Bob211, don't worry, I know how much work I've cout out for myself. Besides, I plan to release this mod in "modules"... for example, when I finish the effects overhaul, they are going to be available as a separate mod. Same with game mechanics changes, and finally, when I finish the new race, the whole package will be released.
That way people who maybe only want or like the new effects or gameplay additions, but not the other stuff, can install what suits them.
I'll put up a short movie of the explosions once I touched them up and finished the other races so people can see how they compare.
Nick, I don't know if the outposts can be made expandable. Right now I know a way to put them in, but whether they will be upgradeable... maybe. Perhaps a modification of how capital ship levels work. We'll see.
Mines. In essence, they will be deployed the same as some siege capitals deploy those bombardment modules. You will have a "minelayer" ship and, after you tell it where to park itself, you will then select the "Drop Mine" ability, which will then spawn a static mine. The mines themselves will be able to detect when an enemy ship enters their damage zone and detonate, destroying themselves and damaging everything in the damage area. Including other mines, so placement will have an impact. Clustering several mines together may have a cumulative effect, but may also waste a lot of mines on a passing scoutship.
I was toying with the idea of "tagging" an enemy ship to use it as a spy, but unfortunately as of now I have no idea if such a thing is even possible. Once I learn more, if it is possible I would certainly consider having that in the mod.