ok, so we all know that trade routes exist within the world of endless space but what about making them more important??
Personally i don't pay any attention at all to trade routes and doubt i ever will... but what if they could be stolen by other players?
Ok here's the idea...
1v1 multiplayer, player 1 has several trade routes coming out of 1 of his systems that's within striking distance of player 2...
the travel lines coming from said system are different than normal to indicate the trade route giving everyone a visual notice that there is trade coming from said system, player 2 then builds a fleet and sends them to blockade this system and for as long as the system is blockaded player 2 gets the bonuses from the trade route (he basicly captures the trade ships on route and steals there sexy cargo).
This would mean player 1 would need to organize defences for both ends of the trade route to ensure the cargo is not stolen.
Now if you have played the game long enough you would realize that when u are not at cold war with a player you can not enter there system unless u have an open borders agreement, while this is all well and good it means that you are unable to be somewhat greedy, to counter this i purpose that we are able to 'hire' pirate mercenaries that we are able to use to blockade and capture trade routes even when u are allies with the other players...
Again here is an example of how this would work...
player 1 has the same system as above with some very lucrative trade routes but is allies with player 2 who combined are at war with a new player 3.
player 2 is the weaker of the 2 allies and is jealous of player 1's income and expansion, so decides it'll be a good idea to hire a few pirates to go steal him some of player 1's massive fortune from his trade routes.
to player 2 these pirates would be his color and fully under his control however he would be unable to equip them, to player 1 and 3 these would look just like usual pirates so neither would have any clue where the trade routes cargo is going.
IMO this would make the game a little more strategic in terms of micro management of systems and trade, there would also need to be a few balances to ensure ppl just don't go crazy and hire a hundred pirate fleets for this i purpose that players are limited to hiring only 1 fleet at a time but are able to hire more ships to be part of said fleet, i.e. on turn 20 u hire a pirate fleet of 3 destroyers then u find the pirates have started using cruisers so u then go and hire a cruiser to add to ur pirate fleet, again ur unable to choose its equipment in any way so it comes as the pirates see fit, trade routes should have there dust income increased to make them more viable targets, the better equiped the system and the higher population numbers the higher the dust income of each trade route, trade routes can only be seen after you have scouted the systems with either a scout class ship (with scout mod) or you have a system close enough with a sat network improvement so your area of detection covers the system.
There is still a few ideas that i can throw into the pan to do with this subject but for now i think u all get the general idea of how this is ment to work, there is a very well known turn based strat game out there that has a very similar feature all be it less strategic that works pretty well and i believe it would make a pretty nice addition to this game.
please leave your comments and idea's below