“We were all at fault, and we were all victims too.”
August 13, 2017 4:29 PM   Subscribe

One year on, is No Man's Sky the game it should have been? [Eurogamer] “I still sense another gap to close, though, between No Man's Sky as it is now and the game it is genuinely striving to be. It's a gorgeous prog-rock-album-cover generator and engrossing space exploration sim, but it still has a certain hollow aimlessness at its heart, a sense of something missing. A storyline that makes any kind of sense would be a good start. A still deeper faction system might make the amusing interactions with the three alien species more meaningful. And there's still that promise, never ruled out by Hello Games, that you might, unlikely as it may be in the vastness of space, come across another player. More than new crafting and upgrade paths, it's things like this that will fill the hole in No Man's Sky's heart: humanity; contact; a sense that there's something to look for, that there's someone out there.”

• Meet the Diehards Who Still Love No Man's Sky [US Gamer]
“Excitement for the game is so much so that the fans have returned to doing their part to spread the gospel of No Man's Sky, urging players to leave positive reviews, or revise negative ones. While the general consensus is that the update is at the very least interesting enough to get casual fans to talk about No Man's Sky again, I wanted to wade through the excitement to get a better understanding of what this update means for devoted fans and those who fell off of the game after the initial hype. It was kind of difficult to be honest. One user who goes by "maximumcarnage" responded to my question with what sort of sounded like a sales pitch. "The launch left many feeling disappointed but those who saw what the game could be and knew it would be supported stuck throughout," they said in a Reddit reply. "The first months before any updates were announced it was dark and hate-filled yes but quickly as updates started coming ... the community has been great welcoming. We all love this update and are only now scratching the surface of what's to come and loving every moment of it."”
• No Man’s Sky’s Story Overhaul Gives The Game Focus [Kotaku]
“When I played No Man’s Sky at launch, it was easy to get lost and confused. This was a part of the game’s appeal, in a way: to be able to get so deeply lost in a vast universe. I’d go from planet to planet, just looking for the best sunsets or strangest creatures. Now the game has actual opening missions, as well as ones that span more than one planet and galaxy. I was a little afraid that a more structured game would take away from the joy of exploration, but instead it’s made the game easier to parse. Instead of making goals for myself 100% of the time, I now I have a neat thing to check out in each new galaxy. Many of these introduced me to new gameplay elements. On one planet, I learned how to make antimatter. On the next, I found my first outpost. This guiding hand is sparse enough that I don’t feel pigeonholed towards one way of playing the game but direct enough that I now have a much clearer sense of what to do if I get bored of sunsets. For the even more mysterious additions, like portals, there’s now a in-game guide that will tell you what to do with them when you find them.”
• Massive No Man’s Sky update adds multiplayer, 30 hours of story and much more [Polygon]
“Hello Games is promising “double the lore and interactions of the existing game”; presumably, the new alien race will provide much of that. The studio has implemented a proper quest system, along with new features to support it, such as a communicator inside your ship that allows you to interact with characters even when you’re on the go. The developer has also expanded upon the existing fetch-quest-style missions with “constantly generated” missions that are “unique and rewarding.” And the process of building up your reputation with each alien race — as well as other elements of your progress through the game — is now codified and tracked in the redesigned menu interface. The Atlas Rises update also brings more variety to No Man’s Sky, just as the Foundation and Path Finder updates did. In this case, the changes are centered around planets and their biomes, with new “exotic planet types” popping up as you approach the galactic core. Atlas Rises also gives you the power to change planets yourself: A new terrain manipulator allows you to sculpt the landscape with the Multi-Tool. It works “anywhere on any planet,” and lets you choose from various materials, shapes and sizes.”
• One year later, No Man's Sky is a better game but still lacks magic and mystery [PC Gamer]
“When Hello did begin communicating, it was with only a few words but a boatload of new content for No Man's Sky. While silent, Hello Games had been listening to feedback, and The Foundation update included base-building features, new survival and creative modes, and plenty of fixes and improvements. Foundation was followed by Path Finder, an update that introduced hover bikes and land rovers, a fantastic photo mode, and other new features. This week we'll receive a third big update called Atlas Rises, which arrives after a winding ARG and will bring portals and new spacecraft to NMS. That's a hell of a lot to happen in a single year to a single game, but expectations for No Man's Sky were so high they'd have been nearly impossible to live up to. I think it's great that Hello Games has remained hard at work to add new features that players have requested, but at the same time adding new parts and pieces doesn't change the core of the game, and that core is what I found ultimately disappointing. As good as they may be, it's hard to believe bases, hover bikes, portals, and ARGs will do much to bring back the mystery and curiosity that made No Man's Sky such a phenomenon before its release.”
posted by Fizz (80 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
 
I think the game's in a good place now. Has been in a good place since the first major update. One of my favorite recent gaming experiences was starting a new save after the Foundation update. Playing on survival. Wake up on a desert planet with my broken ship several kilometers away. Plutonium and zinc are incredibly scarce. Days are brutally hot and burn through my protective suit in a matter of minutes. The cold nights are the only time I can travel at length. Daylight is often spent hiding in caves and deep indentations in the canyons. Most of the surface fauna is relatively docile, but the caves swarm with small flesh eating creatures. Brave the heat, or face the hostile caves with a weak gun and a laser battery at only 20%, are the choices for every sunrise.

Every scarce plutonium deposit feels like a minor victory. When I finally make it to my broken ship and sit in the cockpit for the first time, after several in-game days of walking and several close calls with death, it feels like a major accomplishment. And I can't express the feeling of how the first flight felt. Effortlessly flying over the same ground I slowly crossed. Seeing each of my personal landmarks from the air. I built my first base on that world. A way of making my victory permanent.
posted by honestcoyote at 4:47 PM on August 13, 2017 [51 favorites]


I feel bad for falling into the hate/hype machine when this game was first released. I let the media, my friends, and negative steam reviews shape how I walked into the game.

And while Hello Games bears some responsibility for making promises they were not able to follow through on when the game was first released, a lot of this falls on us, gamers like me who over-reacted and got carried away with the vitriol that was directed at the game. At least, that's how I feel.
posted by Fizz at 5:20 PM on August 13, 2017 [3 favorites]


I really enjoyed it on launch as a peaceful, beautiful planet exploration simulator. There were a few exciting videogamey moments but in the end it got a bit repetitive (this was before the first big patch) and I faded away from it. Really interested in the new material, and curious whether it's worth starting a brand new save to experience all the new content, or should I carry on where I left off to save all the grinding for a better ship and all the upgrades?
posted by EndsOfInvention at 5:28 PM on August 13, 2017 [1 favorite]


Got it a few days ago, Played 14 hours.

