I never really liked the thumb ramp. It was always more of a thumb stop than a ramp. Kind of uncomfortable.
The finger guard kind of got in the way, both in use and when sharpening.
I always thought a design like the photo attached would be a great all arounder, especially as a test bed platform. It can be used just about anywhere and the tang is robust enough to handle rougher work.
Something with the same fundamental design points:
flat grind, 3.75 or 4 inch blade, blade serves as finger guard and makes it super easy to sharpen consistently, with maybe a touch of a thumb ramp, would be awesome. Simple rounded handle with bead blasted g10 or something, nothing crazy. Especially with a simple left or right handed boltatron sheath with a clip that can be positioned for horizontal, vertical, or 45 degree strong side or cross draw.
Fairly thin stock, there are plenty of beaters out there, many fewer cutting demons.
If it's going to be a testing platform akin to the mule team then i wouldn't care about which steel it started with though I'd suggest vanax or rex 121 which would cause an immediate passionate response and ensure a good first run...
They who dance are thought mad by those who do not hear the music.