To start: Yes I am relatively new to this game. (But not to gaming)
OK, now to the thread:
Customizable Ships Interiors. From the gaming view point (not the look, but the stats).
The idea breaks down into several areas. First there is "What do you do aboard ship?" Second is the follow up "How do you do that?" Third is "How does that work with the rest of the game"?
1st: "What do you do aboard ship?" Well as it stands not much. But I propose changing that... First off some basics, like your crew and facilities. Your crew is comprised of BOFFs, DOFFs, and "red shirts". Each of these is supposed to have something to both do and something that can happen to them. Your facilities are currently always the same (no differences that make changes to the game). but...
Lets start with you, the Captain. You have a chair on the bridge (that does nothing) and living quarters (that also do nothing). How about the ability to "upgrade" your bridge with a "ready room"? Where you can interact with star fleet (securely), or with other mission characters? (Comes in various sizes? Required for missions?). Another possible add on to the "bridge deck" (see below for better deck descriptions) is a "Briefing room". Like the "ready room" it would allow for interactions (possibly mission required?), but this time with your BOFFs included, not just the captain. About those quarters; are you getting enough sleep? Upgradable quarters would benefit the captain more over time away from base/shore leave (see morale idea below ).
Next you have your ships BOFFs. Each is supposed to be a highly trained and responsible individual with an assigned duty. But aside from sitting in a chair on the bridge, what do they do? From the series (and in game) we have seen the 1st officer (and various department heads) act as crew chief, and do such things as review crew performance, arrange various ship wide (or department) training exercises, and such. But all of that, and (usually) filling the top bridge station? So... How about giving the Dept Heads some offices? Again upgradeable, so that they can do their jobs better?
Next next (Next x2?) we come to the DOFFs. Each has a specialty (from Doctor to Brick Mason...). But where do they perform their work? No labs, no diplomatic meeting halls... Again, lets be able to add them, and upgrade them...
(In case you are wondering, yes I am aiming this whole thingy at the idea of you having to invest in your ship to get the most out of her)
Finally we have those adorable little "red shirts". the filler crew that just seems to be standard everywhere. How about making the cost of some (all?) of these options and upgrades include having to dedicate "X" number of crew members as staff? It gives you a very fast acting limiting factor (crew intensive add-ons would be a no no for a lot of escort class ships...).
2nd: "How do you do that?" Design, that's how. The ship interior is already broken down by decks, so lets expand on that, shall we?
Each of these decks would start out as a blank template (appropriate to each Tier, crew size, and class of ship). Certain basics would have to be present just for the sake of backwards compatibility. But the rest (and a lot of the basics) could be customized by you to make your ship truly yours.
Items below that are listed with a "*" should be basics that may be upgraded. Items with a "**" should be optional with the possibility of variants/upgrades.
The decks I propose are:
Bridge: Simply put, the command center of the ship. Add-ons to the basic would be a "ready room**" and a "briefing room**". Not all ships would be able to fit both, much less upgrade them (limit by Tier and crew assignment?). Possibly use upgrades to the bridge itself to make it more comfortable to the BOFFs? (Again see below for the idea regarding morale).
Service: This deck would house the working area of your ship. Items here would include (but not be limited to) Sick Bay*, Transporter*, Security* (including the Brig*), Labs**, Department Offices**, other (just a generic filler for now). Again how much and how much you can upgrade would depend on "X" (crew and Tier?).
Crew: Seems sort of bland, but lets look... How about better quarters*? Officers quarters** (how many, how good, environment variable for aliens...)? Ever thought about those families that are seen aboard ship (in ST:TNG and ST:Voyager)? How about adding those**? That leads us to things like a lounge (what kind? Restaurant, night club, quiet bar, play ground/park?) and how many? Each style would appeal to a different set of traits... And since they are spending so much time off being lazy and getting flabby how about a Rec-Room (gym, sports arena, dojo, holo deck...) Also on this deck would be some more mission specific items like guest quarters (upgrades here might be things like security, and full suites), or extra quarters for evacuation/transport(?). You get the idea (I hope).
Cargo: Again, it seems kind of bland, but lets look anyway, shall we? All of that cargo has to get aboard somehow, so how about a Cargo Transporter**? And a Hanger Deck*. Not to mention a Fabricator**. And how about adding some Hazardous cargo shielding**? Or just plain more*? Maybe some way to "Multipurpose**" cargo space (could be used as crew/civilian quarters)?
Engineering: Here we come to something that is the heart of much of the Star Trek universe. But of almost no use in game (the deck, not the career). So how about things like maintenance? Items (consoles up to complete offices) here would parallel your ships systems (weapons, deflector, shields...) and would need crew and Tier... And don't forget your Department Head (Chief Engineer) and his office. How about your Environment? If you are running a mixed specie crew (almost certain in game) then you are going to have to provide for them...
"How does that work with the rest of the game"?
Well, the biggest changes are here, at the end. Three items that I would be adding are Crew Morale (Fitness?), Ship Status, and Ship/Crew Capabilities.
Crew Morale would act as either a Buff or DeBuff depending on the Morale level. This effect should not be enough to make it the end all, but its effect should be felt. Since your DOFFs already have a system of Traits built in lets use that for the basis. If a DOFF has given Trait then a facility that shares that Trait (positively?) would raise that DOFF's Morale. Example; A DOFF with the "Social" Trait would be helped by a Lounge (which would have that Trait). An upgraded lounge might help more DOFFs, or have more Traits...
