Originally Posted by udm
Working on top of those ideas mentioned: when your ship blows up, you automatically escape in a life pod (which will never be destroyed since it is too small to be identified on radar by an enemy). Insurance is automatically calculated into the cost of the item - everytime your ship's destroyed, you will have to go to the nearest station with an insurance firm to reclaim a ship with fitting and loadout the same as the one that was destroyed. The catch is, the insurance company doesn't care about the state of repairs - it only provides you with the equipment and ship, which will be in a beaten up state, and it will fall on you to see to it that they are repaired.
In hardcore mode, you will need to manually eject from the life pod (when hull gets low?). If you don't, you permanently die. Also, instead of getting the ship handed to you on a platter, you will only receive premium in the form of cash, which is calculated based on the expected value of the loadout and fitting from your destroyed ship. This severely penalizes the value of very rare items, since their expected value will be many times less than their tangible benefits, and further discourages players from getting into a scuffle that they're not confident of winning.
Just an idea off the top of my head
Wow! Awesome development of that idea!
I'll try to add a little. You could have escape pods of different qualities, the best one being very expensive. Your pod could never fail, but those of your crew could, in which case you'd lose them.
Also, in hardcore mode, you'd need to clear your explosion radius to survive, so it's not just about abandoning ship early -- it's about abandoning ship early enough to survive the following explosion. In regular mode, again, it's not a concern. Don't know about losing all your items in hardcore mode -- that seems a bit much