No Man’s Sky changed the video game hype train forever

Love it or hate it, No Man’s Sky was the most important, influential video game of 2016.

I’m not talking about the rights and wrongs of developer Sean Murray’s pre-release interviews, or the state of the space game at launch. Enough has been said on both those topics already. I’m talking about the fallout, and what it means for video games in 2017 and beyond.

What’s clear is some players felt misled by Hello Games. . Some got one from Valve. Whatever your feeling on it, No Man’s Sky caused one hell of a shitstorm. But this wasn’t a by the numbers video game shitstorm. This one – and the industry noticed.

No Man’s Sky patch adds epic space battles

No Man’s Sky just received a new patch on PC and PS4 that will make space battles vary in size.

“Players should see bigger battles,” developer Hello Games noted in its .

The update also fixes numerous bugs, like the recurring death loop that would happen if the game autosaved in Survival Mode when the player is about to run out of health.

Advertising Standards rules No Man’s Sky Steam page did not mislead consumers

The Advertising Standards Authority has ruled No Man’s Sky’s controversial Steam page did not mislead consumers.

Its decision means screenshots, videos and text currently on the No Man’s Sky Steam store page may remain. While the ASA’s investigation looked at Steam specifically, its ruling applies to the PlayStation Store, too.

The ASA had received 23 complaints about No Man’s Sky’s Steam store page, with most accusing the assets of painting a misleading picture of Hello Games’ space title.

No Man’s Sky’s long-awaited update brings its galaxy back to life

Let’s get the awkward bit out of the way first.

I liked No Man’s Sky. For the two weeks just after launch when I was firmly under its spell, I really liked No Man’s Sky, and was happily lost to its lulling loop of exploration and adventure. There’s something soothing about the gentle brand of sci-fi that fuelled Hello Games and No Man’s Sky’s infectiously sanguine artwork, all hazy purples and pinks swirling together like the Chris Foss artwork that inspired it. If you’ve ever spent long lazy evenings leafing through dog-eared Panther paperbacks, No Man’s Sky could feel pretty special; having been sucked in by the sci-fi splendour of those early trailers, it was every inch the game I wanted to play.

For many others it wasn’t, though. Maybe it was the air of well-engineered enigma that lingered throughout the pre-launch process, the half-truths or, in one oft-cited example, , but for many No Man’s Sky fell well short of their expectations. Its more polite critics called it a husk, its more vitriolic an absolute sham and Hello Games’ mute approach didn’t help silence the almighty din that met the release. Until, eventually, it did. The subreddit slowed to a halt, charting only the number of days since Hello Games’ had spoken about the game. Players moved on, and it seemed for a while that No Man’s Sky was happy to be finally forgotten.

No Man’s Sky files suggest land vehicles are on the way

No Man’s Sky just received a colossal , drastically expanding the space exploration game’s feature list, and developer Hello Games has promised much more to come. While it’s been cagey on the details of what that entails, recent signs suggest that the sci-fi game will soon receive land-based vehicles.

discovered game files with references to a buggy vehicle, tires, and tire tracks. They even created a that allows players to observe the blueprint of this proposed vehicle in the game, though it’s far from operational at this point.

While the buggy has yet to be confirmed, its presence would suit the direction No Man’s Sky is heading in as the Foundation Update focuses heavily on base-building and customisation, with plenty of options for fast-travel and farming. A quicker method of land-traversal seems like it would suit the agricultural needs of many a Martian fan.

No Man’s Sky studio breaks silence, announces base building and more in huge Foundation update

UPDATE 27/11/16 11.00am: No Man’s Sky has now been patched with its big Foundation Update, which adds base building, freighters, farming, options for creative and survival modes and a lot more.

The download for the update clocks in at 2.7GB, around the size of the full game, and its contents have now been spilled in a fresh Hello Games .

