Six years on, No Man's Sky is a masterpiece


I'm a late bloomer, both to No Man's Sky and to space games in general. Star Wars Battlefront I & II aside, most of my two and a half decades of gaming have been spent playing almost everything but space titles. Survival and/or exploration RPGs haven't really been my thing either. Combine the above with the abysmal launch of No Man's Sky back in 2016 — truly a publisher's and developer's worst nightmare — and understandably, I totally overlooked Hello Games' universal epic.

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-Foxtrot66d ago

It released in a sorry state with a shit load of broken promises, it took years to even get to a reasonable point and while it's good that they've kept supporting it, they didn't really have a choice or no one would ever buy their next product again.

Any game can get good overtime, but we need to stop applauding games being broken at launch only to use the "it'll get better over time" excuse. There's too many games to play and if a game is in a sorry state at launch most of us aren't going to stick around, we'll move onto games more deserving of our time.

ApocalypseShadow66d ago (Edited 66d ago )

And this is where we agree. Everything you said is accurate. Hilarious with those that disagree with actual TRUTH. I bought the game. And I was a fan of Joe Danger. It was fun reliving an Excite Bike like game with extra flavor.

Gave them a shot at a second game because their first game was fun and their second game was sci-fi which I like. Ended up as total lies and totally unfinished. I spent hours trying everything to get one of those portals open like in the preview videos. And found out online it had no functionality. Nevermind the missing creatures, features, crashing, etc.

Instead of telling everyone it was a work in progress release, they said nothing. I uninstalled it. Was tempted to refund like others did. And swore off buying any future game from them.

Then, over years, they turned the game around. I'm glad I got my money's worth but still rarely play it. And VR is fugly on OG PS4. So, it's cool in a sense to be in VR. But not worth looking at it that way. It's only worth it on PS4 Pro and PS5 in VR and flat mode. And, I'll check it out on PS5 VR as they said it'll be a free upgrade.

If we are going to call unfinished games overtime masterpieces, then I'm guessing games like cyber Punk, sea of thieves, Halo infinite, etc, will one day receive this same honor of a platinum or gold trophy. We can like that they're now playable. But I'll never give an unfinished game at launch a masterpiece rating. With the time Hello Games has had, any game can get and be better and become masterpieces.

They are still on egg shells in my book. I'll consider their next game because I'm a gamer. But I will not buy their games at launch if they make anything else. They lost that privilege.

SullysCigar65d ago

The game changer for me was when it came to PSVR. You could feel the isolation and the panic brought by environmental factors. But it was blurry as hell. Then came the Pro patch, which helped, but it SO much clearer on PS5.

Next up, PSVR2 patch (confirmed), bringing the shed load of content that released since I last played it, plus completely redesigned control scheme for those gorgeous new controllers.

It's going to be delicious, especially for those new to the game or to VR!

MadLad65d ago (Edited 65d ago )

Imagine how much better off they would have been if they just called it an Early Access title, priced it as such, and then just worked on it.

I'm tired of this game getting praised for becoming something similar to what they promised years after the fact.

Early buyers got screwed on this one.

mkis00765d ago (Edited 65d ago )

"Any game can get good overtime"

And yet it is a rarity that anyone tries. You get a year of patches and a few dlc and that's it. Meanwhile here I am struggling to figure out how they can put so much time into one game and wondering why AAA developers can't do the same.

Crows9065d ago

Except that in most cases you're referring to triple A scummy publishers. Anthem comes to mind. That's a game with incredible ideas and combat but lacking in absolutely everything else. Easily could've fixed it but they decided to move resources off the game because if the loss of players.
Most indie devs make 5heir games better years after release. This is normal. What's not normal is releasing it in a sorry state. That's usually a triple A publisher mistake.

NotoriousWhiz65d ago

^ So would you be happier if instead they repackaged and resold it as the definitive edition? Give praise where praise is due. Criticize where cririticism is warranted. They messed up 6 years ago. Definitely. They've corrected their mistake since, absolutely.

crazyCoconuts65d ago

I think the main guy (forgot his name) has a lot of passion for the game, and might want it to grow like Minecraft did. Minecraft took a long time to get where it did so I can see the intent there. I dont think many games AAA or otherwise have the same aspirations

1nsomniac65d ago (Edited 65d ago )

It’s even rarer for a developer to literally be taken to court by the advertising standards agency for false advertising and being told to fix it or else…

People still seem to think the devs did all this out of the goodness of their hearts.

