If there happens to be another big-ish expansion/update I have some ideas.
Warning: This may take a few minutes to read But I hope you do, whether you take it on board or not.
My idea is to allow players who cannot be, or simply don't want to be diplomatic, access to the benefits of the pacts.
There are upgrades, and a ship specifically for diplomacy. I mean specifically the envoy cruisers. There is an entire upgrade tree for this. And yet, what if you don’t want to have allies? What if you can’t have allies because you are playing with real people and none of them want to ally with you? What if your play style is that of the Vasari loyalists where you simply consume everything and move on?
It takes some time to research all the diplomacy upgrades, send out envoys and complete enough missions to make the most of the pacts you can have with another player/race. I think this is brilliant and well done. However… Like I said, what If you don’t have allies, perhaps because allied victory is off… You are completely bypassing the diplomacy expansion if you turn this option off. Yes, you can have allies for a time, but if you make pacts you will never want to be enemies, because you lose too many advantages…
What if there was another way?
What if you could reap the benefits of a diplomatic relationship without being diplomatic?
I propose that you introduce a system where removing a player/npc from the game, allows you to unlock a single pact for yourself. That way, when you are playing a game WITHOUT allied victory (or simply if lone wolf is your play style) you can still grow your empire with these upgrades.
Perhaps at the start of the game you could set your status to friendly or aggressive (an option almost like ‘teams allowed’). If you choose friendly, you get all the normal diplomacy stuff, however if you pick aggressive you CAN NOT ally and can only reap the benefits of the pacts by eliminating races. So, when you destroy an enemy’s home planet, you get to choose one of their pacts (for example, if you defeat a TEC player/npc you get to choose a TEC pact to keep permanently).
Another, simpler idea would be that if you are not allied with anyone and a player is removed from the game, whether you were responsible or not you get to ‘scavenge’ their ships/structures/research centers, allowing you the advantages of one of their pacts.
My apologies if this seems to be a long/irrelevant post but I wasn't sure how else to send you guys my idea, and if it's not possible or not wanted so be it.
Yours sincerely, a long time Sins fan.