Lamentably, it seems that my confusion regarding the latest Steam build of the game (i.e. whether it was another beta-build mistakenly uploaded or not) has been removed, with the worst possible answer: it’s not another beta-build, it’s the actual release candidate. Look at this blog entry, from Kerberos’ author-in-chief for SotS II: the impression that I and others on the Paradox/Steam/Kerberos forums have gotten is that Kerberos have run out of time and money, and have released an unfinished game as what is essentially a delaying tactic.
Now, if the company had said this before the game “came out”, said that they’ll continue to work on the game until it’s better than the original, and had apologised to everyone, then I’d have kept my pre-order because SotS1 was a game that just kept getting better and better, and was supported for a long time. However, they chose not to inform anyone, and when everyone started getting understandably annoyed when the release came out, they said “ah, we’ve uploaded a beta version by accident – we’ll have it fixed in a few hours”. Several hours later, the only meaningful fix was the DLC was now usable. There’s been a patch that fixed a few bugs after, but frankly, the dishonesty of this is the real outrage here.
On a more positive note, here’s some screens of the beautiful ships in the game. Hopefully in a few weeks/months, they’ll be more functional.