As a StarCraft player I can assure you that DoW3 is looking to be nothing like StarCraft. There are some changes which have made DoW more like SC, but these will always be overshadowed by dominant casual mechanics like a focus on hero units, a largely automated economy, only basic strategic expression through tech choices, and token base-building (which serves as little more than somewhere to rally from). In short, decision making is limited, player attention is focused, and there is a greater margin for error but consequently a smaller space to differentiate yourself with skill.
Accessibility needn't not be at the expense of depth, but Relic insists on accommodating everyone by compromising on game mechanics rather than by designing separate game modes. If this is really the case then DoW3 is in danger of becoming a jack of all trades which offers little beyond a 40k experience and the novelty of a new game.
Elite picks tries to appeal to casual players like SC2's co-op commanders does; more responsive units and coherent visuals is an attempt to recreate SC2's competitive playability. The difference is that in SC2 these two goals are fleshed out in their own game modes, whereas DoW3 is trying to cram everything into the same gamespace.
I'd wager that DoW3 multiplayer will stagnate after the first half year, and I say this not to be mean, but because it doesn't seem it'll have the solid gameplay and skill ceiling needed to engage players for any significant amount of time.
I just hope that all this nonsense about hero picks, line units, and elite points won't be impossible to correct with mods or maps, because DoW3 is shaping up to be another Relic RTS that modders and map makers will have to fix for any lasting multiplayer presence.
On an even less savory note, It's amusing how people regard SC as the APM boogeyman - people who have clearly never tried to experience RTS games to their fullest. These same people then go on to make grand, sweeping statements about how this and that mechanic will make or break the game, a kind of game which they themselves have never really, truly explored.
All this being said, its pretty clear from what the devs have shown that the best case scenario is that DoW3 becomes an amazing MOBA RTS hybrid, where line units function like controllable, producible creep. It won't have the team element of MOBAs or the strategic and mechanical depth of RTS, but it will be something new. I hope this is the case.