I was there and I liked the game for what it was on release. You can check the Qt3 thread to confirm. But it had issues for sure.
That said, comparing the game NMS is today to what it was on release, I can notice much more clearly how barren it was, and how much more it could be (and eventually came to be). I didn’t need many of the improvements to appreciate the game, but all the improvements definitely made NMS a better game.
Cyberpunk 2077 is different for me. The broken parts are way too visible for me to dismiss. I played NMS on release and enjoyed it for what it was. But in the case of Cyberpunk, I loved the first couple hours, until the bugs and the braindead AI began to sour my experience. I still soldiered on for another 10-15 hours, but seeing all the issues and wondering all the time if something that happened is a bug or intended ruined the experience for me, so I uninstalled for the time being. I’ll come back to it after (a lot of?) patches.