Packages and factions

This page will help you find a suitable combination of package, faction and starting location when first establishing your company. Following the advice below is especially vital if you are new to APEX. You best settle on a package first and then have a look at the different factions and the planets they control. Certain planets are better suited for some professions than others, and some planets and professions do not work together at all! But of course, the better suited a planet is for your industry, the higher the local competition will be.

Please note:

  • Some recommended starter planets do not have a commodity exchange. These are not recommended if you are using APEX for the first time.
  • When setting up your base, two additional Pioneer Habitation modules are recommended regardless of package.



Short description Producing agricultural products that can be used in the food industries is the foundation of every colony.

Long description Victuallers are the heart of the food industry. Their profession revolves around extracting water, producing ingredients and turning it all into edibles for their own and others’ workforces. Without victuallers, all other industries would soon come to a halt, which is why their trade will always be relevant across the universe.

Important notes

As a victualler, you will depend on water. If you do not settle on a planet with water, you will have a hard time turning a profit. The speed at which the crops on your farms will grow depends on a planet’s soil fertility - the higher the fertility, the quicker the growth.

Rig (RIG): Extracts liquids (water) from the ground. Farmstead (FRM): Requires water to output different integredients used in food production and adjacent industries. Food Processor (FP): Takes food ingredients and turns them into consumables.

Promitor (Insitor Cooperative) Proxion (Castillo-Ito Mercantile)

Starting Experts

2 Food Industries experts


Short description Metallurgists have all the knowledge and tools necessary to extract minerals and refine them into precious metals and composites.

Long description If you don’t mind getting your (workers’) hands dirty, this might be the job for you. Operating at the base of several industry branches, metallurgists produce ores, smelt them down and supply their trade partners with refined metals that will ultimately go into the construction of buildings, ships, and other structures.

Important notes

Extracting ores from the ground will be an essential everyday task for your company. Make sure that your planet contains at least one mineral, or you will not be able to put your Extractor to use. Plus, if that mineral is not an ore, you cannot put it into your smelter.

Extractor (EXT): Extracts ores from a planet’s surface. Smelter (SME): Refines ores into metals.

Vallis (NEO Charter Exploration)

Starting Experts

2 Metallurgy Experts

Carbon Farmer

Short description Carbon farmers grow plants and extract carbon from them.

Long description Carbon has become a vital resource across different industries, so much so that a whole job profile has evolved around it: the carbon farmer. Even though you will be planting crops like a victualler, you will not have much to do with the food industry. Instead, your plants will be harvested for their precious carbon, which is the basis for many essential production processes in the metal and other industries.

Important notes

Setting up shop on a planet with higher fertility will help increase your farms’ output. If a planet is completely infertile, farms cannot be built at all, leaving your company dead in the water!

Farmstead (FRM) (2x): Requires water to output different integredients used in food production and adjacent industries. Incinerator (INC): Extracts pure carbon from different carbon-rich plants.

Promitor (Insitor Cooperative)

Starting Experts

2 Agriculture Experts


Short description Manufacturers produce construction granulate, tools and plastics for their trade partners to process further.

Long description As a manufacturer, you will be a versatile creature which does not depend too much on a single industry. Your company’s main purpose will be to supply your trade partners with goods such as basic clothing and building parts. Getting started as a manufacturer is quite complex logistically, as you will have to buy your input materials from a nearby commodity exchange.

Important notes

Your production lines will need hydrogen and carbon to operate. Hydrogen can be extracted from the atmosphere of certain planets directly, but initially you should look into buying it from a commodity exchange. Carbon is produced by an incinerator from various agricultural goods that will also be available on the market.

Basic Materials Plant (BMP) (2x): Produces a host of materials and end products needed to bootstrap a colony.

Vallis (NEO Charter Exploration) Gibson (Castillo-Ito Mercantile)

Starting Experts

2 Manufacturing Experts


Short description Constructors know their way around building parts, from basic structural elements to complex engineering materials.

Long description You and your fellow constructors will be the key element to expanding existing bases or establishing new ones. Your output materials, mostly polyethylene and different building parts, will go toward the construction of your and your clients’ buildings.

