I had this idea and I think it would be awesome. Not sure how difficult it would be to implement but here goes:
It would be awesome if this game had a Ker'rat type system where there was a faction capture the flag game going on constantly. I imagine a good way to implement this game wise is to make it a Patrol a neutral zone system, basically just like Ker'rat. However, instead of it being the borg thing like ker'rat, you would have a capture the flag system, where Fed and Klingon would fight over various stuff in the zone. Ideally, it would have extremely high queue amounts, upwards of 25 or 50 people, so you could have massive battles.
Instead of the current pvp capture the flag "reward" though, where it just clicks up the red or blue thing depending on your team, each player would get a certain amount of ec per second of control. Initially, I am thinking like 10 ec. If you have say 5 extra zones over the other team, you would get 50 ec a second. As different flags are captured, the amount you get would go up and down. The game would never really end, you would just leave when you want, and other people would come in to replace you.
One major issue that would have to be dealt with is team size. In ker'rat, sometimes there are more feds and sometimes more klingons. it would be extremely bad, obviously, if Feds were able to dominate these neutral zones, so Feds could just camp them for ec and klingons avoid them. One way to fix this is to have team size affect the rewards. For instance, if the Fed team has 25 players, and the klingon side has 1, the Fed team would get a major hit on their rewards, such that they would need to control all of the zones and still only get 1 ec a second or something. The lone klingon would get a major boost to his reward, so that if he even holds one zone he could get like 1000 ec a second. This way, even if the klingons are frequently outnumbered in these zones, they will still have an incentive to join in because the rewards are good for them. Conversely, Feds will not join as much because if they outnumber the klingons, their rewards will not be good. It would be self balancing.
As far as players camping and not helping at all, I imagine just reporting the players would be sufficient. If a player is really just sitting there decreasing everyones rewards without helping, it is likely everyone will report him, as opposed to just letting it be. Camping is a potential problem for all the queues, but I have not seen too much of it, to be honest. So I am not too worried about it. It might be possible to decrease the idle time in this specific zone to like 1 minute or something, and you dont get any rewards while you are idle.
As far as making private queues, it would be important not to allow this to happen. Otherwise, obviously, fleets could get together and make these games and just sit there. Making it solely a pick up game zone has its downsides, but allowing teams to get in would just not work.
Also, it could be done so that if the zones of control are balanced, nobody gets any rewards. This would force people to attack, as opposed to just sitting back and collecting on whatever zones they have.
A Fed v Fed zone and klingon v Klingon could be possible, and set up as training grounds, so it makes sense that Feds are killing each etc. I am partial to the neutral zone idea.
Another possibility is to take out the ec portion of it and just have people gain honor points, etc., which would be solely for bragging rights. Instaed of getting ec directly, players could turn in lots of honor for a small amount of ec. This will allow the zone to be more of a for fun zone as opposed to a grind for resource zone. I think small amounts of ec would be better though, as opposed to something that people may just not care about or be able to use effectively.
I think something like this would be great for the game as a whole, because it would encourage players to meet up and work together, which is something the game somewhat lacks. STFs are OK for this, but because it is a win/loss nothing in between system, people just tend to get upset at people who dont know what they are doing. In the capture the flag scenario, players can help out in smaller ways and if the are not good it is not as big a deal. One bad player wont cause everyone to fail the mission and not get anything.
I am a big fan of the persistent aspect of it because this adds an element of immersion, which I believe the game also lacks. Instead of just queing up for something, killing everything in the instance and being done with it, you can just go to the neutral zone, play for whatever amount of time you like, and leave when you feel like it. One of the problems with pvp right now is that you have to queue for it, and then if you get blasted away by good pvpers on the other side, it feels like a huge waste of time and is not very fun. Here if you get blasted, you wont be that happy about it, but at least you didnt have to wait 2 to 4 minutes to get blasted.
Another possibility is to put a hard cap on the amount of zones there are, and if you want to join in, you have to wait. This would help eliminate camping and other abuses just to grind for resources. This is probably going to cause more problems then it solves though.
Well that is a bit of a wall of text. I think it is a good idea, though, but I am sure it can be improved. Thanks in advance for any comments or suggestions.
I like the idea, but afk'ers will be a lot bigger problem than you seem to think. Some kind of vote kick or other tool would have to be introduced. Instead of simply rewarding the individual player, why not also reward the entire faction? Make the zone a point on the map that is a pain in the ass to go around to get to other systems, but if your faction controls the majority of flags, they they get to pass. Also maybe give the faction that controls them an extra 5-10% of all rewards for turned in missions.
With as much spam as there is now, I can't see there being more than a 15v15 queue without causing some major lag issues. Even 10v10 is pretty extremely when e1 is in one area. I would also stretch out the map quite a ways from what the current cap n hold is. Make it a commitment to head to a different point to try to take it so that it's more of a strategy as to where to send forces. This will also split up the bulk of the players a little more to avoid large clumps of players all in one spot.
Yeah AFK would be the biggest problem with abuse. I am not so sure the vote kick is the best suggestion because I think mutually beneficial afk abuse is the bigger potential problem. Maybe something like a 30 second idle boot thing instead of the 1 minute i talked about would be best. If you are playing the game, you wont get booted for 30 seconds of idle, and if you are not, being afk in the map and clicking something ever 30 seconds seems extremely annoying for a couple 1000 ec. Even if it is 100k or something, that just seems so annoying.
If they can work it out so people get idle booted, I think the afk thing wont be too big of a problem. I am not sure how easy something like that would be to program though.
@ drkfrontiers -- yeah that does sound like an awesome map.