Other treaty/quest/hazards for the suggestion box
Sorry this post is bit long. Got a little carried away with late night writing.
More variety is the spice of life...perhaps in a future version we could see something extras like...
1. Prototype treaty:
a. You discover an ancient artifact and bring it back to the empire of your choice. With a mutual protection pact or higher, you can begin a "quest" that is just a research timer (say a random value between 5-15 game minutes). At end the end of the timer you are given a random high value item (artifact?) based on a new technology that this empire does not have. The empire also gains this new technology in future ships. The quest is failed if the treaty level falls below Mutual Protection.
The idea here force the player to choose between keeping the treaty state for the quest to finish and get the artifact, or for events/choice to change the treaty state and fail the quest.
a. Randomly, a new sub-race *immediately* possesses the artifact but needs Drox Operative assistance to research it. If the player accepts, that sub-race immediately agrees to a mutual defense pact and begins research with the same results as above. (the idea here is to tempt the player into an agreement with a severe underdog empire...at the risk of losing any treaties/goodwill with existing empires...just for an artifact item.
2. Challenge quest:
Once a non-aggression pact is signed, there is chance that the player will be challenged to a duel by a spoiled, wealthy captain. An elite version of the empire's current military ship will spawn nearbyand be hostile with the player and must be defeated. Player must pick up the black box and return it to the quest giving planet. The reward is the wealthy captains inheritance (a small treasure box spawns near the player).
3. Trainee quest:
Once an alliance has lasted for 5 games minutes (or if too difficult to code, just when the alliance is signed), there is chance for that empire to offer one of its capital ships to accompany the player for a "training cruise". A empire ship *of equal class as the player* will now follow the player at close range (perhaps directly behind at a small distance). If the player is able to keep that ship alive for a random 5-15 minutes, and return to a specified planet with the empire ship still alive, then a several experienced crew of the empire's race are given as reward.
4. Crazy Race quest.
An entertainment company specializes in showing daredevils doing crazy things.
The player is given a quest to survive getting between two points in deep space in a specified time period. The fast the player gets from one point to the other, the better the reward.
The problem is that both the starting and ending points of the race are quite a distance out of the sector borders.
Just getting to the starting point will be a a challenge. When the player touches the start "flag", the player must then race to the other flag and activate it before it decays away.
The developer could code it such that either "shield/health/energy potions" are limited during the race, or making the race so quick or dangerous that simply using the consumables and flying straight will *not* ensure victory, or by some other means.
4. SAB Mine (scatter and blind mine)
a. if the player runs over this: they are teleported a ways out past the system border of the system. The enormous energy required to make this happen results in an energy surge that disables the minimap and map functions for a period of seconds or minutes. Worse yet, the player strange emergence alerts nearby enemies like one of those "siren mines". Well maybe that last part is a little much...
5. Transformer Mine: running over this will immediately upgrade a nearby enemy into an elite boss.
6. Sentient space storm quest:
Inspired by those pink or blue "lightning storms" that spontaneously appear. At first I simply imagined a bigger, more dangerous version but then this morphed into some sort of lore/quest.
Lore: Autonomous AI energy constructs were built and assigned by ancient Drox Operative commanders to shipyard duty. These "Durability Test Clouds" will meant to anchor and stress test newly built ships being worked up for duty. The regenerating armor of the day was given a workout for a period of months to harden the hull...since a Drox Operative might need to hide out in the photosphere of a star while on surveillance.
The last of these "Durability Test Clouds" suffered damage during an accident at a shipyard, then drifted away and wandered for several centuries attempting to fulfill it's "durability testing" on any ships it encountered. Over the centuries it could not find any ships that could pass the test. This cloud has finally resorted to using a stored testing routine in which a Drox Operative must attempt to access or rescue an object in order for stress testing to begin.
Although they are the size of two player screens or more, they are entirely invisible at first (perhaps unless the player has a particular component like a scanner/co-processor..unsure if this is really necessary).
The Storm will set a trap using one of two types of bait:
Ancient Recharge Station
Disabled ship awaiting rescue
When the player touches the bait, the entire area around the the ship erupts into the storm.
A general messaage will appear to the player when they are within the storm boundaries:
"Durability test in progress"
Other ships in the area will be slowly damaged and will scatter away from the storm at best speed.
The storm has a special property of "draining ship speed" in an attempt to trap the player within the storm...which also does damage over time. The player speed will never reach absolute zero...just some very slow speed.
If the central "node" can be destroyed the storm the dissipate and no longer appear in this game instance. The central node more or may not be near the player when the trap is triggered.
The trick is living long enough in the center of the storm to do this. Or escape and let the storm fade away.
If the player leaves the storm boundary...the storm will begin to leave the sector (and attempt to lay a trap for the player in a different sector). A ton of experience and an achievement will be gained if the player succeeds in destroying the node.
* possible peace victory: if the player approaches the central node and then does nothing for N minutes...then the storm assumes the testing is completed done and and will dissipate. A ton of experience and a different achievement will be gained if the player succeeds in pacifying the node.
Perhaps this will be one-time quest in the life of a player character.