Hi, welcome to a massive Dalek Mod suggestion thread where I'm gonna suggest ways to better integrate the mod into Minecraft 1.17.
Suggestion Set 1: Artstyle
As of Minecraft 1.14, there is now a much more consistent art style to the game. So, let's make use of this to help sell the mod as being part of the game.
Now, I'm not talking the texturing exactly, Mae's already doing great work with that, I'm talking more so how certain things are implemented.
For example, the Trident (1.13+) and the Spyglass (1.17+) are modelled items which only render as modelled in hand. A similar thing would work well for items such as the sonics. Other modelled items, like Ace's Bat, should probably be put back to being sprites, or given a model more inline with Minecraft.
Suggestion Set 2: The Laws of Minecraft
For this section, I will be referring to this video and the facts stated within it. It's also a good watch, would recommend.
Within the video, there is mention of a few of the pages within Jeb's book of design guidelines, which are approximated to have been introduced around 1.8. The two biggest ones known are "One Block at a Time" and "Bad Things Happen..."
One Block at a Time isn't worth bringing up much, I just want to use it as a jumping off point to suggest things that cause explosions drop all items.
Bad Things Happen is what I want to focus on. The page is about bad things happening due to the player, not due to AI.
The biggest issues within the Dalek Mod in regards to this rule are the Special Weapons and Suicide Daleks, although others exist such as the Cyberdrone (and going outside the Dalek Mod to make a note, Martians in WotW). These variants of the Dalek create massive destruction to the world without player input, the exact opposite of the rule. Now, I'm not suggesting the removal of these Daleks and other mobs, but instead a tone down. There should be a player caused reason as to why Daleks can destroy a player's hard work, rather than it just being pathfinding. Whether it be a case of you must damage first in order for them to do damage (similar to how the Bee only attacks if you mess with it), or maybe some other trigger. Alongside this, a change to Special Weapon Daleks to destroy less, and more so create devastation such as fire, might be a good way to do this. Suicide Daleks becoming Dalek Creepers would also work quite well for this simplification (including Creeper quirks such as being scared away by something, for Creepers it's the cats).
The lack of control to why your work can be griefed is part of why some players, myself included, don't enjoy playing survival with the mod, and instead just build in creative with the mobs and mob griefing disabled.
Suggestion Set 3: Expanded Functionality
One of the best things about Minecraft is how the player can access more things by combining other things together. Netherite Scraps and Gold, then Netherite and Diamond tools for example, or campfires and beehives. I think the Dalek Mod could do with similar connections between features.
Concepts I have for this include having something that can only be forged through the smithing table, perhaps related to Daleks or Cybermen. Having the Stone Cutter be used to obtain new, fancy blocks. Something that'll be mentioned in the next section in regards to vanilla controls. Replacing radiation pills with some form of radiation potion that is brewed, instead of crafted. Creating this cohesion between Dalek Mod and Vanilla Minecraft features would make the mod feel less like random content stuck on top of the base game, and more like something that is a part of the experience.
Suggestion Set 4: Controls
Short and simple one, various control schemes, not based off the show, but instead off themes. As mentioned in the previous section, having controls that look just like vanilla blocks, such as the vanilla handbrake, for the entire new control set. Some may need to be vanilla-inspired instead of vanilla wholesale, but having that slight integration will help out. Alongside that, controls which feel like they belong within Minecraft and it's technological stylings would also be important.
Suggestion Set 5: The Places You'll Go
A huge part of the Dalek Mod experience should be the planets. The reason it's not, is there's next to no reason to go to most of them. And as such, this suggestion section comes about. To me, each and every planet should have a major reason, and many minor reasons, to go there. For examples within vanilla, the Nether has blaze rods, needed for the End, but also the materials for brewing, a new array of blocks, a new stronger ore in Netherite, and more. The End has the Elytra, but also Chorus Fruit, special loot, and of course, the Dragon.
For Dalek Mod planets, I feel a similar thing should exist for each planet/timezone, in order to make the planets worth exploring, and also possibly worth inhabiting.
