that need to be taken in stride along the way. But to ever get to the better ships, you’ve simply got to keep inventing more ships.
This approach (just not launching weaker ships) can substantially improve a player’s cost-effectiveness over time, which is why many players start shifting to that approach fairly early on.
So if you miss the first five or six launches on your very first rocket, consider instead waiting (more patience!) until you’ve invented new and better ships to launch. Getting to those better ships is going to be key to getting highly productive anyway, so a bit of discipline and patience here can pay off and help keep your initial costs down.
More Ships Means Better Opportunities
Your total population across all your worlds is particularly important, because population is what drives Knowledge accumulation, which in turn is what allows you to invent more and better ships, and launch them to find better planets in a more cost-effective fashion.
The basic thumbrule for Knowledge produced is:
1 Knowledge produced, per person, per hour.
Your actual Knowledge per day produced will continue to rise over time, however, because each of your worlds are continuing to produce more people.
So getting additional worlds (either through finding them with launches, or buying them outright) can increase your daily population gains, and that population will accumulate Knowledge on a constant basis, until it reaches the point where you have enough Knowledge accumulated to turn on the “Invent A Ship” button. Getting to that point in a cost-effective and efficient
manner should be one of your major goals, as it opens up new and better ships.
Inventing a new ship does come at a cost, however… one of the most severe costs in the game, in fact. Each time you invent another ship, two things happen: your current Knowledge gets reset to zero and you start accumulating Knowledge all over again, and the cost in Knowledge to invent the next ship goes up to TRIPLE the Knowledge cost of the current invention.
This has the net effect of making it much, much harder to continue to invent more and more ships, as the Knowledge cost becomes prohibitive. (There’s also currently a difficult-to-fix bug in the ship invention process, which prevents people from being able to invent a 16th or 17th ship, depending on conditions.)
It’s important to note that, since Knowledge resets to zero every time you invent a new ship, any additional knowledge that you accumulate beyond the point of unlocking the “Invent A Ship” button is, in effect, wasted. It will be lost along with the minimum amount required to meet the goal when you do choose to invent a ship, so it’s generally considered a good idea to
invent a ship as soon as it is possible to do so, to ensure your population gets back to accumulating Knowledge for the next ship invention.
The general expectation when inventing ships is that you seem to unlock the chance at (but not a guarantee of!) getting each higher rank of ship only after first inventing the previous rank. (There are some documented exceptions where people have skipped a rank, but they seem to be exceedingly rare).
Why Population Matters So Much
At its most basic, unlocking the ability to invent your next ship can be reduced to a simple concept: the amount of time it takes to get there is the Knowledge you need, divided by the population you have (which creates that Knowledge).
Time To Goal = Size Of Goal / Population You Have
This means that all you really need to do to be able get more ships (which will generally be better than early ones) is just… wait. Your first few ships can be invented in very short time frames, because the required initial Knowledge is very low… but the required Knowledge for the next one triples after ever invention!
If you have a very small amount of population, that wait time (for more than your first few ships) might quickly get excessively long, but on the plus side, your worlds will keep making more population every day. That means you’ll (eventually) get there, just through exercising that most difficult of skills: patience.
If you do nothing at all, you’ll eventually get to unlock some much nicer ships. I don’t recommend just waiting, though. Getting more population will get you there much faster… which means finding new worlds, and/or buying additional worlds with high populations if you can afford to do so.
Getting 5 times the population will get you to your next ship 5 times faster. That’s why getting more population on your account is such a powerful aid to good performance: it gets you to the better ships, faster. Those better ships will tend to bring you much more value than the weaker ones.
There is a dynamic tension in the game in what you want to do with your population: do you want to just let your population grow and drive your Knowledge upward, or do you want to launch a ship from a world, thereby reducing the number of people you have and therefore the rate at which you are able to invent your next ship… but potentially finding a new world which will make even more people every day?
In addition, you can even choose to allow any given planet to “rent out” some of the current population to others, letting them launch ships using your people, in exchange for a direct payment of Ethereum. If you have enough population, this can start to give a kind of “passive income” from your worlds with no real effort on your part.
Each player will need to decide how to best balance out that tension. One advantage to using your colonists for launches instead of renting them out to others is that, if you actually find a world, a decent chunk of the population that ship had on board when launching will serve as the initial population on the found planet, as a kind of “instant boost” to population.
In general, I recommend not “starving yourself out” on population by launching ships (and thereby subtracting population) faster than your worlds are producing new people (it’s nearly impossible to do this in the very beginning, which is part of why I recommend getting a world that already has a decent population base, to help prevent this problem).
I can also typically find worlds for sale that have more population available than the cheapest possible set of rentals of that equivalent amount of people. In those cases, buying the world instead of just renting even at the cheapest possible price is the better choice by far, if you have the Ethereum to be able to buy a world instead and launch from there. That will give you an additional source of population and minerals every day, population to launch with, and if you use up almost everything on the planet, it still has a non-zero resale value!
I recommend being patient if you’re tempted to rent people in order to make a launch… there are almost always better choices if you wait for a while. Conversely, renting your people out to the impatient can let them voluntarily move value to you in a pretty painless fashion.
