icekatze wrote:While I have figured out that mixing the races present on colonies can increase the population cap, I still have no idea how exactly that mechanic works. I would recommend having some sort of indicator that tells the player how much unused space on the planet there is, and of what might be able to fill that. At least, it would be nice to know without trial and error of finding a planet with a certain population, and dragging that population over the colony to see how much it would increase. Also, how this interacts with terraforming is not entirely clear.
Yes -- this is a hard one. Arioch and I have both spent a fair amount of time thinking about different ways that we might visualize the habitat occupancy status of a planet. But, neither of us have come up with a candidate UI we're particularly happy with.
This is a case where I think the underlying model may be complex enough that hiding the gory details from the player, and just telling them about the implications, is the best game design choice we can make. There's always a chance we've missed some clever idea though, so, if you have any suggestions about how, exactly, to improve the current population cap displays, please let us know
The core problem, really, is that each race has the potential to impact the cap on each planet in a different way. And any combination of races on any planet type will potentially imply a different effective cap.
We could, perhaps, take the current hinting system displayed during population move orders a little further. Say, by outlining in green any planets that would receive a cap boost from the currently selected population type. We might also do some hinting around candidate terraforming projects, say, by showing how much the effective cap for each species currently present on the planet would go up or down if a given terraforming option were applied.
We'd still be effectively requiring a process of trial and error from the player -- but, it could perhaps be a simpler, less tedious trial and error process