I am thinking about getting this game, just had a few questions.
How big is the download? I'm at work so i can't check but I believe it was just over a gig.
How is the population for eastern US times? The population is still a bit low, but there are plenty of players on in your time zone.
What are the starter areas like? Well..... think of yourself waking up after the Apocalypse thrown into a strange world with a pair of pants, shirt, shoes a basic weapon and tools of the trade you chose. There are no NPCs, no starter town, no quests. Just you in a huge world and the first hamster you come across will probably kill you LOL.
What crafting skill do you think is least used, that could better help the community? I think all skill get used and if you are not sure what to chose I would suggest tools since everyone and every trade needs tools.
You can solo, but you may want to join a tribe. It is a bit tough going solo.
Download isn't bad at all, the overall population is not huge but there is always people talking in global. The starter areas are crowded with abandoned totems so you might want to explore a bit before settling down.