I’d say I’m an above average rust player and have a very long time in the game; collectively 12000 hours across many accounts (due to hiding username, and previously having streamed the game)
In this time, I’ve come to realise I actually think raiding to an extent ruins the game. At least, any server that lasts longer than 5 days per wipe? Its unfortunate that many casual players have to result to 10 player populated servers just to breach into the game; and even experienced players who get day 1 blown up by random groups of 10 and then quit for the month, its just not a very sustainable way of keeping servers populated throughout the month.
So, my suggestion comes with changing how raiding works; potentially a way where you can only damage the property of someone listed as an enemy in contacts. The enemy has to be mutal between both parties, and you cannot change someone to being an enemy within contacts, it must happen through pvp etc. That way, raiding gains a causation, similar to those youtube videos where people thrive for revenge against players, try to find a certain persons base; i think it would really improve the longevity of a wipe and provide some sort of purpose beyond just aimlessly blowing things up;
in addition, perhaps removing the ability to break tcs to grief a base? you could implement a codebreaker/lockpick mechanic exclusively used on TCs, tcs get their own unique lock and in turn become indestructible, during a raid, if the raiders gain full control of the base and successfully manage to pick the lock of the base, they can loot 80% of the TC, so that it retains upkeep and gives players a chance to reclaim their base and still continue their wipe. This option would likely need to be tinkered with to fit the different gamemodes between vanilla and softcore.
I’m honestly just trying to fix the issue of people just A. sitting in their bases doing nothing and then just flying out at the lowest pop to blow someone random up, B. bases being MLRS griefed out of boredom and C. the lack of longevity for the servers that last longer than a 3 days. Because you know, theres a reason they last 3 days, its because any longer it dies out.