No Man’s Sky Is Steam’s Biggest Release Of 2016

No matter what you think of the game, No Man’s Sky [official site] has gripped the games industry in a rare frenzy with its promises of nigh limitless space exploration. The game launched today on PC, and although things were a bit rocky, No Man’s Sky is already setting records, swiftly becoming Steam’s most successful launch of the year.

According to Steam Stats, No Man’s Sky peaked at 212,620 concurrent players on its first day. Even at the time of writing this article (which is a ridiculous time, I’ll have you know), No Man’s Sky sits at over 125,000 players, sitting pretty in third place below Dota 2 and CounterStrike: GO. It’s likely we could see these numbers climbing higher as we head into the weekend proper.

If that’s not an impressive number for you, consider XCOM 2, which launched earlier this year and peaked at 133,022 players. Or sleeper hit Stardew Valley, which peaked at 64,362. These numbers don’t really indicated how many copies of the game have been sold, but they can be a pretty decent indicator of a game’s success. If you consider Fallout 4, which launched alongside Call of Duty last year, Bethesda’s post-apocalyptic mega-hit peaked at 472,962 users and earned $750 million within 24 hours. It’s worth remembering that No Man’s Sky hails from a wee indie studio. It’s success in comparison to a huge AAA launch is pretty considerable.

Disclosure: Our Alec did some last-minute writing for No Man’s Sky. He won’t write about the game for us any more, and every time he thinks about it we kick him.

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159 Comments

  1. TheMightyEthan says:

    I just wish it would launch for me. I’m one of the people with a Phenom II, so the game crashes on launch every time. HG says they’re working on it, but my weekend is slipping by.

    ;_;

    • saluki says:

      In the announcement late yesterday they mentioned that they would be forking off an experimental branch in steam to cover the SSE4.1 problem. Now, yesterday there wasn’t even a beta tab in the game’s properties, but this morning i notice there IS a beta tab, but with no experimental version listed yet. So maybe that’s progress!

      • dahools says:

        Looks like the experimental went live 10mins ago on steam plus a link to know workarounds for other folks problems who cant get into the game or it keeps crashing.
        Dont know if it will fix your issue but give it a go.

        • dahools says:

          oh for an edit button,

          link to steamcommunity.com

        • Warlokk says:

          Unfortunately, while they apparently have a fix in place for the SSE4.1 problem, they left in place an issue with SSSE3 that most of those same chips also don’t support. So basically the crash just happens a few seconds later. Progress! :P

          • TheMightyEthan says:

            Lucky for me I seem to have one of the chips that DOES support SSE3, so the experimental version works for me. Yay!

          • saluki says:

            Yeah, now the crash is just after the starry sky loading screen. Maybe I’ll just play stellaris this weekend instead, lol. This is death by a thousand cuts.

          • TheMightyEthan says:

            Yeah, I spoke too soon. It crashes after flying through the starfield for a while. I just thought I was good because the first time it went for a lot more than a few seconds, it was a good 2-3 minutes of starfield flying before it crashed. Though on every subsequent attempt I’ve barely made it past the No Man’s Sky title before crashing.

          • Warlokk says:

            Yep it’s SS*S*E3, not SSE3, which most of the Phenoms do support, unfortunately.

        • Arglebargle says:

          The experimental branch has gotten two more of our six players in game (happily including me). Bad news is that I think the X Branch is a different universe, as I started over on a new planet. I’d initially started on a different planet playing in the main branch on someone else’s computer. Oh well, still get to play and learn.

    • PancakeWizard says:

      Considering that the Phenom was an unsupported CPU from the outset, count yourself lucky they’ve decided to support it after all!

      • Warlokk says:

        Except that was never stated until after the game was released… the only CPU requirement listed in the specs was Intel Core i3, which in most respects a Phenom II will surpass. Nothing was known about SSE compatibility until the crash reports started rolling in, so evidently they only tested on up-to-date Intel machines. Since almost a quarter of the Steam user base runs AMD processors, this is a pretty serious oversight.

        • TheMightyEthan says:

          Yeah, this. If it had said it doesn’t support Phenoms then fine, I’d have known going in. But the only thing it said was minimum Core i3. My Phenom II X6 1100T is better than the vast majority of i3’s, so I (reasonably, imo) assumed it would work.

          • Premium User Badge

            modzero says:

            Oh dear. And back in the times PowerPC was a thing, you’d be here complaining that your PPC is more powerful than some old Pentium, therefore things Should Work On It? It’s a different CPU, it’s just similar enough that it’s viable for programmers to support both in one binary – but that’s in no way implied by your judgement whether Phenom is better than i3 or not.

            That only the Intel line is explicitly supported is a bit sad – OTOH, QA on multiple platforms costs money, and they already had two to support.

