I've had a really high opinion of your company for a long time. After it finally got patched up, Demigod was actually one of the more exciting DOTA-themed RTSs I have ever played (though I wish you'd produce more content for it). Elemental, I never played. Sins of a Solar Empire is similarly fantastic.
That's why I recommended to my brother that he purchase Sins off of Steam. The only problem is that, he, like a lot of Steam customers, cannot even do so much as launch the game. It boots up, goes black, and immediately crashes. There's been no patch, no support and he hasn't gotten a single response from customer service (nor, does it seem, has anyone else with this or a similar problem).
I just wanted to say this: Stardock is a small company and most of its customers are first-timers that hear about a game through word-of-mouth. But most PC gamers are wary of small developers because, more often than not, they release shitty games that are bugged to the max. And so, they pirate the game and they discover that Stardock is actually good at making games, but there's still no reason to buy it now that you have it. So the incentive has become: release the game at the height of its hype or sales potential, regardless of the state of the game and hope you can get enough people to purchase it to fund the rest of its development. I agree it's a terrible situation.
You know what's worse than that? Letting it get around that your company consistently produces buggy games. Sins is really your only successful launch. Demigod and Elemental were unmitigated disasters. So, universally in the gaming community, Stardock has become associated with mega-hyped, should-be-quality-games that are destroyed by a poor development cycle. And your core group of supporters (like myself) that buy your games anyways because they know that you can produce quality entertainment begin to fall away. And now no amount of hyped-releases can get you the money you need to make video games.
That's a long-winded way of saying: this is why people pirate video games. You wanted to take advantage of Steam's holiday sales, so you rushed Sins to Valve without doing the proper quality control. Now tons of your customers can't even get the game to work properly. I know my brother won't be paying another $20 for one of your games. And after purchasing Galactic Civ, Demigod and Sins, I don't know if I will either.
Let this be a lesson to you. Every gamer on this Earth would rather pay $20 for a working game than $13.39 for a broken one that might be fixed later. If you need any more instruction on how to release a game properly, ask the folks over at Runic Games.