I know, it's just a game, but it seems ridiculous to me that you can take a locomotive from your inventory, place it in the world, and POOF it suddenly JUST APPEARS out of nowhere right next to you, this thing which weighs multiples of tons more than you. Ridiculous.
And of course the ability to run around the world with literally tons and tons of ores and equipment in your inventory is also ridiculous.
Though there is probably a way to explain all that away in a manner that makes the game more challenging.... nanobots and cyborgs. The player also never eats, sleeps, or excretes waste. So apparently they are not human. Something else? Maybe a cyborg or robot critter?
These inventory objects that appear out of nowhere, perhaps the player isn't merely placing them but rather is commanding a cloud of nanobots that we cannot see that follows them and surrounds the player, and they are what constructs the objects.
It would make more sense if the construction of objects is not instant because it takes time for the nanobot cloud to build things. So perhaps there could be a little progress indicator on objects the player has placed, where the object appears as a ghost which then "fills up" until it is fully solid and ready to function. Larger or more technically complex objects would take more time to build to the point of being ready.
If a biter happens to see the build of something in progress, they can attack which causes the construction to halt and the object does not work. Then as the biters continue their attack the construction bar slides back to zero until the object is destroyed. But if the biters are killed in time, then the player or a flying robot can arrive with a repair pack to resume construction of it.
Building by the nanobots is not the same as damage to a fully built object, so it may use a different color or different style of progress than the normal damage/health bar. Also, before an object is fully constructed, it does not function or block movement.
The flying construction robots may also not actually build things themselves, but also command their own nanobot clouds, so their building should also take time.
And in the same manner, removing a placed object should similarly take time, with a progress bar in the reverse direction until it is fully disassembled by the nanobot cloud.
Damaged objects can not be placed back into the world, but instead just count as a fraction of a normal object. In this way removing multiple damaged objects results in being able to place fewer of the same number in new condition, from the combined recovered building materials.