Myself and three other friends who played a lot of UO, Shadowbane, Dark Age of Camelot, etc all tried the current beta. There was a consensus after roughly 4-5 hours of playing: we don't get it. Not good when four people who have an affinity for PvP/hardcore MMO's cannot justify the purchase of the game to themselves or one another.
The game has been in development for over a half-decade now and all that's been produced is a season-based, shell of an MMO that has an endgame similar to Dark Age of Camelot, but with no compelling reason to join any particular faction. Crafting is slightly more interesting than your average MMO, but similar things have been done in the past in different MMO's.
The goal is to push the boundaries of the MMO genre, apparently, but I've seen absolutely nothing new in this MMO, nor any novel ideas/systems proposed for the development pipeline. Tons of stuff has been ripped directly from other MMO's, especially Shadowbane.
The CEO doesn't have a good track record for this kind of game. I know he's trying rest comfortably on his Shadowbane laurels, but I am not sure if he remembers that Shadowbane, at release, was nearly unplayable and basically collapsed under the weight of its own ambition and Wolf Pack's ineptitude. In later years, Shadowbane got quite good, but that took YEARS, and there were many serious issues that went unresolved, right up until the time it was shuttered by Ubisoft.
The game is being released into an ecosystem with mature, competitive alternatives, and it is not even promising, specifically, how to be better than it already is. All the studio can do is make promises at this point, but they are not even doing that. Shadowbane had virtually no competition compared to what Crowfall is releasing into. At best, you seem to get a vague set of guiding principles and a cringey comparison by the CEO about how releasing a game is like having a baby, but it really doesn't mean anything.
I've seen people critique ACE's incomprehensible/nonexistent marketing strategy, and I agreed initially, but MMO's rely entirely on repeat business, and any kind of marketing push would be based on half-truths, outright lies and euphemisms like the game "featuring a subscription." I am honestly not sure what there is to market right now.
I am also not seeing the Crowfall stans screeching and hissing at negative feedback, nor lauding every incremental improvement ACE makes to the game. While it's nice to not have to wade through that garbage, it's also somewhat alarming that it isn't present at all. No one really seems to have anything good to say. The best that I am seeing is that combat is okay and that they hope that they will see drastic improvement in all other areas.
I certainly do not want the game to fail, quite the opposite, but I think that any honest accounting of the current situation is going to conclude that things are not looking good.