I had that initial bump where I was kind of like “I am doing something wrong? Why do I keep getting splatted?” but things smoothed out for me significantly. The first hour or two had some frustrating WTF moments, but it got much better after that. Partly it was avoiding the fights (talking my way out), partly it was getting a little better at the game, and partly it was upgrading my ship. You get the ability to call buddies in for assistance pretty quickly as well, which also helped.
So I guess what I’m saying is, I had similar frustration and almost felt like putting the game aside for the evening, but it got a lot better a little further in. Just one point of data, but might be worth sticking it out for a little bit longer and see if the game grabs you.
It felt a little oldschool where I was kind of thrown to the wolves rather than being babysat for the first little while of the game. I tend to prefer that compared to overly long “tutorial” periods where things are a snoozefest, but the game could probably use a little more onboarding. I felt like I was fighting pirates before I knew how to operate my ship.