Distant Stars for example, only added a few new techs, but nearly doubled the amount of research needed to complete a research tree forcing you to focus more or less on one type to get really strong at it really quick, or spread out the love and be a generalist, not really powerful in any one thing.
Sweet. Are they over at Moddb? Do you mean you have to spend more money on upgrades of current techs? There's a Real Capitol Ships mod that increases the tiers for hull points, armor, shields, lasers, etc. to almost ridiculous amounts, but if you research more, you have the edge. Or is this something that actually adds many new and different researches on the tech tree?
(Don't know what happened up above... ??)