Yes, Foundationthegame is totally free! The development of this game took a long time but and the server on which the game is hosted is not free. As a result you can help and contribute to the game by buying credits . Buying credits is an optional feature of the game, it is in no way compulsory, and in no way will this affect your chances of completing the game.
You can use your credits to purchase items while exploring planets. Many of these items may help you in your missions, others will not. However, while exploring a planet you are at risk of being killed therefore you should be careful. Please note that exploring planets is not a compulsory part of the game.
The "independent" missions have no deadline, the mission ends as soon as you have met your objective. For the "Empire", the "Merchants", and the "Foundation", missions all end on the Sunday of the week following the one when you started your mission (GMT+1, Paris Time). So if you start your mission on a Monday, you will have the longest possible time to complete your mission: 14 days. However, by starting on Sunday you will have the shortest possible mission: 8 days. Be careful: for Merchants and Founders it is strongly recommended that you begin on a Monday to have the greatest amount of time possible to complete your mission.
In foundationthegame, multiple accounts do not affect the overall balance of the game. It is extremely rare that accounts belonging to the same player will be affected to the same galactic sector (see map ). You are allowed to create several accounts, as foundationthegame is also a role-play game. This way, a player can have several characters with different role-plays.
However, it is forbidden to create more than 3 accounts. Multi-accounting is controlled, and any abuse will be punished. Generally, when at a high level, players end to sacrifice some accounts due to time constraints.
Players that are out of mission (having ended their mission and not having restarted one) do not disturb the game. At the end of their missions players are removed from the map and go into inter-mission where they can wait before being re-affected to a new mission and sector.
The AI automatically manages only 'Neutral' and 'Empire' planets. These planets are inactive; they defend themselves (without any reinforcements), but do not attack.
The Independent Merchants, who trade on any planet, are also automatically managed.
After you leave a sector your former planets become neutral, and will probably soon be conquered by other players. If you were a general or marshal of the Empire, your planets stay under control of the Empire and the imperial AI will take over from you.
It is only possible to ally with people that are present in your sector. But as some sectors overlap, you can see a player’s planets without him seeing yours. You can thus offer an alliance but since he cannot see it he will not be able to respond to your offer. To be sure to be seen by everybody, it is recommended that you conquer planets in all four corners of your sector.
When a planet is already under attack, you can’t target it. You must wait for the current colonization to end before launching a new attack.
There are 2 kinds of merchants: the merchant players, and the independent merchants that are automatically managed. The merchant player sees your trade offers and is free to choose the one he prefers. The independent merchants will never come if the exchange that you are offering them is not profitable. We advise you to offer them at least 2 containers profit (ex: 7 tin against 5 iron). The bigger the profit margin you offer, the more chances you have of being resupplied.
It is difficult to guarantee that all sectors are equally populated and have the same amount of gold. Generally, sectors fill up during a mission, you may wish to explore and wait until the second week of your mission ( newcomers might arrive in your sector). Do not forget that you can make commercial offers be accepted on "Neutral" and "Empire" planets, it is a tedious way to trade but it can prove very effective.
Please note that there is a rebalancing procedure which guarantees that every merchant will have approximately 2000 gold containers in his sector (+/- 10 %,1000 for merchants Lvl 1).
Unfortunatly, since many players’ missions interact the one with one another, you cannot stop during a mission. However, once your mission has ended, you do not need to start a new mission immediately. Take the necessary time before starting again.