Why No Man's Sky Is The Most Necessary Game Of 2016

Image: Supplied

I'm writing this while sitting on a train. It's almost full, packed with commuters. Most have their heads down looking at the tiny screens of their phones. Schoolkids argue loudly about something I can't quite hear. Some people are just waiting, staring out the windows. Staring at the floor. Eating some chips. Everyone on public transportation is on pause, between one thing and the next. Worried about their destination. Excited to get there or dreading the moment they arrive.

This is what a large number of human beings do every day. Locked in a steel box, eager to be somewhere else. It is a bizarre modern practice but it has become completely mundane for millions. A lot do it because they require money for food and shelter. Otherwise they will die hungry and alone. They invented trains and all the corresponding destinations. They pay close attention when to exit and are ready to get instantly annoyed if the train isn't quick enough. They will spend years, decades, perhaps even centuries doing this. Or at least until teleportation is commercially available.

Sean Murray, one of the directors at Hello Games, has said that within the universe of No Man's Sky there are 18 quintillion planets. To put that in perspective, the only things on this single planet we call Earth that would perhaps amount to a quintillion are atoms, drops of water and the amount of times some radio stations still play Chumbawamba. Probably even after that meagre comparison, it still wouldn't be enough to match the scope of this game. It has also been said that in order to visit every single planet, you would have to set aside roughly 585 billion real-world years. Even if an understanding supervisor granted you that much time off work, it's still not guaranteed that a Platinum Trophy awaits you at the end.

When No Man's Sky was first revealed in December 2013, it took people's breath away. Wedged in amongst developer interviews, musical acts and Joel McHale discussing his genitals, a two-minute trailer appeared on the VGX Video Game Awards which instantly stole the show. It captured people's imaginations so immediately that it was the only thing that rose from the ashes of the program. Everyone wanted to know more about this surprise announcement which came from, astonishingly, the studio that made Joe Danger. Since then, the desire throughout the video game industry to play No Man's Sky has grown exponentially.

I'm writing this during a birthday celebration at work. Everyone's standing in a circle eating cake. They exchange small talk and barely tolerate hearing about each other's tedious, bleak lives secretly wishing they could be anywhere else. They couldn't possibly care about your wine tasting or hospital visits. But they pretend to listen just so things don't get weird and uncomfortable in this place. A place they have to be in all day. Every day.

All procedurally generated, every planet in No Man's Sky will be somehow different. Snow, dust storms, rain, toxic environments and every variation imaginable lay in wait to discover. Discovered by you. When landing on a planet, it is highly unlikely anyone will have set foot on its surface before. Step out of your ship and explore. That's what you're here to do. There are creatures wandering about, dangerous robot sentries, trading posts, space battles, black holes and you can even land your ship on an asteroid. All of it waiting for you and you alone. Technically there will be other players in No Man's Sky but it will be rare to cross paths with another human. You'll be essentially exploring this universe in solitude.

One of the smartest things about the marketing for No Man's Sky is prolonging the questions. Hello Games have created a virtual universe. Not one filled with linear story missions or cannon fodder enemies. This universe is open and endless. A place of discovery and wonder. And most of it is still unknown because its creators refuse to disclose its secrets. Since the game's announcement, the question of "what do you do?" went from a legitimate query about the game's contents to an annoying meme and back again. Everyone wrestled with the desire to know more and wanting to jump in completely blind. For most people upon seeing even a few minutes of the game, it has always been a question of how to play No Man's Sky, not if.

Image: Supplied

I'm writing this while watching the news. From here, humans look like a catastrophic mistake. According to the World Health Organisation, over 50 million humans die every year. The leading causes in medium-to-high income countries are heart disease and cancers. In low-income countries, more than six million children under the age of five die each year from malnutrition and childbirth complications. Traffic related deaths number in the thousands every day with over a million per year. Add that to the rest of the injury-related deaths (including murder) and it's over five million. Strangely enough, nowhere does the World Health Organisation list 'old age' as a common cause of death. Perhaps the number is too small to even bother recording.