        • Raoul Duke says:

          I just upgraded my trusty massively overclocked Phenom II to an i3 and I am sorry to break it to you but the latter is vastly more powerful. Also, it doesn’t heat up to 400C when gaming and uses way, way less power.

  2. Kefren says:

    It turns out that there’s not even a setting in the menu to disable the online synching/downloading of random srangers’ namings and guff into the game. Pretty disappointed with that. (The only option is to mess about with Windows Firewall if you want to keep NMS as a game where it is fully your own universe). Though it did get me thinking – they had to put in so many planets so that people could have some space of their own. The downside is no-one will visit them all, and many end up rather samey after a while. I wish, instead, they’d totally done away with the limited (and complicated) online systems and just let each new game generate a small set of solar systems from the current date’s seed (or one chosen by the player), with quite a bit of variety. A shorter game but one where replaying it is always different and exciting. I remember Starglider 2 on the Amiga had planetary landings from space and back up again, seamless; I spent days just mucking about in the one solar system. Throw in a few solar systems, which change each game, and I’d be much happier than having a quintillion (or whatever) planets I’ll never see.

    • Kefren says:

      That system would also have enabled more varied updates later – with the current system they can’t do much, because everyone is using the same seed and system so the planets that have been visited can’t be changed. I think they’re unlikely to patch in new planet types later (ones without life, gas giants and so on) because it would mess up the current system. If they’d gone for something smaller and more varied and which changed each time it would have been ideal for dropping in exciting updates and rare events.

      • aepervius says:

        There are already planet devoid of live or nearly. I landed on a planet where all there were on the surface was rocks, plutonium, lots of graviton plants, and irons. There was only a small formation giving a measiley 20 carbon underground here and there and that’s it. The problem is, you *need* plutonium , Iron and Th (can’t recall the name) for the ship to function so that at least must be everywhere, and you need carbon if you start on the planet for basic reparation IIRC (or was it jump cell?).

    • jpm224 says:

      There is an option to disable online features. As for the rest of your comment…No, just no. Please stop.

    • Guy says:

      I’ve seen a few similar planets, but I’ve seen move varied ones. Also, just how do you think it is in our real universe? I would imagine that a lot of those rocks out there are close to being exactly the same, with a few here and there that are wildly different.

      • aepervius says:

        Well our own universe is not a game, this is a game ;).

        I have seen a lot of similar planet, thinking to refund the game…. then suddenly I landed in a *terran* one with trees like oak or ash. That brought me to see more varied planet later.

        The problem is… It is the luck of the draw. And you can be absolutely unlucky. I have been on planets with near constant poison storm…. The only things I did there was get material for a jump cell and GTFO.

  3. TillEulenspiegel says:

    The “wee indie studio” with a massive marketing push from Sony for the past two years, including being one of a small handful of titles featured at the introduction of the PS4.

    I gotta say, those Stardew Valley numbers look pretty damn impressive in comparison.

    • causticnl says:

      sony only advertised and supported the PS4 version, the PC version is solely released by hello games.

    • DailyFrankPeter says:

      I’ve gotta say, when I first saw Sean Murray in an interview my though was “Their marketing guy is really good! His ability to evade literally every question, while fuelling interest by a smug: “I’m leaving this vague as a special secret for players”… was both really f*** annoying/and impressive from a marketing standpoint.
      Then I discovered he was the head math geek, but I supposed being really talented at both is allowed.

  4. brucethemoose says:

    I’m afraid of one thing going from this game above all else:

    Devs and publishers might look at how well their marketing strategy worked, and try to emulate it… Which would be TERRIBLE.

    • Shadow says:

      I suppose we have to wait and see how strong is the refund backlash. A lot of people were driven to preorder by the hype, regardless of the game’s actual merits, and I wonder how many are happy with their choice.

      • brucethemoose says:

        Call me a cynic, but a strongly suspect that alot of people don’t even know/care to ask about a refund, even if they don’t like the game.

        • unimural says:

          Call me a sucker, but it’s often difficult to classify games in a binary like/not like -fashion. Using that as a criteria for refunds doesn’t strike terribly useful to me. A lot of experiences I don’t like still have value. And most often things are a mix of things I like, appreciate or value and things I dislike, do not appreciate/value.

          I do think you should get a refund if the game doesn’t work reasonably well for you. Bugs, crashes, etc. I can also imagine being repelled by a game so much that I would want a refund. The latter has never happened though, what with games being relatively middle of the road subject matter wise.

          I guess I am in general skeptical of the prospect of not getting anything out of something that has intrigued you by its relatively honest marketing.

          Ceterum censeo, never pre-order.

        • Shadow says:

          It depends on a number of things, like how much 60 dollars is worth to you, and whether you care enough to voice your dissatisfaction.

