How To Incorporate "Favorite Builders" And Keep It Balanced
This is one of the fundamental problems of the game. How do you balance giving raiders outposts they want to raid while evenly distributing raids among all outposts? Unless all outposts are of equal quality then this is fundamentally impossible. I've spent a lot of time pondering the issue and this is the solution that I've come up with.
First, introduce a system that allows players to favorite builders. Favoriting a builder will do several things. One, it would add them to a list that can be easily found in social raids. One option simply being to default search outposts from favorites. So as soon as you click "social", all the outposts from all your favorite builders are displayed. Then there is a separate area where you can click a specific builder from your favorite list to see their stuff. This will just make social raiding your favorite builders easier.
The second thing favoriting a builder will do is increase the odds of coming across their outposts in your expedition. Now the key to keeping this balanced is these raids do not increase the raid count of the builder. If that builder had an active brutal outpost and they are only scheduled to get 3 raids for the outpost then they still only get 3 raids on that outpost. But all things being equal, if a raider is searching their expedition for an outpost and that builder is one of their favorites and hasn't hit 3 raids yet then it would be distributed to them. So this increases the odds of finding outposts in your expedition from builders you like but does not change distribution of raids to builders.
Now the third thing I propose is a little more controversial. I think each player should be allowed to substitute an outpost from their expedition for something off their favorite builder list of equal skull difficulty rating once per day. These raids do not count against the builder for raid distribution and do not even have to be from an outpost they have activated. If the raider has an outpost in their expedition and they have a strong inclination that the raid won't be enjoyable, they can just say "nope" and use up their daily substitution token to swap it out with something that one of their favorite builders put on social that is an equal skull rating. The rewards to the raider are identical to what they would have got from the original outpost.
Doing this serves several purposes. It rewards good builders that put in the time and effort making maps that raiders want to raid. It gives a small amount of autonomy to raiders and improves their raiding experience. Yes, this will create a system that gives disproportionate amount of raids to certain builders but by limiting this to once a day shouldn't break the system. Builders will still get enough raids to improve their skills.