Most death seems to be preventable. Not in the long term of course but human beings certainly are comfortable in accepting premature expiration as a normal thing. You would think this to be cause for worldwide alarm but it's not the case. Humans are too busy to care. They concern themselves with pointing out their differences or beliefs. Or promote their advantages over other less-fortunate people in ways to make them feel superior. Or blame others for their own intolerance. Some of them are even using these things in the hopes of being elected into positions of power. And they have support. 2016 seems to be moving the goalposts on an almost daily basis for what humans will accept as normal. What previously seemed insane to accept is slowly becoming standard to tolerate.

In October 2015, Sean Murray appeared as a guest on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. They talked about the vast size and scope of the game and showed off some of the planets and creatures. For a game developer, international exposure like this is almost unheard of. A mainstream television show with millions of viewers is a platform usually reserved for blockbuster movie stars and musicians. But here was Colbert, basically calling Murray a god for creating a second universe for people to dive into and play around with. And the crowd loved it. The video of the segment has over a million views on YouTube. Which would be remarkable were it not for No Man's Sky's own gameplay videos already breaking the 5 million mark.

Everyone wants to play No Man's Sky and it didn't take much to convince them. After watching the two-minute trailer in 2013, it would have close to impossible to find someone who wasn't completely sold on the game. To go out there into deep space and have the freedom and opportunity to explore it all on your own is something most people dream about as kids. Not only to visit strange planets but be the very first person to set foot on them has been a tremendously appealing notion in all varieties of science-fiction since humans started looking up at the stars. It's a fascination held by every civilization throughout history whether from a scientific or religious viewpoint. What's out there and how far can they go? Humans want to know. For better or worse, a collective desire to explore the universe is something most people share regardless of who they like or dislike. Regardless of what they do or don't believe in. Regardless of whether they have love or hate in their veins.

I'm writing this while watching a live stream of NASA footage. The unmanned spacecraft Juno, launched in 2011, is entering the orbit of Jupiter. For the next 20 months, Juno will orbit the largest planet in our solar system to get a clearer picture of its atmospheric composition, mass and magnetic field. It took five years to reach Jupiter. Travelling through cold, dark space so humans could learn just a little more about their tiny, tiny, tiny corner of the universe. Missions like this are commonplace for NASA. The Cassini is currently orbiting Saturn and studying its moons. The Dawn space probe reached the dwarf planet Ceres in May 2015 while the rovers Curiosity and Opportunity are moving along the surface of Mars. Opportunity is currently twelve years past the point where it was supposed to break down and fail. But it's still going, gathering data about the planet and sending it back to Earth.

As incredible as these achievements are, a human being hasn't left the low orbit of Earth since 1972. Apollo 17 departed from the surface of the moon in December of that year and since then, astronauts haven't travelled further than the International Space Station. That was 44 years ago. A lot has happened on Earth in that time and not all of it has been good. 2016 feels like it's leading up to something and from the track record it has laid down as of this writing, humans are naturally worried about where that might be. How much more intolerance, horror and absurdity can we witness in a single calendar year? How often can it happen for it to become even more commonplace and accepted than it already is? Are human beings in real trouble and as a collective group, what can they do to help themselves?

Every astronaut that travelled into space and turned to look at the Earth has had a common revelation. The planet is small. So small and fragile. It's just hanging there in a black void, housing all of our history and probably most of our future. They describe it as the most amazing sight in the universe. Even if they were standing on the moon or could see countless stars, almost everyone who has left the Earth has said they couldn't take their eyes off our home planet. Any problems or differences human beings may have on the surface instantly disappear and mean nothing in the blackness of space. From out here, two countries going to war seems about as important as an overdue gas bill.

After more than three years in development, No Man's Sky will be available on August 10. Despite everyone's ravenous desire to play it, the team at Hello Games might be the ones most relieved when it is finally released. Their concept of an entire universe will ultimately be delivered. And for the rest of Earth's humans, the game holds a promise of something that can instantly cause them to dream bigger than the tiny planet they stand on. Infinite possibilities and endless discovery. A solitary experience of galactic exploration beyond everything we know.

