First a sidenote: it says that I have played Starbound for 100 hours. This is from the launcher being up in the background as I seldom turn off my computer.
The real number is closer to something like ten, maybe even less. I write this because people will be tempted to call me out on one hundred hours of time played must mean that I actually love the game, just like how I love waiting for the bus, which I have probably also done for several hundred hours in real life.
This game has so many positive reviews specifically complaining about negative reviews that I am almost tempted to call
Chucklefish out on paid lobbyism, but maybe these are just run-of-the-mill fanboys.
Many negative reviews have been misrepresented so I will try to explain what my problem is in as clear a way as possible.
Basically it boils down to this: It was supposed to be released in 2013. Two years later and it is still in early access.
Some people have argued that they never update the game. This isn't true and fanboys as well as chucklefish themselves
have used this as a strawman to brush off all criticism. The problem isn't that they haven't done anything. The problem is that they are two years behind schedule, and seem all too content to move forward at a slovenly pace after making a quite ridiculous sum of money. You'd think this cash would encourage them to take their own release dates a bit more seriously. I get it, people don't always make the right predictions in terms of timescale. In fact, more often than not they get it wrong.
Take the concept of Valve-time for instance. But come on, two years behind schedule, still more artists working on the game than programmers(four programmers for those who are curious), despite a good bit of money having been made from it even before it is finished. And to top this off they are appearently working on a new game before this one is even finished. Not finished and two years behind schedule, mind you.
For people who still don't see the problem: time matters. People change. Chances are you didn't wish for the same stuff you wanted last year or the year before that for christmas.
If you order a pizza you might be dissapointed if the delivery guy is an hour late, and if he is stuck in traffic so heavy that he won't be able to deliver it for at least two years, despite having your money already, well, the good news is that in the future you will one day be pleasantly surprised with a cold pizza being delivered to your front door.
Unless the pizza company has closed down in the meantime.
Some people also have the good faith to assume that Chucklefish spending so much time on this game is a sign of passion, love and the quality work that goes into it.
Choosing to believe that they do this so that the game will be as good as possible before release.
My comment on how time plays a part in our appreciation and desire for things nonwithstanding, I invite these people to check out the gem that is Duke Nukem Forever. At least that's one turd nobody paid for before it was released.
I wouldn't even be so annoyed at this very casual attitude towards profiting several million dollars, breaking your release date with two years and counting, and getting annoyed when people ask when the game is coming out (google up some old tweets from Tiy), if most of their updates didn't consist of visual content in the vein of furniture, clothing etc.
To me the novelty of dressing up an alien monkey wears off quickly. What I am looking for is things that extend actual gameplay. Thing like quests, non-procedurally generated npc's, new game mechanics.
Yes there has been some of that, but not two years worth. Not by a very long shot.
Maybe this game draws so much ire from me since it was the first early access game I bought into. It will probably also be the last, now that I am no longer naive enough to think that developers won't abuse the freedom of this particular business model.
Do buy: If you are amused by dressing up cute alien sprites in different clothes, and if good pixel art alone is enough for you to be satisfied.
Don't buy: If you are compelled by the idea of a vast adventure spanning an entire universe. The vast adventure consists of procedurally generated content and a handful
of quests. And only if you play the unstable buggy release.