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This article has been verified for the current PC version (2.6) of the game.
Mammalian Fleet

A ship is a spaceborne vessel controlled by an empire. They are the primary way of interacting with objects and entities in the galaxy via specific ship orders. Ships are classified into civilian and military vessels, the former being controlled individually while the latter form fleets. All ships must be constructed and repaired at Starbases where there is a Shipyard module. Each Shipyard module can construct one ship at a time.

Civilian ships[edit]

Civilian ships represent all unarmed vessels of an empire and are controlled individually. They are equipped with shields, armor and core components automatically once the next tier component tech is unlocked at a free cost and do not have to return to a Starbase to receive component upgrades. Each civilian ship except transports have a monthly maintenance cost of 0.75 Energy Credits.png Energy.

Civilian ships have the evasive fleet stance by default meaning that they will attempt to escape the system whenever a hostile fleet enters it.

Construction ship[edit]

Construction ships are used to build every space structure. They are not used up during construction meaning that they can go on to do other tasks after they have finished their building project. Fleet Orders allow the construction ship to build the following:

Build order Cost Maintenance Description
Fleet task build outpost action.png Outpost Alloys.png depends on Government
Influence.png 75 per hyperlane from closest owned system
Energy Credits.png 1 Energy The Starbase is a space station used to claim star systems and expand your borders. It can only be built in orbit around a star. The full cost is dependent on which star system is being claimed.
Fleet task build mining station action.png Mining Station Minerals.png 100 Minerals Energy Credits.png 1 Energy Mining Stations are used to collect Minerals, Energy Credits and Strategic Resources from uninhabited planets, stars and asteroids. Mining Stations that collect Energy do not cost any upkeep.
Fleet task build research station action.png Research Station Minerals.png 100 Minerals Energy Credits.png 1 Energy Research Stations are used to collect Physics, Society and Engineering research data from uninhabited planets, stars and asteroids.
Fleet task build observation station action.png Observation Post Minerals.png 100 Minerals Energy Credits.png 1 Energy Observation Posts can be built in orbit around planets inhabited by primitive civilizations to study their society.
Fleet order button build megastructure.png Megastructure Site Alloys.png depends on Megastructure
Influence.png depends on Megastructure
Energy Credits.png 5 Energy Megastructures are truly massive construction projects only possible in the zero-g environment of space.

Science ship[edit]

See also: Surveying

Science Ships are the primary method of exploring the galaxy and the stars and systems within it. They require a scientist to operate.

Once crewed, the Science ship can conduct a survey of individual objects within a system. During these surveys, it can discover resources present on a celestial body (i.e.: planets, stars, asteroids, etc.). A survey may also result in the discovery of an anomaly. Furthermore, an object needs to be surveyed only once and any future hidden resources (such as strategic resources) will be automatically revealed once the requisite technology is researched. The Science ship can also survey debris left after a space battle which may yield research points or possibly even unlock unique technology options.

Science ships can also assist the research of a planet. Upon activation, the science ship will orbit the planet and boost its research output depending on the skill level of the scientist on board.

Colony ship[edit]

See also: Colonization

The large colony ships allow an empire to settle habitable planets. When ordering the construction of a colony ship, the player is given the option of choosing the species of the pop that is to be sent to the new colony, inheriting all of its traits and ethics. Pops are not consumed nor transported in this process. Once finished, the colony ship may be sent to any habitable world within range to start a colony. Colony ships take one year to build and their upkeep cost is maintained throughout the whole colonization process. Alternatively, colony ships can also be built through the interface of the planet to be colonized. The cost of a colony ship depends on the government and the species archetype.

