I’ve been poking around a bit more with terrain/building authoring, most recently with an MMORPG Tycoon 1.1-style overhead view map, which you can zoom in and out.
Those who’ve been around for a while will remember that this was the original idea for how 2.0 would work; you’d have a 1.1-style vector graphic map, but when you zoomed in, you’d zoom straight in to the full 3D view.
As it turns out, though, it feels really weird to do that. For one thing, converting from a forward-view to a down-view interface actually feels really weird. And having the forced-downward vantage point while on the map also feels really weird. And finally, going to the solidly vector-graphic look from the current 3D view just seems to clash, from my point of view; the two styles don’t meld very well at all.
So I’m still playing with it a little, but it isn’t feeling nearly as promising as it sounded when I was originally considering it. Keeping terrain authoring and suchlike done exclusively via the FPS-style view may turn out to be the best way to go, after all.