Will terrain restrictions and atmospheric damage ever be applied to the area surrounding a city? And if not, why?
With more and more planets turning into giant cities, it seems that those features are slowly becoming pointless and have ended up being a waste of time. If there is some larger plan for not having those applied to the outer area, I must be missing it.
That was a large debate. I think it came down to it being too much of a difficulty for new players. New players that finally figured out how the position interface and got themselves walking to reach outside... except to suddenly keel over from lack of oxygen and say screw this game.
'tis the code. The city container includes that terrain strip around the outside, hence any (0,0) is on the terrain and not the city slab. Most likely if atmo effects were added, they would have to be for the entire city.
I believe it was suggested that cities also have the atmo effects, but until NPCs can be equipped with items, they will all die before they finish their jobs (construction etc). Which would be much much worse.
"...but until NPCs can be equipped with items,..." and would like to add that it will be a requirement that the interface to do so will be easy to use and prefferably including some sort of automatization.
Other wise it will be very time consuming and booring to equip NPCs. basically making the whole game a little less fun, little less interesting.
Also, keep in mind, if this were true, you could have a planet like Coruscant where, even though it's supposedly one large city, you would be unsafe on the fringes of "cities" simply because of the way the game is coded.
Basically what Ellias said, wait until the atmosphere effects actually happen all over the planet, city or not, and then it will be more realistic than either situation we could have now.