          In general, I’d bet there’s a significant apathetic group of people (particularly in the developed countries) who won’t care enough to refund any game, and simply move on to the next, without caring about the fact they’re rewarding negative practices, either. There’s a frankly surprising number of people who don’t even play many of the games they buy, according to Steam’s achievement statistics. And I’m not talking about cheap bundle games.

          Personally, I would refund such an expensive game if I really didn’t like it, but I’ve never actually refunded any game.

          I don’t easily fall for hype, and research thoroughly before even considering any purchase. Also, I rarely preorder: only when I’m familiar with the developer and their track record, want to support them, and all previews check out.

          With NMS, it wasn’t difficult to see through the hype and recognize the console focus of the game, the shallow gameplay in every bit of footage they showed, and the stark contrast between reality and the overexcited promotional speech. Plenty of red flags.

      • rochrist says:

        Two hours in and I’m enjoying the hell out of it.

    • Ghostwise says:

      >Devs and publishers might look at how well their marketing strategy >worked, and try to emulate it… Which would be TERRIBLE.

      /em sits in his volcano lair, stroking with a beringed hand a cat with a thick white fur.

      Mmmm…

    • RobF says:

      Their terrible marketing strategy was ‘market it just like just about every other big game ever’.

      Whatever weird perception the internet has built around that is, well, it’s certainly interesting. But I don’t think anyone is going to look and go ‘cor, best not do that’ when most of the stuff around NMS has been internet fiction rather than anything explicitly ‘from’ anywhere.

      • Raoul Duke says:

        People are torn between judging this like a Call of Duty game it was marketed like and judging it like the indie game it actually is.

        • brucethemoose says:

          …pretty much, yeah

          Normal indie games would fade into obscurity with few sales after a bad release, but NMS is immune to that thanks to Sony’s marketing push. So they don’t have to follow AAA PR standards, and they don’t have to follow indie release standards.

      • brucethemoose says:

        It goes farther than that though.

        They intentionally fudged information about co-op multi-player, for example, which no AAA dev would even think about doing thanks to the PR backlash.

        They released lots and lots of actual gameplay trailers and without ever actually telling us what the game will be like, again highly unusual.

        They’re also following the new indie/EA model of “release game first, fix it and add crucial features later”. That isn’t exactly new, but they’re unusually open about doing it.

        In other words, they’re showing devs that all these things are OK to do, and will actually make a game sell better… That’s something I don’t want to see everywhere else, particularly the false advertising bit.

        • RobF says:

          They haven’t really fudged anything about co-op multiplayer at all. This is like, one of the most frustrating things the internet has latched onto and yeah, it’s frustrating. They’ve -explicitly- said that it isn’t a game like Destiny (or any MMO or whatever) and that you shouldn’t treat it like one, that there isn’t co-op in any ‘real’ sense but encounters can happen.

          Unfortunately, when one encounter did happen on day 1, the servers were strained, went for a burton and instead of ‘something’ happening, ‘nothing’ happened. It’s just a bug though. But this isn’t enough for the internet who wants to find some sort of conspiracy behind it. But it is just that. A bug. No-one ‘fudged’ anything. Well, unless you count the internet, obv.

          This is the thing when people rush to believe the worst case scenario first – like all the stuff with the stickers and that. Rather than assuming devs aren’t out to rip them off, there’s this thing right now that just goes for the worst and it’s pretty horrid to work in, tbh. I don’t even understand why everyone has to be so angry all the time. It’s bonkers. There’s no ‘false advertising’ here. Just a bug. A bug.

          There’s gameplay videos with actual gameplay in there, they’ve been floating around for months. With Sean + whoever else running through what you do. It doesn’t cover everything but certainly, there was plenty in there. More than enough to get a very real idea of ‘what you do in No Man’s Sky’. There’s a great one with Anthony Carboni which covers a lot. They’re out there. Nothing unusual, again. There’s articles, Edge ran about 6 pages covering a lot of stuff, Game Informer have stuff. There’s stuff elsewhere no doubt. Now, if you didn’t see it… that’s another matter. It’s there though.

          And well, I don’t think anyone is going for an EA model here. It’s just some stuff didn’t work at launch. This has happened as long as PC gaming has happened and whilst it’s never great, it’s only the past few years that I’ve seen absolute proper anger about it on this scale. Given everyone’s working over the weekend to fix stuff up, you wouldn’t do that with an EA model – this is a total ‘oh bugger, that’s broken’ situation.

          Beyond that, if you’ve got something like this, still got loads of ideas… digital makes it possible to patch them in with updates later. Plenty of games do this without being in EA still. So why not? The alternative here is they leave it as is at launch like we would in 2003 and maybe that’s what some people want and fine, I can understand that. But offering expansions to the main game isn’t exactly a modern conceit, really.

