I guess this is as good a place to ask as any, since I found out from the release notes, mostly, but can someone give me something like an executive summary version of what was wrong with blade spawners and why they were changed the way they were? I never played with the expansion during the pre-5.0 betas, and in the time since then, I've only gotten blade spawners of my own a couple times and never faced an AI that had them, so I don't know first-hand what they were like.
They do seem like they'd be fairly brutal if there were dozens of them at once, with the sheer amount of hp they have and the amount of damage they can do from a distance, but as a human player who can't just reinforce with an arbitrary number of them, they seemed decent but not amazing in the 5.0 release, and now they're kind of underwhelming/uninspiring after the total cap number has been nerfed in more recent betas.
Having half a dozen of them around doesn't suck or anything, but for the amount of time and resources it takes to build them, they feel less useful now than some of the other options, whether it's a different bonus ship type or unlocking another starship or two with the knowledge. I think part of it is that it's really, really hard to keep incoming waves of ships at a great enough distance for long enough for them to be effective when playing with 5-6 people, because of the massive numbers of ships coming in when you only have a couple available choke points for them to be sent to (and it's even harder when using them offensively because of the speed multipliers in enemy vs. allied systems). I mean, we have a gravity drill (that's the one that drops all ships to speed 8, right?), a full cap of sniper and missile turrets, and three mk2 fortresses in one system, along with smaller numbers of other things, and that doesn't even stop a typical wave of 2000 ships from making it at least halfway across the system. A handful of blade spawners hardly even makes a noticeable difference against the numbers we're usually facing.