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PBEM stands for Play By E-Mail. In Stars! it is used to refer to the method of playing whereby each player is sends and receives their turn files by e-mail. PBEMs are usually played at a rate of 1 turn each day or every few days, and thus the game will be stretched over a period of several months.

This method has several advantages:

  • Players don't have to be online at the same time to play
  • Players can fit taking their turns into their own schedule
  • The pace of turns means players can take as long as they like over their turns
  • Diplomacy can play a big part as the timescales allow for discussion among players

Game Setup

  • If the game is to be played on Autohost then you should e-mail Ron Miller and let him know you wish to reserve / queue a spot.
  • All the players send the host their race files ( racename.r1 ) for the particular game.
  • The host generates a new game, either using the stars program or from the command line using a *.def file.
  • If the universe is to be re-mapped or there are other scenario setup then the host does this.
  • If the game is to be played on Autohost then the files should be submitted ( click here for details ).
  • For Autohost games just let the players know the url of your game page when it is ready.
  • The host sends each player a copy of the universe definition file ( gamename.xy ).

For games hosted manually the procedure is as follows:

  • The host sends each player their turn file ( gamename.m5 goes to player #5 and so on).
  • The players take their turns and the host waits for them to return their submitted turn files ( gamename.x1 )
  • The host generates a new turn using the host file ( gamename.hst ), this can be done before all players have submitted.
  • The above steps are repeated for each new turn.

See also Hosting a Multi-Player Game