There was a stream at http://www.twitch.tv/primevalciv that had the latest internal build with Soren, his wife, some friends, and some players. Here are my thoughts:
1. The game needs an early win condition, something to prevent every map going into 1 Steel, 1 Aluminum or 2 Steel. Obviously, this is RTS, and this won't happen in every game, but I feel there needs to be something to bring excitement to the early game and prevent standard or greedy openings from happening every game.
Good things happen when you have early threats: See a related Starcraft example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vE59uz9z4Qo. The game is game 7 of the biggest tournament in the world for Starcraft, and the player DOESN'T pick the safe option. Obviously, there's a lot of visual back-and-forth that I don't know how or even if we could include this into offworld, but I feel the presence of an early option/threat is a necessity.
2. Blizzard missed out on tons of opportunities for microtransactions. I won't go into details, but in general, there is tons of room for customization in Starcraft. Your units all have in-game models that, in a perfect world, could be changed (a little, but not an unrecognizable amount) for a bit of cash. In League of Legends, there is a software called MKJOGO that shows a different character model for only you, and nobody else. This would give the user enjoyment, but prevent the confusion of other players.
Here, you could have a restaurant theme: the materials could be tomatoes, milk, and grain that build into marinara sauce, cheese, and dough that finish into pizza and garlic rolls. Or, you could be a weapons shop. Springs, triggers, bullets, chambers. Your company could be a biological organism. Amino acids, proteins, carbohydrates, lipids. Remember, the other players won't be confused. To them, your resources will look the same. Maybe only your command center would look different. Your personal overlay could look different. The labels on the resources would change, but not the underlying game mechanics.
3. Easier learning curve. Disclaimer: I come from a heavy Starcraft 2 background. I played since release in 2010, and played in an MLG open bracket (Winter 2012 in Dallas), and actually won some of the games I played there. This being said, I think it's so easy to become frustrated and give up playing something that you just don't understand. I purchased the Early Access after watching Day9 play it, and quickly became confused. I even found myself going back to Starcraft, simply because it felt better to me to know what the heck I was doing.
Maybe this easier learning curve comes from a walk-through, hand-holding tutorial (the prices are high! you should click *here* to sell), or from super easy campaign missions. Everyone makes fun of easy early video game levels, but I think they're a big deal in teaching new players and getting people acclimated without sending everyone to PrimEval's Youtube channel (which has been awesome, by the way).
Let me know what you think! Hoping to hear back from Soren here Love this game, job well done so far.