Written by Ryu En, August 26, 2016, at 1:53 p.m.
That’s a No for No Man’s Sky
When I first heard about No Man’s Sky from my co-worker at the time, I was beyond hyped up and excited for a multiplayer space exploration game. My mind ran through the endless amount of possibilities I could do with my friends and what we could build and conquer in the infinite void. So I pre-purchased the game for $60 to get my hands on a special pre-order ship and I waited… Three days… Two days.
And on August 12, 2016, at 1:00 p.m., the download button finally unlocked in my Steam library! This was it! The most anticipated game of the summer of 2016 was downloaded onto my powerhouse PC an hour later.
And two hours later, I was teary eyed like Anakin Skywalker asking myself, “What have I done?!”
Seriously, what have I done in the game? I spent the good first hour exploring the starter planet for minerals to construct parts to repair my downed ship. I was finally able to take off from the planet, which atmosphere was barely breathable (luckily mining carbon replenishes life support systems) and head into the expanse of space.
After doing the obligatory side missions such as visiting a space station to find a blueprint, I then received a distress call from a nearby planet. I hastily locked onto the source and engaged in quasi-light speed to the destination marked on the HUD.
This planet’s (which name I’ve forgotten) landscape and atmosphere was much more welcoming with its crystal blue oceans and lush terrains. As I entered the atmosphere, I disengaged light speed and finally arrived at an outpost (which name I have also forgotten). Would I be engaging in some type of combat? Or some contest to test my wit and advance the story line? I asked myself as I jumped out of my star ship.
As I entered building, I was greeted by an alien life form who threatened to bludgeon me if I didn’t give him twenty pieces of carbon. And so I did, under duress. He (she) then had a change of heart and awarded me with another blueprint to construct a hyper-drive attachment for my ship. But guess what I had to do get the money to buy the reagents off the trade network? MINE MORE MINERALS!!
And so this went on for four hours. Find a distress signal or an abandoned building, scan for other distress signals and/or buildings, mine minerals to power, and repair my ship to fly off to another planet to do the same thing.
And on August 12, 9:30 p.m., No Man’s Sky was uninstalled from my computer.
No Man’s Sky is a beauty of graphic work. Even running it on the lowest setting (which most PC users had to do initially) provides the player with rich landscapes, beautiful flora and fauna and interesting procedurally-generated creatures to be found, scanned, and uploaded to earn credits.
The Bad and the Ugly
LACK OF CONTENT
The story above, though slightly fictionalized, is what you will spend all of your time doing in the game. With no set story line to follow, players are left wondering what to do next in a galaxy of 1.8 billion planets. The most engagement you’ll get is by speaking with a lone alien in a space station or outpost. Otherwise, I hope you enjoy mining minerals and the solitude.
LACK OF MULTIPLAYER
Though Hello Games did not specifically tout this title as a multiplayer game, they did dance around and state that you would be able to meet up with your friends and go explore. Two players did, in fact, arrive on the same planet but could not see each other. NMS is essentially a single player game in a multiplayer universe.
Final Verdict : D+
I’m sure Hello Games will release an expansion later on down the line to support multiplayer and have an engaging story line filled with customization features. Maybe even adding in building components to mimic Empyrion and Minecraft. Surprisingly, reports show that UK sales of the title have dropped 81% in the past two weeks of its release.
As of now, NMS feels like an alpha title that was sold for a AAA price with beta content. But if you enjoy this type of game, then head for the stars and collect 200 pcs of iron for me, will ya?