No Man's Sky might just be the game we all need in 2016.



Comments

    No it's not.

      well I guess you live up to your name. at least the author of the article could string together many different sentences and arrange them into a decent read full of ideas.

        I like shithead's approach better. Far more succinct :P

          and that is why the gaming world is so full of vacuous conversation of late. Who cares about intelligent conversation, lets just say something is crap , end of conversation *eye roll*

            Imo Raygun articles tend to be more of the former - a million words to say a whole lot of not-much-at-all. I'd rather a Serrels article if I'm looking for intelligent conversation.

              This article isn't even a conversation, it's a diatribe.

            So does your definition of 'intelligent conversation' involve claiming people said things they didn't, and then bitching about the things they never actually said?

            Because it sure seems like it does.

            This article wasn't intelligent conversation as much as it was pretentious, presumptuous and vacuous.

              I like also the insights he gives about his daily life: watching other people do things, while feeling quietly superior. I mean, all those people talking and socializing, they can't possibly have the hidden depths that I have.

      Do people talk like this to you at your job? Assuming you're old enough to have one. I'm sure if they were so blunt and rude, you'd be annoyed. Take a second, consider things and don't be an ass. It's fine to disagree but give it some thought.

    Why No Man's Sky Is The Most Necessary Game Of 2016

    After reading the entire article, I'm not even sure the author was trying to answer that question at all?

      I think it boils down to it might give us some sorely needed perspective on our place in the universe.

      Last edited 18/07/16 12:25 pm

        Elite Dangerous has been doing that for a couple of years.

        I think the monty python universe song did this quite elegantly a while back

      tl;dr: humanity needs some perspective

      Unfortunately in reality a few million gamers will play a game about space exploration, most of whom have already heard Carl Sagan's "pale blue dot" monologue, and it is unlikely to change anything.

      I liked the article and I'm interested in the game, but I think it's "importance" has been rather overstated.

        Just like the relevance of our comments :P

      It wasnt a question in the first place but i understand what you mean

    Sure, sounds fun, if you enjoy roaming around on empty planets whilst scanning rocks and space deer. Some planets might even have blue trees instead of green.

      upgrade your ships pvp pirates, get better tech lern new languages, build bases, sounds boarding right? who wants a 3d minecraft in space.....

        U meant pvnpc right? Sure all those things would be cool if their was PvP involved.

        Give me a hand crafted version of our solar system any day over this pre gen boring planet hype shallow crap.

        Technically there will be other players in No Man’s Sky but it will be rare to cross paths with another human. You’ll be essentially exploring this universe in solitude.

          Totally fine with that - if online multiplayer sandbox games have taught me anything, it's that if you give people access to weapons, they will just want to break your shit.

        There's a tall poppy effect at work where the game is so hyped, a lot of jaded people want to tear it down as another Spore.

        A lot of these people sound like they've never played a single player space sim before in their life, though. Man, I played X Beyond the Frontier back in the day in singleplayer, and it had exploration, dogfights and trading too, and you couldn't even land on planets, and that was fiiiiine.

          hrm, i would probably call myself jaded but that's not why i'm skeptical about this game, very little information about what the actual gameplay is has come out, almost like they're hiding it

            Not really? There's many very long gameplay demonstrations, 10, 20 minutes long, that have come out every since the game has been announced. There's more gameplay footage for this game than for most games I've ever been interested in.

              I think the bigger gripe is that despite all those demonstrations, its never really been made clear what you do and why. I've watched plenty of them and loved them, but still have no idea what you're meant to be doing in the game.

              Which may be the game itself, or a sign that theres some fundamental flaw intrinsic to the game. Either way, whats captured peoples attention suggests plenty will find out on August 10.

              But someone needs to just come out and say something like 'The aim of the game is to explore. Just explore. Then see where it takes you' and that would be enough. Or if someone has, advertise it better. Its just too vague at the moment, and thats confusing people.

              For the article itself, I read it that its a game that might drive someone to explore outwards again. If it inspires just one person to do something and it happens, the point is made. Hard to prove though, until someone in 2040 says 'I was inspired by No Mans Sky as a kid'...

