That is fantastic, Yarlen. And I don't know why I have waited so long to post my opinions about this update, but on the whole it looks great. Amazing to see that you are not only adjusting balance but coming up with new and interesting ideas (the reworked artifacts, titan research benefits) at the same time.
Oh, and by the way, I love the new planet textures. Will these completely replace the old ones or will both the new and the old still be in the game? And if you look really closely at the dwarf planet screenshot, what is the planet icon right above the dwarf planet?
I for one mostly play single player and so I am happy that you keep updating the AI to make it progressively better. And I look forward to more word about that new content tomorrow.
I do think that the Maw and Wail were nerfed a bit too hard, though - but I realize that once you have made a change you are probably not going to go back and work on it again. And I too support a general Vasari bomber nerf, even though my favorite faction is the Vasari Loyalists.
But anyways, just because not EVERYTHING was fixed with this update does not mean that it was not great. And I just love how you guys are still developing new content for an almost 5 year old game. It is rare and it is wonderful in the gaming industry to find a company so devoted as Stardock to their customers.