Author Topic: Idea - Enemy agents  (Read 580 times)

Offline NichG

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Idea - Enemy agents
« on: April 23, 2014, 04:53:52 PM »
Right now, the main way that planetary governments seem to interact with eachother is that they'll send ships to attack eachother or they'll follow your instructions to perform some specific aid mission. What if, once an enemy alliance forms, they can periodically train an operative who has methodologies similar to the player's?

Specifically, a second token 'enemy agent present' is added to the mapmode. That enemy agent will go to various worlds and do things like steal tech to give it to their alliance, induce bad RCI trends, sabotage buildings and fleets, etc. Perhaps detection can only take place either if you're at the same world as the enemy agent, or if you pay credit at the black market in order to locate them at their current position.

If you track down the enemy agent, you could try to assassinate them. If you have the psionics/etc technologies though, you could brainwash them and turn them into a double agent, which enables you to spend credit whenever you're at the same location they are in order to get them to take on specific missions on your behalf (probably a very limited subset, things like tech theft). Another benefit of a double agent might be that you can get that agent to take the blame for some of your actions, thereby being able to do things like sabotage buildings without hurting your influence with that race. The downside is that the double agent basically gets used up if you do this since its pretty obvious to their bosses that they got turned.

(I noticed that several of the ideas on the tracker have a corresponding forum thread - usually it seems like its thread first, then it gets Mantis'd. I posted this originally to the idea tracker, but I think the forum thread helps get people to mull over the idea more and discuss pros and cons instead of just having it on the tracker, so I'm doing the reverse here - I hope that's okay.)

Offline casualsax

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Re: Idea - Enemy agents
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2014, 05:24:51 PM »
I like the idea of the agent, but it needs to be very apparent to the player what he is and what he is doing.  I would suggest having the agent stick to one thing - like stealing tech.  The agent would only be visible when he was doing an operation, which would take an amount of time based on the strength of the ground forces on the planet.  There would be a chance with each operation that the agent would be caught.

The agent, while visible, could be attacked by the player.  The player could then either kill the agent's ship, or dock with it and attempt to convert him to a double agent.  A double agent would still steal tech, but would give it to the player as well as the opposing race.  A double agent is more likely to be caught, and in so doing would lower the relations of the player with all factions involved, but mostly the faction that was being stolen from.

The problem is that an agent that is stealing tech from one race and giving it to a bunch of races is a big, big deal.  Instead of having it be an alliance thing, I would have the Race with the worst tech occasionally create an agent.  This way it acts as both a catch up mechanic and prevents there from being a swarm of agents always present on the solar map.

Adding it to Mantis is never a bad thing. :)  For a feature this big, though, it might have been best to let it stew and solidify a bit with discussion.  We can always update it with our thoughts though!