No Man’s Sky’s Has Space Dinos & Confusing Exclusivity

By Alec Meer on June 10th, 2014 at 11:00 am.

That's a Consoleexclusivosauraus, if I remember correctly

Edit – hmm, the language is a bit unclear. Not quite sure if this is PS4 only first, or if PS4 will just be the first console version and thus a PC version might yet be first. Will try to find out!

We all made a terrible mess in our underthings when No Man’s Sky, Hello Games’ surprisingly bold’n’brave follow up to Joe Danger, was announced back in the cold, grey dregs of 2013. The procedurally-generated cosmic explaration and action game ticked just about all the boxes I could think of, in principle at least, so it’s with an extremely heavy heart that I relay news that the game will be released on PS4 initially, with other versions – i.e. including PC – to follow later.

Oh dear, I’m going to have to buy one of those playboxes now, aren’t I? Because just look at the footage below. SPACE DINOSAURS! Incredible, impossible, insane stuff.

GIVE IT. GIVE IT TO ME. IMMEDIATELY.

Says Hello’s Sean Murray, “One of the things we wanted to put across is that No Man’s Sky is a game without limits. That mountain in the distance is a real place you can visit. So is that planet. And that star. That’s been the case since we first revealed the game, but in the six months since we’ve added so much, hundreds of new procedural systems that have made the universe explode with new alien creatures, amazing geological formations and vegetation patterns, pirates and wingmen.”

For more on how the big procedural promises work, cast your eyes back to our Graham’s extensive interviews on the matter from January.

I know it’s early doors for Aieeeethree, but I suspect it’s going to be between this and Cuphead for my trailer of the show. (I’m not going to say ‘game of the show’, because come on, it’s just one gigantic marketing-off, isn’t it?)

Update: another trailer!

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95 Comments »

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  1. WhatKateDoes says:

    Ps4 initial exclusive? Makes me want to react all like Robert Carlisle as Begbie at the end of Trainspotting. ..

    • marach says:

      You think this is bad? Grim Fandango was announced as a “PS4 Exclusive”, Tim Schafer has been trying to put out that fire since. The problem is he isn’t actually confirming a PC release still, just saying “We’ll talk other platforms later”

    • Shadows says:

      I think you’ll find the exclusivity clause only applies to the console market and that the PC release is not affected.

      • Moraven says:

        Sony seems rather open to indies launching PC at the same time, not really caring and knowing indies need PC to survive. Transistor has been a recent title launching on PS4/PC on the same date.

        Then you have MS who says you Have to launch on the One at the same time or before other platforms.

        • Shadows says:

          I have a very reliable source…having said that, Sony are pumping money in to the game’s development and marketing, so the developers would seem likely to focus on that platform.

        • Shodex says:

          i don’t think they mind because unlike Microsoft, Sony has always been very aware of the PC gaming market. They even make PC games. And part of that awareness is the understanding that the PC and console markets don’t really intersect. Just because you force an indie game to be PS4 exclusive, doesn’t mean the PC gamers will rush to get PS4s. They just won’t play game game. Likewise just because an indie game is on PC and PS4 both, doesn’t mean all the PS4 gamers are going to rush to upgrade their PCs and get it on Steam. Console gamers will always be console gamers, PC gamers will always be PC gamers. Better to let them both be happy in their own bubble worlds than to piss off a bunch of people and direct a lot of hatred towards yourself.

          I don’t like this new generation of consoles, but I’ve always had a lot of respect for Sony since they have the least delusional look on the industry and really seem to understand it. Microsoft sticks their fingers in their ears and screams, “It doesn’t exist, nobody plays games on the computer!” every time PC gaming gets mentioned. Nintendo just locked themselves in their room, and every time you call for it to come play with everyone else it shouts, “I am the game industry! There is nothing but me!”

          • TechnicalBen says:

            And if they do that, some of us will buy it on both platforms. Though it depends if Sony have a part of the PC distribution pie, or only the PS4 bit.

      • Baines says:

        That’s because the PC often isn’t considered in the same group.

        But by the same token, it can also mean than the PC isn’t even considered at all in some cases. Even when PC is considered, it can end up running far enough behind (months or even years) that the console version was effectively a timed exclusive anyway.

    • Ulaxes says:

      This is bad already, but snatching From Softwares new title Bloodborne from us is heart breaking. From Software, what can Sony give you that we faithful PC gamers can’t?

      • Afred says:

        (money maybe?)

        And I’m not saying that in a cynical way, to be honest, if a studio want to release an exclusive for the PS4 it’s their right, especially in cases like No Man’s Sky where it seems that Sony is helping the development a lot.

