I have only played the singleplayer story mode so far so I'm basing my experience on that bit.
The game also includes a build mode, and even online co-op play among others which I will definitely be trying out later.
The game offers a day-night cycle which is faster than real life, but still long enough to have an impact on your plans and adventures. The nighttime is pretty dark and you will have to use torches, headlights, flashlights or other sources of lighting to find your way around the landscape.
This game is in a really good state for an early access game! I would recommend this game to anyone who likes survival, exploration, crafting, and building games.
If you like survival, exploration, crafting and building this is totally the game for you!
You can craft anything from tools to guns, building modules, sentry guns, you name it. There's a lot of different crafting materials you can gather such as wood, stone, iron, copper, tin, different types of plants and more.
The game plays very well and runs smoothly (> 60 fps) on highest settings on my quad core i7 920 (3.2 Ghz OC) with 6 GB RAM and a GTX 770 GPU.
The terrain deformation is absolutely the best I've ever seen. You can literally mine out a cave or structure the way you want it.
It's a voxel based game which means the terrain deforms a lot more natural than a block game would. I can see why this is one of the strongest selling points for this game. This opencl (cuda?) technique the devs are talking about does really seem to do a lot for this game!
The textures are not "next-gen" at the moment, but very much acceptable for such a complex game. I guess this could be improved once they near a final release. It's definitely not game breaking though.
The combat is very acceptable. It's pretty straight forward, click to smash (a la minecraft) but that's totally fine with me to be honest. You are also rooted into place when performing actions which is awesome and makes combat somewhat harder.
Now, this is an early access game, but the only negative things I've been able to find after an hour or so of gameplay is that the world feels a bit empty. It doesn't feel static, since there's a lot to see like different types of animals and foliage/trees/mountains. It could feel a little more vibrant.
The music is fantastic, although there is only one song which loops. It doesn't get annoying because it's a really calm and smooth composition. It runs for a while too so it doesn't get repetitive at all.
Sometimes the combat music can get a little annoying when you're entering and leaving combat in fast intervals.
There is voice acting for most if not all conversations so far. Some of the voice acting is great and some not so great, but also by far not the worst I've experienced. Could use a little more work in some areas though.
There are some basic quests to help you figure out how crafting and gathering works which is great. The game really does a good job of easing you into the game so far. But it doesn't hold your hand too much either, which is a great thing.
I haven't touched the real storyline so far, so I'll have to see how well the story is played out. But I have high hopes!
This game is definitely worth the money and I would certainly recommend this game in it's current state!