Generally I like the direction the game development is going but one of the changes early on might still need to be modified again unless I am missing something.
In Beta 6 patch the Large Empire Penalty was changed from a flat penalty per planet to a percentage. Since that happened I tend to focus on playing races with the Patriotic race ability to avoid having to deal with it. It is a fairly common theme in 4X games to insist on some kind of penalty like this. I read some of the posts about how to deal with this like this one:
I know admits the need to tweak a bunch of other things with the game - this is hardly a major problem - switch to patriotic and ignore. But I wanted to get additional feedback and ideas on ways to tweak this change to get a more reasonable large empire penalty - say one that grows beyond a certain limit based on map size or requiring additional buildings (regional Capitals, etc) or Techs to deal with.
Another thing that I like to change by modifying the game XML files is to allow economic star bases to also mine by eliminating the restrictions to where you can place mining rings (maybe this makes sense only for economic - planet star bases). Similarly maybe it be nice to have a military ring on the same star base you use for planets.
I know there been some discussion about changing the six hex distance requirement between starbases but this can be changed easily by changing the XML files on individual basis - currently I normally don't spam star bases around planets except mid game around planet clusters.
One of the things I would like to change is the ability to upgrade shipyards - maybe only add one level of defense or offensive weapons or add hitpoints. I see in Opt-in 1.02 the pirate star bases now start with 300 hit points making them much more difficult to take out initially.
Keep up the good work Stardock - Galactic Civilizations 3 is great game only getting better.