To expand on the general concept, every planet should have multiple biomes, similar to the Overworld and Nether (the End technically does too, but not as extreme). Those biomes should each support different kinds of life, and can give the player more to look for in their world. Each planet should also be developed to feel more alive than the 1.16 Nether, in my opinion, to give reasons to explore. Structures to find, loot to obtain, and hidden things scattered about.
I suggest these four locations, as these four are the ones I feel should be implemented first, rather than the other planets within the mod which serve less purpose. Planets like Varos, Trenzalore, Mondas, they're not really needed as soon as something like Skaro, to a mod named after the Daleks. And Mars I left off because honestly, Mars in the Dalek Mod doesn't really serve a purpose. It's quite barren, with little to no features. It'd be much better if, when playing Dalek Mod alongside War of the Worlds, some Dalek Mod features spawned on WotW's Mars, such as Ice Warriors.
Suggestion Set 6: Progression Tree
This one is probably one of the craziest suggestions I'm going to be creating here, so let's go.
The Dalek Mod as it currently sits has some extremely wonky progression. You go through Vanilla for a bit, craft a TARDIS, and more or less, you've "beaten" the game. Let's fix that.
Starting off, TARDISes should not be craftable easily. They should require at the very least, getting to Gallifrey to mine certain materials only found there (giving a reason to explore). But, how would you get there? Let me explain.
Phase 1: Time Travel. The first phase of my suggested progression tree is to obtain the ability to travel through time, through the use of a Vortex Manipulator. After getting the device (Crafted with leather, iron, redstone, chorus fruit, and Zeiton-7, possibly), the only current place you can travel to, is Minecraft Classic. You can then power up the device, using materials made from the two eras, to get access to the moon. This is when things actually start occurring.
Phase 2: Suit Up. While getting to the moon is the easy part, surviving there isn't really possible. To explore the moon, you'll need a space suit. This crafting can be determined by what's best for balancing and such. As an alternate way to get to this phase, perhaps it could be possible to fly or be teleported there, using space ships rarely found on Earth. Exploring the moon would net you some new materials, which can create better space suits, able to survive alien surfaces better and store oxygen for longer, and also upgrade the vortex manipulator again, granting access to:
Phase 3: Irradiated. Skaro would now be unlocked to be travelled to, the final planet needed to get to Gallifrey. You would need radiation potions in order to survive on Skaro for extended periods of time, and space suits would not help against the radiation at first. Eventually, you could upgrade the space suit with dalekanium and other Skaronium materials, but until then, you'll continue needing potions. Good thing the air's breathable enough to not need a space suit though xD
The goal on Skaro would not be to find a special material for the vortex manipulator, but instead to find a certain type of rare structure, akin to a Stronghold in the Overworld. These structures would be found rarely around the world, with an indestructible portal frame that must be filled by some material (perhaps some form of Zeiton-7 or maybe something of the Dalek's creation), creating a portal to Gallifrey.
Phase 4: Smaller on the Inside. At this point, you're on Gallifrey, with no way back to Skaro besides the manipulator, which means you'd need to get all the way back to the portal to return to Gallifrey if you decided to go home, so it's better to set up camp on Gallifrey (luckily Gallifrey has no radiation, lack of oxygen, or anything else you need to worry about in that way, and is plentiful on food and other resources akin to the Overworld (food and such)), and start mining underground for the rare metals and mineral-life found below the surface, and from trading with the Gallifreyans and Time Lords. Upon obtaining enough to create a TARDIS, which should take a fair while, I'd probably make the ores as rare as Ancient Debris, you can finally get to work. Craft the TARDIS, place it down, and select your starter Desktop Theme.
Phase 5: Anywhere. Well, not yet. At this point, you have a TARDIS, it has all the base controls, and you look at the planet list. Earth, Ancient Earth (Minecraft Classic), Gallifrey, and that's it. How do you get to other planets? Well, there's two ways. The first is through similar means to the Vortex Manipulator. Put the correct material into a scanner-like block within your new TARDIS, and after a while (maybe a full Minecraft day or so, with the way it takes time being similar to a furnace), the TARDIS will have learnt when and where the destination is, and allow you to travel there. The other, is by chance.
