Eh, when I read that I thought it was just promo fluff, and still do. Like some MMO’s had personal instanced housing where you could display “trophies” from completing various game cheevos. This is more than that.
Tarsis is the personal instanced housing/home base, plus the lobby? And the “lobby” is introduced in the quest line and feels like it was bolted on later (because it was). When I got there the forge didn’t work for me, so I never went back and just went to Tarsis.
It seems like 1/3 of several different games. Part of a looter-shooter, part of an open world game, part of a story game, part of an instanced hub/mission type game. It isn’t even a full half game of any of them. Which makes sense, as those were the parts probably most ready to go by deadline. But you feel the lack of the other 2/3 of each game type.
The parts that did have time to bake, like the side fluff story bits and the core gameplay are great. The rest though, are not just various levels of complete but mismached bits. Like I mentioned before, you can buy craft mats with cash, but have zero need of them. You can customize your look, but have no way to interact with others, so you are the only audience.
You really did miss out not exploring the open world. The caves have full events, some are decent. A lot of content is out there … with absolutely no reason to go see it. Another contradiction.
For the story, it was an unfortunate mix of lack of exposition for the “things in capital letters”, combined with over extensive foreshadowing of any person centered drama. The one team member that had the largest crisis you could see that foreshadowed a mile away, my son called it before level 5. And even the little dramas in your team were the predictable ones that were heavily foreshadowed. That might have been fine in a longer story, where there was a lot of other story between the foreshadowing and the event. I guess explanations of those big things just hand-waved into existence was what was supposed to be in the middle there?
I’ve decided to play it as much as I can until bored right now. I got it later. The content that did get finished isn’t bad. I can enjoy that for my money.The IP is nicely open. They own it, and the shaper stuff doing “anything” does give great ability to take the game into almost any direction anyone wants with no conflict. I see that as potentially promising, but am uneasy what game EA may ask for, and what monetization scheme will be added.
It is an awkward child now, full of contradictions, that doesn’t know what it will be when it grows up, which is one set of problems. But I’m not sure if I’ll like the adult either as that may have a different set of problems.