Ni’Hal are scaled in the same way as base-game stuff was in 1.1’s release – which is mostly the same as 1.0. It’s possible that that system has changed relatively recently, but also possible that it’s just a messup in Rimworld’s spawning systems. I’ve gotten my hands on suits of cataphract/marine armor right from tribal multiple times recently.Ni’Hal actually deploy their ‘good’ armors later than vanilla pawns do. Cataphracts spawn at 1.3k points whereas Stormtroopers spawn at 2k, and Purifiers at around 3k. Vanilla power armor raiders appear at 1.3k as well. Trooper armor is basically Flak Armor, meanwhile, though inferior in not being stackable and superior in their helmet being better-coverage.I’m always adjusting how Ni’Hal weapons work, but they’re basically not worth the cost unless you need to kill heavily-armored targets – or use the shotgun. This is predominantly so they can stack up against Orassans, which are why the Ni’Hal even exist, technically.
Uh, if you want specifically the Ni’Hal development process, you’d have to ask Diana, probably on the Humanoid Alien Races discord server. I do have my own race in the works, though, and I’d definitely say that BodyDefs are one of the easier parts of it; they’re kind of hard to understand but relatively quick to get working. Rather, my issues have been in modifying thoughts to suit the race better, as there are multiple places one can put these modifications (and not all of them work!), multiple different handles which each thought can go by depending on where you’re placing them, and a huge number of files in Core which have to be sifted through to find the thought you’re looking for. It’s done, though, and has been for a while; now I just need to find time to do some C# (which I have to learn from scratch just for this!) to modify the interpersonal thought aspect of a new racial trait.