Have Alliances and the sovereignty system limited the amount of PVP and RP potential in Null sec? Imagine a Null Sec where anyone could build outposts wherever. Would the reduction of the alliance game mechanic, and the removal of the sovereignty game mechanics (or the modification of it from Alliance level to Corp level for that matter) force more PVP into Null sec, or would giant power blocs like the NC still form themselves?"
Since I live in null sec I feel I have decent view of this:
I don't feel the removal/modification of Alliance mechanics would greatly affect how things run in null sec. Even if you take away Alliance mechanics completely, you are left with the same people doing the same general thing: holding sovereignty over null-space. If I remember correctly, there was a time when there were no Alliance mechanics, and space was held by sole corporations. While I have no experience from those times, I see how things are now, and Alliance blue or Corporate blue both mean the same thing: don't shoot it. While I agree Alliances would be more dynamic without Alliance mechanics, in the end the same space gets held by the same group of people with the don't shoot blues rule.
Because of the above rules, PvP is no more forced there than it is now. Given that Alliances can exist without being in an actual Alliance, it's my feeling creations like NC. would still exist, just that they would be known by the smaller names and not the big ones like NC.
Have alliances limited RP and PvP? I don't honestly think they've impacted either. Anyone can RP at any time regardless of Alliances, and anyone can find PvP if they want it (rather easily too). Alliance mechanics, even gone, because of the above statements, wouldn't increase PvP.
A null sec where anyone can build anything? Such a thing was never meant to be, as even Alliances without the Alliance mechanic would not tolerate this. To operate as a group, and stay unified, resources would need divided equitably, and that runs counter to building whatever you and your corp want to build willy nilly. The alliance mechanic just makes distribution of those resources easier, the TAKING of such resources by an Alliance easier, by a single corporation harder. Thus Alliances are more stable, but overall PvP remains unchanged.
It could be argued that null sec PvP isn't really PvP, just blob warfare, which I myself agree to to a certain extent. The battles and experiences are no less riveting or intense however. You still stand to lose your ship, and while you may only be one in a long list of pilots, if the other side wants you dead, chances are you are going to explode and there is nothing skillwise that will save you except Logistics pilots, and even then, that is determined by how much ALPHA STRIKE damage you take.
One last thing on Alliance mechanics: If I remember correctly, corporations are allowed to house up to 5000 members. I'd argue that many Alliances may only just barely meet or indeed number less than this. Admittedly, 5000 ruled by one iron fist seems unlikely, but if everyone wants to hold space so that they can make ISK faster and better and not have to worry about CONCORD, it could and probably has happened. With Alliances as they are now, you can essentially have one giant corporation not limited to a number of pilots, not solely ruled by one person, and able to fill various needs and desires of every pilot under the Alliance banner. It's my feeling that Alliances allow for more player enjoyment because of the opportunity for differing kinds of government. Think of an Alliance in EVE as the UN, only not impotent like the UN, but something powerful, willing to act. While it is possible that it be run like a dictatorship as was done by IT, we can all see the result of that in the end when the dictator is not a benevolent one.