The Sacred Mountain is a mysterious symbiosis of tree and stone, a lithoid hive mind with the tree of life origin. This empire build was conceived for winning at the No Fleet Challenge.
Hive minds, alongside machine intelligences, are disadvantaged in diplomacy but the Sacred Mountain is an exception. The empath trait reduces the opinion penalty that individualist empires have for them and gives the empire a couple of extra envoys too.
Hive minds enjoy furious population growth but are just as limited by habitability as any individualist empire. However the Sacred Mountain has the advantage of the lithoid trait which makes more planets available earlier. Hive minds are generally advised to do the slow colony rush, but lithoid hive minds can do a fast colony rush almost like they were machine intelligences.
Lithoids are strong for a leader focus due to their longer lifespans. The Sacred Mountain capitalises on this with the One Mind trait which reduces the chances of negative traits arising. It also increase overall unity yield which helps pay for leaders.
The other species traits include enduring and quick learners to further support a leader focus.
The tree of life origin has some interesting benefits for hive minds in general. Settled planets get an additional planetary feature that boosts pop growth and society research. The Sacred Mountain, as a lithoid hive mind, can get settle more planets earlier compared with most other hive minds.
There we go, the Sacred Mountain build, an empire build optimised for winning at the no fleet challenge or indeed the colonies only challenge. What empire build would you use to try the no fleet challenge? Answer in the comments below, or…