Diplomacy is the interaction of sovereign governments. In Sword of the Stars II, the player’s Faction may have Diplomatic interaction with other Factions, and also with Independents. A Faction is a star-faring civilization which may control multiple star systems and an extended territorial empire. For Diplomatic purposes, a Faction is dominated technologically and militarily by a single Race, although other Races may also be citizens of the empire. An Independent is a smaller autonomous state which occupies a single system. Like a Faction, an Independent system or world will be dominated by a single Race. Diplomatic relations with another power are defined by two basic measures. Diplomatic Mood and Diplomatic Status.
Diplomatic Mood is an informal measure of the general attitude that another government holds toward your government and your people. The current state of another government’s Mood will be visible as a position on a coloured bar graph with seven basic increments, as follows:
- Hatred This government has excellent reason to regard your government and itspeople as actively evil, and hostile to their best interests. War is nearly inevitable.
- Hostility This government has significant grievances against your governmentand people. War is a distinct possibility.
- Distrust This government has at least some minor grievances against your government and people. Diplomatic Actions may not be well-received.
- Indifference This government has no grievances against your government andpeople, but no reason to favour you either.
- Trust This government has legitimate reasons to favour you and your people. Diplomatic Actions will be more likely to succeed.
- Friendship This government has significant bonds of fellowship with you and your people. They may look favourably on Peace Treaties and Alliances.
- Love This government has very strong bonds and excellent reasons to favour you and your people. They will gladly serve as your Allies.
There are six possible Diplomatic States which can exist between any two governments: Neutrality, War, Cease-Fire, Non-Aggression, Peace, and Alliance.
- Neutrality The default Diplomatic State which exists between two powers which have never encountered each other before. If these two powers encounter one another in deep space, either Fleet-to-Fleet or Fleet-to-System, they can choose to take hostile action or hold fire.
- War A state of conflict between two powers. The majority of Government Types will suffer Morale losses if their Fleets attack other Factions or Independents without a formal Declaration of War, unless their own ships or systems have been previously attacked.
- Cease-Fire A Diplomatic State established by Treaty. Under a Cease-Fire agreement, enemy Fleets will not be fired upon if they are encountered in neutral territory, or in territory controlled by a non-allied player. Enemy fleets WILL be fired upon if they enter systems controlled by the player or allies.
- Non-Agg ress ion A Diplomatic State established by Treaty. Under a Non-Aggression Pact, enemy Fleets will not be fired upon in neutral territory, and they may enter territory controlled by the player and allies without being automatically attacked as well. Governments which have signed a Non-Aggression Pact may also choose to exchange gifts and information.
- Peace A Diplomatic State established by Treaty. Under a Peace Treaty, Fleets will not fire upon one another unless they are forced to do so, and the majority of Government Types will suffer serious Morale consequences if their own Fleets are ordered to violate such a treaty. Governments which have signed a Peace Treaty may engage in inter-galactic Trade as well as exchanging gifts and information.
- Alliance A Diplomatic State established by Treaty. Allied governments share all Sensor and Survey data automatically, and receive instantaneous feedback of Events taking place in Allied territory. Allies may engage in Trade, exchange gifts, and request every type of assistance from one another, including military intervention and scientific consultation in Research.
A variety of Diplomatic Actions are available to the player. Every Diplomatic Action has a cost in Diplomatic Points, and some Diplomatic Actions also have a cost or a benefit in Morale, which is the measure of the support your government enjoys from your own citizens. Diplomatic Actions fall into the following categories: Declaration, Request, Demand, Treaty, Lobby, and Spin.
- Declaration A Declaration of War is a formal announcement of impending military action against another government and its people. The majority of Government Types will suffer significant Morale losses if their Fleets commit acts of war without a formal Declaration, unless they have been previously attacked.
- Request A Request is a petition to a foreign government to receive Resources, Information, Technology, Military Assistance, and Permission to enter a System, build a Gate, settle a world, or establish an Enclave. Requests can only be passed between governments who have agreed to a Non-Aggression Pact, Peace Treaty or Alliance.
- Demand A Demand is a petition to a foreign government to receive Resources, Information, Technology, Slaves, Territory or Surrender. Demands pass only between powers in a State of Neutrality, War, or Cease-Fire. Treaty A Treaty is an agreement between two or more powers. Of all Diplomatic Actions, Treaties are the most plentiful and varied. In general, three types of Treaty can be proposed to any foreign government: Armistice, Trade, and Limitation.
- Armistice – An Armistice Treaty suggests a change of Diplomatic State between two powers. An Armistice can change the Diplomatic State between two powers to Neutrality, Cease-Fire, Non-Aggression, Peace or Alliance from any previous state, including War.
- Trade – A Trade Treaty sets the terms of economic exchange between two foreign governments. Large-scale foreign Trade can only exist between governments who have agreed to a Peace Treaty.
