Verdict
Beautiful settingsRelaxing game playInfinite exporation
ExpensiveNo real multiplayer option
3.4Sky's the limit?
Reader Rating 5 Votes

No Man’s Sky is the game everyone has been hotly anticipating. An indie game developers Hello Games, the sci-fi exploration adventure boasts a universe with 18 quintillion planets. The question on everyone’s lips, “Should I buy No Man’s Sky?” comes after  a huge backlash from gamers around the world. 

No Man’s Sky start each player on their own planet. You have a broken space ship, broken sensor, visor, and your mining beam is out of juice. You’re also in a life support exo-suit which slowly runs out of energy. Thus you will begin your journey of discovery and endless farming.

The survival element of the game makes things super interested to start with. Some people, such as myself, are unlucky with our initial planet. With subzero temperatures and few key resources, it takes me a long time to fix my ship and get beyond a small radius of my start up site.

There are minimal tutorials, but you pick up the basics very quickly. Press this button to shoot a laser and mine that tree. Click this button to turn your tree bits into fuel for your thrusters. Each piece of equipment needs various materials to function, so you go around hunting and grinding.

Once you fix your ship, your options are seemingly endless. Despite this, many people feel the game doesn’t have enough going on. Whilst each planet you discover has been randomly generated differently, they’re in essence mostly the same.

For instance, the initial beauty of the world and it’s vastness becomes boring once you get used to the colour scheme. Going from one solar system to another you notice a general pattern. This planet is mostly green. This planet is almost entirely red. All the colours are bright and exotic, but the colour planet for the whole universe seems limited.

There are three paths to take in the game, and the most popular one is the Atlas Path. The goal here is to get to the centre of the universe, and this is actually the story Hellow Games and Sony marketed.

Although some people have reached the centre already, Hello Games have stated that it should take around 40-100 hours of gameplay if you solely focused on that objective and didn’t explore any of the planets.

There are plenty of other options to take with the game. I personally decided that I wanted to mine and sell things to become super rich and get a big starship. I haven’t focused on upgrading to any weapons and instead chose to run away from fights. Others are more combat focused. Some people will enjoy simply discovering and naming new plants and animals.

The multiplayer aspect of the game is misleading. Whilst any planet, plant or animal you name will get uploaded to the servers forever, you’ll never meet another player. Two players found themselves on the same planet on launch day, and despite being in the same place, could not see each other.

I believe that this is an issue Hello Games will consider fixing. The entire game feels very lone ranger. Aliens you will meet have minimal interactions. Animals either ignore you, run away from you, or maybe attack you. Sentinels are robots that sometimes shoot at you.

For anyone wanting a super engaging story line and lots of interaction, this isn’t your game. If you’re looking for a first person epic space fight, this isn’t your game. It is a game for people who want to relax for a few hours to find things to farm and explore.

Overall it feels like a really good indie game, but priced for something much more complex. The details don’t always load quickly enough. It can feel like there is clunky gameplay. The options of things to do are actually limited, although you can do them an infinite amount of times.

It’s beautiful but repetitive. It’s not fast paced. For some, this means it’s boring. For other’s, this means it’s relaxing.

No Man’s Sky has a lot of potential. It’s huge, but lacks personal interaction. Players who enjoy simple sci-fi exploration without the fear of conflict should buy this game. Players who want a more solid story line and lots of combat, this isn’t for you.

I personally enjoy the game a lot. I believe I’ll end up sinking a lot of hours into it. There are enough small game mechanics that keep me interested. There is room for improvement. We’ll have to wait and see if Hello Games bring out any expansions or updates for the game.

  • There will be updates. For example on launch day there was an software update (that long intro download you experienced on your Twitch stream) There will be more to come. From videos I’ve watched online there is actually a lot of combat if you want it, you can always buy a star fighter ship and become a space pirate which for the most part when I get the game myself I know i will be trying to avoid since i suck at aiming)

    But I do think I will like the variety of “things” to do
    – Feed animals to make friends so they show me cool rare things, or poop out cool rare things
    – Business guy in me likes the barter system, buy low sell high aspect with traders, plus exo suit upgrades at Shelters are 10k a pop + previous upgrade costs each time to max out slots at 48.
    – Actually going to Monoliths while most people forget these gives you the “story” piece of the game and helps make trading easier since you can understand, make friends, and get better prices with traders.
    – There are anomalies that can side track you of the Atlas Path which I must say reminds me of Star Trek 5 and finding “God” which on a side note I remember for not being the best of the 6 original star trek movies but did have one hot asian romulan in it; guess it was the hair & ears :)
    – As for multiplayer aspect, I don’t know. Something tells me int he future this will exist but for sending transmissions & trading only. It’s not like you’re going to team up to explore a planet unless it is mission based like “Find this rare of rare material, fauna or animal”) or battle the sentinels for that rare drop of a blueprint you need to do some cool thing. I could see it working for being a band of space pirates or a caravan of traders like the groups of cargo ships that are sometimes by planets that you can attack for its inventory.

    Last but not least since you mentioned it in your post, the sentinels will only attack you if you; 1) Fire on a friendly indigenous animal 2) try to steal from mining or manufacturing facilities by force 3) try to harvest rare elements or metals. The sentinels & there robo dogs, walkers (bigger as you get to center of universe & rack up more wanted stars) are basically universe police, and this aspect can quell those Grand Theft Auto players that just want mayhem & destruction gameplay.

    I just know I can’t wait to get my shiny new PS4 and download the game today 8/16. I think I’ll ultimately like the open world aspect like I did with Elder Scrolls series and Skyrim on PS3 & I entirely see myself going back to my multiple graves sites as I die attempting dumb thing or answering wrong riddle questions.

    • Harriet Sugarcookie

      Not sure when the updates are going to happen. Not sure if we’re going to have to pay for an expansion or something… Hmm

      • they won’t do paid DLC expansions, but they will probably bring user generated & created Mods to the PS4 like they ultimately usually do for PC which will add some added replayability to it.

        But first thing is first, get through the reported bugs in Steam & PS4 versions. Then after that create new content as sales/revenue gets projected. They are on patch 1.0.8 now, I see that going to 1.0.10 or a major patch of 1.1 before getting new content.

        As for players, the big thing right now is trying to figure out Portals; a) are they active and if so how can they be opened to match game trailer. Just one of many mysteries and easter eggs that are in game. Hopefully others will be added later.

        I’ve played 3 times already (streamed on Youtube and twitch if you want to see my long winded gameplay) and have done 20hrs or so. It might be repetitive at times but if you play for nuance it remains entertaining. Next month Skyrm gets republished so I’ll start to play that as well, I wonder if I can use my save from my PS3, that would be nice since I put many hours into it (skipping main story actually) but the realist in me says I’ll be spending plenty of time re-becoming a thief guild member all over again on the new PS4 version.

        • Christopher Ragland

          I wouldn’t count on mods since they declined to let Fallout 4 mods happen
          same for Skyrim no mods
          For now!

          • sony has already released mods will be availble for new skyrim edition, and the reason fallout doesn’t have those is since it has actual DLC’s that people purchase whereas Skyrim and No Mans Sky are/will be stand-alone content games. If I’m not mistaken during E3 the skyrim mods section was featured, but I don’t remember off hand in what context.

          • Christopher Ragland

            well last week Bethesda posted this:
            PS4 MODS update: https://bethesda.net/#en/events/game/ps4-mod-update/2016/09/09/199

          • Harriet Sugarcookie

            I’ve preodered the skyrim thing… the updated one that’s coming out with the mods inbuilt