I ride clipless 95% of the time, occasionally using flats when I’m instructing specific skills courses. (I’m a certified PMBIA instructor with Ride Ottawa)
Since you are experienced with clipless, you should not worry about a 1 sided pedal. Get a 2 sided clipless pedal with a larger body like a Shimano XT PD-M8020. This larger pedal body will give you a larger area to push against in case you don’t get clipped in right away. On some shoes like a Shimano you can hook the middle of your sole on to body with your heels down if you want to descend clipped out. (But you won’t)
(Sorry to contradict here). I do not recommend multi release pedals unless you have severe knee issues. Your foot can be easily knocked free from slight side force, or upwards force (which is intended) but this is not desireable off road. Since you are accustomed to the action of releasing, you will refine this for off-road very quickly. You are better off to reduce the spring tension and use single-release unless you are inexperienced and nervous. (Like really nervous)
Also with respect to cleat position, you should consider moving the cleat further back towards your heel for a more stable position on the pedal. If you are racing you may duplicate your road cleat position (ball of foot) but shifting the cleat back, even a little, provides better stability. You want to be able to drop your heels below the pedal for downhill stability and body position in steeps.
I am very hard on shoes. Usually the soles delaminate around the cleat and sometimes the toes. I usually only get 6 to 8 months from a pair of shoes. I ride about 250 days a year .
I currently use Shimano ME-7’s and 5-10 Kestral Lace version. I was previously using Mavic Enduro shoes which I also liked. I also have Shimano road shoes, a pair of DNB gravel lace ups and a pair of 45nrth Wolfhammer riding boots.
I prefer the Shimano shoe fit and feel. The buckles are more durable than the Mavic. The Mavics were very stiff. My Shimano road shoes are 12 years old so they are awesome. The DNB shoes were $40 on sale from Chain Reaction, so they are disposable in my mind, but have shown no wear on 10 long gravel grinders. The 45nrth shoes are holding up well too. The 5-10 have flatter sole so they can be used with flats if the cleat doesn’t contact the pedal spindle. The rubber is better with sharp pins on flat pedals. All 3 brands delaminated at 6 months. Shimano and Mavic were replaced on the spot by my LBS (2 year warranty). The 5-10’s will not be replaced until next summer so no more 5-10’s for me. (Since adidas bought them their service has been through a distrbutor here in Canada and they suck.)
Overall I’m a Shimano fan. It I like Mavic too.