Species Auth democratic.pngAuth oligarchic.pngAuth dictatorial.pngImperialAuth corporate.png Auth hive mind.png Origins tree of life.png Origins lithoid.png Auth machine intelligence.pngAp synthetic evolution.png Civic corporate dominion.pngCivic private prospectors.png
  • Alloys.png 200 Alloys
  • Food.png 200 Food
  • Consumer goods.png 200 Consumer Goods
  • Alloys.png 200 Alloys
  • Food.png 500 Food
  • Alloys.png 50 Alloys
  • Food.png 1000 Food
No.png Alloys.png 400 Alloys Energy Credits.png 500 Energy
  • Alloys.png 200 Alloys
  • Food.png 200 Food
  • Consumer goods.png 200 Consumer Goods
No.png No.png No.png
  • Alloys.png 200 Alloys
  • Minerals.png 200 Minerals
  • Consumer goods.png 200 Consumer Goods
  • Alloys.png 200 Alloys
  • Minerals.png 500 Minerals
  • Alloys.png 50 Alloys
  • Minerals.png 500 Minerals
  • Food.png 500 Food
Minerals.png 500 Minerals

Transport ship[edit]

See also: Land warfare

Transports ships are where assault armies are kept. After an army has been recruited it is automatically embarked in a transport ship which will be orbiting the planet where they were created. Therefore, they cannot be built manually. While armies have an upkeep cost, transport ships cost no additional Energy Credits.png energy to maintain. After a battle transport ships will heal the embarked armies.

During war transport ships must be carefully escorted by a military fleet since they are unarmed. Their only purpose is to carry assault armies into enemy planets so that they can occupy them. Additionally, some special projects require a transport ship to be completed.

Military ships[edit]

Military ships represent all armed vessels of an empire and unlike civilian ships they can be grouped together into fleets and led by an Admiral. Military ships require both Energy Credits.png Energy and Alloys.png Alloys as monthly maintenance. They are designed via the ship designer.

Military ships are classified by their hull size, which influences their combat stats, cost, available sections and components and Command Point cost. Each ship takes twice as much time to be built compared to the previous one in the category. There are six available hull sizes, with the Titan and Colossus only available with the Apocalypse.png Apocalypse expansion, and the Juggernaut only available with the Federations Federations expansion. Each ship size has two technologies that increase its hull points and (up to battleships) one technology that decreases its build cost and increases its build speed.

Upgrading ships[edit]

Military ships must be upgraded manually when an upgraded design is created. The cost for upgrading each ship is simply the difference in construction cost between the new design and the old one. Each ship upgrades individually, with multiple ships being upgraded simultaneously if the starbase contains multiple shipyards.

When upgrading a ship, the system will attempt to use the most recent version of the same class name. If no design of the same class name is available, then the upgrade process will retrofit them to the most-recently saved design of the same size instead.

If a ship obtained via an event contains components not yet researched the ship should not be allowed to upgrade. Upgrading it will replace the components with the latest researched ones, even if those are inferior.

Naval Capacity[edit]

Naval capacity represents the number of military ships that an empire can manage. Going beyond this limit will increase ship maintenance costs by a percentage equal to the overcame value. For example if an empire exceeded its naval capacity by 50% it will increase the maintenance cost of each ship by 50%. Each empire can build a Titan for each 200 Naval Capacity, up to a maximum of 20 Titans at 3800 naval capacity. An empire's base naval capacity is 20, and is modified by:

  • Ap galactic force projection.png Galactic Force Projection ascension perk adds +80
  • Job soldier.png Each Soldier Job adds +4
  • Job soldier.png Each Warrior Drone Job adds +4
  • Sb anchorage.png Each Starbase Anchorage module adds +4, or +6 with the Naval Logistics Office building
  • Each naval doctrine technology adds +30
  • Tech repeatable naval cap.png Each Fleet Management Procedures repeatable technology adds +20 (can only be researched 5 times)
  • Each Pirate Free Haven corporate building adds +10
  • Each Mercenary Liaison Office corporate building adds +10
  • Each Strategic Coordination Center level adds +50
  • Civic citizen service.png Citizen Service civic increases Naval Capacity by +15%
  • Civic subspace ephapse.png Subspace Ephapse civic increases Naval Capacity by +15%
  • Civic naval contractors.png Naval Contractors civic increases Naval Capacity by +15%
  • Civic fanatic purifiers.pngCivic devouring swarm.pngCivic machine terminator.png Genocidal civics increase Naval Capacity by +33%
  • Tradition prosperity fleet logistical corps.png Fleet Logistics Corps / Automated Underway Replenishment supremacy tradition increases Naval Capacity by +20%
  • Menu icon policies and edicts.png Master's Teachings: Warring States edict increases Naval Capacity by +10%
  • Menu icon policies and edicts.png Grand Fleet unity ambition increases Naval Capacity by +20%
  • Leader trait fleet organizer.png Fleet Organizer ruler trait increases Naval Capacity by +15%
  • Trait brainslugged.png Brain Slug Host ruler trait increases Naval Capacity by +10%
  • Mod shroud unavailable.png Covenant: End of the Cycle increases Naval Capacity by +100%
  • Diplomacy federation.png Federation member empires have reduced Naval Capacity by -20% (capacity is set aside for use by the Federation fleet)
  • Diplomacy issatrapy.png Satrapy empires have reduced Naval Capacity by -30%

