When its trailers first hit the gaming scene, No Man's Sky immediately became the subject of a lot of chatter. Dinosaurs and spaceships? people exclaimed. Interplanetary exploration and combat? This game will change everything! Now that the game is actually here, we're going to slice through all that hype and hyperbole and give you the details on the real game.
Getting an Eyeful
Most gamers have an eye for the beauty and artistry of the game, and in that area, No Man's Sky definitely delivers. It boasts a unique art style, including vibrant colors and fantastic planetscapes lit up or shadowed by multiple moons or suns. You won't find precise, gritty graphical detail here, but there's a surreal glow to the graphics that is truly enchanting. Add to the that the unique juxtaposition of dinosaur-style alien creatures and Star Wars-worthy spacecraft, and you have a game that's absolutely worth looking at. Of course, gamers want more than just pretty pictures, so let's get into the meat of the game.
Crashing on the Starter Planet
No Man's Sky spans a myriad of planets, each with its own resources, plants, and wildlife. When you begin the game, you're stranded on your starter planet, tasked with the job of gathering supplies and patching up your wrecked spaceship. At its core, No Man's Sky is about survival. If you survive the first planet and the oppressive Sentinels, you get to take off into space.
That experience of the first takeoff is a thrill in itself, and well worth the time it takes to repair your ship. Then, you get to wander at will through the galaxy, feeling like Han Solo in your very own version of the Millenium Falcon. As you roam, you have to change your spacesuit so that you can handle each planet's unique climate; but that's a minor annoyance, since you can literally go anywhere. Watch out for those space pirates and Sentinels, though, because they are out to get you, especially if you're carrying a nice payload.
Finding the Center of the Galaxy
As if survival and galactic exploration weren't enough, you have the main purpose of the game, the goal of reaching the very center of the galaxy. Before you can get there, you have to mine for materials, combine elements, create components that form energy cells, and boost your hyperdrive's capabilities so that you can go deeper into space. It's a time-consuming process, but an enjoyable one, since you get to bounce around from planet to planet in the process.
Taking in the Big Picture
It's true that, like most new games, No Man's Sky has had some bugs; and some have claimed that the planets start to look similar after a while; but think about the relatively small size of the development team that worked on this game. Considering the limited manpower, it's amazing that Hello Games was able to dish up such enjoyable fare and such a varied selection of planets. The scope of the game is impressive, and it's enjoyable just to slip into another universe for a while.
So, it wasn't the blockbuster many had it down to be, it didn't tick all boxes. After all, An idea that sounds good doesn't always translate into a great game, but No Man's Sky should be admired within the ideas department, this game is unique, within its own right. Yet, it’s the lack of action which will send many into boredom rather quickly. However, as stated, this game is one of a kind, it’s an infinite universe that you’re able to explore, so don’t shy away from trying this one out. And hey— you get to name your own planet. How cool is that?
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