This is actually a rendition of an earlier post that got flagged as spoilers when it wasn't, so you may have read this before.
So, as the title says, I pretty much said screw the main story. I wanted to see this world for myself. No hand to hold. And holy crap, this is by far the best way to play this game if you really are devoted to having a full experience. Once I reached the mission "City of the Sun", I turned my quests and Hud entirely off; and just started walking. And I kept walking. The entire map was seen by my eyes for the first time with no explanation or story to drive me. Just my raw curiosity drove me.
I can't stress how amazing it was to play like this. To scour the world as a foreigner with no explanations, seeing new machines and muttering to yourself "wtf is that thing"? I also did the collectible objectives because they were basically checkpoints for me. (Yes. Every single thing possible).
So now I have about 40 hours in, and only 20% of the story done. I've got some nice weapons, I know the land and the machines because I took them down myself on my own. Now that I've basically "lived" in this world for the past week doing nothing but walking the lands and defeating mechanical beasts, I feel like I can grasp the story much better because I have a past with every setting I'll visit. Something to expand my original thoughts on. "Was my hypothesis correct about this area of the game? Wow, I was very wrong, but it's cooler than what I thought anyway!"
For those who are just starting and want to dive into this game like you've never done with a game before, do these simple things:
- Limit your HUD as much as possible (remember everything can be brought up by touching the touchpad)
- Play up until you get the mission "City of the Sun".
- Go to quests and turn everything off.
- Explore this absolutely amazing world to your hearts content.