Just a few of my own ideas... for GalCiv3
Alpha Centauri had a lot of good features and keyboard short cuts that GC2-3 would benefit from, particularly the "go to" destination.
There are few improvements i`d like to see in the interface and the game play, but i doubt we will see them in the TA update. Would be nice to see some of the non - agressive game play options beefed up, as it can get a little too Invade & conquer oriented.
1. Would be nice to see which "tech & remaining weeks to discovery" you are currently researching when in the "Colony Management" view screen for each planet... this way you can cycle through your planets whilst altering the "military, social and research" spending and get instant feedback on how this will effect the "discovery" speed of thecurrent tech. Also include the "current tech" being researched in the "Civilisation Manager - Colonies" screen... so that you get quick feed back on how your "spending" decisions, effect the research time to the next "discovery".
2. Ship Experience: Would be nice to see this included with the other ship information when you click on a ship(appears on the right in the main galaxy window). Otherwise you have to double click on each ship to get a separate "pop-up" window to fins the info.
3. Espionage: All though this has been improved under DA, there is still plenty of scope for improved game play options as in Alpha Centauri. Some of these options would only appear if you have "researched" further up a spy-espionage tree. Thus, when you place your spy on an enemy planet, you would have a choice of options, dependant on your "spy tech level".
Options could include:
Sabotage - Military / Social / Research / Economic (with an option to destroy, delay, disrupt, assasinate scientists etc.
Steal: Techs, Money, Research Points, Influence points
Blame another "race": set up another race for your deeds.
Reduce Morale or take over planet: Have to be big credit cost, low % chance of success, require highest "spy tech level" to attempt. Option of an Espionage Module for "Influence SS", would improve % chance of Espionage if fitted and enemy planet was within sphere of influence.
The more damaging choices would have a lower % of success or higher chance of capture etc. The higher your "spy tech" level the higher the chance of you succeeding. You could add a financial cost fee against some of the options and / or pay a fee to recover your spy after "an operation". If you choose not to, you loose your spy if you are successful or not. Should be an option to make a clean getaway (for a fee) or try to blame another race (% chance of being caught doing this etc.. for which there should be serious consequences for the "Spies race" ie: Fines, Loss of influence, loss of treaties, Diplomatic loss, WAR.
Not sure how the AI would play the "Spy options", but it would make fun gameplay for the human player. The "Spy - sub tree" levels would have to be quite expencive to research, so both AI & human player would have to consider how much they want to expend on gaining espionage options.
4. Survey: Currently, anomalies and space junk provide the human player a big boost in the game. Would be nice to tone the "bonuses" down a little or make the bonuses better but harder to gain IE: Introduce a "Survey" subtree off the Sensor Tech tree, which you have to research to unlock / discover some of the Anomalies/SpaceJunk in the game. Prior to research the anomalies/space junk carnt be surveyed/unlocked or may be even seen on the screen? But once researched (improved/advanced survey module fitted) they can be surveyed/unlocked with a bigger/better bonus/tech discovery etc.
This could also apply to "pre-cursor" tiles on planets. (A bit like the "terraforming" tiles options).
If you research to the highest level in the "survey sub tree" you could have access to a "Planetary/Galaxy tech building" that once built, unlocks/discovers/provides bonus "pre-cursor" tile/s and/or technology or space ship etc or major pre-cursor "Galactic Achievement" that could reshape the game if you or your enemy discover it on their planet.
As with the espionage, the "survey tech tree" would be expencive to research, but might prove a worthwhile option, depending on your game play. It stops the game becoming mainly an invade / conquer strategy.
I wouldnt think this would be too hard to code into the game
5. Planetary Resources: This is an option i would like added to the game.
At the moment, we colonise or conquer new planets, improve their PQ, terraform, build up populations and construct ships, buildings, research techs. Apart from planetary moral, there is no impact on the planet.
I would like to see the planets resources dwindle, or polution or production decrease over time unless you research a sub tree of "Planetary Improvements". This would have a big impact on the game, as you would be left with the choice of "stripping" a planet bare of its resources as quickly as possible, before it decreases in PQ or "resources" or you choose to reduce "production- research" to increase the longevity of the planet etc. By introducing planetary resources into the game, players could use various options of play ( this could involve Race Modifiers, as some races are less industrial, militaristic or destructive). You would be left with the option of husbanding your planets existing resources or researching "ECO-techs" to increase/improve/recycle or extend your planets PQ/resources or conquering more planets in order to maintain your Races expansion.
Each planet could have a variable amount of resources (choice in game options)which the player may or may not know about (might have to research tech to have an accurate idea of PR (planetary resources)). The PR would then decline dependant on some of the variables i have outlined above. Eventually, without any action on the players part, the planet would exhaust its PR or become too polluted or toxic to produce any thing as well as support/feed/water the population etc.
So it could come as a shock that your PQ 18 Planet that you have built up suddenly starts turning into a toxic dustbin! (And looks like it from space etc).
Alternatively, the "Survey" tech tree outined in Para 4 "Survey" might unlock or discover "pre-cursor" technology or a pre-cursor building tile that can reverse/halt or improve your planet's "PR" state. So if your spies find out that another race has discovered or has built/building a "PR" project/tech/building you may wish to intervene, invade, steal, sabotage etc..
Like i said above, all the ideas included from para 1 through 5 are ideas for improving
and extending gameplay. Some might not be practical or achievable, but I would like to think that there is scope for some of the ideas to be considered or improved upon. For those that havent played Alpha Centauri, take a look, its still a very good game and a lot of the game play in GC2 can be traced back to it. I particularly like the "cut video scenes" when you "invent-discover-build" a planetary improvement... this would add a lot to the "bells & whistles" overall sense of achievement in GalCiv. It wouldnt take too much to introduce these.