Obviously this is super minor. But torrential rains and hurricane force winds do not make for ideal aerosol dispersal.
But more on point I agree, weather should have an effect.
I agree that we don't need to get super complicated. This was just something that I thought about with the current hurricane going on.
I don't like the idea of graffiti degrading over time. It is cool that some of it has lasted so long. There are murals and various pieces in various cities that have been there for decades and are understood to be off limits.
As others have mentioned, it is kind of silly that you cannot target specific tags to remove. I have rationalized that in my mind by imagining that the tags are all very close together and nearly on top of each other.
That being said, each 'street room' in the Mix represents a fairly large amount of space. Enough space that I think tags could be separate from each other.
I think it would be cool of the system were changed from being able to tag up individual messages, to a system that tracks the number of tags. The room description could be modified on a sliding scale. Perhaps along the lines of;
This block is (lightly, moderately, heavily) covered by (Sinner, Snake, etc.) graffiti.
This block is (L, M, H) covered by gang graffiti, of which (Sinner, Snake, etc) seems to be the most prominent.
This graffiti tells the story of a heavily contested block, with Sinner and Snake tags practically on top of each other in (light, moderate, heavy) amounts.
The ability to use the current system to 'write' specific message could be gated behind Artistry.
The assumption is that any 'ganger' can put up a crude tag to mark their turf. But in order for the graffiti to be recognizable and meaningful to non-gangers, it requires some level of artistic skill.
I am not sure how to balance the removal of 'artistry' tags.
In the system I am imagining, anyone could use solvent to reduce the overall level of graffiti in a room. (heavy > moderate, moderate > light, light > none).
Maybe some sort of meta-awareness of the more artistic tags. Tokens and NPCs could shout out or attack people trying to remove artistic tags. Or if there is SICnal, a random SICer could comment along the lines of, "Some bastard is defacing that ace graffiti outside of Westinghaus!! The (gang)s are going to be pissed!"
And if this were to become a full archetype, it'd be nice to have more gear for graffiti. A high tech decal printer that can swap between all colors (needs batteries). Holo-paint cans that change color/message as you look at them repeatedly (expensive). Graffiti aftermarket chrome that lets you paint without a can, with the stuff coming out of your fingertips. Stuff like that, I'm sure more creative people can think of other stuff.
And I may be wrong here, but as far as I know, tagging doesn't actually do anything, beyond instilling gang stuff IC. It'd be cool to have turf coverage affect a gang's income/influence somehow, so people would have a reason to keep their turf clean and tag enemy turf.
The inconvenience of having to fix a wall with paint on it is already present in having to do the work of cleaning a tag or paint a wall, but having to clean an entire street of all graffiti just to remove the one tag you don't like is really silly, and I'm really doubtful that anyone thinks it's a meaningful feature rather than just a side effect of the current random-selection system of tagging and cleaning.
Being able to use paint to 'cross out' or blot over other tags instead of using solvent to clean them would also probably be themely, not all gangers or neutral graffiti artists are going to be assed to clean it using solvent when they could use what's on hand to just put it out of sight.
Graffiti tracks different layers of paint, it can obscure artwork to deface, you can mess with security gear, you can remove parts of it at a time, you can make it more difficult to remove through various means. You can also use colors in some pretty interesting ways.
There are areas with layers of graffiti that tell stories going back years or even more than a decade. I've gone through areas needing to clear out some graffiti but not others, and it was a bit of a ballet of resource management and thoughtful application.
As a task for entry tier gangers and as a general storytelling device, I think you could argue there's a hell of a lot of code behind it.
I'm not saying it should change necessarily or be removed from the game or whatever, it's what it is. But it feels like a weird and trivial thing to devote coder attention to.