Changes to malice were necessary to improve its impact on runtime performance in large battles; the large volume of weapons fire made it too computationally expensive to spread damage each time any of the dozens of affected targets received damage. The ability is functioning as intended in its redesign, although a bug that reduces its damage potential caused by multiple Progenitors staggering their use of malice has been identified. This will be fixed in the 1.1 patch.
I think you completely missed the boat on this one. I don't recall reading a single complaint about Malice affecting performance. Nearly everyone has complained about the Guardian shield causing performance problems. People complained about Malice being over-powered, and thus you gave it one of the biggest nerfs of any unit in this game. You did the same thing with the LRM's and the siege frigates weeks ago. People complain, you change it drastically, then bring it back into line a little bit. Now that you've changed Malice people are complaining about Returning Armada again (rightly so). While patches and support are nice, you guys need to learn not to make drastic changes. Going from unlimited affected units down to 8, 16, or 24 on top of changing the way damage is calculated is a HUGE change and not a minor tweak especially when you're not taking into consideration the scale of some of the longer single-player games.
I used to enjoy things here, but these constant major balance changes based on what's popular to complain about are tiresome. Play your own game and figure it out. I've really become irritated with the way you guys seem to be eliminating what different specialty that makes each race unique and focusing changes on smaller online matches. Again, it's not that I don't appreciate support and patches, it's that major changes or multiple compounding changes to the same item keep happening instead of tiny tweaks that take into account the variety of scales of battle. Not everyone plays this game online on maps consisting of a single star and a handfull of planets. Some of us play games with multiple stars and dozens of planets.