Even after that much play time, I haven't a clue if I'm enjoying it. Leaning towards no, but that might change.

I'm somewhat convinced that I'm an intellectually challenged person who is going from planet to planet and space station to space station trying to claim I discovered planets and facilities people already live on.

And they just humor me and send me on my way.

The sentinels aren't mean, they're just making sure I don't hit my head on anything.
posted by Lord_Pall at 5:31 PM on August 13, 2017 [10 favorites]


I went to the centre. I got to a new galaxy. I've got a decent ship, a couple of farms, and then.... yeah... what?

If there's been an update, I suppose I'll fire it up again.
posted by pompomtom at 5:37 PM on August 13, 2017


Oh man, I've been waiting long and hard for the updates to catch up with the promise of this game. This game sounds exactly my speed. I have been working through my second play on Fallout 4, and have basically just been wandering around. Aimlessly, or self-directed mission wandering is my favorite.

I think I'll hold off for a few more months and pick this up for winter. I really hope they produce a legit multiplayer sometime soon; I've been reading that you just see folks as like, orbs or something? I've got a few friends I'd like to go exploring with. Cooperative play on a game like this would make me pull the trigger tomorrow.
posted by furnace.heart at 5:39 PM on August 13, 2017 [1 favorite]


The problem with No Man's Sky isn't any of the things addressed in the updates. It's just that the core gameplay is no damn fun. At least not fun enough to play for long, and the game demands a lot of time be put into it. I'm not sure how they fix that.
posted by runcibleshaw at 5:45 PM on August 13, 2017 [1 favorite]


Wait, my base has disappeared?

Suppose I have something to do now...
posted by pompomtom at 5:53 PM on August 13, 2017


Wait, my base has disappeared?

All your base are belong to us
posted by Fizz at 5:54 PM on August 13, 2017 [6 favorites]


People who love it really seem to love it. I'm not sure making it more like a regular game would really please them.
posted by Artw at 5:55 PM on August 13, 2017


I played NMS a lot in the original release. I've felt like the updates took away a lot of what I loved - there was a sense of being alone in an uncaring universe that I relished, and feels gone now. I guess I'll try the latest update, but I just feel... too welcomed in its world, if that makes any sense?
posted by egypturnash at 6:20 PM on August 13, 2017 [5 favorites]


I dunno. I watched a lot of the pregame hype. I didn't feel Sean Murray/Hello Games lied at all. I feel it is parallel somewhat to the whole Star Citizen thing. An awful lot of people read into the prerelease media what they wanted to see and projected their hopes and needs on it. Granted, IMO, the ending needs some work, but, given the game, I am pretty much clueless what they could do other than what they did do.
posted by Samizdata at 6:31 PM on August 13, 2017 [1 favorite]


The main goal is to take screenshots that look like Prog Rock covers, right?
posted by Artw at 6:45 PM on August 13, 2017 [16 favorites]


Maybe people who don't like it should try listening to Hawkwind while they play.

I like a lot of niche games that people tend to love or hate (mostly walking simulators these days). I don't necessarily want a game that appeals to everyone, because I'm not into stuff that might be universally loved. Based on everything I've read about this, I wonder if the big issue is just that the game was marketed to be more broadly appealing than it really is.
posted by shapes that haunt the dusk at 7:31 PM on August 13, 2017 [5 favorites]


Based on everything I've read about this, I wonder if the big issue is just that the game was marketed to be more broadly appealing than it really is.

I think that was a big part of it. I think a lot of gamers/fans were to blame as well. Certain expectations were built about what this game could/would do and it just didn't meet those fantasies we had in our brains. And then people reacted in very negative ways.
posted by Fizz at 7:42 PM on August 13, 2017


Hawkwind?

Try Sloughfeg!
posted by sutt at 7:58 PM on August 13, 2017 [4 favorites]


I mean, it sounds like you have plenty of time to listen to a bunch of albums end to end.
posted by shapes that haunt the dusk at 8:12 PM on August 13, 2017 [3 favorites]


I haven't played the game since the major updates started, because when I opened it after the Foundations update the loading screen made my PS4 sound like it was about to catch fire. I should try again sometime, although I'm not hopeful; they seem to have been putting most of their work into the least interesting parts of the game, like the crafting system and the terrible aliens, instead of the potentially fascinating procedurally-generated world exploration that made the game seem like it was going to be something special before launch. It sounds like the animals are still as boring as they were at first and the plants and rock formations are still just stamped out from a limited range of pre-made models (are they even palette-swapped now? They weren't before).

It's nice that they're still working on it at all, though.

Based on everything I've read about this, I wonder if the big issue is just that the game was marketed to be more broadly appealing than it really is.

That was part of it, but they also made all kinds of quite specific claims about things that would be in the game but weren't, like planetary physics, detailed chemical/physical models for the planetary environments, procedural plants, some kind of multiplayer (which has apparently been implemented now) and various other things. The reaction to it was overblown (of course; it's the Internet) but not baseless.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 8:27 PM on August 13, 2017 [4 favorites]


Here is the No Man's Sky - Atlas Rises Update Trailer
posted by Fizz at 10:31 PM on August 13, 2017


How hardcore are the system requirements for this, by the way?
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 10:32 PM on August 13, 2017


How hardcore are the system requirements for this, by the way?
MINIMUM:
OS: Windows 7/8.1/10 (64-bit versions)
Processor: Intel Core i3
Memory: 8 GB RAM
Graphics: nVidia GTX 480, AMD Radeon 7870
Storage: 10 GB available space
Also found this via fraghero:
“As No Mans Sky is generated procedurally, it relies heavily on computer hardware to quickly create the game experience for the player. The sort of PC required to meet recommended NM:Sky specs while still achieving a reliable frame per second at 1080p would be an i7-980 2.8GHz processor or possibly an AMD FX-8120. The more powerful the processor the smoother the experience with this type of spontaneously generated game. RAM will likely play a significant part and at least 8GB RAM will be needed for No Mans Sky when you are swooping down across the landscape of a planet that is being built in front of your very eyes. Finally an Nvidia GTX 480 is the minimum graphics hardware or an AMD HD 6970, but I suggest looking for more powerful. Perhaps a R9 285 or GTX 960.”
My humble specs:
AMD 4350 Quad Core
16 GB ram
GTX 950

I've got everything on medium settings and it looks quite nice and runs smoothly, a bit slow to load up, but I haven't had too many issues, nothing game-breaking or anything like that.
posted by Fizz at 11:01 PM on August 13, 2017 [1 favorite]


I didn't feel Sean Murray/Hello Games lied at all.