          So all that’s happening here, in the main, is the internet is running away with these mad (and the past few days, supremely angry) theories that don’t really stand up to any scrutiny. This is REALLY strange to watch as well.

          Yes, the marketing is proper big box marketing – that was (if you listen to the Remaster podcast from this week) the intention. To try and take a game from a small team and give it the AAA treatment. It’s not -different- to normal marketing though, if anything it’s identical and we’re just not used to small teams being put on that particular pedestal. But Hello aren’t the only ones pushing there – part of what FIG is, is to try and bring ‘bigger’ money into indie for similar effect. They’ve just been fortunate to find cheerleading teams at Sony who want to go along for the ride (and the cash, natch).

          Which is why I say no-one is going to look at this and go ‘we’re not going to do that’ as it’s what’s done for every large game. In fact, there’s probably more out there on No Man’s Sky than a lot of AAA because Sean’s allowed to talk to people, unlike big box.

          I can understand not liking it, I can understand being miffed about bugs or whatever. So much else around this, it’s unfathomable – especially the misinformation and anger and accusations flying round. Folks need to chill and go and play some videogames and do a bit less shouting on the internets.

          • RobF says:

            (I’m not suggesting you’re angry btw, just that a lot of this misinformation is being loudly shouted by a bizarrely angry fringe of people on the internet with out of context quotes, video snippets and what have you. And it keeps going until it seeps into normality.

            I have no idea why this is A Thing at the moment, but it’s tremendously depressing no matter what it manifests around. Whether that be No Man’s Sky or a Call Of Duty trailer or whatever)

          • drinniol says:

            Give this man a fucking medal.

          • brucethemoose says:

            No, I know. Honestly I’m just kind of ignorant :P

            Only having followed the hype superficially, I don’t have a good grasp of what’s true and what’s not yet… It takes some time to sift through it all and find out.

          • Koozer says:

            In hindsight the 12 million gameplay snippets they released were quite accurate in what you do in the game, it was the collective internet’s strange expectation of more that brought about the question,” but what do you do?”

          • Press X to Gary Busey says:

            About those “overloaded servers”; I don’t know what was actually planned or what they meant with the vagaries and Molyneux promises (or lies depending on who you ask) during development but what’s in the final product is database sharing and a possibility to ping nearby players based on their location from the database logs (added in the last second day 1 patch).
            Seeing other players or their actions in real-time isn’t implemented.

  5. Psychomorph says:

    High five to those who are immune to hypeting (hype + marketing).

    #nonomanssky

    • Ysellian says:

      I’m not really immune to hype but I just never pre-order or buy games day 1. Even for sequels to great games I usually waita week.

    • wcq says:

      Thing is, nobody is immune to marketing. Nobody. Not even people who actively try to be.

      • C0llic says:

        Marketing in of itself isn’t a dirty word. It’s just that some of the practices are. If you’re aware of the sales pitch, that’s half the battle.

      • Press X to Gary Busey says:

        I’ve got a tiny bit of an immunity, inoculated from poverty (studies).
        When you have to choose between hunger or owning the latest $60 article of hype. I don’t know how many times I’ve got the hype-itch but then a Steam sale or two later the itching for the unpurchase is just gone when I could finally afford it, especially if it was a single player game with limited replayability, some ever-improving early accesser or sequel n with sequel n+1 now announced as in development.
        (impulse-buying bundles on the other hand…)

    • MajorLag says:

      Now that it’s out, I was really hoping RPS would slow up on the NMS posts. They’re probably just excited, and I’m not because it is very much not my jam, but damned if they aren’t acting like they’re being paid to talk about it… well, except for that they’ve been pretty reasonable about criticizing it.

      • Universal Quitter says:

        Of course they’re being paid to talk about NMS. It’s called ad revenue, and generally speaking, it’s value is proportional to the amount of unique hits they get on their site. And right now, the game that attracts the most attention is No Man’s Sky.

        You don’t need to (jokingly, I hope?) reach for the “shill” explanation, when the right one is so obvious and straightforward.

        • Universal Quitter says:

          *its

          I’ll sign up for the premium service when you give us a goddamn edit button again. Until then, you get adblock turned back on, RPS.

      • Cederic says:

        To be fair, their readers are pretty excited about it too.

        It’s a proper gaming event. (Right down to the crushed dreams.)

    • Comintern1919 says:

      And what about those who were immune to the hype, didn’t have much expectations, but still like the Game very much?

  6. TamyKnockers says:

    people in steam are asking for refund ?

  7. causticnl says:

    people whining about performance, turn off your gsync, problem solved.

