9 planets total to explore for now, with tons of items to craft and use towards an end-game goal. After the end game you can still explore and create/build more.
The Nov 15 update is also adding a creative mode and the ability to use "dedicated servers" which i'm guessing is like how Steam used to allow people to run their own servers for Halflife/Counterstrike and maintain your own persistent world?
Been watching 2 Youtube streamers for a few months now, they even have some emergent multiplayer activities, where you can start a new save with friends and try to build things together.
Haven't been this excited over a new game since NMS launched.
Roll out to PS4 was pretty smooth, only thing I heard of was players losing their saves until they patched it a few days in, but I did not experience this.
Have not seen one crash or major glitch, after 2 patches have been pushed so far for crashing issues.
What a cool little Zen game to come home to and unwind with.
Things I don't like so far: Camera controls with the PS4 controller are clunky. Hard to keep the cursor focused when you are picking items up to move around and it goes into slo-mo mode when moving things. Sometines the focus to 'use' items gets stuck on things behind you, leading you to disconnect base parts, or worse, fire off your solid booster attached to your ship, stranding you since it only has 2 uses, luckily I was able to craft another on site, now I always carry a spare. Camera controls when driving vehicles needs work.
Things am really digging:
It's pretty much an open sandbox.
Jumping in a vehicle or shelter creates a game save, but unless you back up a save for a certain point, (or duplicate a save, which is neat) any save restore takes you right back to the last successful one only.
After a tutorial game, you start out crash landing on a planet, and you need to survive, gather resources, and build up enough of them and functional items to get you off the planet to visit the other 8, each planet is a bit harder in their respective environments, but there is no special environmental hazard needs other than you need to keep power an O2 tanked up in your suit with various means.
Only real 'enemy' encountered in the game is plant-based hazards, which are easily avoidable and easily dispatched by digging them out with your terrain tool. The only ways to die are run out of O2, fall to your death, blow your self up, or one of the harder planet's aggressive plants kills you.
There are no weapons, other than certain types of explosives that are used for terrain reasons later on, just your terrain tool which can dig, flatten and create terrain with the use of a soil canister to store dug soil.
You progress by doing research and gaining Bytes, which are spent in your computer catalog to learn things to build with your 3d printers.
All items in game are learnable/accessible without the help of someone else. Only a few milestone trophies require multiplayer.
Harder planets require higher level items to progress quicker on them, but it is possible to dig in a harder planet's soil with lower level terrain drills, it just takes longer, and there are about 7 subterranean layers to go through to get to the core of the planet, which is related to the underlying storyline as well to complete for all planets which reveals the 'end game'
But mainly our game is to gather, learn, build a base, and search for goodies and equipment to use on each planet.
Graphics are very smooth an even the environmental audio in underground areas has a nice echo effect.
The planets are of a size it is possible to travel all the way around them in an hour or two, or so, the moons are even smaller.
I find it to be a very relaxing zen game I plan on spending many hours getting lost and finding my way back to base in.