There is no good excuse for releasing a game series of this complexity level without a tight, or very near tight set of rules. None. Moreover, where is the much needed GOSS v2 Errata? Again, no excuse at this stage
But the real tragedy here in my opinion, is that even players who like detailed simulations (e.g. OCS/EFS/La Bataille) and are willing to read a lot of pages may be turned back from GOSS long before they ever experience the aforementioned beauty of Joe's design, all as a result of the sloppy rules-writing itself.
I'm with you here.
I have NO problem with complex rules, and I'm all for investing for long term return. But deep down I was afraid that something so very disorganized would prove to be truly half baked, and that after all the work to figure out what the rule MEANT to say or SHOULD have said we'd end up with a nearly broken game.
It's good to hear that underneath the mess there's a pretty exciting good foundation. If and when a real set of fully developed clearly organized rules comes out GOSS may pop back up on my own personal radar....but I continue to be concerned that the rampant disorganization seen on paper goes down deeper than the surface.