In the old days alliances fought about better space. If one group was living in mediocre space, but wanted better space, they tried to invade another group. This lead to a lot of good content. This worked, since you knew that your new target space had already stations, so that leaving your current space with it’s stations behind wasn’t a huge loss. It was also possible to relatively easy move POSes for cyno beacons and jump bridges. You had to get new TCUs and IHUBs, but that’s a price most groups were willing to pay for better space.
This changed when Upwell structures got introduced. Now leaving your space means that you have to leave Trillions in infrastructure behind, because you can’t move it. So once a group settles in somewhere, it will not leave until it gets evicted. However, if nobody wants to get better space, we have galactic boredom and just ‘content deployments’ which often fail. And the struture rigs play an important role in this. Because they are often much more expensive than the structure itself. For example, a Raitaru is 500M, but a single T1/T2 rig can cost 800/1500 M. A Sotiyo is 22B, but a single T1 rig can cost 50B. And this is lost if you leave a region.
While I agree that this empire building has it’s nice aspects, it will just lead to more and more stagnation. People will just stay in their space with very little to fight for.
However, if you would make rigs removable, it would make much more sense to move even a large group to better space. Making rigs removable would make it also easier to make changes like realigning structures, or repurposing structures much easier. It might even help to reduce the number of unused structures, because it’s much easier to take them down. One can also think about making the structures more expensive instead. That would also help reducing the structure spam.
P.S: While writing this, I realized that the size of Upwell structures makes it also very difficult to move them. However that’s still possible with some effort. However, the rigs are lost for ever.
Your idea still adds no reason to fight for anything, but it does make it so even less stuff is lost. Having fixed infrastructure is an incentive for the defender to, well, defend, and not run from any fight, and stimulates the economy if a group decides to move.
Maybe there could be some small percentage of recycling of the salvage input mats for the rigs when a structure is properly decommissioned to make movnig feel a little less onerous, but in general, this game is critically short on destruction and leverage points to force fights, so allowing people to safely recover their rigs seems counter-productive to fixing the problems facing the game right now.
I agree that there is not enough destruction, but a defender doesn’t need to defend if there is no attacker. In the old days, people were fighting much more, even though they couldn’t lose expensive structures or rigs. Right now, there is no reason to attack someone, because everybody is so tied to their space. And that’s the biggest problem in the game. Would it solve everything? Of course not. But it would increase the mobility of alliances at least a bit. Something like WWB would be impossible today.
Rigs do a pretty good job of making people commit to their structures and attacking peoples assets is more successful today than it has been in the past in the way they can’t just pack up and leave. That’s a good thing.
I doubt less people fight today because of structure rigs. It’s more likely the lack of bodies in the game, lack of pvp hungry players and also the lack of loot drops from structures.
More mobile deployment of structures can be done without rigs if that’s what you want. But it comes at the cost of effectiveness.