Glad I decided to give Subnautica another run. Thanks for the thread Longbow. I've essentially gotten back to the point I had reached before my progress was clipped by a system death. And did so in half the time it took in the first run. I've played more efficiently which is to be expected having done it once. And I've found some things I had missed as well.
The game is beautiful, and for me quite amazing. The environment is stunning. I talked about it in the thread from last year, but I feel that the devs did a wonderful job re-imagining the ocean. Every plant and creature is fictional, but seem evolutionarily plausible. If only Crashfish didn't evolve!
Lots of bioluminescence which looks fantastic at night.
Gameplay is fun, performance is smooth and stable. Sounds are superb. Initial load times are a bit long, but not that bad, less than a minute anyway. But it's all seamless inside, no loading screens or that sort of nonsense.
The gameworld is divided up in to a number of very distinct biomes, which are intertwined with one another. There are a large number of cave systems to explore, but get your O2 squared away first! From shallow, colorful areas, to extremely deep and dark locations and all sorts of places in between. It's a game that expertly rewards exploration. I always say this, but it's particularly true in Subnautica. Do not resort to guides and google. Infinitely more rewarding when you discover something yourself and see it live for the first time.
It's not a game for everyone though. It requires both imagination and self motivation. There isn't much to guide you. It's the sort of game where you get out of it what you put in to it.
And it can be frightening. The combination of darkness, depth and seen and unseen dangers can raise the hackles. Imagination plays a part here of course, but there are dangers at nearly every turn in Subnautica. The effect will depend on the player, but it has the potential to scare your socks off.
I've been building a second base in a distinctly beautiful biome. It's a place I wanted to build in during my first run, but never got around to it. I'll post a shot of it when I get a chance. Hopefully it won't be too much of a spoiler. And then a third base, in a very deep, amazing location. Players getting near the end will know of it, but I don't even want to post the name of the biome so I don't spoil it by revealing it's existence. I feel my experience is much better for having gone in blind and it won't be me that ruins it for someone else
Subnautica is a game that's worth your time. It's reasonably priced ($25 full price) and goes on sale often. The new Subnautica is right around the corner (in early access now) so it's a good time to check this game out and then be ready for Below Zero full release.