Its… Complete. I don’t mean just early access, I mean from a mechanical, story and feature sense… its… complete.
and more much more important than that: It all works together immensely well.
Its the premiere swimming with the fishes simulator – that does it right.
The game does three things and it does them all well, not just as separate areas, but mingled and intertwined.
So first: the world & environments because everything else flows from there. Much of the game is based around exploration and finding things in the game world. While you’re guided on the first few steps with things you can do – most of the world is left to your own devices.
Whether its finding fish species to eat, plants to use for resources and crafting, materials for your bases or vehicles or even wrecks and alien bases to get special technologies.
Each step along the way you find more cool things that enable you to progress further, dive deeper and explore more. This synchronization between amazing world design and progression is fantastic and keeps it from being a grind (most of the time) and instead is a rewarded experience bit by bit.
The Story ties into this as well and allows you to explore it as you come across it, and there are many ways to find yourself reaching the final stages of the game, even accidentally on occasion you’ll find a cave or tunnel that hides some unique aspect of the game you never expected.
A drawback in my opinion, though that’s a deliberate choice by the developers, is that there is no map in the game. There isn’t any way outside of craftable beacons for you to map your surroundings, meaning that you can get lost easily, need to backtrack repeatedly and might miss amazing sights because you simply didn’t head in that direction.
Lastly, there is PC performance and here its not as perfect – frequent pop-in, loading stutters and frame-skips are about in the late game zones and activities, which is a damn shame. With various bugs and issues still creeping in, even those that in some ways might be consider game breaking.
Though the developers have been great at squashing them, there are still quite a few that pop up
Overall, this is a phenomenal single player experience, and I’d recommend it to ANYONE that does not have a fear of swimming.