Screeps World Review: April 2016

In the past season, players have mined and used minerals with much more confidence, especially since minerals are mined as easily as energy, unlike power. Processing minerals is more interesting though, and we’ll touch on that later. As for now, here are the leaders in expansion and power:

AzuraStar and NhanHo have reached GCL 28+ thus getting the maximum CPU 300. Perhaps it cooled down their drive to overpump controllers, so they are now building up the walls extensively. Hernanduer[27] and DarkTrooper7[26] are close to the high level, while the rest have not reached GCL 10 yet. We congratulate Skorp[11] who started only in January but is already in the TOP-10. Let’s have a look at the expansion graph from danny:

Some people love to change badges frequently, now even custom ones, while others have stuck to one badge from the very beginning. Here is how players' domains look like with their respective badges:

Don’t forget that the map has many viewing modes apart from the “Owner control level,” for example “Minerals” which is very important nowadays, it helps quickly assess mineral logistics.

After the initial placement of minerals across the map, some players have managed to grab lucky new rooms with mineral-rich neighboring rooms:

AzuraStar 29 9 7 3 1 5 2 0
NhanHo 28 11 2 1 2 5 3 1
Hernanduer 27 5 8 2 3 4 2 1
DarkTrooper7 26 7 11 1 1 1 2 2
Sargeth 19 3 4 6 1 0 3 0
danny 18 4 4 3 4 1 2 0
TooAngel 18 1 2 0 2 1 1 0
Dissi 17 4 3 1 2 2 3 1
ThyReaper 16 1 6 1 0 1 3 0
Mototroller 15 5 3 1 1 3 1 1
Pascow 12 5 0 0 1 1 3 0
Rumatah 12 1 4 1 0 1 1 1
chris 11 3 2 1 0 1 1 1
atomicinf 11 0 4 0 2 0 1 0
Skorp 10 3 1 2 1 1 0 1

As we can see from the table, the top three players have more Utrium. A half don’t have Catalyst at all. A third of the table has a serious disproportion in Oxygen/Hydrogen. The following players have the most even combinations: Hernanduer, Dissi[18], and Mototroller[16].

From a practical viewpoint, distance between rooms play an important role, but since the terminal allows transferring minerals at any distance, you can gain advantage by collecting the full stack of minerals. While the automatic market system is under development, and neighbors may be slow at times, players have to rely on themselves and create self-sustaining mineral usage cycles.

Let’s look at the reactions going on in labs with minerals in storages and terminals. This will give us an understanding of where players focus on, whether it’s security, attack, mining, progress, versatility… The following diagram shows compounds converted into corresponding effects:

The diagrams show thousands of ticks that players needed to build a compound. For example, – 1 tick, – 3, – 4.

Dissi has the most versatile stock. However, the best in class is again Hernanduer who also used various boosts to the full: mining energy and power, attack (see video attached), and the most popular effect among players, upgradeController.

You need labs for all this. Unlike other objects, they need to be placed within a 2 square range in order for a reaction to work. It’s interesting to see how players tackle this issue. Here are basic configurations for each player:

The most popular lab configuration is increasingly an “eight”: Hernanduer, Dissi, and Skorp[11] have this architecture in all their rooms and it’s similar to the “tunnel” extension layout. Similarly, DarkTrooper7, Rumatah[12], and chris[11] tend to favor “grid” layouts in both their extensions and labs. Mototroller prefers densely-grouped extensions, so he usually packs his labs with the maximum density, in squares. AzuraStar has handily arranged his lab worker surrounded by labs in a feng shui manner, and he even managed to have a raw source nearby. This is similar to his spawns layout.

Therefore, we can guess which layout will be used by those who haven’t utilized minerals yet: eight, greed, square. Even before we looked at E24N12 we could guess that NhanHo would use “rails.” So, if you’re still pondering how to place your labs, just look at your extensions.

The featured battle of the season shows 10 rooms of TooAngel wiped in a flash. This video again shows how important it is to place towers as close to the borders as possible in order not to lose their effectiveness due to a great range, and that you shouldn't rely on them alone, but keep spawning proper defending creeps when under siege. It’s popcorn time: