I just started playing TotA after a long hiatus from GalCiv2, and my first game I've encountered something "unusual".
I created a custom race and made a huge map. One of the opponents, also a custom based off the Drengin, was across the map from me, so no contact for a while. I'm about midway through the game, and I own about a quarter of the map. My planets are generating production in the 200's or so at max output. Meanwhile, I'm seeing massive numbers of ships from the enemy custom race, and when I go to spy on him, his production is in the 600's with only a handful of industrial sectors on the planet (class 12-ish planets). I finally reached high espionage, and noticed his economic bonus is listed as over 1000%. Early in the game, he had found what I thought was an ascension crystal, even though ascension vic is turned off. The message said he will get more powerful as the game progresses if I don't stop him.
I'm guessing that's what is happening, but now that I finally have the tech to explore his entire territory, I don't see anything out of the ordinary - no special planet tiles, no special resources. And yet, he's operating with much less territory at 3 or 4 times my production capacity. Only way I can win is if he's totally stupid at this point.
My question is, what did he find, and how can I throw him off it if I can't find it myself? Was it one of those mega-events and I just didn't react fast enough? Or is this a bug that I couldn't track down, where his bonuses are getting stacked each time I load the game or something?
Thanks in advance!