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I'll be away on a trip for a few days so my activity will be low
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Here's my WIP phase sheet so far.





My sheet. Practically finished barring a few touches.


@Willy Vereb

Talked with @Sigma about the Jump Gate camping. There's an Eden Accord that prohibits the laying of mines directly at the gate's close proximity, as well as for turrets. Weaponizing or Disruption of Jump Gates is prohibited, lest they want to incur the wrath of the combined power of accord abiding nations.

There's also a reason that gates won't function correctly if there's an object in the immediate vicinity of the exit point. Possibly your pitch with the radiation burst can tie up with that as well, let's just wait for Sigma's approval.
I think the radiation burst idea can be toned down if needed but the fact it's there means locking down gates is far from simple. If we add that it's prohibited to do so adds some extra layers. For two reasons.
1.) It might be prohibited because it could accidentally damage the gate itself, a very reasonable concern.
2.) Even if it can win a fight there might be some methods a determined attacker can use to still breach through if somebody wants to "gate-camp" still.

So this could work to prevent scummy tactics and keep the game entertaining.

I don't think ITC can economically bully people, they likely can ransom peeps if they are literally giants but they can't really bully them when they can just say "nah" and they could still operate reasonably with the wealth of resources they already have. Then again, not necessarily all colonies are developed enough they can do decent exploitation of their own system. Some colonists might be brand new, even. They might explicitly need the ITC economic aid to just survive. That'd be a curious development.

Anyways, I think I could drop the space nomad thing. Alternatively they could had O'Niel space colonies in the past but the gates explicitly forced them to change that. Now I am only have to imagine up a plausible shape for said colonies. Perhaps the same cylindrical setup but with multiple layers with each providing gravity through "gravity plates" tech?
@Willy Vereb

The Interstellar economy is highly developed. Very few, if any, planets are actually capable of autarky anymore. Blockading your own system would effectively immediately remove your ability to fight the war, and once the enemy eventually clear the mines you're doomed.

You can certainly try to seal yourself off, but given any gate can connect to any gate you're just hurting yourself. Moreover, I imagine (given the ITC, a power bloc) that by now a number of treaties regarding gate commerce have been passed, or forced, by or onto the governments of the Cluster.

So sure, you can cut yourself off. Your people will probably starve and your economy is almost certain to collapse, but don't worry! Once you eventually open your gate again you're going to be sanctioned and persecuted by just about every major trading nation.

That's my take. Sigma and Hyper can chime in if their opinions differ.
I meant to post a longer response but I feel in the current format the constant back and forth exchanges would not help and would not resolve in a timely manner thus further frustrate players.

I don't think interdependent economies are plausible with entire star systems' worth of raw materials. Maybe if you play almost absolutely hard sci-fi but that's a fringe nobody will do (and you'd effectively have to reject all NS submissions that way). I also don't think the solution you came up with is sufficient to prevent abuses.

I'd propose a solution more grounded in the mechanism of the gates. You see in order to transfer untold metric tons of mass through some wormhole style travel mechanism it'd require ridiculous amounts of energy. Since this is soft sci-fi we don't need to think hard about this but it could open a possibility. Basically when a gate transit happens it is accompanied with a gigantic radiation burst, enough to fry electronics in 10,000 mile radius and blind sensors for a while. Due to the specifics of the gate transfer the object coming through the gate is immune to this effect thus they can safely fly out of it. The consequences? Gate camping is not only ineffective, it'd be actively dangerous. So instead of mining up regions or ready to snipe ships at the gate, both sides have ample time to position up for an upcoming proper battle.
This should resolve one problem.

As for the isolation shenanigans, while I criticize it, being made an interstellar pariah is a good deterrent as any for now. Still, I feel a bit strange with the idea of an interconnected economic block involving the whole playerbase. This would require syncing sheets to a ridiculous degree. Does this game really wants to run by this or it's just something you thought about in response to my post? I feel this is a gigantic matter which would be put at the forefront for the OOC because it changes basically everything you do in this game compared to normal nationgames. Actually, this way it would not be a space opera at all, rather playing a cold war era NRP with less doomsday concerns but the exact same political shenanigans and overall discouraging of any direct military actions whatsoever.

Anyways, since we don't have a discord I apologize in advance if OOC will be taken up with a couple of discussions which will likely involve me. Not necessarily my faction but the setting.

As to expand upon the gate-camping issue.
Basically, with FTL gates being the sole method of reliable interstellar travel, if it ever comes to war... they just won't happen.
Why? Because whoever owns the gate can just mine up the region, camp up the place with defensive turrets and effectively make anyone passing through the gate to never survive the aftermath.

This is a severe issue if you want a classic space opera game without having to deal with FTL shenanigans dominating like you apparently do. As I said this effectively makes interstellar warfare impossible unless you have the paradox situation of already infiltrated and defeated your opponent before you'd pass through the gate. Alternatively somebody can effectively isolate themselves for years doing this trick and nobody could do anything against it.

So... do you actually have a solution for this?
On a side note, do we have any sorts of FTL communication?
@Willy Vereb
Alright we've come to a decision. I would agree with @Crispy Octopus in that the mobile castles would be too large. @Hyperdrive feels the whole "anchoring" thing would defeat the purpose of having Jump Gates for the setting. He also suggest that instead of large mobile castles, why not a large fleet of regular sized ships?
First of what's a "regular sized ship"?
I don't think I mentioned castles but you may have read the sheet I linked before. Said castles range from 250 to 2500m in length.
If you flubbed up and meant my mobile colonies, see my second point.

Second, in order to sustain life the O'Neil cylinder needs to be fairly large in diameter, at least a few kilometers I say so centrifugal force based acceleration doesn't need many revolutions per minute to work. Length is secondary in comparison but of course add weight to the artificial environment. The better question is why can't gates be larger? If the gates are the size of regular vessels or even an Arc then it's a massive pain in the ass to navigate through them. Make them a few dozen kilometers in diameter and this concern no longer applies. It might also eliminate other problems to an extent like gate-camping, although this trouble still remains.

Third, I agree on FTL gates that can be anchored being possibly disruptive for the setting. Although I also feel there's a plothole if they don't exist. Then again, story above worldbuilding, I'd say, so maybe we can just accept it and move on.

@SigmaIt actually can work without me being so unique to not have claims.
They just have to currently occupy regions without habitable planets. As for origins I plan them to have developed independently from Core culture and only recently arrived from the Frontier.
Not sure they'd fit through the gates o.O
Arcs did, I figure so would my own cruising cities.
I am also thinking of either having the colonies have the ability to "anchor" to an orbit and produce a gate for travel or there are specific gate colonies that perform this purpose.

@SigmaWould it be acceptable to have a faction that has no systems outright owned but rather they live in mobile space colonies?
Think of gigantic 25-100km long O'niel cylinders with engines. They are very vulnerable and lumbering to the extreme. They are not meant to represent my faction's industrial capability at producing warships and while numerous these were made over a long period of time.
Would it be acceptable?
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