First off, the obvious: I believe we can agree that FO should have an “Empire Pool” of resources. Resources are automatically moved to worlds with shortfalls.
1: Should excess resources stockpile (specifically nutrients and minerals)? And if so, what form should the stockpile take?
* No Stockpiles Excess resources are either converted into money or lost
* A local stockpile on each planet in addition to a separate global empire pool. The player decides how much of his excess resources to move to the empire pool, and how much to keep at home.
* Local Stockpile on each planet. The local stockpile can’t be manipulated by the player (except perhaps via Evacuation of a doomed planet). Local stockpiles are summed and used as a global stockpile.
* Global Stockpile. Excess resources are automatically added to a global stockpile.
Global stockpiles are the “empire pool” of available resources—the player doesn’t have to perform voodoo dances to move these resources to worlds with shortfalls.
2: If there is a stockpile, should there be a cap?
* No cap (aside from the upward range of a 32-bit integer) (or we could just let it roll over like high scores in pac-man
* A static cap (for example, you can have no more than 5000 food empire wide, or you can have no more than 100 minerals on a planet)
* A planet cap based on a supply that will last your population a number of turns (for example, if you can store enough nutrients to feed your population for 4 turns) Only applies to local stockpiles.
* A cap based on empire population, consumption, planet size technology and/or facilities. If this is the case, the exact nature of the cap will have to wait for v.3--have to define technology and buildings before we can start assigning effects to them.
In the case of a global stockpile, there may be times when we need to determine how much of the stockpile is located on a planet. (for example, if the planet is under a blockade/siege, or if we allow conquering empires to gain a portion of the loser’s stockpile.) I’m ignoring this aspect until a later date because we won’t need it for the v.2 requirements. When we get around to defining the actual systems for blockading, raiding, and conquest we’ll have to include the effect on stockpiles.
For the record, I’m also ignoring the possibility for resource decay, as I don’t remember anyone suggesting it in the design thread. It’s possible that we might add decay later on for play balancing, or keep it out of the game altogether.