The first step in dealing with your addiction is admitting that you have a problem.
My problem is that the default material options in Blender are somewhat limited, and the node shader system is much nicer to work with. My other problem is that I am not aware of any way to export the node graph to a standard file format.
OK, I'm not sure how admiting that is going to help me get over my rendering addiction and get back to gameplay programming. All that did is make me write an exporter in Python so I can get at all of the lovely shader node graph into the pipeline. If I can find a way to bind the shader UV channel names to the Assimp/COLLADA imported mesh, I should be able to use that to generate a shader.
Then I can hopefully start to work towards some prettier lighting: