isn't it called "wariness"?
tbh I don't like it if a defeated party is penalized (1) they already are usually in a somewhat weaker position because to invade a planet demands for space superiority ie. stronger military on the attackers side (2) the loss of the planet will already penalize the defendant
making the weak side weaker, and more weaker with any lost planet will only result in the attacker becoming invincible soon after starting the fight. rather the penalty should be reversed, a faction that conquers other planets should get diplomatic penalties, or a moral loss if too many wars are fought simultanously.
understandbly, planets can be conquered if a race needs some more breathing room, but if a faction is expanding in all 4 directions this could raise some doubts if it is not too much or enough new worlds already.
some mentalities also become defiant (instead of depressed) if you do harm to them etc pp.. thinkable is any scenario.... so it could be individually & faction-based
The ground invasion mechanism in Galactic Civilizations is deeply flawed. A futuristic civilization would not send it's citizens to attack or defend invasions; it would have a professionally trained army of soldiers and/or robots. This is not medieval times where numbers are that important, equipment and training are.
So they should really change this terrible invasion mechanism to be about armies fighting armies and not civilians.
from a thematical point of view, I agree, it seems like a complete genocidial drawn-out war where any & every civilian arms himself, even woman & children...
but from a balancing point this is so fine because it means if you want to conquer you'll have to subtract from your own pop which will mean a loss of prod etc so it's an investment, or tradeoff that, eg. doesn't really pay off so soon in a game, and that also someway guarantees an early focus on safe colonizational growth & not simply rushstorming an AI - because, in many otjer X4 games where you can build troops independantly of population these 2 things are usually threatened....