Oh, he definitely lied about multiplayer being included at the launch of the game.
posted by Pendragon at 11:03 PM on August 13, 2017


lied

It's remarkable how certain fandoms feel... that creators have sacred obligations to them.

I can't imagine that consumers of any other kind of product would have used the phrase "lied" to describe not getting what they want--with the implication that it's some kind of ethical breakdown driven by... malice?

When Alfa Romeo announced the North American debut of the Giulia Quadrifoglio, they stated very clearly they would bring over both the manual and auto transmissions from the European model. They did not. Auto was the only option. (Speculation was around US-specific safety regulations that the manual couldn't pass.) Car enthusiasts, who cannot be said to have fundamentally less passion than gamers, did not whine and cry about broken promises, did not send death threats to the engineers at Alfa, or make lengthy YouTube videos cataloging their grievances, and did not swear to withhold their purchases until their whims were catered to.

Every other industry you put a product out there and if people like it they buy it. If they don't, they don't. It feels like gamers (and other assorted genre geeks) buy first and then demand to know why they didn't get what they wanted.
posted by danny the boy at 12:31 AM on August 14, 2017 [13 favorites]


lol remember when volkswagen lied about the ability of their vehicles to pass emissions tests and everyone was all like "that's cool, i will simply refrain from purchasing volkswagen cars and trucks"
posted by logicpunk at 1:07 AM on August 14, 2017 [2 favorites]


It's remarkable how certain fandoms feel... that creators have sacred obligations to them.

It's not that remarkable how people don't like being lied to, repeatedly.

When Alfa Romeo announced the North American debut of the Giulia Quadrifoglio, they stated very clearly they would bring over both the manual and auto transmissions from the European model. They did not. Auto was the only option.

It's difficult to draw worthwhile analogies for games; they're a combination of technical product and artistic work in a way that means that it's not really useful to compare them to things like cars. Maybe a better analogy would be (hypothetically) JK Rowling promoting the sequel to Harry Potter so intensively that it drowned out the publicity for anyone else writing in the same genre for about a year, and enthusiastically announcing on the day it came out that she was excited about people finding out what happens to Harry next, but then the book comes out and it's a 50-page novella about some minor character with no mention of the main characters of the first book at all, all the people who pre-ordered the hardcover edition got a crappy print-on-demand paperback with the pages falling out, and then she goes into hiding with her millions of dollars. But even that doesn't capture the way the lies seem to have been carefully tuned to the front-loaded nature of game sales.

I don't know, I think we should expect better.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 2:05 AM on August 14, 2017 [5 favorites]


With the exception of a couple of bugs involving location markers, I was very satisfied with this game at launch and wish they had never updated it.

I loved scanning everything, and exploring, and seeing what every new planet had or didn't have. I had an almost fully-upgraded suit and multitool. With that first update, suddenly the multitool couldn't mine several essential minerals, and the only way to "upgrade" it so it would work properly again involved building a base. The quests I was given to set up the base involved visiting an unreachable underwater building that disappeared every time I got near it. Eventually I quit out of frustration. But if my base is gone with this update, maybe I can try again...? I don't want quests or structure though, good grief!

This is an excellent paragraph:
Now your base comes equipped with a teleporter that will zap you back to the last space station you visited, even if it is hundreds of light years away, and vice versa. If you find a system you want to return to, you can leave a beacon there that will make it easier to navigate back. The first of these is essential for the base-building systems to work smoothly, but it comprehensively breaks the sense, so carefully constructed and well communicated by the base game, of interstellar travel as a precarious enterprise in which you can't afford to ever not be moving forwards. It trivialises distance, while the rest of the game does everything it can to make distance something you fear and feel.
posted by heatvision at 3:41 AM on August 14, 2017


This excellent critical look at Jon Bois' 17776 made the point that I keep coming thinking about in the context of No Man's Sky. He makes the (huge, existentially horrifying) argument that ultimately, the real point of games is to distract us from the fact that distracting us is the real point.

I can't help but feel like No Man's Sky, in building an infinite universe, created a situation where they couldn't help but miss that one cornerstone element that makes a "game", on which everything else depends.
posted by mhoye at 4:45 AM on August 14, 2017 [2 favorites]


> lol remember when volkswagen lied about the ability of their vehicles to pass emissions tests and everyone was all like "that's cool, i will simply refrain from purchasing volkswagen cars and trucks"

There's a bit of disjoint between the millions of cars designed to harm the environment in considerably more extreme ways than they were allowed to and the game that wasn't as entertaining as promised.
posted by ardgedee at 5:10 AM on August 14, 2017 [2 favorites]


It's remarkable how certain fandoms feel... that creators have sacred obligations to them.

Not lying to potential customers is not some sacred obligation... it's just common sense.
posted by Pendragon at 6:01 AM on August 14, 2017 [1 favorite]


I would love it if we could have a conversation about this game that doesn't rehash the same "the developers are LIARS!!!!!" discourse that was already boring a year ago.

I think the first piece linked in this post is on to something. It wasn't that the initial release of NMS didn't merit the criticisms leveled at it, but it did evoke a feeling I've never seen in a video game before: A real sense of awe at the appalling scale of the universe relative to a single person.

Frequently cited in the praise of the Dark Souls games is the idea of "indifference"—the sense that the game world is not here for your convenience, and does not care whether you live or die, succeed or fail. But of course that's a carefully-constructed lie: the games are carefully and lovingly designed to simulate an indifferent universe such that players who succeed feel they have done so on their own merits. Its facade was meant to evoke indifference, but still feels like it has been erected facing the player, and is basically finite.

NMS, especially in its earliest incarnation, embodied a different indifference. While its gameplay loop was not particularly deep, its facade is incomprehensibly vast, so much so that it no longer feels player-oriented. If we think of "beating" a game as a combination of mastering its systems such that you can view the entirety of the facade's artwork, there is no way to beat NMS. You cannot see everything. You can't even see a tiny fraction of everything.

This is part of why I found the immediate cries of "but what's the point?" so odd. It's true: The coolest-looking spaceship obtained after many hours of gameplay provides only incremental advantages over the one you started with. The game's portrayal of a vast cosmos is so compelling as to give the lie to the idea that a cooler spaceship matters. Of course it doesn't matter.

On the scale of galaxies, nothing comprehensible to a human matters.

I'm not even really sure, exactly, what point I'm trying to make. This game works for me; I find the vast indifference of its universe a comforting place to visit. It lets me contemplate the yawning void within the relatively safe confines of a science-fictiony video game.

