These proposition is inspired by KKND real-time strategy game. Generally the concept is designed around factions conflict.
After a nuclear war (or something similar) there are two groups of survivors: people who survived in underground bunkers for decades (Survivors) and those who survived on the surface and mutated because of radiation and/or viruses (Evolved or Mutants). Survivors look like normal humans, like characters currently look. Evolved are mutants and have visually distinct bronze or even red skin colour and assymetric face features (other distictions can be added on wish), but have the same build and height (nothing like mutants from Fallout). The player can choose which faction his character will belong: Survivors or Evolved.
Factions have their own specifically looking weapons, armour and house parts. Members of each faction can only build their own faction types of armour, weapons and house parts. Mutants should have more barbaric looking armour and weapons (maybe with spikes and horns) than Survivors. After wooden buildings Survivors can progress to stone buildings, and Evolved – to clay ones (or at least their stone buildings should look like stones with clay or plastered with clay).
– have higher initial health 120-125 points compared to 100 points Survivors have.
– are stronger: deal 20-25 percent more damage with the same melee weapons than Survivors do.
– suffer times less radiation damage (or no damage at all).
– can eat raw meat without harm (but receive times less callories compared to roasted meat).
– can tame wolves and use them as pets.
– craft better armour and sophisticated weapons, like crossbows and firearms. Their firearms and crossbows deal more damage and have longer range.
– craft more efficient tools.
– build stronger buildings (+20-25 percent building hitpoints).
– can craft devices Evolved have no analogues of, like flashlights and radsuits.
RESOURCES, STONE AS MOST COMMON RESOURCE
Stone should be extrated not from metal and sulfur piles but from all rocks there are. Stone should be the most common resourse, but it should require metal tools to mine it. Mining stones with a rosk or stone hatchet should be far slower. And even mining with metal tools it should be slower than chopping wood.
Metal ore should be mined not from piles but in mines. These can be abandoned mines and caves. Once the mine is exhausted it collapces and enterance needs to be cleared again. Maybe mines could randomly spawn in rocks once old mines are exhausted. Metal mines would be the main resource for factions to fight for control of.
WEAPONS AND ARMOUR
No modern guns and armour.
There should be only selfmade oneshot pistols and rifles (muskets and flintlock pistols, or pistols and rifles, that use shells but can make only 1-2 shots between reloads). But these weapons should deal more damage than now. A flintlock pistol should deal around 50 damage and take a minute or half a minute to reload it. The rest should be bows, crossbows and different throwing weapons, like axes, javelins, even stones (thrown weapon could be collected). Also there should be large variaty of melee weapons from wooden clubs to steel swords. And appropriate armour types: cloth, leather, leather with metal, chainmail and finally crude plate armour.
MAP AND SPAWNING
Survivors and Evolved spawn in their respective half of a map randomly. To add to the atmosphere Survivors spawn randomly in one of tens bunkers scattered around their territory and Evolved spawn in caves or undestructable clay huts scattered around their respective half of the map.
It can be done so that bunkers and huts have undestructable doors that only faction members can open and every faction member can open any faction door. This way spawn shelters can serve the last shelter for faction members and prevent enemy faction from spawnkilling. There can be empty undestructable boxes in shelters to store and exchange resources between faction members.
For each 12 or 24 hours that character manages to survive without dieing he is awarded with +1 maximum health with higher limit been 200 for Survivors and 250 for Evolved.
To encourage faction wars characters are rewarded this +1 to strength (influences melee damage) every time they kill 10+n*5 enemy faction members. It can made that Evolved progress more in melee and Survivors – in ranged weapons.
There also should be crafting and building skills that progress with using them (Skyrim-type skill system). The higher the skill the better items and building blocks are made.