  8. Warlokk says:

    Imagine how much higher those numbers would be if the game ran on multiple generations of AMD Phenom CPUs that run everything else in the gaming universe perfectly fine…

    • Baines says:

      I’ve seen a few games lately that don’t run on Phenom II’s, due entirely to SSE issues.

      The PC port of Earth Defense Force 4.1 didn’t run on a Phenom II at launch for that reason. Support was patched in a few weeks later.

  9. Stellar Duck says:

    I think I’d prefer to read Alecs thoughts than these constant marketing pieces.

    How about looking into the state of the game instead of fluffing the press releases and posting stats?

    • sairas says:

      agreed. no problems with Alec writing as long as it’s followed by a full disclosure. didn’t Rossignol write multiple articles about Sir, you’re being hunted?

      at least it’s still (yet) nowhere near the ridiculous plugs for xcom 2 or witcher 3. probably, I don’t know, I’m certainly not saying because it kinda seem to be sort of a stinker …

      • Stellar Duck says:

        I honestly don’t think Mr. Jim wrote much about Sir, aside from a piece explaining they were making it. But I may misremember.

        Thing is, I don’t really care about disclosures and such like. This is a hobby site so whatever.

        I’d actually just be very keen to read Alecs thoughts on the process, his thoughts going into it and what he thinks about it afterwards. I think Alec is a splendid writer and he has such a unique voice and frankly, I just want to read his thoughts.

    • Don Reba says:

      I, for one, think Alec should be granted some time to catch up with his backlog of STALKER mods.

  10. FurryLippedSquid says:

    I’ve hit a bug where it won’t let me construct a warp cell for the hyperdrive, so I’m stuck in one system, pending a restart.

    It wasn’t that pre-order DLC either, I didn’t buy it.

    Bum.

    • PancakeWizard says:

      Won’t let you, how?

      • FurryLippedSquid says:

        Doesn’t show up in any crafting menu, despite having the correct ingredients. There’s even an onscreen prompt telling me how to do it. Nope!

        • Comintern1919 says:

          I had the exact same problem! Until I realized to craft you have to press X and not A, stupid me :D . Maybe you push the wrong button, too?

          • FurryLippedSquid says:

            Nope, I found out how to access the crafting menu pretty quickly and I’ve tried absolutely everything, anyway.

            Thanks for the attempted assistance, though!

    • Nacery says:

      What material do you need to make the warp cell? I remember being stuck for hours until I realized that I had to buy it in a Space Station. Also, In been using the DLC ship with no problems.

  11. aircool says:

    Due to too much playtime, mostly fiddling with settings and trying to sort out the strange low res render problem, it came as no surprise that I wan’t entitled to a refund.

    So NMS and I have come to some sort of agreement. I’ll put up with the shitty 720 or whatever render, no matter what resolution I set, as long as the game scoots along at 60+fps for most of the time and Hello Games allow us to be rid of the shitty filters that make the game look like it’s on a 1970’s TV.

    I’ve also yet to see much variety beyond cactus like plants and normal trees.

    Radioactive toxic snowstorms are kinda fun though :)

    • TechnicalBen says:

      I assume you are playing in Windows 10? (I can emulate the problem in other games in 7)
      I think it is linked to maximising the window and the OS assuming a different resolution (not recognising it changed size).

      Perhaps try in a borderless window and see if that fixes it?

  12. aldo_14 says:

    I get the impression NMS could really have done with extended Early Access – it seems like Hello Games couldn’t cover anywhere near enough hardware configurations for a solid release. I wonder if they even considered it, or was it prohibited under their deal with Sony?

    • sairas says:

      or, you know, solid QA even if it meant pushing release even further?

      • aldo_14 says:

        I don’t know the scope or budget they had to test on all different hard/software configurations, though. My assumption is that, as a small team, they probably wouldn’t have the ability to cover more than a small subset of probably thousands of semi-unique systems. Normally under those circumstance I’d think the bulk of QA would be handled through unit/system/integration tests, which could give a false sense of security.

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        modzero says:

        if it meant pushing release even further?

        And during that time, all the employees work pro bono, eat nutrient paste and drink sewage water, and the computers for testing come from Salvation Army.

        That would surely work.

        • Premium User Badge

          modzero says:

          Ugh. Blockquote fail. Who’s paying RPS for not implementing the edit button?

        • sairas says:

          that’s fair, though I would guess (and without knowing any number of actual sales) considering the press, hype and €60 price tag the budget surely grew beyond most “indie” titles and would’ve been adjusted during the way? I wouldn’t suggest developers living on kibble.

          • FriendlyFire says:

            Problem with that is: you can’t tell your landlord/grocery store that you’ll pay them in six months when you’ve released this thing that’ll make you rich.