No Man's Sky, for me, is practice in contemplating the infinite.

And now to editorialize a little more stridently: I find the raucous complaints to the effect that "everything looks the same and it's just a bunch of palette swaps" to be somewhere between mystifying and deliberately obtuse. Between the things I've personally seen and the images I've seen other players share, the set of possible vistas in the game is on a scale utterly unlike anything available in any other game. Only Minecraft comes to mind as a similar natural-wonder simulator, and NMS's ambitions are so far beyond Minecraft's, it's incredible that it even debatably succeeds.

The game is, if nothing else, an astonishing technological achievement. Moreover, the dedication of the tiny team at Hello Games to improving it in the face of both withering (if legitimate) criticism and the worst kind of Angry Gamer Entitlement Syndrome is nothing short of exemplary.
posted by Sokka shot first at 6:24 AM on August 14, 2017 [22 favorites]


I'm impressed with how Hello Games has delivered on the promise. They pretty much went silent after release in the face of the backlash, and that felt kinda shitty, but then they've worked hard and made a lot of improvements to the game.

I like the new patch. It's a bit strange how they've altered the existing worlds so much. It really screwed up the NMS Galactic Hub group, for instance. But it's all in service for new content and more fun, so in the end it's fine. The new story stuff seems good too. The thing they haven't fixed is the clumsiness of inventory management and the general grindiness of the gameplay loops. The new algorithmic missions are very thin.
posted by Nelson at 7:37 AM on August 14, 2017


Elite: Dangerous still does it better, IMO.
posted by DrAstroZoom at 7:57 AM on August 14, 2017


Yeah, I've been sucked into Elite: Dangerous for the past couple of months (since the PS4 release), but I spent hours and hours in NMS before that. I eventually burned out when the crafting chain turned interplanetary (fuck that), but up until that point I honestly enjoyed just wandering around and occasionally having the universe surprise me. But I wasn't engaged in the prerelease hype machine, I just sort of remember looking at the review videos and thinking "huh, that looks like a thing I'd like". The only thing I wasn't sure of was whether or not it would be _too_ crafting-oriented, or if crafting was just a sideline for shinier baubles.

And yeah, I'm not 100% sure I like the game holding my hand more? I sort of liked the self-directed aspect of the exploration. On the other hand, it probably helps give people who aren't self-directed some sort of aim. And maybe it'll give me something to do that isn't colonizing a whole system to get a functional base.

The thing I don't hear a lot of discussion of is the story - I like it, it's a nice sort of dead universe with pockets of life. It feels sort of decadent in a way? And if you chase down the alien relationships, you get a feel for the space vikings versus the space nerds versus the space.. uh.. whatever the gek are. space capitalists? I really got to the point where I got a bit of a thrill when I'd run across a new historical monolith to get more story. And learning more of the language so the various aliens what inexplicably don't speak my language stopped being complete coin tosses. It was super fun when I'd hit an ancient base and know what the puzzle wanted me to do because I knew more than half of the words it barked out at me.
posted by Kyol at 7:57 AM on August 14, 2017 [3 favorites]


A real sense of awe at the appalling scale of the universe relative to a single person...The game's portrayal of a vast cosmos is so compelling as to give the lie to the idea that a cooler spaceship matters. Of course it doesn't matter...On the scale of galaxies, nothing comprehensible to a human matters.

This is the one thing that I wanted from NMS and the thing it fails to do. It's not a galaxy simulator or star system simulator. All the alleged space travel is just a fancy menu for selecting a new planet from the already-colonized habitable-planet simulator. Your comparison to Minecraft is apt, because going to a new planet is functionally no different from generating a new Minecraft world.

This is a "galaxy" with less variety than our own solar system. A galaxy with no gas giants. No planets as close to their star as Mercury or as distant as Neptune. In fact no planets that aren't already covered with buildings everywhere. Where every star system is just a small room with a few planets right next to each other--the actual amount of space you have to fly around between planets is smaller than the distance from Earth to our Moon. You can't ever get to the space *between* stars, so there's never any sense of how far away the stars are from each other. NMS doesn't even give you the sense of how vast the distance is between planets in a star system.

(I remember playing I-War and somehow stopping in space between planets and being freaked out by the idea of how far I was from any planet, how hopelessly stranded I'd be if I didn't have a hyperdrive, even though I hadn't even left the system. There's nothing remotely like that in NMS.)

It's funny. I was so certain I had no inflated expectations for this game, that I wasn't letting my imagination create a game much bigger than they were advertising. Because I didn't care one bit about the trading system or the combat mechanics or whether there was multiplayer. I just wanted to explore.

But I was assuming that when they talked about randomly-generating a galaxy, they were talking about something like Space Engine or Noctis or Celestia or Elite. I thought they were taking existing technology for modeling the locations and distances of stars and planets and bolting their amazing planet-generating tech on top of that. A Noctis with planets that weren't just wireframes! I could play that forever!

But instead it's more like an endless exploration mode for Mass Effect. My assumption wasn't actually based on anything the NMS developers had said--it's my own fault--but I was still immensely disappointed. I'd fallen into the very same trap I'd shaken my head at other people for getting caught in, boarded an imaginary hype train I was so smugly certain I was avoiding.
posted by straight at 8:14 AM on August 14, 2017 [9 favorites]


On the other hand, I love exploring in Minecraft. And once I got used to the idea that NMS wasn't really about space travel, but rather planetary exploration, I enjoyed it quite a bit. That planet and creature generator delivers a whole lot of neat stuff to find.
posted by straight at 8:17 AM on August 14, 2017 [2 favorites]


I had a decent time with it at launch acting like a photographer; trying it again after the update, I sincerely can't be bothered. The movement mechanics are way, way too slow: why make the planets so big if you can only move at a crawl? Even with the punch-jump jetpack glitch it is a slog to get around.
posted by one of these days at 9:03 AM on August 14, 2017


I think Elite: Dangerous (even with Horizons) and No Man's Sky are opposite sides of the same coin - Elite does a really decent job (too decent, maybe) of letting you feel interplanetary distances, and interstellar distances can really add up if you're not in a properly specced ship. My day-to-day Viper/Python takes 3 times as many jumps to get anywhere versus my Type-6 that I specced for exploration, and at ~60 seconds per hop that adds up. But the planets are mostly just there, even with the Thargoids and Ancients leaving stuff behind. There's precious little guiding you to them and I'm amazed that people find the surface content in Elite without looking at the wiki. I always sort of find myself wishing Elite had an orrery view of the systems you get into, though - some of the orbitals in the sector map must be totally wild in motion, but it's hard to visualize it at the interplanetary distances involved.

