It's been said many times that the current version of augmentation is a bit boring from a strategy perspective. When the abilities were tied to the second hive, it was great to get them all at once, as defending the building hive was of great strategic importance. Just waiting for a timer to expire isn't much fun. Having to choose between energy usage for cysts/drifters/mist is a step in the right direction, but augmentation is just something you check off the list as khammander.
Why not have the khamm research the second and third tier abilities individually? This has been suggested before and someone from UWE was behind it. With alien upgrades being tied to specific hives, killing one hive could remove certain upgrades but not all of them. Having the second hive would be an advantage to start researching more abilities faster.
Once we get third tier tech, aliens could finally have some real options in their tech tree besides just crag/shift/shade. The team could rush gorge upgrades for an early victory, support a couple of pro fades, or go for a more balanced approach. Also, anything we can do to make the second hive more important and give the khamm more options right now would be a step in the right direction.
Third tier could also open the possibility of doubling the maturity time and allowing 2-tier abilities to be researched at 50% maturity, with 3-tier abilities researched at 100%.
Thoughts and ideas?