        • Vin_Howard says:

          PC Gamers have been more then generous to indie development. Just look at all that has been raised via crowdfunding.

          • Shodex says:

            PC gamers help fund indie games themselves, but a lot of the time this is done by throwing money at indie devs to play an unfinished game and then complaining that it isn’t finished enough.

            I’d rather have a big company like Sony with me, giving money as well as assistance. Sony has always seemed to take care of it’s own. They’ve got their little harem of studios and those studios don’t disappoint. Naughty Dog, Sucker Punch, Insomniac, SCE Santa Monica. All of them have a better history of quality products and commercial success than Kickstarter games do.

            I’ve been a PC gamer all my life but I loved my PS3 for it’s exclusives, and while the PS4 doesn’t really interest me I can’t blame any studio for wanting to be part of that club.

          • crizzyeyes says:

            Do you really think that crowdfunding is going to get From Soft as much money as Sony gave them for development? Not to mention that, like Demon’s Souls, From gets to use Sony’s development studio, Studio Japan. That’s not even getting to the PR nightmare that is “I know we’ve made a lot of money from Dark Souls sales and we’re not an independent developer, but please give us money anyway!”

      • Auldreekie says:

        From Software worked with Sony’s Japan Studios for Demon’s Souls, From Soft only jumped into bed with Namco Bandai when Sony dropped them after poor sales. I guess this means Sony is welcoming them back into the fold.

  2. Premium User Badge

    Harlander says:

    Oh dear, I’m going to have to buy one of those playboxes now, aren’t I?

    By no means! You could also wait, white-clenched knuckles gnawed at with chattering teeth in delirious anticipation.

    That’s a lot cheaper too, aside from the obvious damage to your knuckles.

    • MadTinkerer says:

      Look, at least a Playstation is not an XBox. I wouldn’t buy an Xbox (360 or bone), because there are zero compelling reasons to buy an Xbox if you already own a decent five year old laptop. But Playstations do have reasons for PC owners to play them. The Disgaea series, Kingdom Hearts, tons of games that you don’t need an Xbox because they’re also on Playstation such as Soul Calibur, and so on.

      Digger is on the PS3. Don’t remember Digger? Then you are not a PC gamer.

      Just buy a PS3, they’re cheap. Wait for PS4 to go down in price and have some more titles. Don’t ever buy a console at launch. But go ahead buy a Playstation (not PS4 YET, just whenever you can get a good deal). It’s okay. We’re still the PC master race. Skip a graphics card upgrade that you’d replace in a couple months anyway and get a Playstation. It’s fine.

      Don’t get an Xbox, though. Because, really, Microsoft. Really.

      • Chuckleluck says:

        “there are zero compelling reasons to buy an Xbox if you already own a decent five year old laptop”

        Halo 3.

        • Billanthrop says:

          This.

        • Shodex says:

          That said if you haven’t jumped on the Halo bus already, you’ve missed it. Halo’s campaign is a lot of fun but the real gold lay in the multiplayer and the community Bungie created. Bring some buddies over, play Halo, have fun. Try out that one guy’s (there’s always one) custom gametype. Run the campaign with a buddy on Legendary with all the skulls on. Catch the latest episode of RvB and spend an hour playing Grifball.

          Bungie just made Halo feel right. Like you were welcome. And they released new games sparingly enough so that when the new one was coming you WANTED to give away that cash and get in on it. With Bungie gone? It feels cold, Microsoft-ish. New Halo games are popping up everywhere, half of them are remakes. The Covenant are gone (which means so is one of the most fun throng of enemies to fight in any shooter), they showed Chief’s face.

          Halo is over. And thank god, that means I don’t need to buy an Xbone. Now fingers crossed that Uncharted 4 ends up totally shit so I don’t have to buy a PlayStation 4 because right now I really want to play Uncharted 4.

  3. Premium User Badge

    amateurviking says:

    So much desire. SO MUCH. All I need is for one of you chaps to get hands on and say:

    ‘it’s the game that it looks like it is’

    And I will be content.

    Edit: THE MUSIC

    Edit edit: just watched it again. I regret nothing.

    Edit edit edit: Just watched it *again*. Sorry this game is impossible. I must now expunge it from my mind until it has been released into the wild.

    • BobbleHat says:

      The music in the first video is Debutante by 65daysofstatic. They play loads of spacey electronic-y stuff; probably a perfect soundtrack to playing this game.

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        amateurviking says:

        Thanks!

        Edit the fourth: They are super-spiffing.

