Interstellar Incorporated – Civilian Ship Traffic v0.1.1 – ALPHA

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Author: fireinthedisco
Last revision: 27 Oct at 00:09 UTC


Welcome to Interstellar Incorporated – A Civilian Space Odyssey. This mod is all about bringing Stellaris more to life, mostly through the inclusion of civilian and corporate fleets, but in a way that actually drives your empire’s economy – nothing about this mod is purely visual, it is all functional.

The mod is very feature incomplete – current version is an alpha, at best. Most of what I intend is waiting for Stellaris’ v2.2 update. What’s already been implemented should be playable, though EXPECT BUGS, possibly save breaking ones, if you choose to play in the current IN DEVELOPMENT state. Feel free to subscribe if you are interested in the direction of the mod and want to keep an eye on progress, or if you’d like to play it, help report bugs, or even make suggestions!

Note to subscribers:

Starting next week (11/6) I’ll be in the middle of moving houses and may not be as responsive to comments/questions, or able to make significant progress on the mod for a few weeks. Don’t worry, I’ll be back soon.

Version 0.1.1 – ALPHA updates
  • A very large number of mostly behind the scene updates and bug fixes that should make the behavior of the included ships work better under different conditions – for example, they should know what to do when colonies or starbases change hands, when new starbases are built, etc. This should bring the mod up to a playable status.
  • Models switched to the vanilla (unused) freighter model
  • Migration ships added, but not tested.

Current features
  • Civilian freighter ships will spawn to shuttle mined resources from mining stations back to colonies – you don’t automatically get the goods until they’re delivered
  • Colonies spawn autonomous miners which will mine bodies that don’t have mining stations built around them
  • Migration ships should spawn when a pop migrates to carry that pop to a new colony
Planned features
  • Planets have their own local resource supply stockpiles, from which ships and buildings are built from – not from an empire-wide total, with no need to transport anything
  • Thus, civilian ships will also autonomously transport resources between colonies, taking into account surpluses at one colony and shortages at others. This will include things like food.
  • Interempire trade will also be pursued along the same lines. Traders from other empires may arrive to trade and supply necessary resources at colonies.
  • Slaver ships, in the same vein as above – countries who participate in the slave trade will have slaver ships transporting the "merchandise."
  • 2.2 is going to expand the number of resources in the game, which will greatly increase the interestingness of this mod, since there will be many more goods that need to be supplied to different colonies, but I may also eventually revamp the resource system myself as well.
  • Expanded piracy. Obviously, all of these trade supply lines make your empire’s economy and pops more vulnerable. Pirates will be more unpredictable, and will seek to attack vulnerable targets, potentially interrupting those all-important supply lines. Of course, this is a viable tactic for enemy empires to pursue as well. Some pirates may even disguise themselves as civilian ships until the time is right.
  • Neutral criminal elements, for example smugglers and neutral slave traders, may also bolster your economy… But may increase the strength of pirates as well. Probably will be tied into the crime function in 2.2 – colonies with higher crime levels spawn these kinds of ships more.
  • Neutral traders spawned from trader enclaves
  • Corporations, which will be factions in your empire, who will build their own mining stations, and, based on an empire law which determines corporate freedom, may field their own defensive fleets to protect their ships from piracy, and may even lay claim to whole systems outright. Of course, they will also owe a portion of their incomes as tax. Corporations may even build corporate headquarters on planets, and… stuff.
  • Energy-producing buildings are still required on planets to run local buildings, but that’s it. Your INCOME will be based on tax rates, levied on all of the above described economic activity of your empire.
  • Very long term plan, probably – versions of all above described civilian ships for every graphical culture. I have to learn to model!

If this interests you, join me, and together we will embark… on a civilian space odyssey.

Current to-do list

Besides hunting any other bugs that pop up, and waiting for the 2.2 Stellaris update, my next big step may be to start trying to build the planet stockpile system, but limit it to food only for the first iteration. That means that planets would need to receive food shipments to make up for food deficits, and others would ship it out if they had a surplus, but no other resources would work similarly for the time being.

Some improvements are still needed to the currently implemented features as well. Civilian ships don’t yet know how to deal with hostile entities well, or what to do if friendly systems or planets are occupied. It would also be good to have some events letting the player know when a civilian ship is attacked, for example, or when a migration ship embarks.

I’m also going to be thinking about what to do with my corporation ideas, now that Paradox has announced they’re adding… corporations.

Recommended mods

Buttjunkie’s EG – Basic Map Icons
I really recommend using Basic Map Icons, as with the large number of civilian ships that can be flying around at any one given time, the fleet UI bars can be pretty obtrusive. This reduces their size and makes for a better visual experience.