Yesterday they (FINALLY) released a new patch, with... base building and capital ship ownership.
Also, they added a survival mode, which makes it more of a game by drastically increasing the inconvenience of recharging stuff and the rate at which you use up life support.
Specifically (so far):
(1) You spawn on a hostile planet about 5 minutes walk from your ship. The planet is hostile enough that if you just immediately start walking towards your ship you'll die before you get there, so you have to survive without it for a while.
(2) Instead of being able to get titanium to recharge your hazard protection by killing sentinels, it's now a super-rare mineral that's impossible to find and impossible to mine without upgrades, so the practical means of recharging protection is building shielding shards out of platinum and iron. Or (more practically) by going underground or into a building or your ship.
(3) Platinum and zinc flowers are much rarer.
(4) Life support specifically requires Thamium-9, or power cells you build using plutonium.
(5) Plutonium is much, much rarer. Thamium-9 on the surface is more common (about as rare as platinum and zinc now), but the generic tiny asteroids in space now mostly give you iron.
(6) Launching from the surface now takes 100% of your launch thruster fuel. That's several hundred of the now much more rare plutonium every time you want to take off, unless you landed at an outpost.
(7) Outposts are much, much rarer. Or at least harder to find because you don't get the little question-mark hints that a point of interest is nearby. You also don't usually get a free pointer to an outpost by scanning in space (instead you get a readout of what minerals are available on the planet). Also, some planets now have no outposts whatsoever.
(8) The death penalty they said they had but actually didn't is in effect -- it breaks some of your equipment and you lose some of your money and all of your inventory when you die. Although you only lose the inventory for your suit if you died on foot, or your ship if you died in space, so you can generally save *something*. Also, there's base and freighter storage although I haven't unlocked that yet.
What this all leads to is that, at least in the early game, survival considerations are dangerous instead of being a nuisance. You really, really don't want to land your ship anywhere but at an outpost without a good reason, because you might not be able to take off again, and the planet might be super-hostile and difficult to explore.
So... yeah. Definately makes it worth playing again, because it's an entirely new experience. Not sure if it gives the whole game more longevity in the long run, though, since once you have all the stuff I expect it'll still be pretty easy to survive.
There's a third 'creative' mode where they supposedly took out the resource requirements for everything so you can just build whatever you want without limits. Haven't tried that one yet.