Again (and that link has been posted three times now)- Stardock is counting revenue (the question is, does Stardock's application side count in Stardock's revenue projections- I'd argue it shouldn't for ranking purposes if it is), where this is probably counting units sold.
There does need to be a more consistent way of getting numbers.
One of the reasons Elemental is coming out early, is that apparently for retail sake, Stardock's options were August or Feburary.
I'm guessing a November option is out there, but competition is brutal then, and Civ V would be freshly out at that point (and I do think beating Civ V out is a factor in getting the game out not, at least logically.)
One reason I do feel some hurrying is going on, is that I never remember Stardock doing crunch time like this before. Not with GCII at least (I could be wrong). Given that Stardock tends to not overwork people (I've seen Brad mention that a couple of times in the past- which is one reason why I think Stardock delivers quality stuff), I'm sure it's really necessary. Does crunch time end when the RTM version goes out, or does it continue until release date?
I know some of this sounds like I'm being a little critical of Stardock. It's not my intention, while Stardock isn't perfect, they're pretty damn good. That said, from my perspective from the outside, and friends I talk to (all of whom also pre-ordered) do believe that you guys are rushing out the door, and think that Civ V Steamworks decision did play a role in it. That said, all of us believe the game won't suffer for it in the end- due to your excellent support, though it may take a patch or two to get things right. I know for all of us, we have a pretty high faith in Stardock, a faith that few other companies get from us- that trust has been earned, and for damn good reason.
I guess what I'm saying is that while I think for game reasons this might be coming a little before it's ready, I can understand the business reasons, and given Stardock's track record, I have faith that it will all turn out right in the end- and this game will end up being better then GCII, and potentially an all-time classic.