- Limitation – A Limitation Treaty sets a limit on certain player actions. Limitations can be set to Fleets (number of Cruiser Equivalents), Ship Class (number of Dreadnaughts or Leviathans), Weapons (arming of ships with Bio-weapons, Siege Drivers etc.), Research (AI, Bio-weapons, Psionics, etc.), Overharvesting, Terraformation, Settlement (number of Colonies), Development (number of Forge or Gem worlds), Naval Bases (number of Star Bases and Sector Bases), Gate Stations, and Conquest of Independents.
Any given Treaty, in addition to proposing its central goal, will also have two other characteristics: Duration and Consequences.
- Duration – The Duration of a Treaty is the number of terms that the agreement will be in effect before it is null and avoid. The Duration of a Treaty can be as short as a single turn, or Indefinite until re-negotiated through a later Diplomatic Action.
- Consequences – The Consequences of a Treaty are the proposed penalties if any signatory government violates the terms of the Treaty. Consequences of violation can include: Fines, Cessation of Trade for a pre-agreed number of turns, Downgrade of Diplomatic Status, Sanctions, Loss of Diplomatic Points, and War.
- Lobby is an effort to change the Mood of a foreign power toward any other government, including your own.
- Spin is an attempt to avert the standard Diplomatic and Morale penalties of certain player actions. When a Treaty is broken, when shots are fired without Declaration of War, a Spin can make the prevent the Mood of a foreign government or the Morale of your own people from taking a radical plunge.
In order to take Diplomatic Actions, the Player must have Diplomatic Points. These points represent an abstract measure of the power and influence that your government and people have accumulated within a larger community of neighbouring governments. There are two kinds of Diplomatic Points: generic and specific. Generic
Diplomatic Points are a general measure of your empire’s size and its investment in Diplomatic activity. Specific Diplomatic Points are a measure of your investment in close and mutually beneficial relations with a specific Faction.
- Generic all-purpose Diplomatic Points are generated every turn by every Province that the Player holds. The more Provinces the player controls, the more D.P. the empire will generate per turn. Diplomatic Stations are an additional source of generic Diplomatic Points. For every Diplomatic Station built, the player will earn a set number of additional Diplomatic Points per turn. The number of D.P. will scale with the level of the Station: a Star Chamber generates more points per turn than a Customs Station.
- Specific Diplomatic Points are generated by Habitat Modules which provide comfortable quarters for visiting aliens. An Alien Habitat Module dedicated to the comfort of alien visitors can be added to any Civilian or Science Station and generate a small number of Diplomatic Points per turn for Factions and Independents of the appropriate Race. The number of specific Diplomatic Points generated per turn is increased if an Alien Habitat is added to a Diplomatic Station. Large Alien Habitat Modules will generate a larger number of specific Diplomatic Points when they are built, and again will generate more points when added to a Diplomatic Station.
The Diplomatic Points both generic and specific that your empire generates each turn will accumulate until they are spent or lost.
Spending Diplomatic PointsEdit
The player spends Diplomatic Points in order to exert political power on a galactic scale. Every time a Diplomatic Action is attempted, Diplomatic Points must be spent. Declarations of War, Demands, Requests, Lobbying, Spin and Treaties all require some expenditure of D.P. The number of D.P. required to exert power through Diplomatic channels will depend on multiple factors: the Government Type of the two powers involved, the dominant Race of the two powers involved, and the Technologies that can affect Diplomatic negotiations.
When it is time to spend Diplomatic Points, keep in mind that D.P. which are specific to the dominant Race of a certain government are worth more than generic Diplomatic Points. As a general rule, Race-specific D.P. can be spent at a ratio of 1 to 1. Generic Diplomatic Points can only be spent at a ratio of 2 to 1.
Example: I wish to propose an Arms Limitation Treaty with the Morrigi Confederation, a Diplomatic Action costing 50 points.
Generic Diplomatic Points stored: 40
Specific Diplomatic Points for Morrigi: 30
My specific Diplomatic Points for the Confederation will spend at 1 to 1, because the dominant Race of the Confederation is Morrigi:
50 D.P. – 30 Morrigi Points = 20 D.P. remaining.
My generic Diplomatic Points can only be spent at a ratio of 2 to 1.
40 generic D.P. / 2 = 20 D.P..
In short, it will cost me 40 generic D.P. and 30 specific D.P. to bring the Morrigi Confederation to the table to discuss my proposed Arms Limitation Treaty.
Losing Diplomatic PointsEdit
Specific Diplomatic Points can only be lost when Alien Habitat Modules attached to Diplomatic Stations are destroyed. Alien Habitat Modules attached to other types of Stations can be destroyed without loss of specific Diplomatic Points. General Diplomatic Points can only be lost as a pre-agreed consequence of Treaty violation.