This game was great. I loved the complexity. The music was soothing, the visual was perfectly fitting and the sound effects just clear enough and not too invasive.
I wish the interface was a little more clear, though. Some suggestions would be to highlight and make clearer how many frigates and colony ships you have in each fleet, since they are very different from the other ships. Maybe, too, have a small graph when you link yourself to a planet to indicate what's the status, with at least the actual population, max population, actual landmass used and landmass available, since, to me, the last three informations weren't easily accessible.
Also, I'd suggest making the cargo interface easier to use. For my part, there was always so much to do that I simply disregarded the cargo holds, and I didn't even once freight ressources from one planet to another. Maybe add an option for automated freighter runs?
I don't know for the other players, but I also found that the game was most easy when you focused only on your first planet, expanding only when you had already beaten the opposing fleet at least once. If the game mechanics really make it so hard to expand, maybe revise them. To me, a strategy game like this is at its most when you MUST manage expansions to win. Maybe revisit the transit mechanics to make it more symbiotic? But then again, maybe it's just my opening sequences that make it most easy for me when I expand late, in which case I doubt any changes would be required.
But even if there is room for improvement, I loved this game. This was a real all-nighter for me, addicted as I was. I really liked how everything interacts, how you must find your own expanding routine to win the harder settings.
I hope the second one will have special achievements and objectives to win certain missions, as the only real downgrade I found to this one was that most missions were quite similar.