You'll definitely enjoy it. Last time I played it they had finally got it to a good point (early on it was really bad) but it doesn't hold me for long.
Much like no man's sky it has the "procedural generation" gimmick for planets, fauna and flora and that's fine because the goal isn't really to explore it's to find more resources. I will say initially you will like the "exploration" aspect as you discover different dungeons/outposts/burial sites/post-apocalyptic cities/etc but after a few times seeing each you get that "seen this already" feeling from them. There's random stuff to find on each planet, I seem to recall each planet has at least one hostile base or friendly outpost. Occasionally you'll come across a city/base, get really jealous of their decorations and then discover that if you destroy their shield generator you can actually steal all of their decorations.
One thing I really liked was the ship. Having that dedicated safe zone that you can decorate and stuff is really nice. Something I never ended up messing with was making your own colony but I imagine that's pretty cool.
The bosses were also interesting enough from what I played. They all have a mission (with lore books like journals and stuff) leading up to them so it feels a bit more interesting than the Terraria bosses who for the most part just appear, fight you, then done.
I think the only thing that really let me down was the combat just didn't feel as interesting as Terraria's does, and perhaps someone who has never played Terraria might not have that issue with it. I don't really know what it was though. Something I do know contributed to this feeling was that the weapons are randomly generated and the amount felt quite overwhelming at first but once I worked it out it usually just amounted to a flat damage increase with no visual difference to anything else. Which again I compare to Terraria and you have a lot of unique and interesting weapons so it just feels a bit meh. There's noticeable progression but ti somehow felt lessened to me when I was just constantly getting similar stuff.
As I said at the start, you will really enjoy the game. They may have also released some updates since I last played that may have improved it further.
Posted November 2nd, 2018
I've played it but never finished it. I know it's had several updates since the last time I tried though.
I have a few major issues with the game. The first is that, compared to Terraria, the combat system is just... dull. It's pretty slow, the weapons are either gimmicky or adequate, and the enemies don't seem to have much in the way of AI or interesting mechanics. In Terraria you go from having severely limited mobility to being a flying speed demon, and the enemies scale over time to keep up with you. In Starbound you might get lucky and find a double jump tech, while the difficulty of your location will almost always determine if you're getting murdered or doing the murdering. The lackluster weapons and slow combat speed also translates to boss fights that aren't very interesting.
The second major issue, as someone who loved building in Terraria, is that making anything worthwhile in Starbound seems to require a time investment far beyond any worthwhile return. Want to craft some metal walls? You're going to be mining for hours to get enough metal to craft enough of them to make a room. Ultimately you're better off finding something that matches the aesthetic of what you want to build (spooky house / science lab / medieval village) out in the world and tearing it down for resources than trying to make them yourself. It's doable, but it's not very engaging or fun.
The best part of Starbound is the procedurally generated universe. There are a wide variety of planet types, and you can find some really cool twists on other types if you're lucky (polluted ocean worlds with toxic water, strange mutated worlds, and spooky shadow planets). The randomly generated temples, towns, and other structures are fun to come across, but there does seem to be a general lack of design variety. You'll start noticing the similarities once you stumble across your third or fourth one of the same type. Still, compared to Terraria's single map you've basically got an infinite galaxy to explore.
The ship is a highlight too, as it starts out pretty small but ends up as a massive mobile base over time. I think more recent updates have also added the ability to construct some kind of 'space station' that you can populate with NPCs.
It's an interesting game. I don't think it ever comes close to reaching the heights that Terraria does, but it's fun for exploration.
Posted November 2nd, 2018
by Count Dooku