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Does any mod get around the 71 (I think) stars and 249 planets hard limit that MOO2 seems to have?

I love MOO2, but the maps are actually too small for me to properly enjoy a long game without artificially forcing myself to take a break from expansion and just let research run wild. So if it's at all possible to get bigger galaxies to play in, I'd love to know how!

Alternatively (though probably off-topic), does anyone have a game similar enough to recommend? Note that the galciv series - while fun - is not similar to MOO2 in my eyes. Races too similar, no real variance in planets beyond the numerical "planet class" value...
AAR for ICEmod:

Just wanted to say that I finally got around to installing and playing Rocco.40's mod for MoO2. Played impossible difficulty in a Huge average/average galaxy vs 8 AI opponents, tactical combat and Antarans enabled. I chose to play as the stock race Psilons, since I figured being creative would mitigate somewhat my lack of familiarity with the rearranged tech tree. In ICEmod with the increased racial picks limit, Psilons have Democracy rather than Dictatorship, so yeah they were like playing vanilla Psilons on steroids.

It wasn't enough.

In spite of the somewhat rearranged tech tree, much of the early game played out as normal. My home system was kinda towards the middle of the galaxy, had 3 terraformable planets, including 2 Rich ones, and the neighboring star system had a dessert and 3 other barren/radiated ones, all average to low resource. Perfect for the initial expansion. It ended up Orion was located right next to my home star.

The low-gravity trait kinda slows things down a bit for the Psilons, but that is to be expected. Still, the first hurdle I found was that Robo-Miners is much further up the tech tree in ICEmod than in vanilla. So I had to settle for Robotic Factory to aid in settling new colonies. It makes a BIG difference, especially for poor/ultra-poor planets. Compared to the turbo-charged AI races, my expansion was glacially slow. Between having 7 planets to settle in my first two systems and lack of Robo-Miners, I didn't get a Colony Ship built till quite late, and by then the galaxy was starting to get crowded.

Initial contact was with the Klackons and Trilarians, followed by Gnolems, Bulrathi and Mechlons. The Klackons were Repulsive, so I anticipated an early war with them. All the others I offered Tribute to improve relations, and although it seems ICEmod has made it a bit harder to get positive diplomacy results, between Alien Psychology and a leader with Diplomat skill, I manage to sign trade/research/NAP treaties with everyone but the Klackons in due time. The friggin Mechlons kept stealing my tech, even though I had quite a few defensive Agents quite early. I guess that's to be expected with a Democracy.

Right after settling my third system, the Klackons decided to attack. My space-navy was non-existant. They overran my new colony with an impossibly large number of battleships, cruisers and destroyers and besieged my home planets. Fortunately I was able to rush-build enough missile/fighter bases to keep them at arms length, but I did lose another colony before the situation stabilized. Had they attacked, they probably could have captured any planet they wanted, but the AI seemed content to wait.

Missile tech upgrades come much more slowly in ICEmod. Having concentrated my efforts to get Planetary Supercomputer, I didn't even have mirved nukes researched yet, and they seemed out of reach for the immediate emergency, so I settled on making destroyer raiders armed with Fighter Bays. Fighters generally work pretty well when you are Creative, since you get all the armor, computer and weapons upgrades anyways. I noticed that Fighter Bays are higher up the tech tree than in vanilla, so you can't use them as easily as a Blitz tech in ICEmod. Other than the fact that there were so many of them, the Klackon ships sucked pretty bad, but they did have Zortrium armor, which meant I needed to concentrate all Fighters on 1 battleship to take it down. The Klackons had Merculite missiles, so my raiders would launch and retreat, while a fast frigate decoy would stay in battle till the all fighters launched their 3 attacks. One by one I slowly eliminated the besieging forces and freed my system space of Klackon ships. I even managed to beat them back and retake my lost third colony.

Then the Antarans showed up.

What can I say. I had nothing that could even remotely stand up to Antaran destroyers at that point, and their first attack had 5 of them. Brutal. So I watched helplessly as they took out one of my home planets. Then 6 turns later they destroy my hard-won defenseless third colony. The Antarans definitely got a boost in ICEmod, and you need to come up with early defensive techs even more urgently than in vanilla. My standard defense is usually Zortrium-hulled battleships armed with EGM missiles. Fortunately the EGM missile upgrade is right where it should be in the tech tree. But still, it takes a while to research all that and build up a fleet. Later on I tried using Tractor Beams against an Antaran Battleship, and 4 of them didn't immobilize it as would be expected. So I don't know if that is a bug or a feature of ICEmod.