On the other hand, NMS is almost entirely about the planets and (to a lesser extent) the systems they're in, the space travel was mostly just a means of slowing down getting from A to B, but it never really felt like it was a part of the game you were supposed to spend a lot of time in. And each new release kind of drives that home. The whole portal system in the last update, so you didn't have to fly from your base to a station all the time, just hop in a teleport and *boop* you show up on the station, for example.

I'm sort of hoping the portal address system will generate a degree of "hey this is a really cool world, come say hi" tourism? The problem with procedural generation is always that it's hard to get out into the extremes believably, so maybe if people start finding the interesting extremes and sharing them....
posted by Kyol at 9:04 AM on August 14, 2017


The movement mechanics are way, way too slow: why make the planets so big if you can only move at a crawl? Even with the punch-jump jetpack glitch it is a slog to get around.

Well, there are ground vehicles now. They move a fair bit faster than the player on foot.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 9:13 AM on August 14, 2017


Well, and I think the original intent was that you'd use your ship to get around, except there's no real way to get back to something you'd previously discovered, and the bookmarks/waypoints system is sort of a mess, so once you get in the ship you're never going back to where you were. That's my biggest complaint about it - I'd find a really cool formation with a ton of harvestable minerals, but once I headed off somewhere it may as well not exist any more, I'm never getting back to it.

Similarly running across ancient bases with useful tool upgrades that are _just_ out of your current budget. Go to the local station and do some quick arbitrage to earn a million or two aaaaaand you're never going to find that ancient base again. Too bad, sorry!

Ok, I'm remembering the annoyances now. :)
posted by Kyol at 9:23 AM on August 14, 2017


When Alfa Romeo announced the North American debut of the Giulia Quadrifoglio, they stated very clearly they would bring over both the manual and auto transmissions from the European model. They did not. Auto was the only option. ...Car enthusiasts, who cannot be said to have fundamentally less passion than gamers, did not whine and cry about broken promises.

Had they already paid for the manual-transmission cars? Were they told the cars they bought would have manual transmission, and didn't discover otherwise until after they got home with a "no returns" policy?

The problem wasn't with "we planned for features that we didn't provide;" it was "we made a lot of sales by claiming the game had features that were not included, and dodged confirming that the features were absent so we could continue to sell to people who wanted them."

(I'm waiting for NMS to hit $15 or less on a Steam sale to pick it up; I don't expect to enjoy it more than Samarost 3, so I'm waiting for the price to be less than I paid for that.)
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 9:30 AM on August 14, 2017 [2 favorites]


I've definitely gotten the $20 I paid for it out of it, and I'd hesitantly say the $30 Amazon wants now (for PS4) is still ok for most anyone who wants to give it a shot _knowing_ that it's not really a game like most people think of gaming. I mean, I've definitely gotten the list $60 out of it, more than the $60 I'll pay for a dinner and a movie, right? But I can understand that it isn't for everybody.

That isn't to say that I think they have successfully bridged the gap between a full on exploration game where you're constantly leaving picturesque vistas behind searching for the next one and a base creation/in-depth exploration game. There's a tension there, and I think the devs are aiming for the former (keep moving! keep going! do not under any circumstances get introspective about what's going on!) while the fans would really prefer the latter (lemme go back to the pretty vistas, man!).
posted by Kyol at 11:08 AM on August 14, 2017 [2 favorites]


except there's no real way to get back to something

The Foundation update added the ability to build Beacons to bookmark a place so you could get back to it easily. I've used them to mark places with good minerals near the base I'm building. I still think the larger problem is true, there are no compelling reasons to travel in the game. Every part of a planet looks like every other part of the same planet. Although that may be less true in the update; I'm not sure, but I think I'm on a newly formed planet and it feels like a different layout that the usual planets.

I think NMS is still a flawed game, but it's definitely better and more featureful than at launch. I still like it as a chill poke-around-it game. My favorite times playing it have been when I was jet-lagged or otherwise looking for something not too demanding to entertain myself with.
posted by Nelson at 11:33 AM on August 14, 2017


I still like it as a chill poke-around-it game.

I agree with this 100%. It's nice to just explore and relax and not feel stressed the way I would if I were playing a game like Doom or Prey. Even moments where I'm being threatened by a new species, I'm not super worried or concerned, more annoyed. It's a calming game for me.
posted by Fizz at 11:48 AM on August 14, 2017


I've got something like 1200 hours into Skyrim, so replaying the same content again in a slightly different way (as a new character, or a different class, or whatnot) is something I am quite familiar with and still find enjoyable. I was slightly disappointed with NMS at launch, because yeah, there was a lot that was promised that was not delivered. But the Foundation update really made it a lot more interesting for me. I've built a nice base and all the vehicles, and I play it for perhaps an hour at a time, as a chill exploration game. I paid full price and feel like I've definitely got my money's worth out of it, and then some.
posted by xedrik at 12:17 PM on August 14, 2017


The Foundation update added the ability to build Beacons to bookmark a place so you could get back to it easily. I've used them to mark places with good minerals near the base I'm building.

Ah, yeah? I mostly only ever seemed to use them as a way of getting the RNG to cough up the next Alien Settlement / Monolith / etc or (if nothing else) mark that I had already visited the one I'm current nicking all the good bits from so I don't bother landing if the auto targeting system decides it's a potential destination once I fly over the horizon.
posted by Kyol at 12:28 PM on August 14, 2017


lol remember when volkswagen lied about the ability of their vehicles to pass emissions tests and everyone was all like "that's cool, i will simply refrain from purchasing volkswagen cars and trucks"

This is... idiotic. Like, you can't on the one hand claim the industry is unfairly maligned by the perception that its products are for kids and on the other hand actually behave like an entitled man-child.

Lying is if the dealership gave you an auto but told you it was a manual.
Lying is if the game description on the PS store listed as one of the bulleted features "Cooperative multiplayer. (Requires PSN account.)"

Scoping down your project to meet a deadline isn't lying. And what VW did was fraud, not "lying". They broke federal laws and have been punished with fines and jail time.
posted by danny the boy at 12:34 PM on August 14, 2017


Not lying to potential customers is not some sacred obligation... it's just common sense.

I think this right here is exactly why people are so upset. It's not enough that they're unhappy, they need everyone else to feel exactly as they do or else all is not right with the world. The developers weren't punished to their satisfaction. Everyone should have boycotted. It's an atrocity that the studio didn't go bankrupt on the backs of millions of people refusing to buy their product.