            Sure, the price is high now, but it’s not gonna give them money to develop it, only to patch it once it’s been put on sale. Sony only gave them marketing, not funding.

          • Premium User Badge

            modzero says:

            I didn’t call them “indie”, and yes, Sony *could* shower them in money, just like the landlord could give them rent for free – difference being, Sony would have to deal with its shareholders after doing that.

            They had a privileged position (Sean Murray does look like privilege personified), but that doesn’t mean infinite money.

          • Press X to Gary Busey says:

            They got a mountain of cash from a successful PS4 release and PC pre-orders so they could surely have put the PC version on hold until it was in a better state (or even closed beta for pre-orderers).

          • Premium User Badge

            modzero says:

            they could surely have put the PC version on hold

            Yeah, that would surely be a popular decision with PC gamers. Like, nobody has ever tried that before.

          • Press X to Gary Busey says:

            At least they would’ve been used to the murder threats they got the other delays.

  13. Spainman says:

    It’s an excellent game. Someone spend a lot of money on marketing so people noticed it looked nice and sounded like it might be interesting. It is interesting, fortunately. Easy on the eye and the ear.

  14. Zankman says:

    Fuck this.

    Fuck such a promising game being ruined due to being developed primarily for PS4.

    Fuck the moronic idea of not adding Multyplayer to this game.

    Fuck console ports.

    Fuck preorders.

    Fuck ALL of this!

    • zxcasdqwecat says:

      If you look at jackfrag’s of NMS you’ll notice all 4 aim assists are missing, maybe it’s more like a pc port, so Idk maybe the general adv made a mess while NMS infos about the game were on youtube all along before the bitching erupted. I’m not defending consoles or anything, never owned one, nor I’m defending hello games or whatever all Idid was lurking in the NMS thread in the rps forums.

    • aldo_14 says:

      Didn’t Sony sign it up after there was a lot of hype building from the first (inevitably PC-driven) demos? Though if there was a Sony funded, PS4 dedicated QA team, and a fixed platform, they probably would be expected to catch a lot more bugs on the console version. Not to excuse the PC issues, but being less buggy on PS4 doesn’t entail it’s a console port.

    • Sargonite says:

      Er, fuck multiplayer being added to so many games these days, especially exploration/survival ones, to the detriment of the singleplayer experience and the blood pressure of people who just want to relax away from other people.

      Seriously, almost every open-world/sandbox game is built around multiplayer these days – and make no mistake, if multiplayer is *included*, it will almost inevitably become the *focus* of a game’s design, leaving singleplayer people in the dust. Starbound for instance was developed with singleplayer as an afterthought, to the point where you can’t even pause the damned game.

      So yeah, here’s one vote for “really really happy No Man’s Sky doesn’t have any real multiplayer.”

      • iris79 says:

        Same! I’m delighted there is no multiplayer. Plus I’m pleasantly surprised by the game, during the hype phase I thought it looked pretty but not my thing. Watched someone play it for 2 hours or so on PS4 yesterday, bought it and having much fun. Understand people grumpy if it doesn’t work for them but otherwise if you are going to get that upset over a game ‘failing to live up to its hype’
        or whatever maybe you should wait for a few reviews, it may seem strange but some people.are OK with the possibility of disappointment.
        As for punishing them, it’s a game company! Hardly like supporting battery farming or child labour and all the hundreds of awful ethical compromises we make even using a computer or phone. Criticize hello games business practices if you want, but the heightened emotions seem unnecessary.

  15. shrieki says:

    totally in love with the game. i think it has a lot of heart and amazing creativity in it. having a lot of fun playing it just like a good game but it is also like experiencing an extraordinary work of art. speaks to me directly and thats awesome.

    • Guy says:

      Same here, I just can’t get enough of the game! Yeah, I wish the bases and stuff were a little more varied, but I get so lost in finding stuff and upgrading, and then looking for cool things hiding in the Universe, that I just don’t want to stop!

      • shrieki says:

        yup the buildings are repetitive and there are so many! it is awkward … i want to find a untouched planet without any signs of any civilization. wonder if there are such planets.

        but still i love how it make me feel a foreigner in a strange world and it´s me myself and not some avatar space dude. for me the gameworld doesnt pretend to be a simulation of a real universe… it feels like it IS a real universe. somehow. if that makes any sense.

  16. cairbre says:

    So it seems it’s not as boring as I feared it would be

  17. milligna says:

    I would’ve liked this more if it committed to what it was doing instead of half-assing so many things. Only the soundtrack and art direction are first rate, the rest is on the level of… Joe Danger.

    Proteus: Dangerous should’ve been a more compelling game! I’ve had two sessions with it so far and that seems enough. Not a very good value for the money.

