Kenshi is a free-roaming sandbox RPG. Be anyone you want as you customize your character and explore the gameworld.
Several fates await you, from building an empire to starving to death or being killed by beasts. Build a squad and control them, or stay alone. Keep exploring or stop and build a settlement. All the while, upgrade skills and tech. There's also the ability to start your own faction.
The gameworld's denizens do not level up with you, so you can run into high-level combatants early on. A complex medical system with wounds, bleeding, and hunger management adds to the difficulty.
The crux is that there is much you can do and little guidance. You are not a hero on a quest. A world filled with struggle and opportunity awaits you.
Research new equipment and craft new gear. Purchase and upgrade your own buildings to use as safe fortified havens when things go bad, or use them to start up a business. Aid or oppose the various factions in the world while striving for the strength and wealth necessary to simply survive in the harsh desert. Train your men up from puny victims to master warriors. Carry your wounded squad mates to safety and get them all home alive.