They learnt a valuable lesson that they’re not quite a big enough outfit to get away with that sort of behaviour. Not yet anyway. Everybody seems to also forget that Sony got away Scot free with this as they had a partnership at the time and they openly said they were spending more time than they usually would with a developer. Yet no one rained them in or questioned what was going on. Then soon as it went the legal route Sony thrown them immediately under the bus so as to take absolutely no responsibility.

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DeusFever65d ago

Hello Games releases free updates and has done so for 6 years. No microtransaction bullshit. We should make a No Man’s Sky award for games that are friendly to players.

65d ago
Imalwaysright65d ago (Edited 65d ago )

Yeah it would be fine and dandy if all developers did what hello games has done wouldn't it? All developers should release a broken mess of a game with dozens of unfullfilled promises at full price and then let those that bought them day one to wait 6 years until their games become "masterpieces". We should all start a petition for every developer to do the same and those that do it should receive a "friendly to players that like to take it up the ass" sticker.

ufo8mycat65d ago

Those free updates over 6 years is what should have been in the game ON RELEASE, which gamers PAID for.

Instead, gamers got a empty, uninspired game with hardly any content.

CaptainHenry91665d ago

I doubt Starfield will be better than this game

SullysCigar65d ago

Ultimately, it will be based on preference, but you're right in so far as size, freedom and variety, that much is already confirmed.

I can't believe you can't land or take off in real time between planets in Starfield. Just a Ratchet & Clank style cutscene!

SSD is being wasted - heck, NMS could manage this on HDD and on an Xbox One, with a TINY team lol

neutralgamer199265d ago (Edited 65d ago )


While I understand your point and agree somewhat you are missing something bigger. They were a small team who were out in spotlight and needed proper PR team. And their studio got flooded so they had lost quite a bit of work. So you will hold a team of 4-10 developers accountable yet what's the excuse got teams with 200+ developers

Battlefield 4, battlefield 2042
Sea of thieves
Halo infinite

Atleast they didn't give up and made good on most of what was promised and fans appreciate it. I always find it funny that us gamers are holding the small studio accountable yet defend the huge well funded studios

People are now praising cyberpunk yet it's no where near what was promised and CDPR have moved on to PAID DLC while we have NMS giving huge huge chunks of free CONTENT


Let's call it how it is and not let our biased get in the way. EA ended patch support for mass effect Andromeda mere months after release when with patches it could have been improved

We already do get articles and videos saying cyberpunk is a great game now and it's clearly not anywhere near what was promised

How about never buying any game from MS over sea of theives (which launched bare bone and improved over time) halo infinite (absolutely no excuse) battlefield 4 and 2042 etc

What really is frustrating most of these publishers now launch early access games at full price and promise to fix later

ApocalypseShadow65d ago (Edited 65d ago )

Bias? I bought and held onto the game for 6 years. I had to WAIT for a decent game after 6 years. Yeah. It's better. It's still not a masterpiece. I hope your attitude isn't of thinking it's okay to release a broken and unfinished game for full price at launch in hopes of improving it for years and expecting gamers to accept that. And you calling gamers biased for having to have gone through that shows a lack of common sense.

I have purchased many games at launch that were masterpieces **at launch.** Not waiting pretty much an entire console generation for a playable game that I spent hard earned money on.

Those coming in right now would consider it a great game. And I fully understand that they will have a different perspective. But for those like me, we had to suffer for years until it was better. We're going to have a different outlook than someone buying it now. You might have forgiven them. That's your right. For me, they only gave me what I paid for years earlier. I'm not going to pat them on the back for it.

We're not talking EA or anyone else. Yeah. They got flooded. But don't turn around and release a broken and unfinished game for full price unless it's actually ready for the market. How you don't understand that is anyone's guess.

