I'd love to be proved otherwise, as per your suggestions, but as you said "they seem really set in their ways" and on that point I couldn't agree more.

Personally I get the feeling the reason things are taking so long is because they vastly underestimated the scope of this project, which might be alluded to by the expansions in workforce. The last patch took a while and all we got was the Druid and some mushrooms. Perhaps I am too pessimistic but I struggle to see myself playing this game again sadly.