I've been thinking about economics for Beyond Beyaan, and I feel that I may be over-simplifying things by just developing factories on planets, and those factories will produce BCs (billion credit) where you spend on research, construction, or planetary development. In Master of Orion 1, you could have 1 to 8 factories per population unit based on your current tech/racial bonus. They contribute to whatever construction effort you have on that planet. That's not really "realistic" So I worked out a more accurate economic model.
Here is how it will work:
Each planet will have three components:
Population - They will spend money on consumer stuff (food, toys, homes, etc), resulting in BCs for you to spend on. The more population, the more BCs you get. This will not be dependent on factories. So having an undeveloped planet full of people won't be so useless, they'll give you money to spend! Population growth means that they're developing infrastructure and small businesses and stuff. Also, population is a factor in planetary development, the more people you have on a planet, the less cost overrun you will encounter building factories/labs there.
Factories - Those are big factories capable of producing parts for starships and other major constructions. They will reduce the cost of building starships. If you start with a planet that have 10 factories, you can spend up to 10 BC before you start getting cost overrun. Cost overrun is basically stretching the factories capacity at diminishing return. Think of overtime pay for employees, equipment breakage/repair, etc. The more factories you have, the less overrun you'll encounter in building starships.
Labs - Those are government-funded facilities that allow you to pursue your research. This will work in a similar manner to factories, but with research.
I think this system will still keep things simple, but make things more manageable and less abstract. If you set up trading agreements with other empires, they contribute BCs, but not production or research points. So even if you have tons of BCs coming in from trade/population, if your planets aren't developed, you'll have a hard time building things.
Comments? Thoughts? Feedback? Feel free to comment!