Geoff the Medio wrote:
Taking population from around the empire to fill up a colony ship on the turn its built seems awkward to me.
If there is no migration system in place that let's the player set persistent controls for where population comes from, there are a few options that all seem bad:
1) take population uniformly from connected planets (bad because players won't want to depopulation good planets)
2) take population from planets according to some algorithm (bad because players won't want to depopulate certain planets the algorithm will take from, no matter what algorithm is used)
3) Let the player pick planet(s) to take population from (bad because this has to be repeated each time a colony ship is built and could be a lot of micromanagement compared to persistent migration settings).
If there is a functional migration system, there's no need to put any population on colony ships, so no need to use the migration system to decide where to take population from.
Heh, I was just about to suggest some kind of persistent control for migration from desired planets, until I read the post again and noticed you already considered this.
I strongly think that a decent migration system is the way to go, as it will solve this problem and several other game design objectives, such as evacuation of doomed planets, or quick colonisation of valuable/artifact worlds and so on.
My only objection is that using migrants to fill the role provided by colony ships' populations would delay the actual colonisation of the new world, as the having colonised the planet, the player must wait for population to migrate there first! The migration system might for the sake of simplicity be instantaneous - migrants arrive on the same turn they depart - but this would introduce some problems. What if the new colony is within supply rage but otherwise distant from the most populous and developed part of the empire? It seems unbalanced to permit huge amounts of migrants to immediately get to a farflung planet that would otherwise appear to be in the galactic wilderness! I suppose I agree with a comment made by Eleazar (possibly in the migration thread) about how the shape of a player's empire ought to be relevant. It could be used to improve gameplay by giving advantages and disadvantages to clustering or scattering colonies.
Geoff the Medio wrote:
For v0.4, I'm leaning towards magically creating population on colony ships, and reevaluating this issue after any decisions about migration systems being added or not, and the mechanics thereof if applicable, is made.
Being mindful of the current workload and the fact that v0.4 was intended to be solely about combat, I am wary about attempting to add too much at once, particularly when the system in question has not discussed in depth.
That said, it would be nice to see the proposal Tzlaine described actually implemented and working, as it would provide a demonstration of the system and could be useful in evaluating the gameplay ramifications of migration systems.
But anyway, there is always a good case to be made for the option with the least work! So long as the population that is 'magically created' is sufficiently small then it wouldn't be much of an issue anyway, particularly given the in-development state of FO.