Is it just me or do others find that the majority of planetary exploration missions have some pretty nice scenery, but nothing more. You run around scanning some artifacts, but little else. It seems like a huge waste of potential. I encountered one recent mission that I hoped might have some variety. We beam down to an inhabited planet where the people are roughly iron age technology. We need to remove some artifacts and avoid contact. Well, I got to do half that, since we never come close to the people. It would have been nice to have to avoid contact with the inhabitants as part of the mission. Instead of fighting, you need to be sneaky. On other worlds, it would be equally interesting to add plant and animal life to encounter. Not always hostile, but sometimes. Another mission I did involved dangerous, carniverous plants. All we did was scan them. Having them attack us or emit an incapacitating pollen might have made it more interesting. I don't think the repetative factions of hostile invading aliens needs to be the only interaction in these exploration missions.