        • Ex Lion Tamer says:

          Nothing confirmed, but I believe Hello Games (the developer) is in discussions with 65daysofstatic to score the whole thing. Unless I wildly misinterpreted some things months back. Very possible.

          If it works out, this could be on par with HEALTH’s score for Max Payne 3, which is saying something. Really elevated that game.

          • BobbleHat says:

            That is awesome if true. If not then just listen to their Silent Running soundtrack on repeat while playing.

  4. Armante says:

    Looks cool. Wonder how it will play as a game.

    I can’t help but be cynical and think that by the time I get around to playing it a zillion things will already have been discovered, making the whole “discovered by” thing kinda annoying. Plus, just how many players will not be able to resist naming everything dick-this and twat-that, or have user names like ‘eatmysh1t’ ?

    But yeah, will watch how this develops.

    • TechnicalBen says:

      I would assume naming is automatic. Hopefully if it’s procedural, they can keep generating more stuff to find.

  5. Premium User Badge

    golem09 says:

    Where exactly is the source for that? I can’t find it in any of the articles about it.
    Most are also calling it “console exclusive”. That would suggest that it releases on PS4 and PC at the same time, like The Witness, but it only later released on other consoles. Probably because the devs just don’t have the workforce for multiple ports.

  6. noom says:

    If nothing else it’s a remarkable technical achievement for such a small team. It’s sadly almost too much to believe it’ll play as good as it looks… but by God do I hope it does.

    • Skiddywinks says:

      If you want impressive scope and proceduralisation given dev size, check out Limit Theory

      • Ex Lion Tamer says:

        I definitely second the Limit Theory recommendation. Remarkable stuff – visually more conventional, but the depth and everything going on under the hood is going to be extraordinary for any dev team size (particularly a team of one).

        No slight intended toward No Man’s Sky…this trailer has me just as excited as anyone. I do hope people give Limit Theory a close look as well, though.

      • Syphus says:

        Or Space Engine, only kinda a “game” but it procedurally generates the entire observable universe, while being made by one guy as well.

  7. Cockie says:

    And they have put yet another trailer on YouTube! With even more varied landscapes!

  8. iainl says:

    If, as I suspect, the PS4-first thing is the price of Sony having helped out with the Hello Games Flood Disaster, then I’m not going to begrudge the decision one bit. Besides, the last indie game I know to do this, Volume, only gave Sony a month’s head start before the PC, and that’s not exactly going to kill me.

  9. JustAPigeon says:

    It looks great. I’m a bit worried, though, I hope these sequences are condensed for presentation purposes. For example it seems to take far too-short a time to go from the planet’s surface to orbit, and vice-versa. Makes things seem a bit too small.

    Hopes are still ridiculously high.

    • observerrrrr says:

      There is a clever map skip when going from a planet to space and vice-versa, disguised with the colorful fog. When on a planet scaling looks correct, but in space, planets suddenly become on order of magnitudes smaller compared to ships.

      Observe the noticable level of detail pop-in of the mountain at the bottom-right in the first video at the 1:27 mark:
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GH3fJO-kjIQ&t=1m27s

      • Premium User Badge

        FriendlyFire says:

        You can also notice it when they enter the second planet: the ships ahead of the camera disappear in a puff of smoke.

        I think it’s quite frankly a great way around it. Infinity’s taken years and years trying to make planetary transitions and terrain generation and all that absolutely 100% perfect, and I don’t think we’re ever going to see a game out of that. Cutting a few corners and making the game a game first (instead of a simulation first) is a much more pragmatic way around it.

        • JustAPigeon says:

          I do agree. I just think a sense of scale is important, I want the planets and solar systems to feel massive, whereas in that video they seem a but too small. But I guess we’re a long way off seeing “proper” gameplay and this is all stuff that can be tuned.

  10. Soulstrider says:

    Looks pretty great and ambitious, but I will remain cautiously optimistic until It finally comes out.

    One thing I don’t understand though, so we have space exploration and space battles, great. And we also have surface parts, what are we supposed to do in them? Just sightseeing?

    • staberas says:

      Cautiously optimistic is what i am in this type of games that dont have any type of gameplay..

    • Premium User Badge

      skalpadda says:

      To be honest sightseeing is probably the vast majority of what I’d do in a game like this. Almost every frame looks like a 60s sci-fi illustration in the best possible way. I have vague memories of them talking about species extinction and things, so I’d assume there’s more to visiting planets than discovery and exploration.

      Please please don’t fuck up the console exclusivity. Please.

