PROBLEM: almost any terrain affected by player actions looks ugly and bland, contrasting too much with the surrounding landscape. The longer you stay at the base, the uglier its surroundings get. This is by most part caused by one simple thing: there is no plant left. Vegetation is a significant part of each planet's unique look, and when you remove it, the feel of the planet is removed as well.
This may be a purely personal thing, but I don't like destroying things, especially those which are pretty. I am sure some players would understand this.
That said, I am suggesting a SOLUTION to the PROBLEM I created just a second ago:
A way to replant destroyed vegetation.
Possible implementation variants:
TERRAIN TOOL AUGMENT
Research cost: 2500 bytes, craft cost: 1 zink, same as any other augment.
When installed, inhibits terrain deformation, instead planting vegetation native to currently selected terrain type.
If a terrain analyzer is attached, vegetation is picked for the type in it, and if there is no analyzers active, vegetation is picked for the type under the cursor.
May use organics to plant vegetation that can be re-collected again, or may only consume energy and plant visual-only grass/shrooms. Both options can be implemented at the same time (in this case, the augment would have a slot for organics on top of it, that can be filled for planting of "true" foliage).
Deformation speed (drill augments) are applied, affecting planting speed.
Possible alternative use: placement of any types of ores and resources purely for decoration purposes.
CONSUMABLE ITEM: Spicy spores
Research cost: 700 bytes, craft cost: 1 organics
Can be placed on the ground and then activated, or activated from the backpack.
When used, covers the surrounding area with grass native to terrain type. When dug, this grass gives a maximum of 75% of one organics item, or gives back nothing at all It's cheap anyways.
Research cost: 2000 bytes, craft cost: 1 aluminium alloy.
Has a resource slot on the top.
Can be activated from the backpack or after being placed on the ground, rapidly consumes 15 bars of energy before activation.
When used, plants selected resource (mainly organics) into ground/walls in a small radius, not burying its chunks deep and without any resource losses.
CREATIVE MODE TOOL
This one is the most obvious. A special TT mode that allows you to place down all kinds of resource deposits, including grass. Should have been added along with creative mode itself, if you ask me.
All of these could be implemented together or separately or in any combination. Additionally, all these tools could be used for decoration purposes with all kinds of resources, like placing down tons of ore around your base to brag around on a dedicated server. Who doesn't want to possess a huge dwarven fortress decorated with shiny chunks of hematite?
Overall: a new way to aesthetically perfect the world around you, with next to no downsides. Heard that SES people want to add that kind of stuff, so I hope they find some of this worth looking upon