Agreed. That's why I came here--I could have always looked elsewhere, after all. I hope that TDM will encourage modders to explore other templates, such as a more combat-oriented or RPG-like template. While strictly new templates are never created by mixing and matching older ones, it still produces a massive variety; one that has yet to be sufficiently exploited in the mainstream.
Yup, I know what you mean. We are complaining about game companies doing always the same, copying old ideas, and we essentially do the same. But, well, that was the definition of the project, and we never claimed to do otherwise. At least not in a substantial way. But I think that work that we are doing here, could at least be used as a foundation for completly different games as well. So we will see what comes from it.
For me, the main reason we should restrict ourselves to variations on Thief's template is simply due to a lack of resources, nothing more. I for one have always wanted to experiment with Thief as a strictly skill-based MMO, using a combination of instancing/globals and procedurals/hand-placement to produce the metropolis that is the City. Obviously, this would be unachievable without massive resources, and even then it would be unduly restrictive.
Another idea I've wanted to explore is integrating the wiimote with TDM to completely change how users perceive its gameplay. For now, it's little more than a pipe-dream, as there is much work to be done beforehand.
In the end, I'll be fine with others taking up the mantle and going far beyond my own limited imagination.