Bases are large, immobile structures that are can be designed for a number of uses. In unmodded Space Empires IV, bases come in three sizes: Space Station (500kT), Battlestation (1500kT) and Starbase (2500kT).
Bases have unique mounts available that are not available to any other ship or unit. These mounts have increased range, damage and accuracy. In combat, bases are formidable and it usually takes a fleet to destroy a large base with lots of weapons. Bases are huge structures and can be designed with more weapons & components than ships. They have unlimited supplies and decreased maintenance costs. Bases don't require engines so that is even more space that can be used for other components. Bases get a maintenance bonus, making bases cheaper to maintain than ships of equal tonnage.
Bases are immobile so they may be, and frequently are, not placed in a good position during combat. In games, battles are fought on an ever moving front; immobile bases can't be moved to where the action is. If they are placed poorly or out of range in combat, there is nothing that can be done about it. Because of their large size and immobility, bases receive a combat penalty and are easier to hit. Bases are also expensive. (Slick)
Space Yard Bases
Building bases with space yards increases the number of build queues available to your empire. Most experienced players will put 2 or 3 of these bases into orbit above their homeworld (and other construction sites) as soon as possible. A space station with the necessary C&C components and a spaceyard will have room left over for an additional 50 kT of components. Some players leave this space empty, others put a CSM on there to help with sector defence, others put cargo components on there for unit storage.
Remember that if you build units with your Spaceyard Base, there needs to be available cargo storage to store these units somewhere in that sector. Units built by a Spaceyard Base will be put into the first available open cargo area. This may be on the Spaceyard Base itself if available, or on any planet, moon, ship or base in the same sector. If no cargo storage is available, you still get charged the cost of building the units but they won't get built and you will get a log message stating that there is no storage available.
Unit launch strategy
I found by accident that the ship/base that has a SY does not have to have cargo space when building units if there is any other cargo space in the sector. I use this for warp point defense. Build a cheap base with a sat bay/mine layer and have a SY ship (or base) in the same sector. The SY ship is set to repeat build sats or mines and they are automatically placed in the launching base which is also set to repeat launch. If needed the SY ship can be moved and return or whatever else is needed. With larger sizes this is of small concern but it does allow for mobile unit production with a cheap SY ship and anything else with cargo space wherever is needed. (Bearclaw)
A good idea, worth implementing once your empire is large and making more resources than you can store per turn, is to create bases at your planets of your own weapon mix, a drone launching base, and a fighter launching base. This leaves your planet surface for weapons platforms. Your opponent will not overcome this without a massive fleet, and the AI will send its ships to crash against your platforms like waves on the sand - you will stay alive.
A handy base configuration is the Cargo Base - essentials and the rest of the space filled with Cargo Storage. These can be used to store excess units at rally points or it can be used to store non-breathing population at key locations for pickup or transfer.
BUILD STORAGE BASES! They can be emergency resources, allows for full use of the planet building up possible use items, and if things get tight in that area the base can be retrofitted some something with weapons/shields. And they have only .1 more build time than a cargo facility (in the check I just made YMMV) (Gandalf Parker)
StrategiaInUltima's Population Strategy
Create bases with ONLY cargo storage (as soon as you've met the requirements for B/CQ/LS by placing those or MC) and build one/a few in orbit around your homeworld. Then, whenever your population gets above a certain level, place a set number of pop on those stations. That way, you can have billions of people in orbital stations, even if you start on a Tiny world. The reason for this is that this way, when you colonize a new planet, you can immediately fill it up to max pop to speed up its growth tremendously while not emptying your homeworld this way. Also, when an important colony has suffered severe population losses, you can replenish the pop. Or, when an important colony has been depopulated with Neutron Bombs, you can immediately repopulate it completely so you get the full income again after just a few turns, instead of suffering perhaps crippling losses to your economy over the course of perhaps several years.
| Manual (SEIV)