In regards to the Cheatle (noun: an extremely long forum post), written by @Cheatle, specifically regarding coalition/alliance projects:
I’m thinking perhaps we have coalition/alliance research that can be queued by the owner of the system wherein the coalition/alliance station is located.
These researches would use Coalition Points (CP) instead of Science Points, in order to complete the research. These Coalition researches would give the requisite technology to grant the benefit options mentioned by Cheatle. This essentially changes CP from a token to something akin to Science Points.
In addition to being active, all players (regardless of coalition status) would have a repeatable research on their trees that can be done to earn CP. This would give every player something to research. This research would be extremely long though, longer or on par with the longest on the tree. This is not something to be pumped out in large numbers, but the occasional increase in points that gives coalition members a way to contribute to these projects via their research capabilities. If you’re not in a coalition, your points add up, and upon joining one, they will be added to the total for that coalition. Furthermore, we could have these CP be tradeable to NPCs for massive amounts of resources or credits, for those not interested in coalition play.
The CP then that is generated would go into the Coalition research. However, as these points are generated over time as well as via activity, I think there needs to be some base amount for just members within the sector or perhaps the entire coalition, so let’s say 1 per member for now.
So if you have 8 members in the coalition, you’d have 8 CP base, you’d generate a maximum of 8 per day from being active, which can give a boost for 24 hours, so for that 24 hour period you would have 16 after everyone’s logged in. When the next day comes, if 7 people log on then you’d have 15 for the next period. Let’s say on the next day everyone logs on and two people generate an extra point via research. This brings our minimum from 8 to 10, and all 8 people logged on giving a CP total of 18 for that day.
In this manner, CP would grow slowly over time, based on the longevity of the coalition, the science focus of its members, and how active its member base is.
The Projects as mentioned by Cheatle would then be funded via taxation & donation efforts of its members. If, for example, a project required 3 million credits, 10 million Farsu, 1 million Ziryl, then the members can donate to that total by sending fleets to the Coalition station, and dumping the resources off there, as well as depositing credits if they wish.
This gives players something to do actively in regards to coalitions. It will make the player feel as if they’re actually contributing to the cause by making them put forth the effort of manually freighting the resources over to build the projects.
So, in this fashion, the Coalition Research would give you access to specific Coalition Projects, as well as different benefits for the sector, to be transmitted via the sector station. Using completely arbitrary numbers here, let’s say there’s 5 options for a sector, and you can choose 2. So you would research the ones you want for the sector. These bonuses can be changed once per month, depending on needs of the coalition, at the sector station.
Similarly, the Alliance-related stuff is a step above that. Each Alliance will get a base amount of CP for projects. For simplicity, let’s say 5CP per Coalition in the Alliance. In addition, all Coalitions within an Alliance will be able to decide whether or not to contribute their CP to the Alliance instead of to the coalition. It’s an either or thing. So once your coalition project is complete, and there’s an alliance project in the works, you can convert your coalition’s CP towards the Alliance goal instead. This can be changed once per week at the coalition station.
For example, let’s say we have 5 coalitions in an Alliance, and there is an Alliance research ongoing. 2 of the 5 coalitions have contributed 16 and 11 CP to the cause already, and the other 3 coalitions are working on their own projects. At this moment, we have 25CP base, plus 27 in contributions, for a total of 52 CP for the Alliance Project. Let’s say a week later one of the 3 holdouts finished their project, and decided to contribute their 14 CP to the Alliance project, this would bring the total up to 66CP.
In addition, there could be a new classification of ship called Coalition Freighters. These freighters can be built at Coalition Stations, and their sole purpose is the transfer of resources from Coalition Stations to the Alliance Station, and would be controlled by the Coalition Station owner that built the ship. The ship would essentially be a massive cargo fleet, capable of moving several hundreds of thousands of resources at a time. But they move slowly, only Warp 2, so they will need to be escorted, or else they could be ambushed by hostile players, and their resources pillaged.
This system ensures that every member, down to the basic grunt, in a coalition can be helpful in every layer of Coalition and Alliance activities, aside from the few managerial aspects exclusive to the coalition/alliance owners. It gives players a reason to log in, if gives them a reason to move their ships, and it gives players a reason to explore, track, hunt, and ambush enemy alliances within their territories, giving an element of war, espionage, and persistence to the game that we currently lack.
This system would somewhat favor larger groups, however, even smaller groups can put together an ambush team to attack hostile Alliance Freighters and reap the benefits with enough preparation. While this may not necessarily be end-game, it definitely expands gameplay up to the end-game stage, whether that’s complete galactic domination, total annihilation of all rival Alliances, or some sort of “win condition project” that can only be built by one alliance in the entire galaxy, that everyone knows exactly where it is, and must be held at the end of the galaxy in order to “win” some sort of alliance title.
This opens a lot of avenues and gives many more layers of gameplay.