It's infuriating when not everyone else shares your fury.
posted by danny the boy at 12:41 PM on August 14, 2017


Hey all, don't preorder games ever. Seriously, do not do it. Don't do it.

Don't pre-order a video game. They are not scarce. They are not custom-built-to-order cars (On that note, don't buy a new model year car before it's out either). The 'bonuses' are not going to enhance your enjoyment of the game. Preorders are meant for you to give them money before you read reviews. That's it.

Seriously, I think the backlash to this game and the grey-area lie situation would have been alleviated a great deal if preorders were not so prevalent these days. It's a cynical marketing device that benefits the consumer not one bit.
posted by destructive cactus at 1:23 PM on August 14, 2017 [3 favorites]


True. If you pre-order anything what you are implicitly saying is that you support that creator's work, whatever form it takes. "Take my money, I don't care what I get." If you cared about the actual product, you would wait for a review, or at the very least wait for its final finished form before making a purchasing decision.

What you don't get for your pre-order money is any kind of creative control over what you buy. The idea that you would... is a fantasy. The descriptions... they aren't even promises--they're loose sketches of what might happen a year from now. I don't think it's a coincidence that this fantasy exists in the mind of people who are in the market for products that are largely about alternative realities.

When you spend $25 on a game before it is released, you are not some kind of Renaissance merchant lord commissioning a sculpture, no matter how much you'd like it to be so. If JK Rowling wants to write about the janitorial staff at Hogwarts or whatever, it is not an injustice to you because you wanted another book about pre-teen wizards.
posted by danny the boy at 1:25 PM on August 14, 2017


If JK Rowling wants to write about the janitorial staff at Hogwarts or whatever, it is not an injustice to you because you wanted another book about pre-teen wizards.

Slight derail: I'm totally ok with this book coming into existence and would gladly read about the lives of the Janitorial staff at Hogwarts having to clean up after idiot students who cannot control their magic.
posted by Fizz at 1:35 PM on August 14, 2017 [3 favorites]


NMS demonstrates that noise-based procedural generation is a dead end for exploration games. The core problem is that noise has no history. When you find a trench in a noise terrain it is meaningless to ask whether it used to be a river, because noise is not a temporal process. When you find settlements, they have no history, no why-- they sprang up fully formed according to the meaningless rise and fall of Perlin noise. Nothing in noise has a cause that can be discovered. It is a superficial mimicry with neither past nor future.
posted by Pyry at 1:55 PM on August 14, 2017 [4 favorites]


Yeah, as the child of a geologist who was fond of pointing out how features in the landscape came to be, I have a hard time with that in most games with procedurally generated terrain. Hell, even Elite sort of fails with that - low G worlds should have significantly different geologic processes (as it were) than megaworlds _and yet_ they're all more or less the same sort of crater and rille, just on different scales.

Harumph. _Harumph_ I say.
posted by Kyol at 2:02 PM on August 14, 2017 [2 favorites]


On the flip side, NMS tends to err on the side of fantasy - floating rocks and glowing caves, so I can tend to forget about it after a while. But yeah, I'm always looking for a river in a valley, especially on a planet with obvious precipitation. Even if that precipitation is acid and melting my exosuit by 5% every 30 seconds.
posted by Kyol at 2:04 PM on August 14, 2017


NMS demonstrates that noise-based procedural generation is a dead end for exploration games. The core problem is that noise has no history. When you find a trench in a noise terrain it is meaningless to ask whether it used to be a river, because noise is not a temporal process. When you find settlements, they have no history, no why-- they sprang up fully formed according to the meaningless rise and fall of Perlin noise. Nothing in noise has a cause that can be discovered. It is a superficial mimicry with neither past nor future.
Unless your generation system generates eons of geology and a bunch of cultural history, which sounds like too much fuckery to be worth it, but hey... when i was a kid computers only ran BASIC.
posted by thedaniel at 2:18 PM on August 14, 2017 [2 favorites]


What you don't get for your pre-order money is any kind of creative control over what you buy. The idea that you would... is a fantasy.

Even if that's true (which, maybe, who knows?), that wouldn't make it right to take advantage of people's fantasy. A con man who says "well only greedy people get conned" is not actually providing a moral justification.

I don't think it's a coincidence that this fantasy exists in the mind of people who are in the market for products that are largely about alternative realities

Oh bosh. TV, film, novels, radio dramas, comic books and plays are almost entirely concerned with alternative realities of one sort or another. What you're actually saying with this is really quite hard for me to distinguish from "lol nerds in their mom's basement amirite", if I'm honest.
posted by howfar at 2:28 PM on August 14, 2017 [1 favorite]


This is... idiotic.

What was that about man-children?

I mean, I know this particular procedurally-generated space-horse was flogged past death a long time ago, but I have to admit to finding it a little bit annoying when people defend the kind of calculated dishonesty that went on here. And I had fun playing the game for a week or two.

NMS demonstrates that noise-based procedural generation is a dead end for exploration games.

Yes. Procedural generation has so much potential, but there are probably half a dozen games coming out on Steam every day of the week that use noise or randomly slotted-together modules as a lazy shortcut to avoid the effort of either designing a proper world or coming up with algorithms that produce something interesting. The kind of tragic thing about NMS is that it does a lot of things really well (the space-to-surface and back again transitions, for example), but the noise-based procgen results in everything being homogenous on such a small scale that, once you've seen each of the handful of planet types and all the plant and building models, there's not much left to explore.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 3:36 PM on August 14, 2017 [1 favorite]


What was that about man-children?

I called his idea idiotic. I didn't call him an idiot.

Your personal attack on me, however, is not really appreciated.
posted by danny the boy at 4:41 PM on August 14, 2017


And I'm honestly not sure how equating VW committing fraud that will cost Europe 14,000 years in life expectancy, worth €1.9 billion with people not getting the video game they wanted, can be characterized as anything other than completely... idiotic.
posted by danny the boy at 4:51 PM on August 14, 2017


I stuck NMS on my steam wishlist last year because I knew this was a game I wanted but it wasn't a game I wanted to the extent of $60 (no game is, really, these days) and I got the feeling it could stand to have some patching. Well, it's on sale and I had some birthday money so I bought it for myself as a birthday present and I've been enjoying it quite a bit.
posted by quaking fajita at 4:56 PM on August 14, 2017


I have to say Patch 1.31 is pretty buggy on PS4. Not outright crashes, but lots of things glitching out. I haven't hit anything game-breaking but then I'm not a true fan who had already learned all the words of alien languages. Because if you have, there's no way to complete the "learn 3 new words" quest that is at the beginning of the new content chain. Quite an oversight. Also I lost my base and my homeworld. Normally you can teleport back to it from any space station but something seems to have glitched out and when I teleport back I end up in some random stranger's base instead, as a visitor. I've since tried moving my base and it still glitches. This bug may be related to being in the Galactic Hub where there's a lot of players clustered, the bug may be if two players build a base on the same world. Who knows, it's a bit irritating.
posted by Nelson at 6:08 PM on August 14, 2017


Heh... I'm jealous. I've been trying to find someone else's base since forever.
posted by pompomtom at 8:24 PM on August 14, 2017


Unless your generation system generates eons of geology and a bunch of cultural history, which sounds like too much fuckery to be worth it, but hey...when i was a kid computers only ran BASIC.

