Without a lattice system, battles are too unpredictable. It's not like you have a single person controlling each empire like you would in a RTS game where a lattice system would be a lot more restricting on strategy. You have thousands of individual people who are vaguely trying to understand what's going on. A squad can help, a platoon helps even more. An outfit helps the best. However at the end of the day, with individual people trying to find their place in a battle much larger than them, having more defined flow is essential. Bare in mind, this is not supporting a watering down of the game. It's not like you're forced to fight within the hexes on the map. The map is still fully open. The lattice system is just making base influence more defined. For example, there is absolutely no reason why the Ikanam Bio Lab should have influence over the AuraxiCom Network Hub, yet it does. A lattice system fixes this.