It was right about then that the Trilarians accused me of spying and declared war. I think it was the Mechlons that were responsible, those thieving cyborg basterds.

More to come...
Post edited January 02, 2016 by Dreamteam67
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Dreamteam67: .... Later on I tried using Tractor Beams against an Antaran Battleship, and 4 of them didn't immobilize it as would be expected. So I don't know if that is a bug or a feature of ICEmod.
Nice write-up! Looking forward to reading part 2.
The Tractor Beam is not bugged. In ICE you need 8 beams to immobilize a Battleship.
Post edited January 06, 2016 by Rocco.40
Hmm. Any mods that just increase galaxy size? Ideally, to something that actually looks like a real galaxy?
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Chilingsworth: Hmm. Any mods that just increase galaxy size? Ideally, to something that actually looks like a real galaxy?
The Huge Galaxy has 71 stars. Perhaps another one could be squeezed out by modding = 72.
Also the number of planets is maxed at 250.
ICE mod has got more planets than the classic maps, so in that sense there is more to colonize, but you're probably thinking 100+ star systems and i don't see it happening in moo2 any time soon ...
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Rocco.40: The Huge Galaxy has 71 stars. Perhaps another one could be squeezed out by modding = 72.
Also the number of planets is maxed at 250.
ICE mod has got more planets than the classic maps, so in that sense there is more to colonize, but you're probably thinking 100+ star systems and i don't see it happening in moo2 any time soon ...
Thanks. Guess I'll just have to figure out how to play Space Empires and/or GalCivs then.
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Chilingsworth: Thanks. Guess I'll just have to figure out how to play Space Empires and/or GalCivs then.
Or wait for this one and hope it will bring what you want: http://www.gog.com/game/master_of_orion
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Rocco.40: Nice write-up! Looking forward to reading part 2.
Hey thanks! Sorry I left it so long, but I have been pretty busy. I'll post the next part as soon as I get some time.
My roomie is looking to play MOO2 online with a friend in another state. None of the basic network options seem usable anymore. So... any ideas or maybe a patch I could find? They would have to allow for Mac to PC connection unfortunately. Is there hope?
Here is a vid on how to install the ICE mod in the new 1.50 patch:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ii7HPny_kL0
ICE mod just updated to v13b:

- Scout Lab tech moved to Field of Capsule Construction.

- Damper Field now kills 80% of troops that attempt to board via Transporters.
(help mentioned 95% in ice 13a, but actual value was 75%)

- Adjusted Random Events. Some can now happen from t40:
computer virus, donation, earthquake, population boom and unstable wormhole.

- AI should now better assess enemy fleet strength that has black hole generators.

- Renamed COMMON.CFG to ICEMOD.CFG
Just trying out a few mods on one of my favourite older games. its a real shame the micro-management takes so much of the game time towards the end of the game in a large universe.

just thought of a mod which sounds fairly simple (in my head anyway) that would change the feel of the end of the games dramatically.

MOO2 already features auto-build. if there were a window to chose and change what you want auto-build to build, and in what order (skipping if the planet already has it). then when you get a heap of new planets at the end you can just click a button and leave them to it. or when you get into a war you can change your auto-build to a defensive set up and it'll just do its thing.

has anyone already made this mod? or what do you guys think of the idea?
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roamingandy: Just trying out a few mods on one of my favourite older games. its a real shame the micro-management takes so much of the game time towards the end of the game in a large universe.

just thought of a mod which sounds fairly simple (in my head anyway) that would change the feel of the end of the games dramatically.

MOO2 already features auto-build. if there were a window to chose and change what you want auto-build to build, and in what order (skipping if the planet already has it). then when you get a heap of new planets at the end you can just click a button and leave them to it. or when you get into a war you can change your auto-build to a defensive set up and it'll just do its thing.

has anyone already made this mod? or what do you guys think of the idea?
Install the 1.50 fan patch! It will kick most remaining bugs away and help you with your problems BUT it will not change the game to a new one so might still be too much micro management for you. https://www.gog.com/forum/master_of_orion_series/master_of_orion_2_unofficial_150_patch

Or you can pick the Vanilla+ light tweak mod, or a bunch of other mods but many of them not updated to work with the new fan patch.
Post edited May 09, 2017 by Themken