While I'm hoping other players will share their own perspectives on this, being quite familiar with a lot of player opinions on the game I can offer a generalized response:
The idea that you frequently replace your parts is the
core mechanic of the game, and is what makes it a fresh experience compared to other roguelikes, at least where mechanics are concerned.
It's unfortunate that it can't be the roguelike for everyone, being such a huge departure from the idea of gradually building a character that truly represents your progress via more permanent qualities like stats and equipment. The latter is what we have in nearly every other roguelike out there, but to create the kind of experience that Cogmind is intended to be, that just won't work here.
I've discussed this on the blog a few times, and I know that it has turned off a couple players who want more permanence. That said, regarding your specific comments I can offer some advice:
I don't like wanting to run from every fight.
You don't have to run! On my good runs to the end of the game (and I'm sure those of the other experience combat players) I literally destroy every single hostile I meet. It's a question of using the most effective tactics. However, I can see that if you're afraid of losing parts then your first reaction to encounters might be to flee, which is I guess what you're referring to here?
(I assume we're talking about combat here, because if you're playing a fast/stealth build then you should be wanting to escape pursuers, or avoid them completely in the first place
Also: The frequency of part loss goes down significantly with experience.
I don't like having to fight scavengers for dropped parts.
Are you taking a potshot at each one before they steal stuff? One shot is all it takes (it's worth considering doing this in the middle of a pitched battle if there's stuff you want lying around). Also, in a future release you'll be able to get all those parts back even if you don't immediately track them down, as well as use other methods to stop them from annoying you
If you're bent on keeping your parts as they are (though really once you're moving through the world more quickly, you'll want to be dropping stuff left and right to upgrade!), there are strategies for that, such as relying heavily on armor and shields.
I suggest taking a look at some of the strategy guides for tips on how to improve, and once you can start reliably reaching the mid-game the experience will start to fall into place as your game changes significantly. As a number of players have mentioned before, you sort of have to forget/ignore everything you've learned in playing other roguelikes in order to do well at Cogmind. I've heard from players who have been big fans of DCSS, NetHack, ADOM and other classics for years, and also really enjoy Cogmind, but they were getting owned repeatedly until they were able to "unlearn" a lot of practices.
I want to put treads on and a ton of guns and be able to tank my way to floor 5 but thats not remotely possible it seems.
It's possible, I do it all the time as it's the way I prefer to play, too
. In one of my weekly seed streams about a month ago I tanked all the way from the beginning to the final floor like that, and didn't lose a large portion of my parts even once, until I finally went down because I couldn't locate the exit to the surface. One viewer said "it looks so easy when you do it" which is exactly why I wanted to show that was possible.
Next time I stream I'll also be starting from the beginning and do an even heavier tank build. It takes about an hour to reach the half-way point of the game (playing + talking...).