One way to keep players around is to give them a fighting chance.
When I started out my IC hobby, I was told to read the guide and FAQ to learn the basics of the game. I did so and that helped me to get a good start. I still had a lot to learn, but it was easier when I had the basics covered. I still have stuff to learn.
That was about 15 years ago and the guide has been updated last time about the same time. I think it is time to update the guide and the FAQ and link them into the game, so when a new player needs help, (s)he can get real tangible info to help her/him make the right choices.
Current guide tour is a joke compared to the info old guide gives. For example different formulae help a lot to plan things and take the playing into a whole another level. These days only old vets seem to know how much NW each of the units, science and whatnot gives you or which opps or spells alert the enemy when failed. Etc.
Of course anyone who knows about old guide can go and check these things (and hope the data is still accurate enough). Old guide and FAQ are not advertised though, because those have not been kept updated.
In the end, not many are willing to read the guide and the FAQ, because there is so much info, but those who will or at least constantly check info from those, will be better players, have better chance of gaining success in this game and are more likely to keep playing and investing even more time into it. I think we ought to give new players at least a chance to educate them in intricacies of this game.
I bet many older players would benefit a lot from reading those documents too…