Ship Status would act the same, but would be affected by the various Facilities (Offices and such). Maintenance (Engineering Deck) is the biggest, but also do you have a big enough Sick Bay to keep all of that crew healthy? Do your BOFFs have the right size Office? Again this would act as both a Buff/DeBuff by increasing your ships abilities (but again only enough to be felt, not tip the game balance).
Ship/Crew Capabilities are what happens when yu bring that DOFF together with that Facility. Example: Your Astrometrics Scientist needs a Lab to finish a certain mission. Perhaps they need a Specialized Lab? These would be more mission specific requirements for the DOFF missions than otherwise, but... How about those Guest Quarters? Or Diplomatic Meeting Halls? Could act as bonus for regular missions and/or requirements (needed maps and such?). Could even (maybe?) be able to plot entire missions that take place partially/entirely on-board (would make a lot of sense in diplomatic missions).
Thank you for your time and patience in face of my "Wall of text"...
(Time to start a thread about customizable ship stats...)
Please let me know what your thoughts are about these ideas.
1st thing. Guessing this because of your 1st point. Are you still a LT.?
Most of the bridges after LT. Get a Ready Room and some get a Briefing Room.
The Ready Room you can add some stuff to it and you can do DOFF missions there.
Briefing Room does nothing, you see it used in one FE.
Some of the lower deck stuff is already there, just not being used.
1. Morale 2. Ship & Crew Status 3. Ship Facilities
This is the attitude of your crew. Morale affects DOFF mission success. Items that affect this would be the time away from base, ship facilities, and DOFFs.
The longer you are away from base the more this is lowered. Being crammed into a tin can for weeks and months at a time gets boring. So visiting a base every so often becomes a real need, not just a convenience.
To counter this decline you can use DOFF "Raise Morale" mini missions (Daily?) which would raise Morale. Or install/upgrade Facilities. Or have civilian DOFFs (Bartender, Entertainer...) act as an upgrade to Facilites of the proper type when on ship.
Example: A Lounge allows DOFFs to affect Morale. A Lounge needs staff though. Having a Bartender/Chef/Entertainer DOFF on board it would count as 1 point. Upgrading the Lounge would also allow more than one DOFF to affect Morale.
Basic idea is that you need Morale boosting items equal to your ships Tier (plus number of DOFFs/50? maybe?).
A DOFF with a high Morale would get a minor buff to mission success, while a low morale would debuff the chances of success.
Morale might even be applied individually to DOFFs. In this case the individual facilities would effect only those DOFFs that share that facilities Traits (Tactful, Social...).
2. Ship & Crew Status
This is related to Morale, but would affect standard ship performance.
Ship & Crew Status would break down by Department. And like Morale it would decline over time. However instead of needing to stop by base, you would need to run "Department Exercise" DOFF mini Missions (which would tie up the entire Department for X hours) to raise Status. Decline could be slowed by adding/upgrading Department Chief Offices, assigning a higher ranked BOFF as Department Chief, or better facilities for each Department.
Basically you need to have a BOFF equal to your ships Tier to hold status level. A Department Chief office would act as a rank bonus. And ship class would add another Rank to the appropriate Department.
Example: a Tier 1 Escort would need to have Lieutenant rank Department Chiefs for each Department in order to maintain Status. Since Tier 1 ships usually only have Ensign rank officers the Status is going to decline (except for the Tactical Department, which gets a bonus to Chief rank).
This system could allow you to get a minor buff to a Department by raising Status (via BOFF, Facilities, and/or Exercises). This buff would be minor, and could even be "permanent" with the right combo of BOFF and Facilities.
Note that the Civilian Department does not have a Department Chief and is not affected by Status(?).
3. Ship Facilities
Facilities are the rooms that you can add to the interior of your ship. Examples are above in my first post.
The concept is that each ship would have different Facilities, which allow yu to do things between missions while aboard ship.
Some Facilities are mentioned above as affecting Morale & Status.
Others would add to what your ship can do (outside of missions). Ideas here would include Crafting (via Labs & Fabrication), Practice (via Holo Deck), Healing Injuries (via Sick Bay), after battle Repairs (via engineering)...
Crafting would be sort of two part: First a pair of mini games. A mini game that allows the player to mix common items to create uncommon items (via basic Lab). A harder mini game that allows the player to mix uncommon items to create rare items (via an upgraded Lab). Second would be Engineering. This is where you actually make those new items. Standard Engineering does not allow for Crafting, and need to use the ones available at bases. An upgraded Engineering could make common/low level items. Upgrading Engineering again would allow you to make uncommon/higher level items...
Practice would allow you to play thru many scenarios on the holo deck, perhaps replaying current missions. This way you could try out different equipment, team members, and tactics.
Healing and Repair are sort of present in the game, but this would expand the concept. And yes, some injuries are still going to require going to a base. And repairs performed in space are not going to be complete, but could reduce the penalties...
Note that the Tier and Class of ship would affect what facilities you can add. For example a Science Class ship could add more Labs than a Tactical Class of the same Tier.
Tier (1 to 5) is the number of Facilities you can add to your ship. Each Basic Facility costs one point. Upgrading facilities raises the cost another point per level. Facilities that are "In Class" Facilities for a ship cost one point less (example: Basic Labs cost 0 points for a Science class ship).
This limit on Facilities would really make choices difficult for Captains. To help here some Facilities are considered "standard" (marked with an * on the list below).
My suggested list is:
Department Offices (one for each Department?)
Department Facilities (one for each Department?)
Thus up to 5 points means that a ship could have all 5 standard Facilities upgraded (and one in class upgraded twice). Or upgrade in class Facility twice (one point) and two other Facilities twice each (four points)...