I think outsourcing ground handling thus reducing staff numbers will be good as large staff base is one of the problems in AWS (although staff salary is used somewhat as a balance mechanism to reduce high margins), it will especially benefit small airlines.
LOL. Let's suspend the laws of economics in yet another area and pretend that you can sign a ground handling contract for 1 flight, 50 pax per day at a price cheaper than an airline delivering 4 flights, 600 pax per day. That seems to be the new direction of AWS.
BTW, 2 wrong assumptions in your post:
1. AWS already favors small airlines
on staffing levels. Full staffing levels do not kick in until you have certain number of aircraft in operation. That is fine for game playability
2. Intention of this outsourcing of ground handling is to make airlines flying small aircraft
But as we all know, road to hell is paved with good intentions, this will be no exception. AWS is already plagued by the fact that large aircraft is not viable on the routes where competition with smaller aircraft is possible. Right now, 777, 340, 747, 380 is not a viable aircraft anywhere A300, 330, 767, 757 can fly, or even where 739, A321 can fly with a tech stop.
Making even smaller aircraft viable is going to extend the frequency plague to the entire world in AWS.
Unless the frequency is tamed, along the lines Jona suggested (greater distance, lower frequency bonus), the effect of making even smaller aircraft financially viable is going to doom AWS. Just one of the unintended consequences...
IMO, higher priority should be first fixing (in order of importance):
1. frequency - it is just overwhelming, needs to be tamed
2. fleet commonality - just plain wrong as is in 1.3
3. fuel contract - just plain wrong as is. It would be irrelevant, except the fact that it is going to be basis of future "contracts"
4. ground handling - maybe after 1. and 3. have been fixed, but still, way below the importance of things like passenger connectivity. But I can understand that Sami wants to get all of the game flying mechanics done before taking on a huge project like passenger connectivity, city based demand.
IMO, other than fixing 1, 2, potentially 3, the highest priority should be creating an environment for new and casual players, where they can go through all phases of creating an airline in a semi-sandbox environment.
I wish I could find an interview with Sid Meier, a legend of computer game design. Paraphrasing, game should keep offering players rewards, fun, satisfaction, and challenge at the same time. AWS does not do that for players who end up in a full game worlds that they are not ready for. Perhaps AWS players are more masochistic than overall computer game playing population, since there are still 400+ airlines in
MT5, for example, half of them with less than 10 aircraft, while getting few rewards along the way...
Thinking of new ways of punishing big airlines for growing big suspending the basic laws of economics does not solve anything either...