I mean, that's literally the exact process Dwarf Fortress has been using for years now, and it still has the appearance of a game designed to run in BASIC.
posted by FatherDagon at 8:28 PM on August 14, 2017 [5 favorites]


(I'm also on a PS4, and the glitch that is annoying me is lost blueprints).
posted by pompomtom at 8:29 PM on August 14, 2017


Yeah, the save migration was pretty, uh.. Weird. Like they added a whole bunch of new mats and migrated some existing ones, or maybe made use of the weird not-quite-mats you got for random space kills or out of drop pods? It would be really annoying to start over, but I worry that I'll end up in a corner because the game figures everybody with a base and a space ship and everything has already learned how to make Fishfingers.

And yeah, the layout of my base is right, but none of my hirelings are there, and it's definitely not my beautiful home. I think the general atmosphere is right, but it was a verdant grassland, sort of annoying to drive through for all the trees. The new place? Not so much.

Hrmph. I like my ship and my multitool! Maybe I'll bulldoze the place and look for a nicer location. There seems to be a _lot_ of little quality of life updates though - the marker beacons you hit seem to make a spot on the map? On the other hand, the game is _chugging_ in the menu system on my base PS4, while it felt a lot more smooth in Pathfinder.
posted by Kyol at 9:58 PM on August 14, 2017


Huh, well with all the PS4 bugs with existing saves maybe I'm better off starting from scratch.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 4:38 AM on August 15, 2017


...low G worlds should have significantly different geologic processes (as it were) than megaworlds _and yet_ they're all more or less the same sort of crater and rille, just on different scales.

If there were a crater of an equivalent scale on Earth it would be over 4,000 km (2,500 mi) in diameter – wider than Canada – with walls over 200 km (120 mi) high.
posted by XMLicious at 7:23 AM on August 15, 2017


I've been trying to find someone else's base since forever.

The Galactic Hub has been interesting for playing NMS. Someone figured out a global coordinate system for the stars in the game and worked out a reasonable way to intentionally travel to a specific star. So then thousands of players all converged on one area of the universe, the Rentocniijik Expanse at coordinates 0469:0081:0D6D:0024. It's a PITA getting there, can take 50-100 jumps depending on how lucky you are playing black hole roulette, but it's doable.

And once you're in the hub the feel of NMS completely changes. Every single star system and planet is named. Typically with a name that describes what's there, like "this planet has lots of Graviton Balls but beware the sentinels". Or "47 slot starship for sale". Or "Giant Diplos, come take pictures!". Instead of feeling all alone the game suddenly feels very crowded, particularly if you want to seek out an undiscovered star system to call your own. OTOH it gives the game a sense of social purpose which is nice. I also like that players invented this community themselves in the face of a game that is all about being alone in the universe.

This update has thrown the Hub project for a loop. Mostly because it shifted a bunch of stuff around so the systems everyone carefully mapped and named are no longer what they were. And there's no way to update names. Also the new portal and multiplayer stuff seems like fun, so folks are looking for a way to integrate that into the Hub experience.

It looks like they have a plan. They've chosen a new home. If I understand the portal system correctly it will be easier to get yourself there, much easier than the 50-100 jumps before.
posted by Nelson at 7:27 AM on August 15, 2017 [5 favorites]


people not getting the video game they wanted
This isn’t about blaming the developers for dropping features – that happens to every game, it is entirely forgivable. We so fervently believe that programmers are magicians we sometimes forget they are fallible ones. But this is about calling developers and publishers out when any such “drops” aren’t adequately admitted before release. Later trailers for NMS did not show the giant sandworm, for instance, or low flights across the landscape, [that were included in earlier marketing] but this does not constitute “coming clean”. To admit that something has been stripped out, you have to explicitly say so, and you have to say it loudly.
From a cogent write-up by Brendan Caldwell after NMS's initial release.

People not getting the game they were advertised, is the important bit; that is a legitimate complaint. As a matter of scale, it may not be the Most Important Issue, but that other issues matter more doesn't somehow absolve the NMS team and Sony of misleading marketing -- whether you want to call that fraud or lying or not is a discussion that was exhaustively discussed in prior NMS posts, and not worth rehashing -- but worth noting that the crux of the complaint was fully warranted expectations not being met. NMS is hardly alone in that and to a degree bore the brunt of ill-will from other similar failures of marketing, and oh hey the new patch is NEW and MORE INTERESTING TO DISCUSS and I'm off to go look at pictures of cool SPACESHIPS and ETC.
posted by cjelli at 7:57 AM on August 15, 2017


For all my apologia, having spent a few hours in the update, there are some serious bugs.

I knew that having regenerated the universe, my base's world would be different. But I've lost all of my specialists, and the quest-chain to hire a vehicle specialist (which I'd already completed, but now need to re-do since my specialists are gone) now appears unfinishable. My vehicle terminal on my freighter's base, not my planetary one, but the quest-chain terminates at the planetary base.

I'm wondering if the only way to advance now will be to establish a new base on a new homeworld (which I want to do anyway, because my regenerated homeworld is garbage compared to the beautiful forest planet it once was) and buy a new frighter.

I'm similarly wondering if I'm just missing something in terms of trading/economy. I bought a very small freighter after hours and hours of gold mining, but it's not obvious to me how to take my economy to the next level. I'd like to start saving up for A- or S-class ships, but that's going to cost hundreds of millions of units, and I'm not going to acquire that kind of wealth by blasting rocks with my laser gun. There must be a solution, but I'm torn between going to the internet for Hot Strats and working it out for myself.

In the meantime, though, having to re-do hours of work because of upgrade bugs is vaguely frustrating. I hope my save file can be patched with a bugfix update and isn't somehow permanently corrupted.
posted by Sokka shot first at 8:07 AM on August 15, 2017


The one word answer for making money _used_ to simply be <rot13> neovgentr </rot13>. I don't know if they've worked out a better, proper, trading or crafting engine that's possible to make significant money on in the current release. The release notes suggest they've made an effort? Although any system that involves burning a hyperspace fuel pellet 2x per loop has got to have some lucrative pricing. Maybe teleporter abuse? But yeah, even in the last release the community strat seemed to be exhausting.