Hello Games founder Sean Murray – who shouldered huge amounts of criticism after the game failed to meet expectations – announced the update was live this morning via the following message on Twitter:

Hello Games breaks silence, announces Foundation update for No Man’s Sky

Hello Games has broken its long silence following the launch of No Man’s Sky to confirm details of the game’s first major content update, which will add a base-building element.

The patch will be called the , to reflect both its construction element and the fact that it is “putting in place a foundation for things to come.” The studio didn’t confirm the full patch notes or when the patch would be released, other that it would be “soon”, but the fact it’s even prepared to confirm its existence is significant after a long and controversial period of silence. The game attracted fierce criticism for not living up to the expectations set by the pre-release marketing, which Sony publishing boss Shu Yoshida later admitted was “”.

The Foundation Update announcement does point out that the game has received seven patches since it released, but the community has long demanded more significant changes, citing pre-release interviews with Hello Games head Sean Murray that referred to features,. Player complaints prompted the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority to , and Steam . Both Murray and Hello remained largely silent throughout, until today’s announcement.

Building a space sim in a post-No Man’s Sky world

There’s ambition and then there’s this; sheer naked madness, seemingly matched to some kind of genius. Dual Universe is an impossible game – impossible because it’s hard to comprehend how something like this could possibly exist. An amalgamation of Eve Online and Minecraft, it’s a single shard MMO where countless numbers of players can get together in a shared universe to create, to spectate, to get lost in the inevitable politics that emerge when you give humans whole planets to mine and to sculpt and to exploit or explore as they see fit. It’s one of the most ambitious games I’ve seen not just this year but any year, a thing of raw wonder that, going from the short technical demo that ably shows how thin are the seams that hold its solar system together, actually works.

Dual Universe is an exciting prospect, then, but it’s got a big problem. After player expectations around No Man’s Sky were brought crashing down to earth, it’s hard getting people excited for another space sim. It’s not really advisable to promise too much, lest you find yourself setting up the same traps Hello Games sprung after the release of its much anticipated game. It’s a problem that developer Dual Universe is currently wrestling with right now

“No Man’s Sky has hurt us, very clearly,” Jean-Christophe Baillie, an impeccably smart looking Frenchman, tells me as he finishes his short demo of Dual Universe in action. “This is a post-No Man’s Sky era. People cannot do the same thing. There’s a huge amount of distrust in the community. As you know we’re doing a Kickstarter, and half of the comments are like this is just No Man’s Sky all over again. We’re struggling. We’re not quite there yet because of that. Our statement is we totally understand what’s going on, and our policy is to be totally transparent.

No Man’s Sky subreddit shut down, community erupts

The No Man’s Sky subreddit has been shut down, with the mod responsible expressing his distaste at what it has become.

/r/NoMansSkyTheGame, which had over 150,000 subscribers, was closed with an announcement post from moderator “r0ugew0lf”:

We’ve kept an eye on the No Man’s Sky subreddit in a bit to stay up to date with Hello Games’ controversial space game.

A new PC mod fixes one of No Man’s Sky’s most frustrating traits

About 30 hours into No Man’s Sky and I’m still loving it, even if its faults are beginning to pile up like a neat mound of Heridium. It’s a soft, muted brand of adventure that Hello Games has crafted – “it is to simulated space what Finding Nemo is to the North Atlantic,” , and he’s certainly got a point – so thank heavens for the PC modders who are here to serve up something for those who would like a little more meat on their bones.

that lets you hug the procedurally generated landscapes of planets and even lets you plunge underwater. It’s very much preferable to the impenetrable cushion of air that’s in the vanilla game, but be warned – with this mod installed, your ship can take damage if you ride it into terrain.

Since No Man’s Sky came out on PC modders have done fine work, allowing players to quickly turn the HUD off so they can snap away to their heart’s content and – most importantly – who’s very much a glass half empty kind of gal with her ‘Life Support Systems Low’ even though it’s at a mean 75 per cent.