Flying the TARDIS wouldn't be a precise thing. You can put in coordinates, set everything up, and take off, but if your TARDIS is not well maintained, it can start to slip, land where it shouldn't, and possibly land on new planets you didn't know about before. There would also be ways to force a crash, such as flying the TARDIS incorrectly and causing flight errors, which would also create randomisation in the landing destination. And alongside these, would be the Randomiser. Activating this would make the TARDIS go to completely random locations, scanners would be disabled, and the only way to know if you've actually landed somewhere, is by poking your head out and seeing where you landed. Of course, this could lead to a lot of deaths. Better make sure to stick Curse of Binding on your keys, eh? (side suggestion, having something like this to allow the key to always be on you, even after death, if you choose, would always be nice to have)
Phase 6: Doctoring the TARDIS. At this point, you've unlocked all the planets currently available in the mod, and in the other mods you've connected in via the config file to set the identifying materials. You've got full Netherite or Metalert armour, making you a lot stronger than you were at the start of this whole adventure, what do you do next? Well, you could always improve your TARDIS. Increase the fuel bank size, allowing for longer travel distances, and staying in flight longer. Increase the power of the shields. Decrease how much damage is done to the TARDIS by things like Dalek laser blasts. Obtain new disguises. Expand your interior.
Or, you could set it down, lock it, and do it all again.
It's entirely up to the player at this point, although giving them new "missions" to achieve with the TARDIS, whether via Advancements or just having things within the game they can only do as they increase the TARDIS's functionality and use it would work wonders for improving it all. Perhaps the TARDIS AI/Handles but Dalek Mod could generate random quests for players to complete each Minecraft day, just so they have something they can do if they run out of ideas.
Suggestion Set 7: Functionality over Quantity
I somewhat mentioned this concept up in suggestion set 5, but want to expand more on it.
The Dalek Mod should really focus on increasing what it can do, over what it has. 90 TARDIS exteriors means nothing if the TARDIS almost always looks like a Blue Police Box from 1963 still. 90 odd Daleks mean nothing if only 7 of them feel different. 10 Planets means nothing if there's only reason to go to 3 of them for longer than 20 minutes at a time. What the mod should focus on is expanding each feature so everything feels like a full feature, not just a bunch of reskins with no other purpose.
For an example, Daleks.
While yes, the Daleks don't have much separating their different versions, there are things that can be done through this thing called "Creative Freedom", and by overexaggerating the show. For some examples, 60s Daleks could only spawn in the Dalek Cities, have a slower fire rate, and can only move along the ground (no jumping, but slabs would probably be fine), whereas 2005 Daleks could spawn on any planet, have a fire rate a bit faster than Skeletons, attack things on sight, and can fly. Having each era of Dalek have some unique quirk to make them feel more important and special, I think is key to making the mod feel complete and part of the game. Nether Daleks could have flamethrowers instead of laser guns, and could survive in lava (perhaps visually they could be tuned to Netherite, and rarely drop Netherite Scraps).
On this same concept, Cybermen. You can have the older Mondasian designs weak to Gold, Cybus designs rusting maybe (and also being the ones who Upgrade villager mobs), and Cyberiad designs (Nightmare in Silver, Jodie's Era) being only defeatable through non-standard means (not swords, but laser guns, axes, etc), to give variety and complexity to the mod, without going overboard.
Now, this isn't me saying don't have texture variants, that's perfectly fine. But, not every version of a mob needs to function identically.
Empty Children could infect Villagers, creating Gasmask Zombies who can then continue infecting, but Empty Children would be all that spawns naturally. Combined with that, a way to cure the Gasmasked villagers and children, like how you can cure a Zombie Villager, would be an important feature I feel (tying back to Suggestion Set 2, with the "Bad Things Happen..." rule of Minecraft).
Suggestion Set 8: Gods
Dramatic name, dramatic suggestion.
