After spending a good amount of time with Eufloria, that I actually pre-ordered on Steam, I can say that this game's good, but could be so much better.
I've been reading many reviews around the net that mimic some of my aggravations. The slow, docile enemy AI and the necessity to wait sometimes one to two dozen minutes to be able to do anything, create a game that seems to be more about waiting and twiddling your fingers than actually colonizing asteroids and fighting enemy seedlings.
While I can certainly praise many aspects of the game's design, and believe that custom content could provide a way for people to create even better campaigns than the original, I feel that the creators probably misunderstood, or understood -too much-, the idea of zen and ambient gameplay.
Personally I feel that a zen feeling while playing a game is most of the time on the player's shoulders. Some people find grinding in RPG's a relaxing experience, for example, but it's not something that happens to everyone. Eufloria seems to try and -force- this feeling onto the player, forgetting that not everyone can feel like that. So it manages to get a whole bunch of players aggravated, or literally alt-tabbing out of the game while their armies grow, which I also found myself doing just because the game was eating a substantial ammount of my time without me doing much of anything. A more dynamic enemy AI, or just a speed-up button would have gone a long way.
The game has a slick interface, some great design choices in its clean presentation, dark matter mode looks stunningly beautiful, both sound and music are several kinds of sexy, and for the most part, save for a few bugs still being addressed, the game's functional, allowing you to enjoy it without much problem. But still, like I've read in other places, it feels like a lot of unexplored potential.
It's my hope that with custom content and future patches many of these aspects of the game are tweaked and balanced. The difficulty curve could be improved to feature some harder levels, or levels with more interesting enemy AI than there is now.
And that's this humble seedling's commentary about Eufloria. I still feel this was a good investiment, especially with the possibilities of custom content, but I guess my expectations were a bit high.