Compactness Question


as the topic says, I have a question about compactness. When I decided to relocate my base I also wanted to make it better and more “conforming” in regards to compactness. So, compared to before, where my base had little routes around the block and bridges to connect islands and branched out in different directions.

My new base is basically almost square which brances out in 4 directions with tunnels to the surface (as I am underwater/underground). The tunnels are not very long and I plotted always 3 plots next to each other as requested. See an example here:

So top is a bit wider (and it will get even wider), left is a 3 plot tunnel up to surface, bottom is a 3 plot tunnel up to the surface and I haven’t done the right because my brother is blocking the way. :slight_smile:

However, my compactness now - that my base is almost square and plotted several plots deep (my base has 4 floors) and almost all plots have been built in, my compactness has gone worse than it was before (at some stage even critical) and I don’t quite understand what the problem is.
Do my neighbours also affect the compactness rating? Basically meaning, that I might not have any influence over my compactness if neighbouring plots decide to go all crazy? Or did I misunderstand how compactness works? I find it rather confusing.

Any insights would be appreciated.


The red is your plot reservation. Its always a row of 2 plots wide.
How compactness works Is basically a “50/50” system. Reservation to plot.
So long your reservation to plot ratio Is smaller or equal to the plots you will be 100 compactness. As soon as reservation to plot ratio goes up your compactness lowers.

In this case because the beacon on the right side of your pic (green plots) has the first beacon/plot rule because you can see the reservation plots (in this case yellow dotted line) go further next to your plots.
If or wen you need to make it more compact its the other 3 sides you need to worry about.

Compactness is calculated in 2D (top view) this means if you go one plot up your reservation won’t move. So it doesn’t mater how high you go on a claimed plot (The game smushes you build flat to calculate compactness and wil see just 1 plot in top view).

If/when an other beacon Is placed and plots in your reservation border, this will effectively remove your reservation border (please note the new claim needs to cover the reservation border because of first rule).
Resulting in a more “compact” state. This can be an other beacon of your self or someone els.

Before you ask :wink: first rule is oldest plot has first right to claim (but plot protection has to be turned on to enforce this rule [purple dotted line and you can’t see it in owned plots this includes guild owned])
Keep in mind reservation of the oldest plot(s) bleed over so you cant remove te reservation by just plotting a row next to the claimed terrain.

Beeding example of what i mean.

Red brick is your reservation plots (2 wide), green your plots.

White (light blue) new beacon but plotted a row of 1 wide. The red reservation is bleeding over meaning you still can turn on protection and Claim first right To plot. On the red spots as its still your reservation border. Can se it here to…

To solve your compactness issues it hat to be more squarish. So you have to add plots to make it square either by extending current beacon or adding new beacons an remove plot reservation with them.

Also aal i want to say if your beacon doesn’t hit 0 compactness your fine. My roads on Lamblis have a score of 1… so all good😉


Sorry for the long post and if im confusing you let me know to on what needs a better explanation :wink:.

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Are you bloody kidding me, this is brilliant! THANK YOU SO MUCH!! So much effort, thank you! This helps a lot!

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Np your welcome had to puzzle it all out on my Terra Nova build :wink:

OK, I just realised… does that mean 0-1 = bad and 10 = good?

100 is the best. 1 is bad, a negative number is really bad.
You’ll lose ff at some point and if you go negative, the beacon is automatically reported to the devs for them to see if it’s compliant or needs to be edited/removed.

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After I replotted and gave some of my plots to my brother, his is now 0. So trying to fix that now. :smiley:
I didn’t realise it goes up to 100. I thought it was 1 to 10. :smiley:


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Another question… if someone else is plotting the “reserved” plots around my base… does it still count as “mine” and therefore my rating goes down or does it consider the foreign base fulfilling my obligation to plot properly and therefore forfeits the bad rating and neutralises it? (so to speak). Because otherwise, that would mean people would have to move and re-base/re-plot completely to be able to fulfill the compactness rating?!

These maps are more than a month old, but you can select your planet & see what is compact (purple) and what is not (yellow).
Circ for example:

Sorry was paying attention to the hunt.

If someone plots your reserved plots, your compactness goes up because you lose reserved plots.

Also your beacon should be fine so long it has a 0/1 (or higher) rating. Negative is bad as your beacon will become [lets call it] “inactive” (You don’t lose it) and loses the the prestige, ability to reserve and generate footfall.

Here is a shot of my place at releas and changes i had to make.

at release the orange roads where not compact at all.
red (left side) left,
green are added claims of others (Currently there is more claimed one on the right and top side).
blue are the filler plots i claimed to remove the reservation plots.

You can use an other beacon to fill in the reserved plots. You have to keep in mind if someone else plots they can also leave and generate the same problem.

Compactness update was added to avoid abuse of the plot protection. As some used it to reserve more land than they actually could plot (a :o: Within a :o: And the space between te circles where covered with active reservation plots). This is one of the main reasons this is added.

So basically to avoid spaghetti on the planet surface.

If you like i can come by and plot a few plots for you. Just send me a pm to where i have to go.

Again when i say “inactive” i don’t mean it disappears. Just that it won’t generate reservation, prestige or footfall. And if it gets reported it could get removed after inspection.

Small tip if you’re brothers plot surface has a lot of single plots that stick out of the “group” like so;
:zero:Plot sticks out of group
:one:plot group


If you add to those compactness should go up also gaps in the group can cause compactness losse like this;
:pause_button:Reservation win plot group



Yeah, I had a look at the map and thought all was good but I got all these error messages when I logged in and whenever I plotted, so I thought my compactness was really bad, even though the map didn’t really show it. But it’s also pretty outdated…

So this was my/our base a month ago. Mine is now completely underwater, I removed 2 long bridges - no one seemed to use them anyway and rather just grapple across. :smiley: Instead I’ve got much shorter tunnels in currently 3 of the 4 directions. So as you’ve seen, my base is much more square now than it ever was (red is what I am atm. plus 3 little arms N/W/S).
The green part is now my brother and he’ll have major issues keeping his compactness above 0. Though taking over part of my base so I could move made his rating worse. The part above the two markers will disappear eventually, when I managed to move my buildings elsewhere. But that’ll take a while, they are pretty builds and I basically want to copy them. :smiley: before I let nature reclaim them.

So hopefully after I moved those, this will solve my compactness rating, if I understood all your posts correctly.

Thanks a lot @Tmmk and @majorvex. Your help is very much appreciated!

Edit: slightly changed my scribbles as they were incorrect :smiley:


Bridging settlement errors?

No, the “your compactness is critical it needs fixing” erros. Though my brother earlier (after shifting plots from me to him) had “your compactness is so bad, you totally have no prestige anymore dude so go and fix” message.

So in hindsight, i should have left it as it was as I made his situation worse despite the fact that we “straightened” (literally) some things out. :smiley:

One question is it all 1 beacon then or multiple beacons. As most of the compactness issues can also be solved by splitting up a beacon.

Also fattening up these parts might bring up the rating to.

Using multiple beacons to circumvent the compactness system is against the rules.
Up to the devs to decide case by case :woman_shrugging:


It’s literally 3 beacons. Mine, my brother’s and my alt. So 2 massive plots and one smaller one for my alt.

If you abuse it as before the compactness update. Yes :wink: not what im suggesting. Using multiple plotted (touching) Beacons to fill in problem zones is ok. Had that conversation with James :wink:.

That’s what we’ve done earlier today after our little disaster to get back on at least rating 1 (and I told my brother to fix that for weeks now but… you know as it is… deaf ears and such…)

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