There are 2 sets of numbers on the sticker that's on the outside of the box. There's no indication which set of numbers is the Serial # I register with. Which one is the Serial #?
The serial number for my retail copy of Ultimate is on the back of the manual. It's a set of six hyphen-separated 5-character sets.
I think I'm going for a max length game, so I'm going to set up an Immense galaxy and turn down Tech speed to very long.
Way too long for me, but I know some people are in to that sort of thing. By way of comparison, I find medium-galaxy, medium-tech GC games are longer than comparable, standard continents Civ4 games. But perhaps it just feels that way, as I haven't noticed a game clock option anywhere yet.
I want to pursue a Technological victory for my first game. Which race should I pick and how do I want to tweak my initial 10 points?
Isn't figuring that out on your own part of the fun?
My first 3 games have been "Intelligent/Tough" attempts and I just go broke everytime. It's the sliders that are throwing me and figuring out how they relate to income, etc. I want to build up the economy, but yet it seems after I build some planetary improvements, their upkeep puts me in the hole. Maybe I'm trying the game at too hard of a Difficulty?
The fundamental production and economy systems in GC are very different than Civ. Unfortunately, they're also rather poorly documented both in-game and online. Coming from a serious Civ player's perspective, I suspect you'll find this to be true of nearly every aspect of GC - there's no single source of GC information even remotely comparable to CFC's War Academy.
Anyway, the short gloss on the economy... the only thing that is actually *created* in a turn is money. Money comes primarily from taxes, trade, and tourism. Production and research are not created - they're merely bought from your total capacity as determind by your labs/factories. So building lots of labs/factories can easily put you in the hole - not only are you paying more maintenance, but now you're producing/researching more and thus paying more to do so. You can adjust the percentage of your capacity you utilize on the economy screen if you find that you've overbuilt, but of course you're best off finding some more income in order to use that capacity. Note that percentage-based economic buildings have limited value at the beginning of the game, since they boost your taxes and are thus based on planetary population. Your production/research sliders are applied after the overall capacity slider. So, for example, if you're running 90% capacity and 30% military/30% social/40% research, your labs will generate 90% x 40% = 36% of their listed research points.
There are lots of other modifiers thrown in there for things like starbases, resources, racial abilities, and focus, but that's the gist of it.