I'll throw this here and see if it's a good or bad idea, if it was already suggested or discussed or whatever.
I was playing as the Covies lately and noticed that the military research is a bit redundant in its techs: I think there are too many of them, and they feel just like a money dumping, boring activity.
What if we added to them a reward for researching them?
I thought that maybe the various techs can be divided, only for flavor, in three (or more) different groups, while maintaining the same perks, and one group would NOT exclude the research of the other; at the end of one group's tech tree would be the possibility to unlock a one-time, possibly even timed, Hero ship that represents your goal in sticking to one's research.
I'll try to explain myself better: say you're playing as the Covenant. Say our mod is placed before the post-war era. Now we would have three main groups in the "offensive" research tree (the tech three where you research weapon and ship buffs):
The Prophet of Regret, The Prophet of Truth and the Prophet of Mercy. Each of these group would have unique researches to them, and the very last tech would be their respective Hero ship;
in this case, it would be the Solemn Penance for Regret, the Forerunner Dreadnought (this is where I would see it as a timed ship) for Truth, and High Charity for Mercy.
This would not only be a reward for the player who spends a lot in research, but it would be a modular, customizeable perk for the mod, granting uniqueness to every faction and late-game fun.
As I said, none of the various group would exclude the others, and since most of their researches are linked and require you to research even twice a tech before moving on to the other, it would be balanced in NOT having two hero ships at a time, given the time you would need to go through every group's line of researches.
What d'y'all think? Did I express myself so poorly or did some of you understand? Let me know what you think, now I've got some pastas and pizzas to eat, mama-a mia!