      • darkshadow42 says:

        Species extinction? I can already visualise flying around on my space ark saving all the procedural creatures! Hopefully more like Silent Running than Dinosaurs on a Spaceship.

  11. BobbyDylan says:

    “One of the things we wanted to put across is that No Man’s Sky is a game without limits”

    Makes it console elusive.

    http://i1230.photobucket.com/albums/ee481/Bobbydyland/CAT_zpsd7c93fc8.jpg

    • psaldorn says:

      You just coined an EXCELLENT phrase. My game will be PC-only aka CONSOLE ELUSIVE.

      • BobbyDylan says:

        Lol. I’m not even gonna correct that.

        • Donjo says:

          This better become *a thing*

          • CookPassBabtridge says:

            According to Bernaysian psychology, you need to be a person with disproportionate social influence to start “a thing”, so we shall have to wait for one of the Esteemed Journo Lords to say it.

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            melnificent says:

            At times like this RPS needs a proper tagging system

        • Wounder says:

          It is an excellent phrase that should be spread, but sadly, I think the variant will see much, much more use: “PC elusive”

  12. Premium User Badge

    Skeletor68 says:

    So maybe have some planets that are just exploration/environmental puzzle based to search out some new resource and then one or two deadly wildlife/military areas that require conflict?

    I have to admit that the trailers so far have been majestic, but difficult to see what moment to moment gameplay will be like.

  13. BTAxis says:

    Have fun exploring the annoying signs that tell you who discovered everything first. As if anyone cares about that.

  14. Artist says:

    Its so painful to see this games movement mistreatened by those swampy controllers instead of the bright, crisp and sharp movements of a proper mousekeyboard setup. Games shouldnt suffer from controllers.. Its just too cruel!

    • Premium User Badge

      Skeletor68 says:

      I dunno man. I played Freespace on an Xbox controller (xpadder) and it was a pretty beautiful experience.

    • Jekhar says:

      Don’t worry, after Freelancer and Aquanox got finally rid of those pesky joysticks, your precious fingers don’t have to touch anything other than your treasured mouse and keyboard.

  15. Kefren says:

    This is what I want. On my Amiga I realised that space games could let me land on planets, and I was amazed. This was the future of gaming! Starglider 2 was my favourite (drop onto a planet, blow something up, jet back into space before things got too hot; relax with the space whales; fly into deep space for ten minutes then turn to look back at the solar system as a small set of dots). Captain Blood was also deeply immersive. Then the more powerful PC came along – and suddenly it is as if space games forgot that discovering new worlds and exploring them was part of the fun. “We can’t do that, it’s too complicated.” I did it on my Amiga.

    For that reason I am more interested in this game than Elite Dangerous. Space stations in orbit (a la Freelancer and so on) always seems like a cop out.

    • Premium User Badge

      Harlander says:

      It feels like there’d been a bit of a slump in the “throw everything at the wall and see what sticks” school of game design as games became more of a big business, probably coupled with the general trend towards increasing fidelity in what you do show. Stuff coming out of indie games, like NMS, recapitulates the earlier epochs of game development in some ways.

      (Elite: Dangerous will allegedly get landing on planets eventually, by the way)

    • Premium User Badge

      Matt_W says:

      Three words: Kerbal Space Program

  16. derbefrier says:

    it does look rally cool. If i is exclusive I hope its not for too long.

  17. The Infamous Woodchuck says:

    They’re promising so much.. The expectations for this game will so high that it would be nigh impossible for this game not to take any flak when (if, even) they release it. Such is the price for having an ambitious game i guess..

    That said, what i’ve seen so far (which consists of 3 trailers, two of them above) looks pretty solid and im loving the art style, it reminds me of spore’s a bit, which im a fan of. Really wish the best of luck for the devs, i hope its shaping up to be the game i’ve always wanted for so long..

    Also sally, is that you?

  18. remon says:

    So, each planet will have an oversaturated color theme?

  19. Megakoresh says:

    This better be a Single Player or some 2-4 person optional coop game and not a fucking MMO. This better be… Ruining such a good tech and idea in an MMO is unforgivable.

    • SWJS says:

      It’s not an MMO. Sean Murray, the studio’s founder, constantly says in every interview it isn’t an MMO, but rather the opposite. Every player shares the same universe, but starts at their own planet at the very edge of the universe, lightyears apart from one another. It’s still possible for players to meet up, but the chances are very, very minute.

  20. Premium User Badge

    Chaz says:

    Look’s great, just as it did before of course. Just hope you can switch off all the “Discovered by…” messages. Couldn’t give a stuff about the whole shared online discover thing. It would some what ruin the immersion of my game.

