I am a newcomer, just finished two games, so I have some suggestions from the perspective of a new player, and I apologize if those were already made and discarded
When a player is AFK or quits and control is placed on an AI, the portrait changes to a silhouette. I’m not sure if a AFK player can return to resume control or not but if in the case the AI control is absolute may I suggest the portrait be something like Hal9000?
Can in a custom game settings, two options be added:
-Block trading with AI
-Block AIs trading with themselves
I feel AI trading can be abused, but cant quite put my finger on it
On the few games I am / was part of, I Saw several players going AFK or quitting, but one of them fought tooth and nail, to the last ship of the last star until KOed, and that improved the experience a lot for me. I gave him renown but I feel that this kind of behavior should rewarded somehow
Can in the future, perhaps, a player assume the empire of a player that gave up? (When joining a new game) I know it would be a very hard position but I personally would look forward to experience this kind of challenge