  18. Dionysus84 says:

    Sean and company have cashed in on our imagination and enthusiasm for a concept. Unfortunately, the execution does not deliver. Effectively the only interesting part of this software is the tech demo of procedurally-generated creatures and environments. Between that and minimal gameplay, there just isn’t much here.

  19. Guy says:

    lol, well that’s a load of crap if I’ve ever heard one. Are you another one of those ppl who play an MMO until they are level 80, all the while littering forums with “this game sucks so hard”, even while you are playing it?

    No Mans Sky is amazing. No, there isn’t huge quests with large storylines, but we kind of knew that going in, didn’t we? It is a game about exploration, and it is FUN. Unless you’re a cynical little bugger.

    • Dionysus84 says:

      No, I love procedurally-generated games with interesting gameplay. (RimWorld, CKII, and to a lesser extent Minecraft). NMS, while an interesting showcase of its technology, simply does not deliver gameplay.

      • shrieki says:

        not the kid of game-play you personally want to see but hey thats not really a parameter for the rest of the world or is it ?
        for me they nailed the gameplay. also love the totally easy and simple UI. finally a spacegame that enables me to just enjoy it instead of making me learn mega complicated mechanics.
        one mans garbage is another mans treasure.

        • Ericusson says:

          Sorry but the same thing can be asked about what you are saying about the game.
          So yeah, opinions and assholes, what we all have in common.

      • Poolback says:

        Maybe you just don’t like exploration game. What about games like Journey, Shadow of the Colossus or Ico (Sorry consoles)? Would you complain about the “lack of” gameplay ? Those game are incredible mainly because of their athmosphere. You explore an incredible world, with an amazing music, the little gameplay added is just an excuse to have you discover their world.
        There’s nothing like No Man’s Sky out there, and the athmosphere and art style is absolutely amazing. Maybe it’s time to switch off that goal oriented mind, and just relax while playing this incredible experience. I mean… if the game doesn’t crash for you…

  20. aircool says:

    How can I get my game looking like the screenshots and videos rather than some low res upscaled crap?

  21. bad_cluster says:

    I know this isn’t much, nor is it a valid sample size. But, me and most of my friends were playing NMS on release, less than 2 hours later, me and 5 of my friends had refunded the game.
    I am very curious to know what is the refund % on steam compared to sales, won’t ever happen, but a man can dream.
    There is nothing wrong with the game per say, its just an indie game made by a small team that overreaches quite a bit, and costs double of what it really should, that’s why I refunded it. It also gave me severe Spore flashbacks that were not pleasant at all.

  22. invitro says:

    I wonder how many other biggest releases of the year have “Mixed” or worse ratings on Steam.

    • invitro says:

      Or a 2.9 User Score (or worse) on metacritic (509 ratings so far).

      • pepperfez says:

        Once a critical mass of nerds hates something, it’s going to have a shit Metacritic score, regardless of its actual quality or even the balance of public opinion.

      • Press X to Gary Busey says:

        Metacritic’s user reviews are pretty useless for most games, for every well written and balanced one there are a dozen warring metabombers giving 0’s and fanboys defending with 10’s to counter the negativity.

        The critic reviews metascore for the PS4 version seems to have landed at 70. The PC reviews are yet to come.

  23. PanFaceSpoonFeet says:

    Hooray for Steam! – I mean Hello Games.

  24. newc0253 says:

    I feel I should love NMS. It looks great and all. But somehow the idea of entirely procedurally-generated exploration seems a bit pointless. I don’t just want to discover things at random, although that undoubtedly has its charms.

    I also want to discover things that are hidden, that have a story behind them and piecing that story together. NMS sounds like it’s almost entirely the former and very little of the latter.

    • Sonntam says:

      All of the three alien races have a story which you uncover through visiting monoliths. The overarching story combines their histories and gives context for their existence.

      That is the overarching goal which drives me.

      For everyday exploration of planets it’s really more about your own story, as lame as that sounds. Once I got lost in a cave which was unreasonable big and had only one entrance. Another time I lost my ship (it literally disappeared into thin air) and I had to trek down half the planet to find a beacon to summon it. On a new planet I found caves infested with agressive spiders. You would think nuking those skitterish bastards would be easy, but it was actually the opposite of the case.

      I thought every planet would feel the same, but somehow I feel more engaged than in most games that have hand-placed story tidbits in the open world. For one, you can never really tell when you will stumble and fall into a new adventure. And second part is probably that I have not seen interesting alien races with complex ideologies for quite a while now. I grasp the main ideals of the aliens, but I still fumble with details. And that is another great part of the game, when you have this “aha!” moment as the pieces come together and you understand the aliens a little better.

  25. Packy says:

    Good for Hello Games on all of the players playing NMS.
    Hopefully, they will get all the bugs worked out soon. I am going to hold off purchase until the game performs solidly for most people.

