Not gonna lie, this is some of the best news I've heard in recent days.
I'll just highlight some of the things I've seen from the Gameplay and FAQs page on the GCIV site.
When will the final release be?
It says the Alpha will be available before Summer 2021; that's end of June, right? Any details on how I can get in on it?
True Colonies/Why wouldn't I just have every world feed into Earth and not manage any worlds?
Introducing CGP Grey's Keys to Power concept as a gameplay mechanic? I like! Same goes for the concept of colonies feeding core worlds.
You may want to edit the response a bit though, because it doesn't read like a direct answer to the question posed.
Hell, while I was reading it, I was wondering "does this apply to Earth, or whatever my homeworld is, as well? Does this mean I can rebel against myself?"
Might want to clarify things a tad here.
Deeper Research/What is new with technology research?
I know the plan is for players to start each new game with 5 semi-randomly chosen technologies. However, will there be a game option where the player can pick and choose the 5 techs they start with instead?
A New Combat System/How is combat and war changing?
I'm highly looking forward to seeing how this aspect of the game in particular is going to change. I'm a simple man, I like my fleet battles.
Besides, I'm the asshole who's been bitching about carriers for the last little while. Any feedback I'll give is likely to be focused around ship combat more often than not.
Anyhow, I like what little I've seen from the trailer. I'd hope there's still an option to "zoom out" the view though, so that I can watch the battle from a bird's eye view at any angle other than "directly above", like in GCIII.
Will the Bazaar and mercenary ships return?
Just wondering... any chance there's a mechanic by which we can build up a Leader with their own custom ship, with custom abilities... and then sell their services to the GCIV version of the Bazaar? That could be another way to earn credits each turn, assuming another civilization hires them.