by Donald L. Worrell
in a game the Empires most deadly weapon is the PL-21 probe.
The first mission for the probes is to seek out and find all
enemy starbase's using the Dark Sense. After this is accomplished
the PL-21 can then be turned into one of the most feared weapons
in the game. With your probes in enemy space you can see and
know all. You can get a turn by turn report of what new planets
the enemy colonises. This is important because you want your
probes to be able to move about freely with out fear of the
you have the Robots for a neighbour. Early in the game say
on the second turn you had sent a PL-21 probe out and it reported
the presence of the Robots to your east. The Dark Sense will
tell you were his HomeWorld is and what other planets he holds.
Since it is turn two the dark sense should have informed you
of all of the Robots planets. With this PL-21 probe in the
area with mission set to dark sense each turn from now on
you will get a dark sense report of the Robots colonisation
efforts. You will now send a second PL-21 probe into the Robots
area . These probes will take over a planet were they can
stay hidden from the enemy. You will now lie in wait for the
enemy to send out a freighter.
PL-21s on station when the enemy sends a freighter into open
space you will be able to plan to meet it at its destination.
Just watch the enemies expansion and go after the enemies
freighters when ever they appear unescorted. You should be
able to tell which planet the enemy is moving the freighter
to because they will not be worried about losing the freighters
in there own back yard. But once you pick the planet that
the freighter is moving to, then draw a hyper warp circle
around it. Then draw hyper circles around your probes. If
you are lucky you might have a probe in position to meet the
freighter at the planet it is moving to. If you can do this
with enemy FC set you have just captured a freighter. If you
have to take two turns to get there that will work as well.
The freighter will move to the planet, then the next turn
it will have to drop clans to take possession of the planet.
You probe will arrive on the second turn capture the freighter
and attack the planet. But since you have the dark sense you
will know that the planet was unoccupied so there will be
no defence post to worry about.
the basic tactics. Just watch the enemies expansion and go
after the enemies freighters when every they appear unescorted.
Remember that you should know every planet the enemy has and
how long they have been held. How long they have been held
will let you guess whether they have built defence posts or
not. So in closing the Empire probes should rule the galaxy
at the beginning of the game. If you can force the enemy to
escort all their freighters you will slow down there growth.
That in it self will make the Empire probe gambit a success.
If you can capture a couple of LDSF that would be icing on