ORIGINAL: Erik Rutins
I suppose we could in the future add a "no hyperspace option" with a small dense start with systems closer to each other, for folks who want more sub-light gameplay. I think that's probably a pretty small group though.
Actually, I tried this partly for role playing purpose, and partly to play a way different from the one suggested (i.e. not rushing the very expensive warp engines but instead developing some cheaper tech so that I could both have more effective ships faster and do some exploration earlier while the warp bubble was being researched).
But the more I think about it, and the more I'm convinced sub-light system to system travel can't work very well in this game, it's just not designed for this.
It would require the thrusters to be handled a completely different way, with no other speed limit than the light speed and a continuous acceleration for half the distance, then a continuous braking for the rest of the trip.
Without this, even with closer stars no other ship than a pretty big explorer would be able to travel and come back from the nearest system, so the sub-light play part is limited to minimal extra-system exploration anyway.
Not even talking about the time and AI factor. I already imagine hundreds of freighters following each others in a several years trip to deliver the goods from a single extra-system mining station.