If right click to pan is implemented, the whole gameplay is changed from a top down RTS to a third person RTS (like Nexus).
Right now Shallow Space plays like a Top Down RTS with the ability to zoom to units much alike Homeworld, which translates to either:
- Tactical Play
- Base Building Play
Tactical Play will require players to interact with different units that have special abilities a'la Company of Heroes. It's not bad per se, but a lot of effort needs to be put into making the map/bases strategically inclined with asteroids, navigational bases, 3D space that allows ambush etc.
Base Building Play will involve players building a diverse amount of units for hard/soft countering a'la Homeworld. If the game doesn't involve Bases, then players are doomed the moment they send out a disadvantaged fleet, no matter how strategically they play.
I do have a pet peeve of wanting Shallow Space to turn out like a third person RTS with Flotilla being considered as one "character" a'la Dragon Age (or Nexus). A right click to pan will offer up a lot of strategic play along with it's ships repertoires (kinda like a character's equipment). A player's flotilla actions can consist of:
- A lead frigate/cruiser (kind of like a hero unit) with different armaments.
- A hero unit will have frigates and fighters that will be in its formation
- A hero unit have passive/active abilities, some affecting only certain ship types or active abilities that require a certain ship type to be in it's formation.
- A hero unit can level up in terms of the ship itself/the commander/ the number of frigates it can command
- A hero unit that play different roles i.e. Damage Dealer/ Fast strike ships/ have drones that can either take control of other ships or indulge in electronic warfare.
The flotilla in turn can:
- Send a few fighters to mop up the enemy's fighters
- Maintain different formations (i.e. some formations will involve bigger ships shielding smaller ships or smaller ships encircling behind the enemy for a reverse V formation) or have ships doing nothing but Anti Missile/Flak Cannon.
- Have different armaments that synergizes with the hero unit or be limited in types of units it can have in it's formation (depending on the speed and size of the hero unit)
- Be customized in terms of their armor/shield/weapons in the fleet. This determines how slow/lumbering the hero unit can be as it travels in formation.
Some strategies that can be implemented with this idea:
- Send fighters to disable enemy engines while long range cannons bombard the enemy
- Send the hero unit to fire an EMP that disables energy weapons while heavily shielded frigates move to destroy the enemy
- Send cloaked bombers to bombard the enemy while close ranged corvettes melee with the enemy.
- Have the ships in formation focus their power on shields/engines to outrun the enemy.
- Overload the weapons in expense of shields/engines to outgun an enemy
With that, combat should be slower as well with less emphasis on firing every weapon at the same time, rather a finite amount of weapons can be fired at any given time due to limited energy. Make every shot count.