While I love the graphics I am concerned that I will end up playing only on the cloth map.
In GalCiv I would always play zoomed out becuase it was far easier to get an idea for what was going on. The individual unit graphics were just not easy enough to distinguish and some information, like planet quality, was just so much harder to see (at least for me).
I assume in this shot that the blue circle under the units feet is because they are selected. If this is true I am concerned that when they are not selected it will be very hard to tell at a glance which side they are on. On the cloth map I would see a colored symbol which would make it instantly clear what they were and which side they are on.
I hope at somepoint during the beta test there will be an option or build that will disable the cloth map so you can get feedback on how easy/hard it is to play without one.