Listen, no one likes a war where the two factions are just like: "I have a great big fleet!"
"Yeah, well my fleet is bigger!" (posts screenshot of debris)
"Oh yeah? Well, my-"
You get the idea....
So during my recent spat with the Kel'Shir, @Catplayz and I hammered out some rules of engagement to make things interesting, and to make it feel like a real conflict that could be won or lost in a single battle on the build of a player's ships. Now you don't have to use these, but if you do, come back and post here to say how well the rules worked for you!
#1: Each faction gets a set amount of $$$ to work with for ships and repairs. Set something up to track everybody's budget. The main combatants (i.e. the factions that first went to war with each other) decide between themselves which amounts are reasonable as posted and which are not. Money should somewhat balanced between the two sides so things aren't a total beatdown.
#2: If your ships are destroyed/damaged in a fight, the value of the destroyed parts needs to be deducted from your operational budget. Factions can also salvage abandoned parts for more $$, or just go get a loan from someone else. (SLACKER!)
#3: NO SUPERWEAPONS!!! This means no DSL, no Doomsday Devices or anything else of that nature.Aside from the lag, superweapons just aren't fun. It's a video game. Why are you even playing if it's not fun?
#4: Calling back to #1, if you run out of money and ships, and no one will finance your slacker butt any longer, you must withdraw from the conflict.
#5: Each faction should pick one ship that is (1) Decently cool-looking, (2) NOT an instant game-crasher, and (3) combat-capable to be their flagship. They get exactly one of these, and if it's destroyed/damaged beyond repair (i.e. more than three-quarters of it is debris), then they must withdraw from the conflict, mostly because logic assumes that the faction had most of its high-ranking officers on board.
Just suggestions, take it as you will.