Maximum Naval Capacity may never exceed 9999. This is not a hard cap on the number of ships an empire can support; it is fully possible to exceed this limit as long as an empire can afford the increased maintenance fees for all of its ships. In fact, the AI will frequently build over its naval capacity if it has the resources to maintain their fleets. Because of this, it may likewise be necessary to build over your naval capacity, especially when you're preparing to go to war against an AI with equivalent or better fleet power (though, in this case, players should also look into increasing their naval capacity whenever possible, if only to reduce maintenance costs).

Command Limit[edit]

Command Limit is a limit on how large any one individual fleet in an empire can be. An empire's base command limit is 20, increased by the following (the hardcoded maximum is 500 but cannot be reached without mods):

  • +10 per hull type technology
  • +20 per fleet doctrine technology
  • +10 per Admiralty Support Staff technology (repeatable, but only 5 times)
  • +10 Civic distinguished admiralty.png Distinguished Admiralty civic
  • +20 Tradition supremacy war games.png War Games \ Three-Dimensional Awareness \ Combat Variable Mitigation supremacy tradition
  • +20 Ap galactic force projection.png Galactic Force Projection ascension perk

Maximum attainable Command Limit without mods: 260

Outliner format: <current command usage>/<fleet command limit> (<template's planned usage>)

Ship Rank[edit]

As ships partake in battle they will increase their rank. Ships, when built, start off with zero experience. Ships built in starbases with a fleet academy apart from the required shipyard are granted 100 experience points and therefore start as experienced. Ships get +1 experience point every day they are in combat.

Ranks are classified as follows:

Rank Exp Points Effects
Regular 0-99 None
Experienced 100-999 Mod ship weapon damage.png +10% Damage
Veteran 1000-9999 Mod ship weapon damage.png +20% Damage
Mod ship hitpoints add.png +5% Hull points
Evasion +5% Evasion
Elite 10000 Mod ship weapon damage.png +40% Damage
Mod ship hitpoints add.png +10% Hull points
Evasion +10% Evasion

Colossal ships[edit]

Colossal ships can only be constructed once per empire and require the starbase to have the Sb colossus assembly yard.png Colossal Assembly Yards building before they can be constructed. Colossal ships cannot be merged with regular fleets. A new colossal ship can be constructed if the current one is destroyed.


Humanoid empire using a World Cracker

The Colossus is a colossal ship that that has a single weapon slot which can be equipped with a weapon of mass destruction capable of affecting an entire planet. Normally built only by Awakened Empires, regular empires can gain access to the technology required to build them by taking the Ap colossus project.png Colossus Project ascension perk. Colossi are unable to attack enemy fleets, as they lack the weaponry to do so. However, they can be fitted with defense components such as armor and shields. During space battles a Colossus will follow direct orders and will maneuver straight to its designated target. This means that the Colossus will do things such as going straight through an ongoing space battle to fire upon an enemy planet, unless its stance is set to Evasive.

Colossus weapons can only be used during a Total War and as such cannot be fired during wars started by Diplomacy federation.png Federation members or from Diplomacy defensive pact.png Defensive Pacts.

