I think subsequent books, both from WotC and other companies (*cough* Goodman *cough*) will continue to expand your options so that you can make a character that doesn't resemble all others of its type.
Sure, and I have no doubt that other companies will try that. But the thing is that the inherent structure of 4E screams "encounter = combat". All options for all classes focus on or at least amount to *combat*. It is even in the names, like all cleric at-will powers are tagged as "cleric ATTACK", for example. So it will be hard thinking of non-combat powers that don't at the same time weaken a character in terms of being on par with the rest of the party heavily interested in fighting encounters. I hope that I am proven wrong, though.
The game (and maybe all systems) seems to go from simple --> advanced --> convoluted and broken.
While I agree with you that there is a tendency towards complexity, it does not mean that games invariably reach a condition in which they will be broken! 3.5 and all older editions are still a perfectly playable games. It depends on what additional sources you allow in your game.
In my mind, the simplicity of 4E gives us that many more years before it breaks. We have some products on the way that deliver some of the things you're asking for, Argamae, but when in doubt, do what we all did as kids and just make it up. Why wait for non-combat rules when you can do your own?
I have to strongly disagree with you here. Firstly, 4E is in no way simple as far as I am concerned. It is simple in that it steers you towards combat heavy characters no matter what class or race you select. And it is simple in that it offers clearly defined and mapped encounters with starting positions for all enemies. Sure, some combat options have been simplified as well. But soon enough - if not already - there will be a flood of new powers and options and builds and paths the likes of which we have never seen before. And that will make things very complicated in very short time. It just has to be from a marketing point of view. How else will you keep players interested if you invest less on *fluff* and background details?
As for the "make up your own rules". Sure, I could do that. But why would I invest in a game where I still have to do additional work to make it work for me? As you said: an older edition already did this for me, so I stick to that. And what is more: after investing hundreds upon hundreds of Euro (or Dollars) in supplements and adventures (most of it from Goodman Games, if I may add gladly) over the years I would be nuts if I now switch to a system where I can use next to none of them (apart from general background books and adventure ideas) and would buy the same stuff all over again.
...Yeah, I know, usual players don't need this in usual games. But still, I feel like my ambition was... unsupported or dismissed or something...
I know exactly what you mean!
_________________The lucky guy who gets to translate DCCs into German!
Done so far:
DCC#1, DCC #11, DCC #28, DCC #17, DCC #17.5