No Man’s Sky was recently announced for Xbox One, considering the game’s reputation that still lingers regardless of the updates it’s received, we take a look at whether or not anyone really cares.
A few days ago, Hello Games decided to preemptively announce that their troubled space exploration game No Man’s Sky would be receiving a new major update this summer. Not only that, but they announced that the game would be coming to the Xbox One at the same time along with Xbox One X support. It’s honestly big news for the developer, and being a fan of the game myself I’m happy for Xbox fans. The question still remains though, does anyone care?
Coming From A Fan
I am one of the few people you will likely ever talk to (or read about) that enjoyed this game from day one. I won’t try to tell you it was everything they promised, or even everything I imagined it would be, but that didn’t deter me. I still had a blast going from planet to planet discovering things that no one else has ever seen before, and would likely never again see. Don’t get me wrong, the game was barren, shallow, and incredibly repetitive, but for whatever reason I still enjoyed it. I was overjoyed when the game started to get updates after the Hello Games went dark after launch that brought in additional features. In fact, you can see my colleague’s overview of the game after it’s three updates that I pretty much completely agree with.
So with that in mind, I’m quite excited for additional people to be able to enjoy the game I’ve spent so much time with. I’m even more excited about what the “Next” means for the update title. They’ve always put meaning behind their update titles, more so than most game updates, and I can’t stop thinking about what they have planned. With the quasi-multiplayer they added with Atlus Rises, it makes you wonder (and hope) that it was only a baby step with full on multiplayer coming in the future. The official word says they plan to support the game in the way they have for the foreseeable future, and that too has me giddy.
The question still remains though, does anyone care?
Looking At The Community
The reason I have asked this question more than once is because whenever I talk to someone about the game or see it spoken off online, people still think the game is garbage. Not regardless of its content updates, but because they simply don’t know it has received any. They either played it when it came out, or read that it was a bad game at launch and have forgotten about it entirely. Most don’t know that the developers have done an admirable job trying to fix their mistakes. No Man’s Sky is the prime example of why developers should make every effort to ensure their games launch complete, or complete enough to make a good impression.
To add insult to injury, when you look at the player charts for the game, they don’t have many playing the game at any given time. Sadly, you cannot track the PS player base, but the PC crowd keeps about an average of 500 players a MONTH! Not only are those numbers abysmal, but their Peak month was just shy of 40,000. They’ve of course had better days, and the content updates typically get more people on to give check the game out again, but the numbers fall again pretty quickly.
On the other hand, the game has garnered quite a loyal following on Reddit that has a host of additional, more specific subreddits. There are Galactic Federations, people trying to map out the universe, others trying to get a detailed list of every creature in the game, VR, a mod community and so on. The game has a ridiculous amount of potential to keep and retain players, they just released it too soon.
Many have called for true and proper multiplayer to the game, and a game like this just begs for it. When you consider the number of additions they have already put into the game that could be used for Multiplayer it feels like a no brainer. Base Building/Sharing, additional vehicles, exocraft racing, interstellar trading and economic variables, terrain editing, portals, and not least of which, joint exploration. The game is built for it, and the joint exploration just feels like a building block to keep players happy until it’s properly put into the game.
Now I can’t speak for the community as a whole, but I know several people who have said they won’t play the game until it gets proper MP. Which just makes sense. A game this vast begs to be explored with someone, and being able to do so as a clan or just with a single buddy would go a long way to making the game more enjoyable.
A Shallow, Planet Simulator
It’s interesting to me that many friends or acquaintances I have who are Xbox One exclusive players are suddenly excited about this game. Virtually every one of them used it as a reason to talk down on PlayStation fans for having such a bust of a game. Sure, a few were excited and disappointed that they couldn’t get the game back when it launched on the PS4 and PC. But when the game came out and it got such negative reviews, they felt better about not being able to play it. I have literally seen in facebook groups where people are saying things like “Thank you PS players for beta testing the game for us. NOW it’s worth playing.” For seemingly no other reason than that it’s now on Xbox.
To be fair, it’s an understandable stance to be in. Many try to justify why not having something they actually want is better, because in the end, they can’t have it. However, when the opportunity arises and they can get what they wanted in the first place, their attention is turned back to the product, in this case No Man’s Sky.
I just find it funny myself that beforehand the game was trash and a blight on the PlayStation community because it was so bad. Yet now suddenly, the game is great and highly anticipated because it’s on their platform of choice. Although I will have to say that it doesn’t seem like the change of heart is with the majority of the gaming community. Of course, the entire internet wrote articles about the game coming, but you didn’t see much past that, or discussions on how excited people are.
Does Anyone Really Care?
Personally, I’m happy more people get to enjoy the game that I have been defending since the beginning. Again, the game didn’t deliver on its promises from the outset, but that doesn’t mean it was a terrible game. Yes, as I said above, it had issues, under delivered, and ultimately wasn’t what they promised. Since then though, they have released 3 major content patches that have added a ton to the game and made it far more than worth your time.
It’s now coming to a new platform in Japan “WeGame”, and the Xbox One. Rumors have been swirling around that they will also be bringing in official VR support (and GOD to I hope they do it for PSVR as well). With the potential of proper online multiplayer, and any other additions you can imagine to further what they have already built and added has me giddy.
No Man’s Sky will likely always have a tarnished name due to its launch, but I urge you to care, whether you’re on PS4, PC, or Xbox One. Play the game if you have the chance, it’s worth your time and will only continue to get better over time. Be sure to document your journey along the way though, with PhotoMode and be sure to share them. The game has many gorgeous vistas and secrets to capture.