          Also Freelancer, and there's still nothing quite like it

      I'm absolutely buying this game because I love the whole discover/collect/craft/upgrade mechanic, and the look takes me right back to my Golden Age scifi childhood (as intended) - but I admit to concerns about the same thing.

      I'm not really sure why the whole "18 quintillion planets" line is pushed so hard. For one, even just a thousand would be far more than any player could explore, but mostly it's just not relevant - what's far more important is the variety on those planets - nobody wants a "game" with 18 quintillion identical featureless spheres.

      Spore was cool in that it had a huge variety of player-designed creatures, and you never knew what you'd find - yet it still got old fairly quickly. I really hope the actual discovery gameplay mechanics are solid too; there needs to be incentive to explore.

        That's the problem I think.
        This game doesn't seem to offer much beyond what minecraft does.
        Big open "do whatever you want" world.

        I find the lack of direction boring. The lack of guidance and lack of story, lack of ending...
        I like games to entertain me. Give me something to aim for, something to drive me further.

        I could never get into the "make your own fun" sandbox type games.
        Once you've played one, you've played them all..,
        Example: GTA. Loved number 3 and played the hell out of that. Then all the others are basically the same save for a different story line, prettier visuals, and more "features".
        I play through the story (if at all) and then realize everything else is more of the same.

        I don't want games that force me to make my own fun. That's just more work. You're supposed to entertain me. I have other hobbies and my own imagination if I want to make my own fun. I don't need to do it in a digital world too.

        I'll probably still play this game, but I don't expect it to hold my interest for long. And it sure as hell isn't the most necessary game because of some deep analysis of the human condition.

        Everything this article says can even be applied to games like Elite Dangerous already. Massive open universes to explore that ultimately feel hollow, empty and boring for any but the most die hard fans.

        Last edited 18/07/16 4:19 pm

          "The lack of guidance and lack of story, lack of ending...I like games to entertain me."

          Seems like your issue is lack of imagination.

            If I'm going to use my imagination for entertainment, then I don't need to waste time and money on a game do I?

            Especially not "the most necessary game of 2016"

            If my imagination is enough, then this game is completely obsolete. If my imagination isn't enough, then the game needs to provide something deeper... which it doesn't appear to do.

          Stop with the comparison to Minecraft, that game is nothing but giant ugly squares. It's a totally unfair comparison and literally about as far apart as two games could possibly be.

            Minecraft is my go to "make your own fun" or "sandbox" game.
            There's other ones too.... like Universe Sandbox. Awesome game, great physics, great learning tool, but it doesn't take long for crashing galaxies into each other to get boring.

            Doesn't matter if a game looks prettier if it's just as devoid of content.

            Heaps of people enjoy Minecraft. Good for them. I prefer Lego.
            Just like I prefer games that offer me more than a sandbox.

            Last edited 19/07/16 1:24 pm

              Legos are expensive, for $/€ 20 Minecraft gives you an infinite supply of bricks.


    I’m writing this during a birthday celebration at work. Everyone’s standing in a circle eating cake. They exchange small talk and barely tolerate hearing about each other’s tedious, bleak lives secretly wishing they could be anywhere else.

    Dude, get a new job!

    It is going to be awkward walking into work tomorrow after your fellow workers have read this article :)

    Last edited 18/07/16 12:18 pm

      Getting a new job doesn't change anything, just another cake eating circle filled with small talk. Most of the time I think its tolerable but we all tire of the forced social situations we are placed in for work.

        Then WHY DO THEY KEEP FORCING US INTO IT?
        (Answer is probably because the world is dominated by extroverts who assume we'll all be motivated by the same shit that they like.)

          Because you'll be happier if you socialize at work and it'll give you motivation to kick the footy after work

            That really doesn't apply to everyone.

            Forcing people to socialise because YOU believe it's the 'right thing' is an absurd notion, and a great way to make some people hate you.