And yeah, that's why I'm real hesitant to burn my save and start over with the story fresh. I spent, uh. probably 50mil credits repairing my abandoned ship? It was just barely tolerable the first time.
posted by Kyol at 8:35 AM on August 15, 2017


I'm also stuck with bugs around quests in my base. It's essential to the new Artemis story line quests, too, so I'm pretty well fucked. This Reddit thread says the bug is triggered by moving your base. But I had to move my base because of that other bug I mentioned about losing my base entirely.

And like y'all I don't want to restart. The core gameplay loop is such a grind. I'm going to wait and hope they fix the bugs.

The way hardcore players make money is farming, which commodity specifically is worth farming changes from patch to patch. The Galactic Hub is a real help here because you can forage from other people's farms. There's farms where you can make 6M with a 15 minute visit. The new mission system may be a help too. I got an Organic Catalyst as a quest reward which is worth 400k. And it bugged out somehow so I got a bunch of them, several million worth. Maybe there's some way to make money for ships with quests.
posted by Nelson at 8:51 AM on August 15, 2017 [1 favorite]


Huh. Farming was about the point where the game went from neat exploratory system to too-grindy, supply-chains-are-too-long for me. I need to harvest X to make Y to combine with Z to get final product omega, and X, Y and Z are all on different planets? Yeah maybe I don't want to harvest that cool purple mineral to get tox protection in my exosuit after all.

And I know it totally isn't required, but the old gameplay sort of leads you down that path eventually and the quest system used to be kind of bad for letting you dismiss a chain once you started it. The new system might be better? I almost want to back up my save to external storage and start over, see if it hangs together better. I think the general complaint that this game has so much potential that it doesn't _quite_ realize is entirely valid, above and beyond the whole "pre-release interviews said all these cool Molyneaux-esque things that (still) haven't appeared in the game" thing.
posted by Kyol at 10:03 AM on August 15, 2017


I knew of the Hub but haven't really checked them out at all. It seems... all very well in line with what I think is the spirit of the game. Here's a sandbox, here's the castle we're going to build in it, come join us. Same WRT changes and bugs and exploits--"hey, that's life in the simulation".
posted by danny the boy at 10:56 AM on August 15, 2017


Same - I'm not super put out that my home world changed, the new flora seems to be significantly different enough that it was never going to map very well, I can pack up my things, no biggie. But I can see the base building quest line running forward towards a "get me these mats so I can show you how to make a science terminal!" but.. hoss. There's one _right there_ in the next room, man. And eventually that could go off the rails somethin' fierce.
posted by Kyol at 2:28 PM on August 15, 2017


Here's an example power farming base. Living Glass for 23M/hour. He shares the coordinates so you can farm his base too but it's in the second galaxy.
posted by Nelson at 5:13 PM on August 15, 2017


Patch 1.32 is out which says it fixes the various game-breaking quest bugs I've encountered. I give Hello Games credit for a fast patching process.
posted by Nelson at 9:12 AM on August 17, 2017


So I've been playing for a week or so now, having not played for about a year. And I do appreciate how more welcoming the game is. You can still enjoy the exploration and the mining and the walking-sim like nature of it all but there's also a mission/duty log that points you in the right direction, should you feel like you need a direction and focus. I like this quite a bit.
posted by Fizz at 5:54 PM on August 18, 2017 [1 favorite]


I played a whole lot of NMS yesterday. I will likely play a bunch more today. But boy does this game still piss me off. It comes down to the UI, particularly inventory management. There's 200+ kinds of items out there. My player + ship has about 80 slots, 40 of which are occupied by tech modules. So I've got 30 slots for 200 kinds of things, which means I'm inevitably throwing things away or storing them in awkward places to make room. And boy are there plenty of awkward places. The Freighter. Base storage cubes. 1.3 adds some new player "cargo" storage. All of these places have some unique, awkward, clumsy UI to access them where you select items via menus and transfer them one at a time. And the stack sizes never match so one slot becomes four or vice versa. It's awful.

The help 1.3 offers to this is both your ship and your exosuit can now be upgraded with "Technology" slots. You can destroy your tech modules and rebuild them over there, freeing up general utility slots. There's a cost to this, it makes it a little harder to get module adjacency bonuses. But screw it, UI convenience beats out game mechanics. I finally got smart and deleted all my level 1 modules too, which costs me ~15% in stats but frees up another 5 or so precious slots.

Why does game after game make managing inventory a little minigame of its own? It's never a fun one? Remember inventory tetris? Whoo boy. NMS reminds me of World of Warcraft where the game really, really wants you to have 5 different bags of size 16 instead of one giant bag of size 80. Fortunately you could mod the game to fix that.

Anyway I played like 5 hours yesterday and fully 2 hours of that was spent laboriously moving shit around. It is not fun. The fun part of exploring planets is still fun though. Particularly since 1.3 has a new worldgen algorithm so there's some new surprises, particularly in terrain shapes. Also scanning things got more interesting and more rewarding, I feel more like a real explorer.

(The patch did succeed in fixing my game-breaking base quest bugs. I still have two NPCs seemingly bugged out but I don't think it's in the way of the main Artemis story anymore.)
posted by Nelson at 7:14 AM on August 19, 2017 [2 favorites]


which means I'm inevitably throwing things away or storing them in awkward places to make room.

My SO refers to it as that 'me sorting my handbag game'.
posted by pompomtom at 3:56 AM on August 22, 2017 [1 favorite]


Yeah, for reasons I'm not 100% clear on, my gun has like 25 slots. So far as I can tell, all I can do with them is keep dumping more and more technologies into them, because I certainly can't use them for item storage. They wanted to make the weapon classes distinct, but they nerfed one of the advantages to rifles (big storage) before I ever played the game. Or at least I sorta remember one of Scott Manley's playthroughs having a "yay I remembered I can put this mat on my weapon!" moment.

And I'm unsold on the fact that they seemed to increase the number of mats in the game - it was already inventory management heavy, let's make it more so? I suppose they figure there are three branches, and the inventory management game only affects the one. (Those branches being explorer following the atlas story, explorer following the language and racial histories, and homesteader. Once you can craft hyperspace pellets, #1 and #2 can mostly ignore the inventory management game.)
posted by Kyol at 11:08 AM on August 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


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