Bunch of random suggestions

Just some random stuff I can think of.

  1. Have wooden frames require nails and hammer or a nailgun with charges instead of a welding tool

  2. Make footcrank use tire and take some thirst/hunger from the player when used for an extended period. It’d be pretty neat if this + the maximum load someone could move via foot cranks was dependant on the player’s strength and the terrain being non-wilderness. Kind of silly the sheer amount of weight you can stuff into a vehicle and still footpedal over wilderland plains.

  3. Extra light, foldable, and wooden frames could use a weight check, so that if you overload them you damage their durability over time.

  4. Bigger/wider tires (excepting wagon wheels) should give better stability and handling as well as slightly faster braking/stopping, while smaller wheels should give better acceleration and energy efficiency at the expense of some handling/braking/stability. Relative to their frame and the vehicle weight, of course. Building a big car on tiny wheels should be appropriately hilariously out of control. Building a semi truck on small wheels should slowly destroy the wheels, because weight. Monster truck wheels on a scooter would be both hilarious and educational, especially if you could drive over obstacles you normally couldn’t.

  5. Make casters not a valid propulsion method, but allow the object to be pulled/pushed around like it does now. (if it doesn’t already).

  6. Ability to define a different climate. High elevation with low temps and extreme storms and sunburn from snow, or Costal with less extreme temperatures but high humidity/lots of rain during summer and chances of extreme tropical storms mid-late year. Or an almost year-round humid swampy junky place like some places in Florida. Stuff like that would be neat.

  7. A change or upgrade/downgrade to the ethanol burner biomod. Have it slowly increase your power per turn while slowly reducing your alcohol content and drunkenness, with power gained based on strength or quality of alcohol, instead of random lump energy sum and drunkenness. You’re drunk because of the ethanol in your system, and stronger initial drunkenness = faster power charging, but it gradually burns the ethanol off so you gradually get less drunk.

  8. A winch module for vehicles. Once installed, you can use the winch with e to dispense a winch hook on the ground. Pick the winch up, and apply it to a vehicle to attach it. If you travel too far away from the vehicle the winch is on, the winch hook item will delete itself. When attached, you can either activate the winch module again or just drive the vehicle the winch is installed on. If you activate it, your ability to drive the vehicle forward or backward is removed, and your engine method of choice is used to winch the attached vehicle towards yours instead (foot pedals would probably only be able to winch light/medium stuff at best unless you were some sort of hydraulic uberhulk). It would probably cause an appropriate amount of noise if the thing you’re dragging has too little wheels. You can activate the winch again to re-enable your ability to drive.
    If you instead just drive the vehicle the winch is installed on, or drive after above winching, and if you have enough horsepower and the thing you’re towing is light enough/has enough of some sort of wheels, you can drag it along behind you.

  9. Some sort of special trunk or aisle you can install around a winch-having frame that lets you reel the vehicle into your own vehicle. Store a motorbike in your trunk. Just collides if your trunk is too small for the vehicle.

  10. Air conditioning/heating. A mechanics and/or electronics construction to make a gasoline or electric powered air conditioner/heater. Standing somewhat near it while inside will reduce or increase your character’s warmth. Also if you can build/deconstruct into/from a wall. A vehicle variant would be nice that only worked if the frame it was on and the ones around it were considered ‘enclosed’.

  11. Soaked towel/bandana/neck/wrist thing wearing. Ability to wear certain soaked articles in low humidity so that the evaporation cools your character down. Some sort of technological variant for mid-late game would be neat too. MIT students actually semi-recently have been working on a contraption that’s kind of like a fancy wearable heatsink.

  12. Wearing heatpacks, and chemical heatpack making. For those winter nights.

  13. Have flashlights omnidirectional as they are now, but if you move your view with HJKL, it will turn into a narrower but longer beam with a vector direction of where you’re facing. Even 1 unit off is enough. For balance you’d have to delay the change in direction for at least a turn, because otherwise you could just lightshow pirouette in hammer-spacetime.

  14. Alter non-follower survivor ai so they become cowardly if A. Their weapon of choice is low on ammo and they don’t have a good melee weapon choice B. There’s a lot of hostile enemies around. Talking like 1:10 odds at least. C. Not chase after random non-hostile mobs like squirrels and frogs D. Prefer to take shelter in enclosed areas like shelters or houses when possible, but will run to another if it’s becoming too compromised and A/B/C are applicable E. Search for and use medical supplies and ammo if they’re lacking.

Air conditioning and wooden frames and heatpack making: +1 from me.
Footcrank tiring player: +1
Different climate: +1000

The rest: not so much

I agree with Zireael.

Also, I think there already is an air-condition in place on most vehicles, so that when you’re in the vehicle it increases temperature when low and decreases it when high. I think that needs fuel or a running motor or something, though.

Still, there should definitely be some kind of ingame hint that air-conditioning is installed in most vehicles.