Of course I really like this game, but before singing all its praises I need to finish it first.
Like most games the quests get increasingly difficult as you go on, but usually the key to victory is in learning an important lesson needed to win each one. For example, there was one early quest that was quite difficult until you figure out that you need to learn how to manage your colonies properly so that you can switch your mining nodes over to fuel once your population income is sufficiently high. There was another one that forces you to learn how to manage multiple fleets.
Having said that, repeated tries with Haven have failed to uncover the secret to winning that mission. In short, the bad guys come to get me long before I have a strong economy up and running. I know there are some quests that if you don't trigger a certain event you get a breather in which to build up. For example, there was one later quest where you are asked to send a fleet to investigate one of your colonies that had gone silent. The trouble is, when you do this it triggers attacks by the bad guys. Of course then I held off doing this for a while, and in the meantime built up cities and defense platforms on my other planets.
But I digress. If there is such an 'interim' in Haven to build up, I've not found it.
FYI, in my latest attempt I actually had a single planet with three colonies with one of the colonies a city and protected by a defense station. I was feeling then that I might have actually had a live one there, but as it turned out when the bad guys attacked they brushed aside my station, cruiser, and three fighters with little trouble. It was like I was totally outclassed.
Anyway, suggestions would be appreciated. I would also add that I want to call 'Light of Altair' the best space strategy game since the original Homeworld, and I will providing I don't get frustrated with these final two quests.