See, I don't feel that way at all. To me, the gameplay is an end unto itself. If the only reason to play the game is to unlock more ships, then then game has failed on some fundamental level in my opinion. If you look at other games(Again, Crawl), the fun is in PLAYING the game, not in grinding stuff out until you get something new and shiny. Why are all of these 'meta-level' mechanics appearing in games these days? Don't track my progress outside of the context of the game, and essentially give me a 'player level,' represent that IN the game.
Not that FTL is a game where the achievements are the only thing worth sticking it out. I think it's fun in and of itself to play, which is why I am quite bewildered by the responses I've gotten. The difficult of the GAME is absolutely perfect in my opinion. You can't ever assume that you're safe(again, due to the GOOD kind of randomness, the kind that happens AFTER you select your ship and loadout), nor is it absolutely unforgiving(because again, you can get lucky!).
Leaving weapons up to luck, or augments, etc, THAT is the kind of thing that can be rewarding. But the game as I see it now is like an RPG where you don't have access to all of the classes at the start. That's a bit silly and it doesn't really add anything imo. Heck, if you want there to be superior loadouts that I have to unlock after a long time, again that's something else altogether. What gets me is that none of the ships are 'upgrades' for the most part, they just represent different playstyles. Why are my strategic options so limited at the start of the game? I'm not asking for things to be handed over to me, I'm asking for me to have the option to play the game in the manner I want. Allow me those options and them make me earn the more powerful stuff within the context of the game, not within the context of a meta-game. Again, why does everyone love this? It's just like Call of Duty's bullshit, adding RPG mechanics not within the context of a match, which works well(CounterStrike), but adding RPG mechanics within the context of the PRODUCT you've purchased, slowly trickling in content instead of letting you have it up front, which does nothing but artificially force playtime out of people imo.