    • Megakoresh says:

      That would be the least of our worries if they decided to make the whole game online. As in MMO. By the gods, that would be terrible! And it sure does look like it can have a lot of MMO elements in it.

      • Premium User Badge

        Chaz says:

        From what I gathered from last years info about it, was that is was essentially single player but when you discovered things like planets etc, they’d get uploaded to a global database. So that when someone else came across it, it would say “Discovered by…” etc. Also I think you could join up with other players but not in the MMO sense. More like co-op allowing a few other players into your game. That was the gist I got anyway. Could well be wrong about that.

        • Megakoresh says:

          If it’s like what you say (and you can turn the prompts off too), then I am definitely interested!

    • Wounder says:

      It’s one of those things that sounds interesting and keen, but will immediately be ruined by the people playing the game. Showing handles for credits pretty much ruins it’s charm, at least for me. Even in the video, “Discovered by BBILZ” doesn’t impress me. Still, nifty concept.

  21. fish99 says:

    See my other comment below.

  22. Jorum says:

    My main concerns at the moment would be

    a) the discovered by messages are immersion breaking. I don’t want to visit some remote ruin and have the sense of wonder interrupted by “first discovered by newbbitchslayer4377″

    b) procedural can create endless amount of content, but can it create lots of interesting content?
    Will be fun for a while but after certain point I think you need some things that are deliberately created with more cohesive narrative/purpose such as remnants of lost civilizations, a unique type of creature or structure etc.

    • Premium User Badge

      Gap Gen says:

      We were talking about b) on Twitter. The human brain is great at pattern recognition, and can spot when an algorithm is switching up the same random components over and over. Minecraft kinda works because it’s more of a setting for human creativity, but a lot of PCG systems are the same stock parts re-used so that every item feels weirdly familiar. I remain hopeful, but I’m not expecting that they’ve made an algorithm that can create on the same level as a human artist can.

    • Syphus says:

      I imagine there must be an option to turn it off.

      I think we have seen some procedural games begin to constantly generate interesting content. On the scale of this game, I am still impressed by the almost limitless potential of Space Engine, and that isn’t even a true game.

  23. Keyrock says:

    There is a lot to like in that trailer, but what I didn’t like is the sense of scale, or lack there of. The transition from planet you see from far away to, you’re on the surface is almost instantaneous and it makes these planets feel like they are absolutely tiny, like much smaller than our own moon tiny. Maybe these just happen to be really small planets/moons?

    • USER47 says:

      Yeah, i have the same problem with that…It looks as if the atmosphere reached few hundreds metres above the surface and even climbing average hill would get you into space:/.

  24. xcession says:

    WANT x 1000!

  25. Premium User Badge

    Jackablade says:

    It’ does all have a deliciously Roger Dean sort of flavour to it.

  26. Kompatriartes says:

    Looks cool, but if there is no reasonably strong narrative to drive it I imagine I will get bored.

  27. Lemming says:

    This is a British developer. I remain resolute there will be a PC release. Because British.

  28. fish99 says:

    Ok I just watched the E3 presentation again and it says ” will make it’s console debut on PS4 ” so this in no way affects the PC release.

  29. steviebops says:

    It just looks so pretty, I hope it can live up to this. I remember when a space-fully featured planets game was a pipe dream. Want so bad.

    Also RPS, any competitions giving away PS4’s coming up? Help a poor indie out :)

  30. jankenbattle says:

    This is ROGER DEAN AS HELL! Holy crap these guys know how to make a trailer. Hopefully the ambition vaguely meets the finished product, I’d settle for a very pretty Noctis clone.

  31. Chuckleluck says:

    FORGET STAR CITIZEN

    FORGET ELITE DANGEROUS

    ALL HAIL NO MAN’S SKY

  32. Frank says:

    Hm, hope it’s possible for someone who sucks at/hates dogfighting to explore. That art is so great!

  33. zentropy says:

    hory sheet, this looks totes amazeballs!

  34. Premium User Badge

    Hodge says:

    They definitely had me at Hello.

  35. AaronLee says:

    Anybody else see the Tet in there near the very end?

  36. Deviija says:

    My brain was nothing but a running mantra of “omyfunkinggod” on repeat while watching the trailer. I’d throw money at the screen, but it’d do nothing. This is so beautiful. I’m as excited and filled with wonder as the first trailer. There are a lot of promises and goals, sure, but there is so much done right already in direction and scope. I hope it lives up to everything it sets out to be. It will absolutely be my dream game come true, if so.