            I'd rather stab myself in the left testicle with a rusty spork than play footy with my colleagues. Or anyone, really. I'm still quietly hoping for the day when we evolve, as a society, beyond wanting to have anything to do with a bunch of neanderthals chasing a synthetic pig skin back-and-forth across what could be a perfectly serviceable parking lot.

              Cmon mart where's ya team spirit?

                Im on the footy can fk off and die team with BJ here! And socializing with my colleagues in any way outside of work, NOPE. As it is they are only breathing because i get to destroy things with a sledgehammer and chainsaw about once a fortnight at work.

            Spoken like an extrovert. Perhaps the kind of extrovert that thinks that "extroversion" is a stupid label for "normal", and introversion is just spineless shyness.

              Im being sarcastic if you're replying to me. No Man's Sky is going to be for us introverts with the whole lonley universe to be at peace in.

                Hah sorry. Your sarcasm didn't translate well over written text.

              Holy shit ... you just summed up society in 25 words or less ...

          I'm so glad people I've worked with learned quickly that I never want to be invited to a cake eating circle jerk birthday celebration for someone I barely even deal with during the work day.

          That's the soul sucking part of white collar jobs. Extroverts making decisions.

          Open plan office space.

          Birthday celebrations.

          Team brain storming.

          Being invited to your boss' wedding on a workday, so you can't "have something else on that day".

          Edit: that last one is specific to me..

          Last edited 18/07/16 9:49 pm

            Really? I'd give him a lovely wrapped box, with a brick in it and a note saying "You can have 5% of my bonus this year"

            Last edited 18/07/16 10:24 pm

          Not only are we not at all motivated by it, we can't stand the same shit they like. The dumbfounded look when I said nope, take someone else to the footy corporate box. Then having to insist that I really am not interested.

    It'll probably stay as interesting as Spore did.

    This is my most anticpated game this year, i dont need to be told what to do, i just want to meander about seeing the sights, shooting some things when i feel the itch and just zoning out, a goal is there i can push towards when i feel like it.

      This! A game where you are not hand held to the next check point. A game where you are free to explore every little nook and cranny of a planet or just scratch over the the surface of many. A game where other people don't shout obsene thigs over voice chat. A game where you are free to pursue a dream of bigger mechanisms than our tiny little rock floating through space.

      I have always taken a cosmic outlook at our place in this world and now finally a game that I may live out that outlook.

      There is a great line from Interstellar:
      "We used to look up and wonder about our place in the universe and now we just look down and worry about our place in the dirt"

      I want to look up in wonder.

        Exactly man, so many people want to know what you do but why do you have to have a goal at all, whats wrong with just doing nothing of importance except exploring.

          Exploring is fun, so long as there's something new or worthwhile to discover. But if all I ever see is a slightly different combination of pastel shades and smaller antelopish creatures with larger horns, then for me the incentive falls off rapidly. I'm hoping there'll be more to the game than slight variations on a procedurally-generated theme, so we'll see how far the mine/craft/upgrade/trading system goes.

            Time will tell. But I guess for a lot of people hyped about the game it is a chance for us to live out our dream of exploring our own universe and heading out into the unknown. Yeah there might only be a reskin or recolour of a very similar model. But you won't know until you explore. The unknown for us presents more of a thrill than the known.

              the creature structures are procedural, their sounds are even procedurally synthesised based on their overall size, head and body size and mouth shape. There's a half hour clip from some audio conference talking about it and the ambient sounds in the game.
              Basically if dice rolls so that world has water, then the dice rolls that says yes there is a little non predator fish, and every part of that fish is basically a dice roll from a set of body parts.
              So each creature model is generated but you may see the same feet again on something else for example, though it will have 6 of them this time instead of 2.
              Really, the experimental procedurally generated music sound track alone is worth half the price.

                Yeah, the music approach sounds interesting certainly, though it's more sort-of procedurally modified music than procedurally created - it's tweaking and combining scraps of pre-composed music. Games have been doing basic versions of this for a while, mind you - switching up the tempo when enemies attack, that sort of thing, but NMS claims to improve on that system.

