So we've been thinking a lot about what would be in GalCiv IV -- and what would not be in GalCiv IV.
Here are, in no particular order, some thoughts:
1. Fewer but more distinctive civ abilities.
Could be interesting especially if one can mix and match with custom factions.
2. Vastly, vastly bigger maps with far more planets.
Always a good good thing, I hate the reduction to number of planets (core game of course one can mod this).
3. Most colonies aren't managed they provide what they provide. If there's a particularly amazing planet, you can train a governor for that planet that lets you manage that planet (this way, even on a huge map, you might only directly manage a dozen planets at most -- or only 1 if that's your preference).
I love the ability to micromanage all your planets. I hate commonwealths in Galactic Civilizations III. In fact I avoid them and never use them. I like being in control of my civilization. I normally just create a build queue and only revisit as needed. Which in later turns is almost never. In early turns often, but then you have less planets. The only time I dislike micromanagement is if one takes over many planets at once. But then again I just review each planet and then let it do it's thing. Please don't take this away, although I agree is a great option for those that want it.
4. Very different map layout. Think "clusters" connected together with hypergates with void space (untraversible) inbetween. Gameplay wise, imagine a series of tiny or small GC3 style maps connected together.
Hmmmm.... If you can pull it off where it feels like one supersized map then all for it. If it seems more like Sins of a Solar Empire (except clumps of star systems versus one star system) then not a fan. I'm with others I don't like artificial choke points. Let me attempt to create one out of nothing. Once again I don't use hypergates in Galactic Civilizations III, I don't like being forced down one path I want to choose my path. Plus easy targets for enemies. Maybe smaller maps similar to Galactic Civilizations III with extreme maps fall down this path. Similar to one wins the battle, now off to the war? There are still many other maps to conquer before the war is over... That would be interesting if done that way, where you may have 4 factions/races on one map, just to connect to another map and find 4 more to come and conquer ect... Maybe in settings one could even choose to play the smaller game one at a time to create one large game, or just play the whole larger game all at once, or even be playing the smaller game, but have the larger game send ships your way from time to time, eventually bringing you into the larger game.
5. Much smaller tiles (a ship would use 7 instead of 1 so that the hexes are more discrete).
As long as it's easy to understand follow, sounds good to me.
6. Multi-tile, multi-turn combat that can be disengaged from (with the enemy being able to get a final shot if you leave the engagement area). This allows multiple fleets to move in and reinforce and engage and potentially have fronts.
Could be interesting, however, I'm one who likes to bypass the combat, by choosing the quick option. I hope there would be that option in this as well. Then once again I'd be all for it as more options the better.
7. New data system to allow players to share mods in-game (XML, etc.).
Something needs to be there, always was promised in some sort for Galactic Civilizations III, however, to this point never put in to practice.
8. Anomalies and scavenging separated so that you have scavengers picking up "Stuff" but survey ships investigate anomalies which create story-arcs.
Not sure if I am fully understanding, however, I'd like to see scavenging/salvaging play a role, such as finding a free laser to add to your ship from a previous battle, no cost to your ship, minimum construction time to attach to your ship, maybe even adding to your scavenger/salvage ship on top of the hull size cap with certain requirements, like need to upgrade your power to support the extra mass, or weakening the hull unless you add integrity fields or reinforce the hull one way or another.
Never really played them anyways. I know what other games do is they use the campaign as an in game tutorial where one can bypass this, but helps those that haven't played the game get into it. Giving them helpful hints ect... Some of them even will unlock special features for those that have completed these campaigns/tutorials. This could give an option for one to have these in the game even if it's a smaller scale or dumbed down version.
10. More specialized (wider) tech trees with many techs boosting a type of weapon (rather than having to throw out your ship designs every few turns).
I like this, I hate to have to constantly upgrade my ships or eliminate all the older ones at some point.
11. Population == Citizens. A planet with 5 population means there are 5 citizens. You move them around, specialize them, train them.
So if I have 8 million population, I have 8 million citizens? I'm assuming this means 8 million population = 8 citizens.
12. Elimination of governments, replace with policies that let you choose how to run your civilization.
Not really a point to the larger game play, so I'm fine with this.
13. Redo of the ideology concept.
As long as I'm not forced to choose which options I can have at any point of the game, that I can choose what I want from the whole list at any given point or eventually if I obtain those needed before it.
14. Diplomacy / Espionage systems merged.
Should already have been.
15. Total UI re-design to support non-modal windows (so you can have more stuff or less stuff on the screen based on your resolution and preferences).
So just a few things off the top of my head.
With multi-monitors? Maybe, hopefully?
Anyways my quick thoughts on the all powerful Galactic Civilizations Frog post.