I am trying to come up with ideas for Rust that solve problems without adding extra UI elements and stuff like that, but instead fully work within the logic of the game world.
Craftable from a plant. Gives the imbiber a faster running speed for x seconds, but makes the hands shake causing all tasks that use the hands (attacking, collecting) to be worse for x+y seconds (i.e. longer). This could be a boon to those payers who want to collect resources but avoid conflict. It will allow to have a better chance to get away, but commits you to fleeing.
A dog (minimal or no combat effect) that can be instructed to “guard” and will bark when anyone approaches - help resource collectors avoid getting snuck up on by bandits.
I was also thinking this dog could be used for tracking. Within a certain timeframe, a scent could be acquired from a dead looted body, a destroyed door, or a looted container. That person responsible for the murder/destruction/theft could then be tracked by the dog for a short while until the trail dissipates.
You could also use this to set up a security system. A dog might have acquired several scents of “bad guys” during its life. If the dog smells one of those people again, it starts barking a warning. A team of players (maybe all wearing the same color clothing for their group) could identify spies (someone attempting to come in wearing the same clothing color) or get warning of approaching raiders if they have some dogs in their base with those scents. I like this because it helps with a problem people often complain about, but fully within the logic of the game world and not by some “bad guy” UI indicator or something like that. If wind direction played a part, it would affect what direction an attacker might approach.
A dog could also potentially be able to find the way home to its base when you are lost.
BONUS IDEA - Wind direction
Any wind direction logic (as mentioned above) could also be used for wild animals detecting the player. Hunting might involve approaching from downwind.
I’ll think about some more and maybe add them. I am interested in hearing other peoples ideas.