No Man’s Sky Game Review

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I know there has been a lot of hype building around No Man’s Sky for quite some time now. I first heard of the game back in 2014 and at that time it sounded like it was going to be a huge undertaking for Hello Games to pull off. As we know the games launch date was pushed off several times and even the launch date split when it came to the PS4 vs PC launch. That being said, after having No Man’s Sky now for roughly a day, let’s get into it.

The game starts you off on a barren world with a busted up spaceship that needed to be repaired so that you can leave the planet and go to other solar systems. With the random generation of the worlds and environments, every player will be placed on a different world that may or may not be like the one I started with. The beginning of the game introduces players to item gathering and world exploration. Some of which are needed to fuel your ship and power up your weapons. They don’t make it easy on you though. After a few minutes you realize that the planet’s air is toxic and you shield will start to deteriorate over time. Not to fear though, you should be able to find everything you need to resupply yourself, ammo up, and repair your ship. You are now on your way to explore your universe.

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Once you’re in space you will have the option of visiting a few local planets and the space station. No Man’s Sky main focus is on planetary and galactic exploration with encounters that may involve some violence to defend yourself. Remember to stay stocked up on supplies and pick your battles carefully. Most of all, have fun exploring your unique universe.

I believe that this could possibly be a top ten game of this year based on concept alone. This game is not very heavy on the graphics but…this game creates its own universe at random including worlds to explore, new species of plants and animals (which you get to personally name) as well as the challenges of your surroundings and inhabitants. There’s quite a bit of repetition in the game, however there’s a lot to do and plenty to keep you busy for quite some time.

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The game has several aspects that make it feel like a cross between Star Wars, Destiny, Minecraft, and Dark Souls. Viewing the HUD, inventory, and overall functionality feels a lot like Destiny. While crafting and gathering of minerals reminded me of playing Minecraft and the restore points and grave markers are similar to the Dark Souls game. Now we can’t talk about all these things without mentioning the aliens, stories, languages, and overall look of the game. That’s where were going to bring in a little bit of the Star Wars feel. And now through it all into one game.

I feel that this game is a constant grind. You are required to mine for several types of minerals and metals such as Carbon, Plutonium, and Thamium to replenish your health, fuel and ammo for you, your ship, and your multi-tool. Gathering Iron, Zinc, Titanium to replenish all of your shields for you and your ship. Now all this needs to be taken care of while you are meeting aliens, discovering new species, exploring different galaxies and planets, learning alien languages, and battling other ships or sentinels. No Man’s Sky is a true survival/exploration game.

Your inventory is very limited and it is a constant juggle. I kept asking myself “Should I keep this trade commodity and sell it for 20,000 credits or discard it to get more crafting materials?” “Should I upgrade my exosuit/ship and lose an inventory space?”

Surprisingly there is no visible loading while flying to space centers or in and out of planets’ atmospheres. Like I mentioned before it’s very cool that if you are the first to discover a star system, planet, animal, etc. you get to name it and everyone else who lands there gets to see what you named it.

As an example of the diversity of the worlds and landscapes, in my 15+ hours of gameplay I visited a couple of galaxies to check out some of the differences between them. Galaxy number one, planet number one had a fair amount of flowers and vegetation, but it also had its fair share of deserts as well. It also had plenty of different animals for me to discover. Now planet two and three were both barren. The plants were very toxic with minimal flowers and vegetation and no animals to find.

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After that I went to Galaxy two, planet one and I found it to be extremely cold with a lot of snow and tall trees. There were minimal flowers and vegetation and just a few animals. Planet two in the same galaxy was covered with water and large mountains. The surface was covered with unique flowers and vegetation along with plenty of caves to explore.

This game is truly enjoyable. Exploring different systems and discovering new species is fun and exciting, however it can get frustrating and boring with repetition. In terms of the space exploration genre this game is the best one out there, but I feel it left room for some improvements. There could be so much more, the potential is there. If this sounds like something that would interest you then I would say get it now if you plan on getting it.

Grade: B-

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