Zanteogo wrote:Wow Talvieno, you certainly have a single minded obsession with this whole civilian thing.
That first line seemed a bit toxic, but I'll ignore it...
Civilians would eat away at this cap.
I'm suggesting a very small percentage of the cap be directed towards civilians, not a large one. I doubt you'd be able to tell that any leaves were missing from a tree, if a few dozen of them disappeared. This goes along the same lines - except it would be far, far less than a few dozen, perhaps closer to 15 at most, for large planets. With a cap at 500, this is less than 5% of the total ship count.
You wouldn't notice they were missing.
Again, to me the regular AI fills the role as "civilians". We already will have groups of AI who will try to avoid combat and be miners and merchants. If we see a system is full of these types of factions we have a clue that it may be safe.
Not really. Mining is the backbone of economy. There will always
be miners - they'll just be paid more for their goods, making it more valuable. That's not something you can tell from a simple sweep of the system.
I don't think you realize the amount of effort your complete idea would take to add. It's a major change to the current gameplay as we know it. The civilians themselves are the easier part. (They would just be regular AI with a specific type of ships and personality traits with shackled ability) It's all the sub ideas that would need to be added to make your idea even worth while that would take time to add and balance, and to continue to balance afterwards when other things are added and tweaked.
Implemented as we suggest, it balances itself. All the balancing it needs is to ensure that unhindered traffic keeps the morale at maximum. This is easily done by adjusting either the rate of civilians, or the amount civilians raise morale.
- Add mechanic to convert planetary resources to ships, designating enough ships as "evacuation ships" so the entire population can be transported if necessary. Divide ship types between "transport" and "escort".
- Add "morale" value to planets. Set value to decay over time, weighted by planetary population size. Larger planets therefore require more civilian trips to stay happy.
- Set civilian ships to travel between planets/stations. (i.e. give them missions, based on the current system) Set completed missions to raise morale. Weight mission destination by population and past success per destination. Escort ships are assigned automatically via the same system the rest of the game uses. With this value being #2's equal, everything balances by itself.
- Set low morale to cause planetary production to drop. This is merely an incentive to keep your people happy, and isn't strictly necessary.
- Set lower morale to cause civilians to start leaving slowly via evacuation ships, starting with rare, sporadic migrations at high morale, with more leaving the further morale drops. (i.e. give them one-way transport missions, weighted towards planets with higher morale and lower population.) Naturally, this will cause these planets morale to drop, and eventually small numbers may migrate back. Also naturally, neglect or piracy will cause morale to fall and planetary population to migrate elsewhere.
- Set large-scale orbital bombing to quickly reduce the planet's morale to zero, naturally causing all ships to evacuate.
That's all it would take. Each of the above is a small change. There are no huge additions here. It's all numbers. It's very much unlike adding new planet types. Mr. Parnell could code it all in a single day, after we get that far. The underlying mechanics are going to be added anyway - it's just a question of whether we want to hook them together and give planets a reason to exist as far as gameplay goes, other than as factories.
Everything else I didn't mention in that little list is going into the game anyway. Like I said, you just hook it up. Judging by your posts, I'm pretty sure you're not a programmer... but if you'd ever done any object-oriented coding, you'd agree - hooking everything up is no great task. If everything beneath it is built, hooking it up is as simple as calling on different parts of the code that already exist and putting it together. And it will be. Civilian populations will take on the personality differences that the factions/systems will already have. Escorts will be assigned via the same systems factions use. It's all very simple, not much has to be added. It's a tiny change that makes a huge difference.