Not sure, if the engine is capable on doing this but:
The bread and butter 1-on-1 melee is nice, and myself i wouldnt like it to deviate that much from that into huge battles. Keeping it simple would be nice aswell.
However it would be really cool if every ship had something like 3 different states: in good shape, in mediocre shape and in bad shape. The last one could be quite funny in the funnier races and a bit less funny in the more serious races.
Add to this, that whenever you hit into a ship, some stuff would get loose from the ship being hit. It would probably be easy to do it via some particle effects. Just when the ship gets beyond a certain health level, it would change the state to a different shape.
This would have the effect in the combat, that it would be really hands on, tangible and super cool. The extra-thing that makes it gratifying.
Thoughts on that?