  26. Avus says:

    Over hyped game is over hyped.

    • plugmonkey says:

      Yes, it was over hyped – largely by us gamers. Nothing could ever possibly live up to the fevered imaginings. We all each wanted a different completely impossible game.

      Does that make it bad? From what I’ve played it’s far from bad. Flawed, sure, but also pretty unique and very enjoyable, in an ambient sort of way.

  27. DeadCanDance says:

    So far it’s been a good ride. Discovered several planets, not a crash to desktop. I feel like there’s a universe only for me there. And the soundtrack… It’s awesome.

  28. racccoon says:

    Well Done Hello Games!
    Great game! Looking massively forward to the loads of new free Content updates! You guys rock!!

  29. Dudeist says:

    McDonald is Biggest restaurant franchise of the world. And?

  30. NephilimNexus says:

    At least it gives RPS something to talk about other than DOTA2 and Overwatch.

  31. geldonyetich says:

    The default settings are rather weird.

    The “30 FPS” setting makes it choppy. Run it at “60 FPS” and it runs great. Run it higher than that, and it’ll eat your CPU alive.

    The “windowed” setting looks ugly that doesn’t help with its issues with losing focus. “borderless” works fine, at least for me.

    I’m not sure FOV setting is doing anything. It’s that “over the gun” perspective. But I got used to it.

    So the first thing you should do is go in and set it to 60 FPS on borderless mode. Then save and restart it. Assuming you could start it up to begin with.

    Oh, and switching most menu options in this game requires holding DOWN the mouse button for it to confirm, a rather odd console holdover.

    All in all, I’ve seen worse examples of consolitus. I played the game quite hard upon release, and honestly had a pretty chill and enjoyable time once the above was seen through.

  32. Old Mann says:

    Playing this on my brand new 4K 55″ TV with a 970 and good old 2600k/16gb ram. Buttery smooth at 1080p I never run higher than that as I can hardly tell the difference and the performance gain on 1080p is much better. As a side note, I can’t understand why so many people are spending big on these ultra wide monitors when you can get really beautiful screens around £500 that blow them away and working on a screen this big is just astounding.

    I had a little play around and I was super impressed. This really is an achievement for what was it, a 15 man team over a few years? What I really love is that the game has sold so well that the developers can just go wild improving the game now, adding more and more to it without worrying about whether they can afford to keep on developing as a full team.

    I’ve decided not to play anymore. I’ll come back to it much later when there’s a shit tonne more added to the game. Seems a shame to play it now until I’m bored then in 6 months or whatever the game gets a huge update but I’m over it and can’t really muster up the energy to go back to it with so many games to play as it is. So I’d think of this first 6 months to a year as early access. Enjoy the articles about the updates as it develops then dive in when you can’t resist it anymore some time next year. No regrets buying it full price. It’s nice to know I have it now and am in some small way contributing to its further development.

    I can also see a bright future for this game in the sales with the price set so high. 50% and 75% is still going to be getting the devs a fair chunk of cash and those sales will really get the people sitting on the fence right into it.

  33. shagen454 says:

    As someone who has smoked DMT and been to places no one could possibly imagine (nothing I could imagine, either), I’m really loving NMS. It is repetitive, but to me it’s repetitive in a perfectly minimalist sort of way. I love the alien anomalies and how they keep pushing you towards a goal with talk of knowing what the Universe is and that it may be a simulation created by “something” (something that can’t possibly be described or imagined). It’s relaxing and yet the end goal is enough for me. Jump, jump, go to a planet and mine to fuel the systems and then more jumping to get to the end goal: of finding out what the Universe *might* be and what life is… it’s beautiful.

    I feel that if they had kept the game at $30.00, the price tag would imply what the game actually is – an indie game developer’s experiment and kept expectations in check. The $60.00 retail value implies something else and most people that buy $60.00 games on a regular basis are probably looking for something more than what is on offer (slight variations on not very many themes, arcade game mechanics, poor to non-existent combat). But, it hits the nail on the head in the immersion department and that is the most important one to me – I still don’t agree with the marketing or the retail price, but, damn – this is a gem of a game.

    • plugmonkey says:

      Why do we do that? People don’t value the experience of a Ben Wheatley movie less than a Michael Bay movie just because it cost less to make. The DVDs cost the same.

    • invitro says:

      Wow, you’ve smoked DMT? Wow! You’re really freakin’ cool. You’ve probably seen more unimaginable things than the rest of us squares could possibly imagine. RPS should hire you just for your increased consciousness and awareness.

  34. Ham Solo says:

    “Will you be able to play with your friends? – Yes.”

  35. Deviija says:

    I love the game. I didn’t expect more than what it is — and I’m very happy with it. Grats, Hello Games.

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