Hello. I've been playing a bit with Life Seeded and I believe I found a very simple and elegant way of making it a more interesting pick that I would like to share with you guys.
So, Life Seeded gives you three things: Increased planet size, Gaia type planet, and the second rarest habitability preference in the game, Gaia World Preference. In return, it takes away a civic slot permanently, leaving you with a civic that uniquely does absolutely nothing once the game has started, and gives you the second rarest habitability preference in the game, which is a terrible one that guts any and all early game expansion.
There are ways to get around this of course. You can use robots, you can conquer another species,you can use habitats/ecumenopolises, you can switch away from the preference as soon as you can and you can even use events to shift your civics and get away from Life Seeded. It's not a complete grenade, a wasted slot can be argued to be a good tradeoff for the big fat planet you get at start, but none of these solutions keep the spirit of being Life Seeded intact. Once the game starts, being Life Seeded is strictly negative, and unless you are roleplaying, you want to work around it as soon as possible.
Which is fine! There's no need to doom a species to perfect worlds alone and it wouldn't make sense anyway; finding workarounds is a perfectly viable option. What we lack, however, is any incentive at all to keep Gaia Planet Preference and Life Seeded (not that we can switch anyway in most cases), which is what my solution suggests to address.
I believe that Life Seeded should enable the unique ability to convert species to Gaia World Preference, with that preference getting its own tweaks, where it gives +3 genetic points. This is a large amount of points that is equivalent to a single tier of the Biological Ascension path, so the exact number is up for debate, this is simply the largest amount I would be comfortable with so I figured it would be better to overshoot rather than to undershoot.
Such a change has the following gameplay implications:
Life Seeded, being the only way to obtain another +3 points, becomes a very interesting choice for the Biological Ascension path. Heck, it's even better for Psionic Ascension/Flesh is Weak, since +3 gene points will have a bigger impact. Gene points are good y'all.
If you do happen upon primitives on a Gaia World as another nation, they become an interesting target for integration.
You can still switch away from Gaia World Preference, but now it isn't strictly a forced option unless you are going for roleplay.
Makes for an interesting Xenophile concept where everyone are snowflakes who can't stand anything less than perfect, but are more variable in return.
What do you think good folks?
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