I think boss mobs which function as proper bosses are needed for the mod. Things not just on par, but stronger, than the Ender Dragon, and the Wither.
While we do have a couple bosses, they're not great, and I think they could be improved immensely.
For the Dalek Emperor fight, the mechanics of it spawning waves of Daleks to try to keep you off of it is good, but that's basically the entire fight.
For Dalek Storm, well it's not really been reimplemented since 1.7. So, let's design a fight for it, just to give a concept.
We'll start with how to be able to fight it. We'll make it require you to summon it, utilising the Temporal Shift it is capable of. Perhaps you would need to create a junk satellite-like device somewhere, aimed at the sky, and send out a signal? Then, here comes Storm, transporting down from on high, destroying the satellite, and starting the epic music.
Now, you have the imposing Dalek Storm firing at you, and you'll have to survive. I'm not going to give damage numbers, health numbers, etc, because I'm bad at balancing those sorts of things. But, let's say it hits like a truck. The first stage of the fight could be to deal it down to half health, when Storm may switch up the strategy a bit, given that it could "suffer weapon damage" from the player's numerous attacks on him. At this point, maybe it slows its firing rate a bit, but starts flying, in order to avoid your attacks, and start healing, almost like an inverse of the Wither fight. Another mechanic to it could be utilising the Emergency Temporal Shift to get further away from you, to make you unable to hit it for long periods of time. Upon defeat, it could drop some Dalekanium and Metalert (parts of the casing), the music disc like it currently does, but maybe also some materials to upgrade the TARDIS (like brought up at the end of Suggestion Set 6), and some trophy-like thing maybe. Perhaps in order to get all the trophies (upgrades, music disc, and a statue or something), you'd need to fight it multiple times, with it always taking a toll on durability and supplies so you can't just keep doing it over and over.
For some other boss ideas, stuff with the Dalek Emperors and Davros would be cool (with Davros dropping that version's chair as a trophy), CyberLeaders/CyberPlanners/Lone Cybermen with armies, and perhaps something like the Great Intelligence as a boss too, with a set spawn location within a structure.
But whatever the boss, it should have a reason to be fought, and be an interesting battle.
Suggestion Set 9: Inventory Simplification
This one is a bit of a different suggestion. Basically, the inventory is a bit too cluttered in 1.12, and I'd love to see it changed.
Instead of having all 90 TARDISes twice, have one TARDIS spawn item, and all the chameleon circuits as items (maybe not even in creative? Having the base chip and having to give it the data like in survival could be a fine thing). Having one Sonic item, and the ability to alter its appearance to whatever Sonic you want via the charging station. Having only a few roundels in creative, and having the rest in a roundel creation bench, similar to the stone cutter. For mobs with variants with little to no functional difference, having them be one spawn item and randomise on spawn, like vanilla mobs (Autons, Clockwork Droids, Gasmask Zombies, etc). Having one fez/bowtie/other dyable, and the ability to dye it just like leather armour.
Please note, this is not me saying remove everything, just remove what doesn't need to be easily accessible and has other means of getting quickly.
Side suggestion to this catagory, utilise the tabs that already exist in Vanilla. Put all the weapons in the Combat tab. Put all the tools in the Tools tab. Put all the edibles in the Foodstuffs tab. Put all the travel items in the Transportation tab. Stuff like TARDIS Components, and other large swaths of items, can get their own DM tabs though, it's more the stuff that can easily go in other tabs without multiplying the amount in the tab insanely I'd like to see moved in with their Vanilla buddies.
Suggestion Set X: Smaller Suggestions
Just a quick bundle of random suggestions
Well, I think that's it from me for now, I may add more in the future, so feel free to give suggestions to what I could add or change, give feedback on my post for things I could improve in future, thank you all for reading all this, and to the SWDTeam, #PleaseReleaseDalekModSixteenAndSeventeen
If you want some other suggestions, check out this post which was spawned from the same discussion! All of their suggestions are really good, and interconnect with what I've suggested quite well, in my opinion.