First, there probably won't be a lot more journal entries for GalCiv III. There will be more updates to GalCiv III but they will fall under bug fixing only. The team has been staffed up (and we're hiring more) to focus on "GalCiv Next".
So basically I should stop harbouring any expectations of further improvements to the GC3 gameplay, and really should quit bitching about the current state of carriers like I've been doing for the past month or so?
Alright then. Message received, expectations calibrated. It's a shame, but c'est la vie. Time to shift focus onto the next iteration of GalCiv.
Crazy big tech tree without it being a mess to manage. Like every GalCiv game we've ever done, we are going to be trying a lot of different new ways of managing techs. What I can say is that we would really like to have a much, much larger tech tree in the future.
Yeah, about that. We know the Ship Builder is already accessible from the main menu. Can I ask for GalCiv4 that the tech tree also comes incorporated with it as well, specifically a version where we can toggle individual techs off and on at will?
It will really help players like me, who like to design entire series of ship module loadouts before starting a game.
Combat. We would like to see combat move away from being an all or nothing thing in a single turn.
Do you guys already have an idea for what that would look like? If not, here's mine; do away with the Battle Viewer altogether, and have all combat take place in the Galaxy view.
Give individual ships an effective range of fire of several hexes, within which they can initiate an attack on an enemy ship. Enemy ships that move within your ship's effective range provoke an Attack of Opportunity; this should make ships "stick" to each other in combat, while giving them the option to retreat if things get too hot.
In addition, restrict stacking such that the number of ships that can occupy a single hex decreases with increasing size, all the way to the point that only one Large or Huge ship can occupy a hex at any point in time.
In place of entire fleets occupying a single hex, make it possible for a designated command ship to establish a "formation" of other ships, which will take up positions several hexes away in a pre-determined location, facing a specific direction. Kind of like how it works in Ashes of the Singularity, actually.
Carriers should probably work differently from other warships; perhaps they could act as "artillery" units, sending fighter swarms to strike individual combatants in an enemy formation from the back line of their own formation. These could be countered by "destroyer" type ships that are built specifically to be effective against groups of Tiny/Small ships.
All this should probably work to give you the "line of battle" I vaguely recall you mentioning some time back.
Let me know if you want me to dabble in Paint or something, to illustrate what I'm talking about.
We want multiplayer to be viable. Putting aside that most people don't play 4X games multiplayer, we would like there to be gameplay modes that you could play with a total stranger in less than an hour if you'd like. These special modes would be available for single player too.
I never tried the MP, so take my words here with a grain of salt. But have you considered persistent galaxy instances, hosted on cloud servers instead of requiring players to act as the host?
Basically what I'm thinking of here is a 4X version of EVE Online. So an MMO4X? I dunno.
To keep players' required time investment down to a manageable level, you could make it so that all players can only complete one turn every, say, 12 hours or so.
This would get you games on huge maps with multiple players that could last weeks, months or even years. Sort of the epic empire-building experience, instead of quick once-and-done games. But I'd argue that's the point of 4X games like these.