* Generic Developments
* Technology Routes
* Development Multiplier
Developments are vital to your progress in the game. You must develop new technologies in order to gain access to new units and new abilities, and they can be started from the "Development" page. Certain developments will limit other developments, while opening up new ones, thus making your company slowly become more evolved but more specialised at the same time, giving you unique strengths and weaknesses. Developments come in the form of "Researches" and "Constructions" - they are both very similar in effect, but you can only have one Construction and one Research being worked on at any one time (meaning a maximum of 2 developments can be worked on simultaneously). Developments cost money and time before they are finished, and their progress can be tracked on your "Overview" page. Developments also give your company extra government valuation worth - based on the base development cost of a development, divided by 2500.
A number of developments are "open to everyone", which means everyone will be able to develop them with no restrictions, regardless of what "technology route" you may go down. These developments can be viewed on the "Generic Techs Tech Trees" page. Some examples of these developments are "Geo Physics" and ultimately "Geo-Phys Thieves" which give you the ability to hire the "Geo-Phys Thief" unit (an upgraded Wheelbarrower), the "Combine Harvester" (an upgraded Harvester), the "Tractor" (an upgraded Gardener), "Insurance" technologies (helpful to higher ranked players that are not in an alliance), and importantly, various "Intelligence" based technologies (giving you access to new abilities on your "Intelligence" page such as Fly-overs, Hax0rs and eventually Spies.
Most of the developments in the game fall under a certain "Technology Tree", or "Route". These developments will actually limit your ability to start other developments, while opening up whole new possibilities as you develop down a technology tree. These different technology trees are named the "Protestor Route", "Thug Route", "Military Route", "Robotics Route", "Special Operations Route", and the "Fantasy Route". You can view the "Trees" for these technology routes in the "Tech Trees" appendix page of this manual.
For example, if your first development to start was "Rioting & General Disorder", which is the first technology on the "Thug Route" technology tree (giving you access to the "Hooligan" unit), then you will be locked on to the " Thug Route" permanently - and you will lose any ability to develop any of the technologies found on the opposing 5 routes.
The "Development Multiplier" is a system designed to make development times & costs more expensive at the start of a round, and cheaper towards the middle and end of a round for late starters, as well as increasing the time in the "early game" when people are still picking between spending their money on developments, or spending their money on troops. At the start of a new round, it begins at 2.8 - meaning all development ETA's and Costs are multiplied by 2.8. Every tick, the development multiplier can drop a small amount based on how many developments have been started by players since the last tick. You can see the current development multiplier value at the top of your "Development Page".