If an empire owns an active Colossus, it gains the ability to use that as a justification to declare war on its Diplomacy rivalry.png Rivals. On the other hand, however, if an empire owns an active Colossus, other empires will also be able to use that as a justification to declare war on the Colossus owner. In both cases, the resulting war will be Total War, allowing the Colossus to be used, although if the Colossus is destroyed, Total War will end and the empires will be able to pick a new Wargoal.

Using a Colossus causes large amounts of War Exhaustion on the targeted empire, and gives it +50% Ethics Attraction towards Militarist.png Militarist and Xenophobe.png Xenophobe, which can cause the diplomatic and political climate in the region to grow even more hostile over time.

The Ap colossus project.png Colossus Project ascension perk does not directly unlock the Colossus hull or its weapons; rather, the perk grants access to an associated special project which, once finished, will unlock both the ship and its weapon. After the special project is halfway completed the empire will be prompted to choose a starting Colossus weapon. The empire can later research other types of Colossus weapons and retrofit it into their Colossus via the ship designer.

A Colossus can carry the following weapons:

Weapon Effect when used Opinion modifier when used Requirements for construction Notes
Ship part global pacifier.png Global Pacifier
  • If fired on a planet, it will irreversibly turn into a Shielded World
  • If fired on a habitat or ringworld it will irreversibly be turned into a Shielded variant
  • −200 Victim
  • −20 Victim's Diplomacy federation.png Federation
  • The world will gain a deposit of 10 Society Research Society Research
  • If used on a Holy World the Fallen Empire will awaken and declare war on the perpetrator
Ship part world cracker.png World Cracker
  • If fired on a planet, it will turn into a Shattered World
  • If fired on a habitat, it will be vaporized
  • If fired on a ringworld segment, that segment will be irreparably destroyed
  • −1000 Victim
  • −100 Everyone
Not Pacifist.pngFanatic Pacifist.png Pacifist
  • Civic fanatic purifiers.pngCivic machine terminator.png empires gain 600–3000 Unity.png Unity on first use
  • If a habitable world is shattered it will gain a deposit of 4–16 Minerals.png Minerals
  • If Earth is shattered there is a 50% chance of creating a wormhole with another system
  • If used on a Holy World the Fallen Empire will awaken and declare war on the perpetrator
  • Can be test fired on uninhabited planets
Ship part neutron sweep.png Neutron Sweep
  • All Pops on the planet are killed and the planet can be recolonized
  • The world gets −30 Mod habitability.png Habitability for 10 years
  • −800 Victim
  • 80 Victim's Diplomacy federation.png Federation
  • Not Spiritualist.pngFanatic Spiritualist.png Spiritualist
  • Not Pacifist.pngFanatic Pacifist.png Pacifist
  • Civic fanatic purifiers.png Fanatic Purifiers and Civic machine terminator.pngs gain 600−3000 Unity.png Unity on first use
Ship part divine enforcer.png Divine Enforcer
  • All Pops on the planet become Spiritualist.png Spiritualist
  • All robot and Hive-minded.png Hive-Minded Pops on the planet are killed
  • The world gets +999% Spiritualist.png Spiritualist ethic attraction for 10 years
  • −400 Victim
  • −40 Victim's Diplomacy federation.png Federation
  • Spiritualist.pngFanatic Spiritualist.png Spiritualist
  • Tech telepathy.png Telepathy technology
Owned planets can be targeted but will also get −20% Mod pop happiness.png Happiness for 10 years
Ship part nanobot diffuser.png Nanobot Diffuser
  • The planet is instantly acquired and changes allegiance to the Machine Empire
  • All biological Pops on the planet gain the Trait cybernetic.png Cybernetic trait
  • All robot and Hive-minded.png Hive-Minded Pops on the planet are killed
  • −600 Victim
  • −60 Victim's Diplomacy federation.png Federation
Civic machine assimilator.png Driven Assimilator


The Juggernaut is a colossal ship which can construct, repair and upgrade ships the same way a Starbase can. It cannot build titans or other colossal ships. Its hull points are 10 times those of a titan and contains multiple hangar slots in addition to two turreted X slots. It also has its own set of aura components similar to titans.

Game concepts