As you discribe the way it works, the issue I see is that many styles of play will not be compatible with that goal. IOW, if you like to do a builder and sort of turtle, your game wil not look as god as some aggressive players at some arbitrary stop point. That style would need more time to show it true value.
I do see it as a good way to see compare note. BTW, I am don't disagree with you about players not posting if things go bad. I posted all the way to the end in the huge game, even though I actually lost. I remember one game I started and cleared the island I was on and saw it was a small island and no other civs were known and decided, I was not up for the task of island hopping. I had played a few in a row and was tired of lots of water.
Not sure if that was AU209 or MZ game. That plus the game crashed. Firaxis now is saying it is not the game and they may be correct. Either way it has been a real pain to reinstall a few times a week for all their test.