The LT engine is doing quite a lot in terms of simulation, and I thought that maybe the processing priorities should be a controllable feature from within the game.
Essentially, all the various algorithms in LT are put in a list from highest priority to lowest priority. From a menu, the player would be able to see how much processing power each part of the engine takes, and pick from various filters, which simply re-arrange this list and divert more CPU/GPU time to certain aspects of the game.
You might have a Commercial filter which puts economic and production simulations at the top, but doesn't give as much priority to graphics and simplifies or eliminates collision detection. Or you could have an Explorer filter which prioritizes graphics and worldgen, but halves the number of market variations and NPC trade calculations. Or you could have a Combat filter which highly details collision detection, weapons production, and collision detection, but severely restricts "real" mining. Or you could have a Historical filter which greatly increases worldgen priority and high level decision making, but places almost no emphasis on collision detection, real mining, pathfinding, or physics. Or you could set up and save your own Custom filter to give the highest fidelity to whatever you feel is most important and low/no priority to things you don't care about.
With these filters, which you can change at any time, you would be able to tweak the engine so that it prioritizes your playstyle; Whatever you don't really care about, neither does the engine. This might be a way to get more oomph out of weaker computers and allow stronger computers to build more satisfying universes.
The traditional view of robotics, the metal servant who doesn't ask questions, is merely nostalgia for slavery.
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