No Man’s Sky and Why I Don’t Care

‘No Man’s Sky’ is out tomorrow (in the UK; today in the US), and I couldn’t care less.

NMS

A part of me watches the hype train and wishes that I could hop aboard, but I just cannot. I watch MrJohnSherry and a few other friends in our Facebook chat talk about this game and share videos and pictures and they are so excited; more excited than I have ever seen them and I feel a little left out.

There is however a larger part of me and it doesn’t give a damn about ‘No Man’s Sky’ because there is nothing about this game that has me, even remotely, excited. It’s strange because this is the game I dreamt about when I was a small boy playing on my Mega Drive; I would’ve been at the front of the queue had this been released in 1993!

Hell; if we go back to E3 2014 and the announcement of ‘No Man’s Sky’ I was HYPED! I would’ve bought it there and then if they had’ve said it was available – it looked amazing…

…but that was two long years ago and since then they have shown off a hell of a lot of the game, and to be honest, it looks like the same things over and over again. Worse than this, sometimes it was literally the same thing…

“Why does this matter Luvva?!” – I hear you scream.

“If it looked good at E3 it’ll still look good December 2014!! Why you so fickle?” – you continue.

Well sit dear reader, and I will break down the reasons why I will not be playing ‘No Man’s Sky’ today, tomorrow and perhaps even ever!

It looks super boring

Don’t get me wrong, I could sure go for a gigantic universe made to be explorable, I think we all could; but I’d prefer it if there was actually things to do within that universe. I know about the “four pillars” of gameplay (explore, trade, fight and survive) and I’ve watched the four videos (that should’ve never been needed if it wasn’t for botched messaging) but Jesus it looks soulless, sterile and boring (but still beautiful from an art direction).

Explore seems to be nothing more than flying to planet A and scanning the plants and animals then giving them stupid names; then flying to the next planet and doing the same – repeat 18 quintillion times and done! I’m sure there are folk out there that this sounds amazing to, but it sounds poop to me! Yawn.

Fight looks the most exciting, but still bloody boring! Shooting poorly designed robots on the ground looks as good as that sounds and the space battles (which should be awesome) have the same weakness as all dogfight sims; the target is far away and so generating excitement is actually ridiculously hard. Unfortunate. It is also the shortest video of the four, that’s more than a little telling.

Trade is utterly pointless – this is my own fault – I was expecting a significant multiplayer portion to ‘No Man’s Sky’ and it doesn’t have one; so my dreams of a player made economy are replaced by a system controlled one. Who are we trading with? AI that’s who! Riveting!

Survive is the same as every other survival sim you’ve played and lost interest in. Dull.

I don’t have faith in Hello Games’ ability to deliver on their promises

18 Quintillion planets and a universe so big it’ll take 40-100 (what a huge fucking window) to get to the centre of it; if you focus solely on that objective, planets that rotate around their central star AND on their axis; realistic day/night cycles, fully explorable planets/solar systems/universes, huge fights in space and more.

Sure it sounds astounding and makes for a ton of bullet points on the back of the box but how much of this is truly achievable?

Keep in mind that Hello Games is a team made up of 12 members and have a game output that consists of ‘Joe Danger’ and ‘Joe Danger 2: The Movie’ – hardly stellar. I think that teams the size of ‘Assassin’s Creed’ (apparently 1000) would struggle to deliver the promises made by Sean Murray and co. But maybe that’s why these promises have been made; and why they are so gigantic; it means there really is no way of either proving or disproving their legitimacy.

I haven’t seen anywhere near the diversity promised

Life forms NMS.jpgHello Games have made big claims that every player will have a unique experience on their  100 hour journey (which has been done in less than 30) to the centre of the universe – they will see planets, life forms and atmospheric conditions no-one else will. So can anyone explain to me why I’ve seen these Dinosaur things in practically every video?!

Seriously, if this super formula, is so powerful and can create anything at all – where is the diversity in the pre-release stuff?

On top of this, if it truly is as powerful as we’ve been led to believe then what are the chances that we’ll see lifeforms that are truly bizarre; that are this games’ equivalent of Duck Billed Platypuses if the universe is so massive?

I can foresee a situation that’ll fall into two major categories;

  1. the formula isn’t very diverse, we’ll see ice/forest/desert/lush/water planets with these exact dinosaurs or very slight variations of them.
  2. the formula is very diverse, we’ll see lifeforms that look like they escaped ‘Spore’ and planets that are impossible.

Final thoughts

I just don’t have any faith in this game. It has fallen victim of its own promotion. It was revealed far too early and has been met with such elevated expectations that it is sure to be divisive. I cannot think of any other outcome other than for every voice of dissention there is a voice calling it the “GOAT”.

And although I won’t be playing ‘No Man’s Sky’ I for one hope that it is a hugely successful game (it will be) because there is a distinct lack of the ambition and passion from other developers that Hello Games have shown with ‘NMS’.

I am a gamer first and foremost, the reason I game is because I want to get lost in worlds that are truly unlike my own. ‘No Man’s Sky’ is apparently giving us 18 Quintillion of them and that deserves to be supported – but I play games to also have fun, this game doesn’t look fun to me.

Maybe one day…

Are you buying No Man’s Sky?

Give me your reasons in the comment section below!

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3 thoughts on “No Man’s Sky and Why I Don’t Care

  1. With games like this from such a small development team I’m really not sure why they didn’t announce this game until they were at least 90% done with development. It otherwise immediately creates an over encumbering sense of pressure.

    Liked by 1 person

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