‘No Man’s Sky’ Is Reaching Molyneux-esque Levels Of HypeFiled inside: Games
Recent statements about the game have set me in a cautious position. When development on No Man’s Sky began, a 32-bit number was utilized for the procedural planet generation. Exhausting all options meant that, should a player spend a second on every planet in the universe, it would still take in the area of five thousand years to see them all, let alone explore them. This inherently means that you’ll die before you encounter everything you possibly could in the game. Hello Games wasn’t content to sit on that laurel, so they upped the generation to a 64-bit level, which added about six digits to the number of possible combinations. That’s over 5,000,000,000 years you explore the entire thing, given a single second on each planet. At the moment of this writing, there are 500,000 players playing DotA 2. If all those players were playing No Man’s Sky, and effectively communicated with all other players to explore the entire universe in the same fashion (a second per planet) it would still take ten thousand years to see it all.
The game has been billed as “infinite” but this is inherently impossible, as the game is made with limited technology. The dev team has produced great work before, and watching videos of them talk about the game seems to display a passion for their craft that leads me to think the game will be good. But the game may not be what people are expecting—it may be going the way of Peter Molyneux, Fable creator and notorious exaggerator.
I want the developer and the game to be successful, do not misunderstand. I’ve been taken with the game’s aesthetic and the concept of exploring new spaces and finding things that have never before been seen is appealing. But the game somehow feels empty. It’s afraid of itself. Hell, its creators are afraid of in a way. Information is slim, on many aspects of the game, but we know it centers primarily around the acquisition of resources to gain access to better ships and suits to navigate harsher environments. But beyond that, what are we tasked with? Is there a real narrative? This is a universe that appears (beneficially) easy to get immersed in, but (problematically) easy to get lost in. And say what you will about the arguments between open world games and corridor-esque shooters, but there is definitely a strong argument for a well-paced narrative in games like these.
Just remember to be reasonable here. It’s easy to get wrapped up in a game that is being billed as “the most ambitious game in the universe.” But we are far from having enough information to really be able to accurately gauge this one. So far, release details are similarly slim—it’s been confirmed as a timed exclusive for the PlayStation 4, and will be releasing on PC, with no indication as to a time frame. Keep an eye out for more details, and if you haven’t seen the game in action, take a look below.