Hold on, you're telling me there were two Colony Wars TCs being worked on? Ages ago I found a guy somewhere on the internet who was good enough at modeling and eventually came out with a WIP Navy Frigate from CW2. Said guy eventually became a FreeSpace fan. I was supposed to take care of the FREDding part of this CW TC but, unfortunately, the project didn't go past that early stage of development. A Colony Wars TC has truly been one of my most desired projects.
Back on topic, tractor beams and similar weapons have been considered a serious possibility several times, but I don't recall any successful attempts at creating them in FSO. If anything, just like in CW, they could serve many purposes and add more degrees of variability to the game. The player could perform several additional tasks thanks to a tractor beam.