I'm sure there are more player than myself that want a slightly more challenging experience. There are several planets in the solar system, yet you can only start on terran (if this is wrong, please correct me. it is true to my games though). This planet is the easiest with its abundance of resources and research. We should be able have a difficulty setting to choose from before we start a new game that will determine several things:
1. Beginning of different planets.
This could have lots of variation to it, from landing on terran which has loads of resources, to landing on the barren moon which has very little. The player gets to decide before they begin so they have no one to blame but themselves and are less likely to quit and start over.
2. Change the rarity of resources on each planet
There is really not much of a reward or consequence for visiting other planets except for the visual aspects. While all planets could still contain all resources, each planet could have a native resource which is much more abundant than the others. I know this is already the case in some instances because I found native titanium and lithium on the radiated planet but it could be extended to all other resources. This could also be a factor for a player to think about when choosing which planet to begin on. The native resources of each planet could also be changed from save to save which could eliminate routine and assumption (I know that this sentence sort of negates the last but at least we have options).
3. Varied amount of research
I have already made a post on this but I felt that I might as well lump it in with this. There are too many research opportunities. I can start a game and have everything researched in at least 2 hours. All one needs to do is find a cave and dig up every plant, and that is only if their landing zone wasn't filled with it. It decreases investment though I may only be speaking for myself. If there were less research opportunities, players would actively need to hunt for them, feel more excitement when finding them, and be less burdened by the amount of "rare" materials (which have few, though awesome, products i.e. oxygen tank and battery) that are acquired by the sheer volume of research that exists. Lessening the amount of research on harder difficulties would definitely add some difficulty.
4. Varied amount of resources in individual resource veins.
Even though this exists already, in the theme of making things harder, you could decrease the amount of a resource in each vein.
These are mainly things that I would enjoy because I like the challenge. I always start on legendary for Halo and survival for Minecraft and I would like to have a tougher time here. There are also plenty of players out there that would like it just to show what they accomplished on the hardest difficulty. Permadeath Minecraft and all of The Long Dark are great examples. Lastly, I know that multiplayer is going to be great with this game and this could give people a reason to play multiplayer; so that they could have more hands on deck to hunt for resources, underground, across regions, or across the solar system, all at once, working toward a common goal. (not sure if that is a real sentence structure or not, whatever)
I absolutely love this game; the look, the music, the idea, everything. You could really steal myself and my wife from Minecraft. The only difference is that there is a long term to us playing Minecraft survival and there isn't much of one here. We saw it on the Xbox marketplace under top paid a few days ago, bought it, and played non-stop (except for sleep) all weekend. I have never been part of a development before, and have never really cared, but this game is one of the coolest and most unique ideas that I have seen in a long time and I would like to help as much as possible.
If anyone would like to add an item to the list, please feel free. If any of these get added, BRING IT ON!!!!