                It's worth bringing up Spore again too, which also had procedural music designed by Brian Eno. I'm a fan of Eno's work, but I have to say I was a little disappointed with the result there - anything procedural takes a lot of careful tweaking and design before it can consistently produce pleasing results.

    Here you go:
    https://www.beyondblue.org.au/
    Sounds like you need it.

    This is the most pretentious story title of the year so far. Keep it up.

    Great read, I've never understood the concern behind what we actually do in this game. Landing on different planets and walking around is enough for me.

    I'm sure it will be adored and sell as much as any other title this year, but the only thing I want to know - outside of what you can actually do - is how many planets will I enjoy visiting. Even with its "18 quintillion planets", if I've experienced everything it has to offer in the first 30-50 you visit, then it would be disappointing.

    Strangely enough, nowhere does the World Health Organisation list ‘old age’ as a common cause of death. Perhaps the number is too small to even bother recording.

    Actually it's because we know how to explain or at least diagnose nearly all the things which kill people.

    Heart attack, stroke, artery/vein thinning resulting in collapse and internal bleeding, aneurysm, renal failure, liver failure, leukemia, immune diseases, eighty billion different kinds of cancer... 'natural causes' and 'old age' were short-hand for "not murder/accident/disease; hell, we don't fucking know what kills old people."

    If you ever see someone citing the dramatic increase of cancer as a cause of death since the 1900s, it's because for most of human history prior to that, no-one fucking knew what cancer even was. NOT because cell-phone towers, electricity sub-stations, and preservatives in food are giving everyone cancer.

      I was combing through the replies to see if anyone else picked this up.

      Old age CANNOT kill you, just like AIDS cannot kill you. What it does is make you far, far more likely to die of other, normally less-lethal things.

      You don't die of old age... you die of organ failure, or pneumonia, or any of a long list of things that are preventable for young, healthy people but lethal once you become old and frail.

      If you ever see someone citing the dramatic increase of cancer as a cause of death since the 1900s

      It also helps that the world population has more than tripled since then!

        When my grandma died it was simply because the veins in her body were getting so thin from poor repairs that they weren't holding up against the pressure. Tearing all over the place. That's literally all it was - the natural repairs weren't up to scratch, and everything was just getting thinner and weaker til it stopped doing its job.

          I'm sure there's a phrase for that condition other than, "old age."

          Jesus christ that sounds awful :( I hope she went peacefully :(

            Yeah. Fortunately, the palliative care folks took great care of her. Really valuable service those guys provide.

              Yeah they do indeed. When my Nana passed, we ended up buying the department boxes of chocolates to say thank you, I couldn't imagine doing that job, it'd take nerves of steel and a heart of gold.

    If we took everything we know for certain about this game on a page... it will be shorter than this article.

    You are reading to much into this game, or questioning the existential reality of a limitless virtual world that is generated by a limited algorithm within the limitations of game physics.

    Dont believe the hype or potential of this game until people get to play this beyond an isolated and NDA wrapped demo. This is going to be one grindy mofo with limitless world and limited gameplay

      Well that was a strangely definitive conclusion...

    Who do I have to see about getting a Ghostbusters piece from Raygun, please?

    With sugar on top?

    This article makes no sense.. so why is No Man's Sky the most necessary game of 2016??

    But no ones played the game yet so YOU DONT KNOW. So it's a bit early for articles such as this.

    wow, this really sounds like it was paid for by sony

    Prepare yourself for disappointment. There is zero game play, land on a planet, look at the creatures, congrats you have seen the whole game.

      Wow. I actually made an account to this site just so that I could write this comment. There are so many things wrong with your statement. I'm sure you were never the kid to enjoy minecraft, playing with legos, or ever using your imagination to create a game all on your own.

      I bet you were the one who needed an objective in every game you've played. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with wanting an objective, but criticizing a game and telling everyone to be prepared for disappointment simply because it doesn't appeal to your game preference is just a dick move.

