CRINGE: So my first journey into ToA. Immense universe, evil empire. Most planets have been colonized and now the competition really starts. I have a large territory mostly to myself and I'm competing directly with 3 minors and the Drath. Generally good diplomatic relations all around. I wipe out one minor race in one round. The next round the Drath declare war on me and harass my freighters. I mobilize my fleet and JUST before I reach Drath zone of control, the Torians message me telling me my war with the Drath is unjustified, and that they're now going to war with me. I mean... wasn't I the victim??
CHEER: Same game. Discovering my missle research was worth it as none of the other races were researching missledefence, while my defensive research was well adapted to the AI's use of beams/mass drivers. My first wave of small & medium sized vessels went through Drath & Torians like a chainsaw through wet paper. With each craft they sent against me, they only strengthened my forces by raising their level.
"WHAT?!": Later the same game. I'm holding off waves of Torian fleets on my south-east, while continuing to mop up Drath (tanacious buggers). Suddenly I get a video screen saying most races have allied against me, INCLUDING long time friends the Altarian Resistance. Since they're across the map, all it really means is my lucrative trade routes are done. Frustrated, I click TURN button and... they surrender!! I never antagonized them, never declared war, and never engaged them when they stabbed me in the back... but they surrendured. Now I have a dozen colonies on the opposite end of space, with no defences, surrounded by core worlds of the races allied against me. Thanks alot Altarians... you good for nothing chumps.