As I said I increased the income from the homeworld to something like a ringworld.
With the additional AI levels in Diplomacy and the increased income from the Homeworld, I digged out an old idea on Dreads:
1. I changed the Dread spawning from antimatter to resources (1000/1000/1000) and reduced the timer.
2. I added to the ultimate ability a -2,5 Resource "bonus"
4. I improved the capital crew upgrades with a slow auto-experience gain until level 6, and doubled ex gained from combat
I had thought of this in the past to counter the player strategy to Hort and nurse capitals (retreat when in danger) until they are high level, while the AI loses their capitals over time. While it did not work in original sins, it works surprisingly well in diplomacy!!!
While the player still has to plan his spendings (as I have reduced overall income), on higher difficulty levels the AI gets a big bonus on his homeworld production and will spawn Dreads until they level up and the -2,5 is reducing the AI income so it cannot reach the required spawn resources anymore. Together with the quicker experience gain, during a game I'm now regular face AI fleets with multiple level 6 and higher Dreads and other capitals even late game. The game has become much much harder and more interesting.
A little trick for players is still to hord Dreads and not upgrade the ultimate ability. Is it possible to have a fixed ability when spawned?
Also with the increase development levels of the homeworld, is it possible to change the appearance of the planet during game? I think not, but it would be great to be able to develop the Homeworld to something like the Star Wars imperial Homeplanet.
it might need more balancing, but it works so good, I suggest you try it out.