DogJosha65d ago

None of those games you listed have been forgiven by me and using paid press to show they have been forgiven is low of you.

Also, it isn't free updates until you provide the people the game they originally paid for. That means ALL the promises used to sell the game.

neutralgamer199265d ago

I wasn't specifically talking about you but just gamers in general. That's why I stopped buying games day one completely. I was so disappointed to see SR reboot being #1 in boxed sales when that game is clearly not ready

Waiting has been beneficial with improved game using those 6+ months of fan feedback and making improvements. 7th generation was truly great but with it came the opportunity for publishers to launch early access games at full price with promises of better game in the future

Bwremjoe65d ago

Some days I just login to n4g so I can downvote a post. Today was such a day.

frostypants65d ago (Edited 65d ago )

None of what you say has any relevance to the current quality of the title. You can fairly admonish them for releasing a turd, but that doesn't mean the current product isn't great.

Pyrofire9564d ago

Yeah many games do not "get good overtime"
This one did. It's pretty cool. And still has massive potential.

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isarai66d ago (Edited 66d ago )

I dunno, i'm on the opposite end if that spectrum. I loved it when it released, and the couple updates after. Did it deliver on everything shown/mentioned? Hell no, but i loved it for what it was as Sean Murray put it "a chill exploration game" discovering weird planets and amazing creatures was so damn fun, put over 200hrs into it.

Now though, the crafting system is so convoluted it has completely ruined the experience for me, every small task multiples into a dozen tasks just to do something as simple as charge my suit or gun. Yes i can play adventure mode but then the sense that i'm exploring is kinda lost as half of that experience is resourceful problem solving, and it takes that away.

Annoying cause i really like all the additions they've made to the procedural systems, its just more frustrating and monotonous than fun to me.

lonewolf1065d ago

Same as, put similar amount of hours in at release. I keep thinking should I start a new game/journey as not sure if I could grasp everything on my original character.

TheCaptainKuchiki65d ago

Discovering planets ? You mean copy pasted planets

AshleeEmerson65d ago

Definitely not copy and paste the planets, you already know they are procedurally generated in some of them are vastly different than the other carrier I just went to a planet yesterday that was completely water. Earlier in my day, I was at a planet where there was so much verticality that it was crazy. It's cool to find planets where it's mostly caves.. this game is about exploration and I think people want it to be something that it's not.

TheCaptainKuchiki65d ago

I've played it a lot when I was bored and it's actually a boring game where you have to give yourself a reason to play. There's not much to do.

Iceman100x65d ago (Edited 65d ago )

Lol If you call something a conman made, then ran away only to come back years later with what was supposed to be sold in the beginning then your a idiot.

crazyCoconuts65d ago

I get the sense that this game was a lot bigger than joe danger, he ran into some complications and was a bit over his skiis. He apologized and stuck to it to give customers what he promised without charging any more money. People make mistakes, and this one rectified his.
BTW if you're going to throw the word "idiot" around, you should at least try to structure a coherent sentence...

SenorFartCushion65d ago

That’s not what masterpiece means

If you launch badly and then make it up it’s not a masterpiece. A masterpiece is completed before launch.

AshleeEmerson65d ago

If that were the case then most artwork wouldn't be masterpieces considering they don't start out that way. Some paintings take years. I do understand what you're saying but of course all of our opinions are subjective but if it took 10 years to make a masterpiece then who cares. Tekken 8 is a masterful fighting game which is going to come out and all the past iterations is what it was built upon.. you get my point

SenorFartCushion65d ago (Edited 65d ago )

Some paintings do take years, but the artists don’t show them off until they’re done.

Imagine if Da Vinci came back from the dead and tried to paint a new eyebrow on the Mona Lisa?

Star Wars seems like a good example, but really doesn’t count because it’s those films were updated, they just weren’t thought of as masterpieces within its given memesis. I sort of side with the critics of the time, subjectively. I don’t think they’re masterpieces and the tinkering of CGI is a reason for that. The studio wouldn’t have allowed it.

AshleeEmerson65d ago

I understand what you're saying cushion but every artist presents their art differently.

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