I've just finished the campaign segment for the imperial factions and have the following feedback:
Planets are a big improvement over BFG1. With the added Lore and the ability to invest in planetary defences etc, this is a big improvement. The ability to customise behaviour for ships is much clearer and more helpful and the decision to limit skills to admirals, rather then ships, makes base ship diversity more important. The addition of fleets is a very good idea (with some caveats below) that stops you taking the same ships in almost every battle.
However, there are some things that are lacking;
- A ship pool of ships not in fleets that you don't want to scuttle. This allows you to maintain your experienced crews. They would require less maintenance but be unusable in battles. This would also allow you to transfer ships between fleets.
- The mission choices seem very restricted... where are the convoy, planet assault, breakthrough etc missions that we had before? are they simply missing from the beta, or are they missing full stop because that would be a big step backwards for lots of reasons.
- I've defended a system and not had the weapons platforms turn up, although they had been bought long before. might want to look into that.
- the ability to level up a skirmish profile against the AI. just make a separate one for skirmishes. otherwise unless you want to grind some MP, you're stuck with half the options, even for a private game.
- Missions that give renown should also give the bonuses to renown from planets. As it stands you only get the pool from the mission.