But let's be realistic, this beta is started, usually, unless you are Arcen Games and you make AVWW, in a beta you do not change the defining characteristics of a game.
I see some problems with the suggestions, not that they are bad, they are just not going to work out the way we want.
1) Due to not knowing where anything is at the beginning, we can not realistically influence any races start-up phase. AT ALL. Even if we are level 50 if a race gets pummeled that we are supposed to keep alive there is no way we could match another races fleets, because at the beginning everything is the same level as you.
2) If we are lucky, and our target race becomes the dominant force, we don't even need to do anything except stir up some trouble, trail 1 of their ships and kill anything near it. You could also call that an indirect reputation grind.
3) It is not uncommon for 3 out of 5 races to be gone just 30 minutes in, thats a 60% chance of losing right there.
4) The combat and movement doesn't work for this at all, if races can fly the same ways we can there is nothing that makes us superior or gives us an advantage. If you think you can outcolonize the dryads you have not played against them. I see colonized planets every minute pop up, by the time I found where they colonized, they colonize 2 or 3 more somewhere else.
5) Because combat is very, let's call it carefully "arcade" there is no tactics involved in engagements, NONE. Poking and running then keeping 1 pressed is not a tactic ^^ the amount and way monsters/enemies behave plays into this too.
To me, if you want this to be a proper "merc in a 4x world" you have to give us
a) A way way bigger ship with the possibility to properly guide upgrades, over at least 50 or 100 stages, with at lest 2 or 3 choices for each upgrade. And a factory, lab and hangar expansion option, including resource refining etc.
b) a proper crew we can assembly with personality, not just crew as equipment, so that they have a moral and a race that relates to ours (so that race choice matters at all)
c) Auto-firing turrets
d) Star Farer style movement
e) Non-race entities that exist outside of our goal and outside of the race system, independents, so to speak.
f) way less enemies, that are way more interesting to fight. Sprawling flak fire and torpedo engagements, carrier vs carrier with dozens of fighters, barrages etc.
g) A proper directional armor system + a directional shield system, so that running away is never a good idea unless you really really want to run away (in which case you put all energy to engines and shields and run like hell.. not "train mobs"
h) physics based weapons ( I am not huge fan of target and throw a dice whether it hits or not weapons)
i) Races that start established and away from each other, but not at war with each other unless the random generator decides that.
j) proper motivations for races, expansion is not a proper motivation, a colony should take much in-game time to get running, require continuous support that a race can not use for war or development of established colonies. Goals, fancy resources to go for etc.
k) Resources that are not just on planets but also asteroids
l) A better way for races to travel that is not a -1- point stargate system, like jump drives.
m) Anomalies should feed into research aboard my ship, in my labs for my personal gain.
n) A more dynamic world, talking about everything besides races, those are dynamic.. but the rest isn't.
o) More things to explore that awe us, including interactions with npc's. Should be highly moddable