I think adding a “scripting” ability for people to program the behavior of their ships would be Very Cool. I understand it might be way out of scope for the first release (or second …), but I think this could take GSB from just “really, really cool” all the way to “eleven”.
What I’m thinking of is something like Lua as a scripting language, and ultimately, something like Robocode in terms of programming API - robocode.sourceforge.net/
The first level of programmability would be to just do navigation by programming (I can imagine some ships holding back until fleet strength is below x%, then swooping in, or writing “hunter-killer” programs that target specific ships). More advanced stuff would be to control energy management (“all power to the shields!” or more likely “all power to the forward phaser banks!”).
I could imagine that this could be a module that you plug in to a ship. The module could be for programmability at all, or for a specific program, not sure what makes more sense.
Among the challenges to doing this include performance (I can imagine that individually programmed fighters, in the thousands, could pose a significant processing overhead), but that could also be addressed with some kind of CPU limiter, or scheduling frequency adjustment. Of course it’ll be tricky defining the API, and folks will squeal a lot if their favorite program breaks after a system update, but “them’s the breaks,” right?
[size=85](apologies for promoting this to a topic of its own, but I think it got lost in the earlier thread about modding features)