In the last couple weeks there have been a couple big updates to Dyson Sphere Program, and then a larger comment on the alien combat content.
For the most part, these are meta goals to change the way you play. Completing the game without using rare materials is certainly doable. Doing it at 0.5x production rate is a scalability challenge. It adds some replayability to the game that isn’t solely focused on SPM at high levels. It will likely generate challenge runs through specific seeds. That would be pretty cool!
Less a big deal, but the Icarus (your mech) can now be customized to a decent degree. You can change the color and the art looks better. It is much smoother and doesn’t feel like you’re pasted onto the world. The big gain here though is what this means to the modding community. There are now more hooks to customize your character’s look. It will be quite interesting to see how that plays out!
I consider this the largest gap with Factorio. The idea that you would encounter hostile aliens during play is both interesting and confusing. Factorio has some sprawl, but it’s dramatically limited as compared to the sprawl in DSP. You’re going to cross solar systems, so whatever defense you do develop has to be highly automated, you need to know what’s going on (imagine fighting on like 12 fronts), and then the ability to impact that context.
Given the complexity of this, the devs are stating at least 6 months of dev work – which makes complete sense. Been lucky so far that DSP has been relatively bug free, the massive blueprint update underwent nearly 2 months of tweaking to get to a really solid spot.
The devs also said there’s more content on the way in the meantime, but I’d be hardpressed to see them as major developments and more focused on QOL items.
tldr; DSP is still in EA, will be for a while, but unless you’re looking for Alien battles in a factory game, it’s pretty much feature-complete.