      Many people, myself included, are looking forward to being able to explore different planets and see the different types of creatures that live there. It sparks the fascination and wonder that we once had as kids. I could easily use your description here on any Call of Duty game. Granted, there is a story mode with an overall objective/enemy, but once you spend the 5 or 6 hours on it, there's nothing left but the multiplayer. Your comment is a perfect description of any FPS game: "Select game mode, complete the objective, congrats you have seen the whole game".

      Like I said before, I'm not trying to criticize your preference for games, I'm just saying you should put down a game because you can't imagine an open-ended exploration game with virtually unlimited things to see.

      Last edited 31/07/16 6:26 am

    They keep mentioning these squillion planets even though you'll probably feel like you've seen everything after about 5. So, on a scale of Watch Dogs to Duke Nukem Forever, how disappointing do you think this is game will be?

      Precisely why I'm still sceptical about this. Starbound promised similarly diverse planets, a huge range of flora/fauna... but last I checked I counted 3-4 AI behavioural patterns - part of that is the 2D nature of the combat mechanics, but it was still disappointing.

    I saw an article about No Man's Sky. And then misread the first line for:

    "I’m writing this while sitting on a HYPE train"

    I look at this game like this: give it a couple of weeks for some reviews to get to the bottom of gameplay and true environment diversity. If reports are promising, buy it. Works every time.

    I looked at videos for this on and off for the last year and have come to the conclusion that it'd be too boring for me to play. It seems like it'd be interesting and fun for the first few hours, but at this point it seems to be the same thing over and over. Though I do enjoy games like LoL, Overwatch, and other online games, but that is purely because even though it's the same thing, the human element makes it different every time and a challenge.

    I don't see how this game was necessary, I was expecting the author to somehow link this game with others or something else in the industry that then created something new or refreshing, but nope. Lots of words for nothing.

    My kotaku prediction:
    Week 1 of release.

    "No Man's Sky is the game everyone needs to play"

    Week 3

    "Is No Man's Sky a warning against hyping your game up"

      I'm not sure why people seem to think this is so revolutionary.
      There's heaps of games procedurally generated levels, especially rouge-likes.
      Elite Dangerous is a very pretty and engaging space simulation, albeit one that lacks any real game play other than flying around.... which is exactly what No Man's Sky appears to be.

        I think what the article is trying to put forward is that the key to No Man's Sky's appeal is how it's reframing the relationship between the game world (and by extension, our world) and us. In most games, that relationship is kind of tangential to the gameplay - it's the set dressing for the action. But No Man's Sky arguably tries to make the relationship the focus of the game.

        just my 2 cents.

          Should we not be pushing "go for a bushwalk and experience nature" a bit more then?

          I've never found much interest in sandbox games like minecraft, garrys mod or whatever. I love building things (i'm an engineer), I love exploring (I travel lots) but I do that outside of the PC. I don't need to do it inside as well.

          I don't think "make your own fun" games are anywhere near as deep as this article implies.
          I think most people will quickly get bored of exploring the same looking (even if random) planet for the 37th time.
          I'm sure there will be some people who will want to break the record for most explored planets or whatever, but that in itself is proof that players will want some sort of goal. Some mission, something to strive towards.

          I'm not sure what you mean by the relationship between us and the game world? how is NMS changing that? The relationship between us and the game is the focus of the game? Huh? Is that some sort of Meta stuff or am I missing some huge plot point?

        Im actually looking forward to playing this game. After playing many RPGs and FPS and MMORPG games this seems like a welcome change. Sometimes I just want to wander around without a very pressing objective all the time. People should not worry, there will be many many many more Call of Duty and Sonic The Hedgehog games.

          What's actually different about it?
          Procedurally generated areas? Plenty of games do that. Rogue-like games give you a different play through each time.
          Massive, never ending world? Lots of space sims do something similar, it might not be as big, but it's usually big enough that you'll never see it all.
          Pretty graphics? lots of pretty games out there.
          Collecting, exploring and upgrading? Basically every RPG ever.

          I'm not sure what's so revolutionary here. I'll still try the game, and I'll probably enjoy it because my expectations are low and I'm not buying into the hype, but I'm not going to pretend it's some incredibly revolutionary game that changes society like this article suggests.

    What a load of pretentious dribble.

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