There is a problem inherent in blurring the boundaries between "safe" systems and "dangerous" ones, which is that it becomes increasingly difficult to tell different systems apart. Every system feels like every other system.
That relates to distribution and probability of course but when there are equal numbers of each government type, distributed randomly, the result tends toward those which you have described.
In other words, in support of your argument, there is a high chance that any system will have within jump range one of the more dangerous government types (muti-gov to anarchy).
Is there any system in galaxy 1 that only has within jump range the safer systems (corporate to confederacy)? And if so, does it also have a trade route that meets the same criteria? There may well be one, perhaps even a few, but I would expect them to be either very rare or on the very edge of the galactic map.
There's strength of influence to be considered of course (and I'm unaware of the exact formula used) but the odds of there not being a moderate to very dangerous system as an influencer are not good. For example, let's imagine a system on the edge of the map, only connected to one other system (rare but possible) and that connecting system is only connected to two others - an unusually strong candidate for a 'safe' trade route.
- 'Safe' system (1 in 3 chance)
- Solitary neighbour is also safe (1 in 3)
- Neighbour is only connected to two other systems, both of which are safe (1/3 * 1/3 = 1 in 9)
- (At least) semi-compatible trade route (1 in 2)
- Approximate chance = 3 * 3 * 9 * 2 = 1 in 162
[EDIT: Strictly speaking, it's 1 in 2.66 of governments rather than 1 in 3. Recalculated that works about to about 1 in 100 chance of a conferderate or safer trade route; even with the favourable conditions described above. Better odds but I think the summary below still holds true.]
That might not seem too bad in a galaxy with over 250 systems, but how many systems only have one other within range? Within galaxy 1 I'm not sure if there are any. Add just one more connecting system and the odds get much, much worse... It may even be likely that in some galaxies there are no longer any safe trade routes left
(at least when using the above criteria).
Personally, I think that Corporate States, Democracies, and (to an extent) Confederacies should be safe. Pirates should be rare to very rare, regardless of the surrounding systems. Meeting a lone-wolf, desperate pirate in a Corporate State should be something worthy of note: "Did I ever tell you about the time I got ambushed in Onrira? The local cops refused to believe me", etc. Meeting a multi-ship pirate raid in a Corporate State should be the stuff of bar-room legend. A single pirate encounter in a safe system might be expected once every ~20 trips; a pirate pack once every ~50.
I think something like that might make a good baseline for corporates but it's good if an increase in government is in some way noticeable over a shorter number of jumps, say three to five for example.
One way might be that max pirates per pack = government * 1.5; while chance of pirate encounter = goverment * 20%
- Corporate (1) = 20% chance of max 1 or 2 pirates
- Democracy (2) = 40% chance of max 3
- Confederacy (3) = 60% chance of max 4 or 5
- Communist (4) = 80% chance of max 6
- Dictatorship (5) = 100% chance of max 7 or 8
- Multi-Government (6) = 120% chance of max 9
- Feudal (7) = 140% chance of max 10 or 11
- Anarchy (8) = 160% chance of max 12
When test 'fails' or is exhausted, may check again at lower goverment type.
A bit forced perhaps but not bad as a measure of difficulty; and makes the jump from corporate to democracy not too steep. It may appear that I haven't factored policing into the above example but police do influence pirate numbers whether you encounter the police or not. Besides, there are many possible methods with which to achieve similar effect.
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