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The Population number represents the number of inhabitants of a planet. The tax revenue generated by a planet's inhabitants is the foundation of a player's economy in Galactic Civilizations II. The population of a planet also determines:

  • influence points proportional to the size of the population
  • soldiers for invading other planets or for defending that planet
  • colonists for populating uninhabited planets
  • morale for that planet; over-population can decrease the approval rating on a planet
  • trade bonuses. Population can give a slight increase (~15% for going from 6B to 24B pop) in trade revenue for trade routes to/from that planet
  • points for social part of the end-game score

Population growth is affected by the approval rating. For game versions below 1.1 the maximum growth rate in a turn is 200 million inhabitants per turn per planet. The maximum population on a planet is determined by the amount of food the planet is generating. Building farms will allow the population to expand. Each planet also has a maximum population based on planet quality, assuming sufficient food. The absolute population limit for a planet is 100 billion (farms don't produce more food).

For transport and colony modules on ships, each 1 point of capacity is equal to - and will deduct a population of - 1 million civilians. It is worth noting that the initial Colony Ships carry only 100 Colonist points, or 100 million civilians, though they possess a larger capacity than that.

Formula for Calculating Maximum Population Based on Planet Quality Edit

This is also called maximum growth-achievable population, since pop will not grow over this limit.

 Maximum Population (in billions) = 0.02 * ( ( Planet_Quality + 1 ) ^ 3 )

Here are numbers for Maximum Population per Planet quality in billions:

  • PQ 1 = 0.16 b.
  • PQ 2 = 0.54 b.
  • PQ 3 = 1.28 b.
  • PQ 4 = 2.50 b.
  • PQ 5 = 4.32 b.
  • PQ 6 = 6.86 b.
  • PQ 7 = 10.24 b.
  • PQ 8 = 14.58 b.
  • PQ 9 = 20.00 b.
  • PQ 10 = 26.62 b.
  • PQ 11 = 34.56 b.
  • PQ 12 = 43.94 b.
  • PQ 13 = 54.88 b.
  • PQ 14 = 67.50 b.
  • PQ 15 = 81.92 b.
  • PQ 16 = 98.26 b.
  • PQ 17+ = 100 b.


This list applies to DL and DA. In TA population cap is not longer tied to PQ instead it is limited by planetary food supply. 1 Food per turn supports 1 billion people. Every colony will produce 8 food per turn and a civilization capital will produce 16 food per turn. Notes on maximum growth-achievable population

  • Yes, a player can still reach planet's food limit by transporting people from other worlds. This would make sense in case a player tries to maximize tax revenue, or wants to make planet less sensitive to enemy invasion.
  • If you transfer to a planet more population than a planet can feed, all excess population will die off when game generates next turn.

Initial Population Growth//Illustrative Numbers Edit

(N.B. Need to confirm that the planet approval modifier is fully multiplicative in earlier versions of Dread Lords, check whether Fertility Clinics behave differently than normal +25% growth bonuses for very low population planets, and check if the 0-3 million random bonus growth is uniformly or binomially distributed. Please see discussion!)

For older game versions (Dread Lords 1.1 to 1.5)

  • base growth is 3% or 75 million pop, whichever is smaller,
  • this base is multiplied by bonus percentage growth from abilities (sum of Aphrodisiacs, starting growth, bonus from anomalies, bonus from planet colonization events),
  • finally, this sum is multiplied by the planet's approval modifier.

In Dark Avatar

  • a planet with 0 population will "grow" to 5M in next turn;
  • base growth varies with the race, but is between 4% and 7%;
  • if (base_growth * sum of race's growth bonuses) is greater than 75M, then 75M becomes base growth, else a random number between 0 and 4 million inclusive (varies with the race) is added to the base growth;
  • this base growth is multiplied by sum of race's growth bonuses (Aphrodisiacs, starting growth, two new technologies from DA, bonus from anomalies and bonus from planet colonization events);
  • for each Fertility Clinic smallest of (25% of base growth or 19M pop) is added to races's growth;
  • finally, this sum is multiplied by the planet's approval modifier.


  • The planet's approval modifier is:

- 0 if approval is less than 21%. In addition, you lose 10% of your existing population per turn.
- 0 for approval between 21 and 40% (pop doesn't grow).
- 1 for approval between 41% and 75% inclusive.
- 1.25 for approval between 76% and 99% inclusive.
- 2 for 100% approval without the Super Breeder special ability or 8 for 100% approval with Super Breeder.

  • Examples:

1) planet at 55% approval, 2B pop, no ability bonuses

  newPop = min ( 3% * 2000M + rand(4) * 1M, 75M ) = 60 to 63 million

2) planet at 80% approval, 4B pop, +10% growth bonus

  newPop = min ( 3% * 4000M, 75M ) * 1.1 * 1.25 = 103 million

3) Homeworld at 100% approval, with 5B pop, +30% growth bonus, 2 FCs

  newPop = ( min ( 3% * 5000M, 75M ) * 1.3 + 2 * 19 ) * 2 = 271 million

4) planet at 100% approval, with 3B pop, +10% growth bonus, Super Breeder trait

  newPop = min ( 3% * 3000M, 75M ) * 1.1 * 8 = 660 million

Notes on pop growth

  • Players using Super Breeder trait reported growing 2 BILLIONS pop per game turn.
  • Additional random 0-3M population is probably added to make "spored" and other low-pop colonies grow faster, since it takes too much time for them to grow at base 4-7% to ~2 B where they can financially support themself.
  • Don't pick up growth points for a race with Super Breeder trait. The *8 bonus growth at 100% approval is more than enough.

Population and Food Edit

In Dread Lords, the Civilization Capital provides 10mt of food per week, and Initial Colonies provide 5mt. In Dark Avatar 1.5 Civilization Capital provides 12mt of food per week, and Initial Colonies provide 6mt. In Dark Avatar 1.6beta5 Civilization Capital provides 16mt of food per week, and Initial Colonies provide 8mt.

The chart below assumes that the planet has an initial colony and tells you the number of farms needed to reach the population cap (which might not be the optimal configuration). It applies to Dread Lords only.



  • one asterisk indicates that there is no need to upgrade.
  • two asterisks indicate that an equal number of lower tech farms will suffice.
  • Note: Maximum Population might not be desirable due to morale and approval. At the same time, a player might need it to get additional tax revenue or influence.
Population/Farm Relationship
PQ Population Population Need to be fed Basic Farm (4mt/week) Xeno Farming (6mt/week) Intensive Farming (8mt/week) Advanced Farming (10mt/week)
4 2.5 0* 0 0 0 0
5 4.3 0* 0 0 0 0
6 6.9 1.9 1* 1** 1** 1**
7 10.2 5.2 2 1* 1** 1**
8 14.6 9.6 3 2* 1** 1**
9 20.0 15.0 4 3 2* 2**
10 26.6 21.6 6 4 3* 3**
11 34.6 29.6 8 5 4 3
12 43.9 38.9 10 7 5 4
13 54.9 49.9 13 9 7 5
14 67.5 62.5 16 11 8 7
15 81.9 76.9 20 13 10 8
16 98.3 93.3 24 16 12 10
17+ 100 95 24 16 12 10

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