So I had a bunch of random ideas I didn't think had a theme. So I'll put em all here and you guys can add on your random ideas too.
1. Balance melee and ranged classes so melee isn't gimped. It seems to me in d2 that melee characters take tons of risk for no reward.
- One way is to make an Iron Maiden for ranged/caster classes
2. Balance two handed vs 1 handed weapon + shield so 2 handed weapons are viable. It seems to me that shields are so useful that 2 handers just have no place in d2. The mods on shields are awesome, you can socket them for resists, and they can give you (essentially) 75% resist physical. Hard to pass up for a tiny plus in damage.
Maybe give 2 handed weapons 8 or 10 sockets, with some really long runewords that give resists or pdr to make them viable.
Or make 2 handed weapons spawn with resists or pdr as mods.
3. Make less gear dependent melee/more gear dependent ranged classes. It's lame that you have to roll a sorc to MF for a million years before you can roll a viable melee class. I wanna be able to roll a pally or barb first thing and have fun with it. I know people have Guardianed with all sorts of ridiculous gimped builds, but I want melee and ranged to be equally powerful.
Basically I want more viable options in general. More options in gear, more options in character choice, etc..
In regards to your shield comments, I agree fully. I always lamented the fact that I had to give up my survivability in order to dish out some extra damage. I brought a concentrate maul wielding barbarian into hell difficulty, and even with his high hit points and defense, no block left him very vulnerable. Optimally, I'd like to see dexterity contribute to the likelihood of blocking a melee attack with a melee weapon, even if a shield is in play. That way players who opted to take the increased damage route could still survive in hell with that as an option, and those who elected to use shields would reap greater benefits still, but without leaving the weapon only guys hanging out to dry. Blizzard could elect to have melee weapons block ranged attacks, but that's a tad too Hollywood for my tastes.
As far as missing out on the extra stats, in my mind that's simply part of the game - you either get the extra damage or the extra bonuses. I just want to use my weapon to block!
As for the first one, they do have the bloodmana curse, but it gets used so rarely that it's barely commensurate. Most of my casters have more HP than mana, so I've only actually been cursed with it once.
Imo, damage is the number one thing everyone wants and useing a big 2 hander is going to give you the best possible damage compared to weapon plus shield or 2 weapons. I think it has to be the way it is. If you want the best damage you have to sacrifice something else.
Basically, the OP sounds like he is asking for balance, and we all want balance, but if they make 2 handed weapons better, then the next argument would be "why are shields useless? No one is using a shield anymore because anyone can put damage or res jewels into a 8os weapon..."
I agree with Stillman. If you could get away with using two handers, shields would become useless. Even if they give you better mods still, if you minimize the danger too far of usigng two handers, it would more than offset the need for extra mods from a shield.