What is No Man’s Sky Anyways?

If you even dip your toes into social media and interact with anyone in the video game space, then you have undoubtedly heard at least a little about No Man’s Sky. It has been one of the most hotly anticipated video games there is ever since it was announced back in November of 2013. This is a game that has been so highly anticipated that its delay from June 2016 to August 2016 was met with death threats from fans towards the game’s developers.

I don’t support those actions at all, but I can appreciate them for what they are. They are a barometer for the insane expectations that this game has been building up.

No Man’s Sky was finally released on August 9th for the PS4, and will release shortly for PC. It could be the recent release hype, but it feels like everyone in the gaming space is excited about this game. There is a ton of content being made about it. Most sites have released impressions articles, but very few have published reviews (We’re in the same boat. Our review is incoming, but will be a while.)

With all that said, I’ve been asked more than a few times what this game is all about in the first place.

No Man’s Sky is a first person exploration game where you take on the role of an unnamed pilot and explore a practically unlimited universe. The “goal” of the game is to reach the center of the known galaxy. This requires exploring planets to gather resources that you can either sell or use to stay alive.  The size of the galaxy is the real trick here. Hello Games has created this game to be all but infinite in scope. They are over 18 Quintillion planets to explore in the game. That is so many planets that if you visited one every second for the rest of your life you still wouldn’t see them all.

They do this using a process called procedural generation. This means their game created all of these planets (and the lifeforms on them) using math equations to help sort out all of the different variables and present them to the players. This means that there are going to be corners of this galaxy that will never be seen. It also means that the vast majority of the game hasn’t even been seen by the people at Hello Games. They have, in essence, created a universe.

That freedom and sense of true exploration has captivated a lot of people.  They feel like No Man’s Sky allows them to boldly go where no one has gone before (Yeah. I said it. It works here. )

No Man’s Sky Gameplay Videos

Here are a few videos showing off the games aesthetic and revealing some of the gameplay elements:

 

For sake of full disclosure, I have not played this game yet. But its success leads me to believe that this game will have a long tail. And there is no doubt it will have an impact on a lot of players. Some writers even believe that this game could rekindle the love for space exploration in an entire generation. And I don’t think that is too unreasonable of an idea.

What do you think? Sound off in the comments! Share your thoughts on the game and what it might lead to if it is successful.

 

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