Ok so I'm new to this game universe, but a few comments as I read all the above, I think that the roadmap is going in the right direction, and I had read of the planned ongoing addition of features before I bought it, it was a selling point for me.
As I read all these comments, I have been gaming for almost 40 years now, and what come to mind is the difficulty of developers to find the right role they want the player to assume, a general, a prince, the leader of a galaxy spanning civilization, and stick to it. With computer gaming its easy to forget that and fall into the trap of micro-managing, something that is just not possible in the real world. Imagine running a government of several planets and stoping to assume tactical control of a battle, let alone the communication issues, or planing all the economy of several worlds in minute details, and still have time for other things. As the game stands now, it reaches a nice balance of the role played, and the micromanagement of everything, if more battle control is introduced then you go towards a space battle game, and move away for a civ type. Adding levels of control only masks the problem, and then you get to act as human resources department for your armed forces!
BTW I have played every version to that franchise since civ 1, and I find that the choices made over the years were not the best, (the spin off "Beyond Earth", was so limited that I bought this game instead of upgrading), for one; difficulty results in bad placement, cheating, (a feature of civIII), and undue advantages to the AI like free stuff, while not considering the inherent advantage of number crunching, (by the AI), which is beyond the ability of most players. I haven't played long enough to see if this is a problem with this game, but so far so good.
Features I like, the feeling of the vastness of space, the customizable ships and races, the incremental progress of terraforming, among many. Most of the limits are listed in the roadmap. One thing I'm not certain of is a stand alone expansion, there is a solid base here that might be best developed fully, but if the stand alone goes in a different direction, like a tactical game, then ok, but just a different version of this one, it would be a shame. I am part of a group that makes a mod for a city builder by and indi, and the bones of that game, simple as they are, are so good that it gave us so much to work with, this seems to be the case here as well. There is so much potential beyond just a more fancy look, actually the best games are those that invest in mechanics and story rather than fancy pictures, when you've played civ in B&W on one of the first macs, well you understand what grandpa meant when he spoke of that new fangled color TV.
Looking forward to all the new features to come.