Hello, so far was always hyped by freelancer and since i didnt found any alternative the past ten years finally tried it out again with some mods. :>
One of the first once i came across was this one and it looks/is very promising.
So played Singleplayer for a few minutes to get the feeling again and jumped straight on your mp server. Bought one of the beginner ships and mk3 weapons so i can just start and look for a bounty. Have taken one of the destroy station/bandits bounties.... they are my favorite. Anyways started flying towards waypoint (which is apparently not so long anymore from what i remember in my childhood years when playing it first times, guess got more patient) and encountered the first pack of 4 fighters.
Well dont want to describe everything in battle so just the points which dont seem beginner friendly or are very annoying (Server had something like 8 players online, so guessed it was because the game is pretty old but well... think i was wrong), the fighters have some insane dodge rates, use all countermeasures so basically rockets useless atleast with 1-2 slots for them and spam 10-20x their shield/life nanobots/batteries. After a few minutes got used to the turn/afterburner burst and my mouse was like 75% of the time on the preshoot crosshair, still they seemed to dodge around 80% when they are not turning for the afterburner burst. Even dead range missles got countered by flares which is just unfun(Not me chasing them more like nearly crashing into each other from front). On the other side the player can even dodge more which is ridicilous.
Completed some mission and hoped to buy some good weapons at some point, was nearby the amount at the end to buy a good ship/weapons, but got killed after 20 mins fight with a assassination target while being chased by 6 of his escort. Just for fun counted the times his shield was restored, and it seems level 10+ enemies can restore shields infight without delay sometimes and like every minute they can get full shields without using batteries ? Anyways it was like 50x + his ~2,5k shield got restored after it was fully destroyed, and tbh i was with the beginner ship and still same weapons. So its even more unrewarding if you try higher enemys and get punished even if you could have killed them 50 times.
So my guess the beginning is just insanely annoying if you dont know where to get good stuff and later on its "ok" ? Only for multiplayer, singleplayer was pretty much fun on hard.