Important notes

Since you will not be extracting or mining yourself, your production will require purchasing a host of natural resources, such as Iron, Limestone, Carbon, and Hydrogen.

Basic Materials Plant (BMP): Produces a host of materials and end products needed to bootstrap a colony.
Prefab Plant Mk1 (PP1): Produces basic prefabs necessary to construct buildings.

Montem (NEO Charter Exploration) Vallis (NEO Charter Exploration) Gibson (Castillo-Ito Mercantile)

Starting Experts

2 Construction Experts

Fuel Engineer

Short description Fuel engineers extract resources and synthesize them to different types of fuels.

Long description The commodities you produce will be the foundation of faster-than-light and slower-than-light space travel. Both fuel types are based on a variety of gaseous and solid ingredients, so there is plenty of room for development and specialization in your trade.

Important notes

Your Extractor will only be useful in STL fuel production if there is Galerite on your planet. You could instead opt for a Collector and settle on a planet prodiving Ammonia or Hydrogen.

Refinery (REF): Produces fuels used for space flight. Instead of Collector: Extractor (EXT): Extracts ores and minerals from the surface. Instead of Extractor: Collector (COL): Extracts gases from the atmosphere.

With Extractor: Katoa (Castillo-Ito Mercantile) With Collector: Katoa (Castillo-Ito Mercantile)

Starting Experts

2 Fuel Refining Experts


When picking your faction and planet, make sure they work well with your desired starter package.

Castillo-Ito Mercantile

Castillo-Ito Mercantile controls two different colonies in their home system Benten.


Castillo-Ito Mercantile is the result of a merger between the Ito Robotics Corporation, a world leader in robotics and automation technology, and the Castillo Group, an international holding company dealing in just about everything including minerals, energy, transport and financial products. Combined, the company’s net worth easily surpases that of most smaller European countries combined. They entered the exodus project early on and had a clear strategy in mind from the get-go. Carefully selecting promising planets in strategic locations, they assembled a fleet of reliable generation ships, all of which successfully made the trip to and landfall on planets in 4 neighboring systems. With access to many crucial resources, they plan on fueling their ambitions plans to become a major force in the new worlds.

Controlled planets

Katoa, Gibson, Proxion, XK-590D, Benten c

NEO Charter Exploration

NEO Charter Exploration has two colonies with commodity exchanges in the Moria System, which is known for its mineral-rich planets.


NCE started out as one of the first space-based mining corporations. A charter granted by a European monarchy allowed them to exploit the name-giving near-earth objects between Earth and the Asteroid Belt. When the news of the exodus project broke, they already had the necessary infrastructure in place to start construction of a large generation ship right away. For this purpose, they captured a small asteroid, hollowed it out and used the excavated minerals to manufacture most required systems in place. All of this happened in relative independence of Earth, but NCE still opted for participation in the APEX system to gain access to funds and components that were only available on Earth. After their arrival in a mineral-rich star system, they parked the generation ship on an orbit around one planet and quickly sent smaller ships to make landfall on a second one.

Controlled planets

Montem, Vallis, TK-575C

Insitor Cooperative

The Insitor Cooperative runs a commodity exchange on their only colony Promitor in the Hortus System. Promitor is a very fertile planet and has quickly become a center for food production and processing.


Before the exodus, South America had become the breadbasket of the world and the countries and corporations of the continent had their mind set on becoming the same in the new worlds. Coordinated by the Insitor Bank, a cooperative owned and controlled mostly by agricultural and bio-tech companies, they opted for a monolithic approach, building a single huge, completely self-sufficient generation ship with more greenhouse and livestock capacity than any other design pursued by other factions. To satisfy the enormous need for resources, they pushed their governments to nationalize most of the private mining companies. Their colonization target was a very fertile planet they christened Promitor.

Controlled planets

Promitor, SW-926C, Hortus c

About this page

This page is part of the APEX handbook's wiki section. If you are looking for an introduction to APEX, please refer to the tutorials.

If you encounter an error or cannot find the answers to your questions, we will gladly help you on our Discord server.