OK, So Let’s Launch These Ships, Already!
When it’s time to launch a ship, you’ll need to pick a launch point for your ship. I strongly recommend that you pick one of your own worlds, rather than renting someone else’s. Population and minerals are treated differently when determining whether and where you can launch a ship.
All of the population required to launch that ship MUST come from the launch planet, so you’ll only be able to launch from worlds that currently have at least as many people as the ship requires.
Minerals, however, can be pulled from any planet you currently own (which is not currently up for auction). Keep in mind, however, that the more worlds which are required to be pulled from in order to meet the needs of your ship to launch, the more expensive the transaction will tend to be.
There were some recent contract improvements which helped substantially
with this problem (by incorporating some client-side pre-processing to determine which worlds should supply the needed minerals and minimizing the number of worlds that needed to be accessed accordingly), but it’s still more efficient at the margins to ensure that you have at least one world each having at least 100% of the needed mineral type, or better yet, a single world that has all of both resources when possible.
This is another case where patience pays off. Letting your worlds accumulate the necessary resources before you launch a ship that needs them can reduce your costs. Sometimes, you won’t currently have enough of a needed resource even taking all of your worlds into account. If you have at least one world that produces that resource, the game will try to calculate how long it will take for your worlds to create those resources, and will show you a timer with that value under the resource in question when looking at the ship.
If you have no worlds that create that resource, you’ll instead be shown a button with a shopping basket and the word “FIND”, which will take you to the marketplace in order to let you buy a world which does produce that resource. Both cases are shown here, where the account has only 1323 out of the needed 1850 copper (Co) for launching this ship, and that it would take over 2 weeks to naturally accumulate that much across this account. None of this account’s worlds make Silver (Si), so it prompts you to go buy a world that does.
While this can be a good strategy in some cases (buying worlds to allow the use of a better ship), this circumstance can sometimes be overcome without having to spend more Ethereum, by continuing to launch other ships until you
find a world that does produce that resource, and then wait to accumulate enough to launch the ship in question.
The best choice will depend largely on whether you think you have the time to wait it out, combined with whether you have the needed Ethereum and can find a well-priced world that will help you meet that need sooner by buying it instead.
Time Really Is Money
As one of the early players of the game has noted, 0xUniverse is a game that allows you (in a sense) to convert your time into Ethereum, through the continuous growth which make worlds more valuable over time. In my opinion, this is an important concept to understand in order to maximize your efficiency and effectiveness in the game. When the mechanics of the game become understood naturally enough by you, it will become easier and easier to see which of multiple choices is of most benefit to you… and you will begin to move into the ranks of the mid-level player.
An example: A planet that is producing an additional 40 people per day, as well as 40 each of three different minerals, will add an additional 4000 of each over a span of 100 days if you just… leave it alone. Do nothing with it.
Go on the marketplace and compare some prices between newly discovered worlds (with basically no population or minerals) and ones with the same
attributes, but with 4000 of each of those things. You should see that the latter ones sell for much, much more than the stripped-bare versions. What people are buying, in this case, is the accumulated time that it took to produce those things.
That makes every planet you own incrementally more valuable every day, from doing nothing but waiting. I find that to be a very powerful game mechanic, personally!
There is a hidden benefit to viewing worlds with high populations and mineral concentrations as stored deposits of time… it means you can choose to “fast forward” your progress on the road to self-sustainability by simply shopping the marketplace for worlds that provide large benefits to you (like big populations) at relatively low prices. It’s up to each player to determine what the best balance is for them between investing more in the game through buying more worlds early on, and doing it the slower-but-cheaper way of finding and growing your own worlds organically.
Wait, what were we talking about, again? Oh yes… finding worlds! Eventually, you WILL find a planet (hopefully you’ll find lots of them over time), and that’s where the rest of the game cycle starts to come into play.
So You’ve Found A Planet. Congratulations!
Finding planets is the key to success in the game at this stage… all of your efforts should ideally be focused on trying to find the best worlds you can, for the lowest cost to acquire them. The difference between what you spend to acquire new worlds and what you’re able to resell those worlds later to others for will be the difference in how fast your Ethereum balance
rises… and how quickly you can start focusing on more advanced strategies. Well then… what makes a planet valuable?
Each planet has several attributes that will factor into how desirable it is, and therefore (in general) how high of a price you’re likely to be able to sell it to others for. Here’s a chart of what you can expect to see on various worlds regarding daily production rates:
Planets come in four different rarities (Common, Rare, Epic and Legendary), and will have various mixes of different rarities of three different minerals produced on them, depending on the rarity of the planet itself. In general, a planet will tend to make minerals of the same rarity as the planet itself. At least one of these matches is guaranteed, and there is also a chance that the other two mineral types might be of a higher and/or lower rarity.
So Common planets will produce either 3 Common minerals, or 2 Common minerals and 1 Rare mineral. Rares can produce no more than one Common and/or 1 Epic resource, with all others being Rare resources. Epics work the same way, shifted up one level of rarity.
