Citing memory is weak reasoning in this day and age. Folks buying the game with any sense review system requirements.
That is neither here nor there, and math behind the scenes not-withstanding, the reality is, the previous version before Intrigue gave us map sizes we were begging for, except for ludicrous. Intrigue is an EXPANSION, but in the map department, it is a severe REDUCTION. And one, we the customer base, as you put it, quite vocally made clear we were not happy about having reduced. The reality is, a good machine now days is quite capable of running this even on ludicrous. In fact, other than multiplayer, it is the ONLY size map I use. I don't see the point of a space 4X game where I can explore the space in 2 hours or less. I play this game on the largest maps because I don't want a game in a closet with 16 opponents and running into 9 of them by turn 50. I play this with my girlfriend, and I was stunned beyond belief to see that the largest map we could play now is ridiculous rolled back to the limits we had a few years ago. Quite honestly, at this pointy, I got Intrigue with some decent mechanics added, and got robbed of useful multiplay functionality in the process. It's not worth the trade off in my opinion. Without the maps I had before, multiplay has become meaningless to me. I will either return it for a refund or uninstall until map sizing is at least comparable to Crusade. Who plays a space game in a galaxy the size of a soup can anyway? Why would you even want to I sure don't. You lose 1 of your X's in a 4X game if you've seen it all before turn 100. Don't build a game map you have shown you can make available to us, the cite memory issues. That's for the customer to meet. If my machine can't hack it, I can upgrade. My machine didn't cost me 3 grand, and it runs this game at every level you have allowed in multiplayer...there is no valid argument that says if those map sizes work in Crusade, they cannot work in Intrigue. I vote with my dollars. This isn't worth it right now at these sizes, and I will certainly think hard before buying another product from Stardock after this.
Consider me sincerely,One of the vocal masses.