I went through my mental checklists and found some additional odds n' ends that may be of interest.
1) Privateer Press... Again. While I was reading all the great comments I got from the last bit on PP (thanks everyone!), a few more similarities were pointed out to me - and a few more came to me on their own. So, added to the last list: PP has its own house brand paints and hobby supplies, attempted to sell it's own branded terrain, brought a high quality line of licensed gaming material in-house and made it suck, barely supports an old range of its product line, has a tournament system with massive flaws and, AND runs a bunch of self congratulatory bullshit posts on their own website.
At this point, all we're waiting for is the inevitable cancelling of the bits service.
2) Infinity: The one positive side effect of everyone idly threatening to abandon the 40k armies they've spent a grand on is that in the quest to find the next new game they can love to hate, a ton of really, really cool looking games got some blog time. Which is great for my rulebook collection. Using some ebay monies, I picked up the Infinity rule books from Corvis Belli. I plan on reviewing this a bit later. For now, lets just say that I wish I had not spent the money. It would have saved me a lot time being bummed out that I can't find a regular gaming group locally to prod into the game. I dunno whether this is a 'le sigh' or an 'el oh el' moment.
3) The Metagame: Whether or not it exists is a pointless debate I'll leave up to the sort of people who truly care about it. But what I can't get over is the fact that even if a national metagame is a real thing , the people for which its existence is the most important have an extremely limited grasp of how a metgame actually works.
Here's the thing, the reason top builds/methods/paths to winning exist in a meta game is not because of dumb luck, ease of use or by shear virtue of being commonly available. They exist because they are successful and good - and have been proven to be so. Simply doing something different - 'going against the meta' - does not give you a leg up unless what you've brought to the table is actually any good. Further, your super secret weapon has to be good against more than one other build. Sadly, knowing all this and implementing it successfully requires more than the pat on the back you just gave yourself for confusing cognitive dissonance with cleverness.
4) There is no #4. I dearly hoped I would think of one. Sadly, I didn't.