This means that it’s possible for an Epic planet to produce 1 Legendary resource, and these are VERY highly desired by players… which means that reselling them can replenish your Ethereum balance pretty quickly and easily if you are able to find them. (Found Legendary worlds can produce either 1 or 2 Legendary resources, with the rest being Epic).
The different rarities of minerals are important, because ships of higher ranks will call for more rare minerals in order to launch them. A rank 1 ship needs 1 Common mineral, rank 2 requires 2 different Common minerals, and from there on, each additional rank will bump up the rarity requirement of the most common resource type required in the previous rank by one rarity notch. So rank 3 is 1 Rare, 1 Common, then 2 Rare resources at rank 4, and so on.
The rarity of the world itself will govern the possible amounts of each mineral (and population) that will be added to the planet each day. This means that Epic worlds will produce from 50 to 84 of each resource, even if one of them is a Legendary resource.
Getting more of either population or minerals is clearly more desirable than getting less, but knowing the possible range of values in each circumstance will allow you to make better decisions on the relative worth of worlds, whether you’re selling or buying them. Current values of population and minerals on a planet tend to have a strong influence on market resale value (because they have instant usefulness to a buyer), but daily rates are what will make the difference over time in value growth as you hold a world.
How Better Planets Are Found
So what governs the rarity of the world we’ve found? The radar of the ship which found it!
Here’s a chart of the results I have seen in my database, based on the rank and radar of the ship being launched:
This chart shows the results from all possible radar values, ordered by radar value (followed by rank), and uses the same basic launch vs found process from earlier to show how frequently those types of ships found worlds… and then supplies a count of the actual number of each rarity type those ship types have found in the database.
It then provides percentage breakdowns of which rarity type was found for each radar level. The really useful columns here are Rare% and Epic%. It should be clear from this that the higher your ship’s radar is, the more likely you’ll be to find a higher-rarity world, which will have a higher resale value.
What The Game Play Cycle Looks Like
This, then, will be the general game cycle as you play: you invent ships, launch them to find new worlds, those worlds will make more population and minerals over time (the maximum that any planet can hold is 200 days worth of production of any one thing, be it population or minerals, by the way). The minerals and population will be consumed by continuing to launch ships, and the population will also contribute Knowledge until you get to the point where you can invent your next ship.
At some point in this game play cycle, you’re probably going to want to pause and consider converting some of your planets back into Ethereum to help fund your continued launch and ship invention efforts. Apply what you’ve learned about what makes a world desirable to choose which ones you want to sell off, and which you want to keep. A useful beginning/intermediate
strategy will be to sell off the worlds that can command the highest price and keep the rest for the moment. Part of what drives this strategy is that 100 people on a Common world contribute just as much to Knowledge as the same 100 people on an Epic world (yes, the Epic world is likely adding more population every day, but not always, and that effect will tend to diminish in short-term effect as your population base rises.)
If you pay attention and exercise patience, you should start producing more Ethereum through sales and rentals than you are spending on acquiring the worlds. You have crossed the line of self-sustainability at this point, and the farther beyond that line you go, the more rapidly you can start doing things like shopping the marketplace for planets listed well below the actual value of the world, and start buying them up to enhance your holdings.
This is particularly useful when shopping for Common worlds with high populations already on them (and, as a bonus, that also include non-trivial amounts of minerals). Buying these “bargain” worlds will accelerate how quickly you’ll be able to invent your next ship, and can additionally give you minerals that you might otherwise have exhausted in the process of launching your ships.
I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to the long-term strategic success of a player to get as much population into their account as possible, because that will act as a divisor to the amount of time it will take to invent your next ship. If you double your population, that cuts the time to get your next invention in half. Increase it by 5 times? It now will take only a fifth as long as it otherwise would.
Getting to good ships faster means finding worlds at a much higher rate, and with better rarities, which will drive your ability to resell those worlds more easily, giving you more Ethereum to help turbo-charge the process even further with smart marketplace purchases. I believe a strong early goal of a “shoestring budget player” should be to get yourself to self-sustaining and beyond as early and effectively as possible, and open the door to ever-increasing acceleration possibilities by doing so.
Knowing these things should take you into what I call the “mid-game” for 0xUniverse, where you have just started ramping up and accelerating your growth. I’m planning to post additional articles over time to cover how to do that effectively, and move yourself towards the “endgame”.
Future articles will cover topics such as using the marketplace filters effectively for buying and selling, moving beyond your first account into multiple accounts (which the community has come to call “shapeshifting”) and how to do so effectively, when it’s a good idea to spend some of your proceeds to buy up bargain opportunities simply to relist them at prices that
are likely to yield a reasonably quick profit (planet “flipping”), “heat maps” of likely locations where a world will be found (and how they vary with engine size), and other topics as well.
Looking forward to seeing you then… now get out there, and start claiming your stake in 0xUniverse, Captain!
0xUniverse — The game itself
The Discord Server for 0xUniverse — A one stop shop to get questions answered and discuss anything and everything related to 0xUniverse. You’ll find me there as @VekTor#8173.
0xU Galactic Markets — A truly phenomenal article on how the in-game market in 0xUniverse works, including links to spreadsheets that will allow you to analyse the expected net worth of any given planet!