I Mean it just makes since no? Mechanical pets…
Also… Bring back Mech Wars. Mechs should b able to Be used in Notum wars more effectively. They should have their Dmg amplified VS towers like before the tower change and when you needed them for Sam battery
Why make things harder? IP cost at low levels would be a big problem by adding ME/EE requirement. Trimmers have engineering skills requirements, so we really do need to burn IP in trade skills at lower levels, but that comes a little later. And at low levels engineer still need to spend IP to use pistols or grenade launchers.
Someday when a emulator becomes reality it may be fun to change some requirement for professions - because it makes sense to require engineering skills to build, operate and maintain a robotic pet. And changing engineer requirements would necessitate a change in IP for bureaucrats and how they create and maintain robotic pets.
The one thing you can do - from a role play scenario - is impose certain rulesets on your game characters. No outside buffs, or no credit or item transfers between characters, or force your engineer to spend IP on ME/EE. I’ve done variations on those themes, and it can be fun, challenging and personally rewarding.