Photo Credit: Google, labeled for reuse.
Last August, I was filled with excitement. I had just received my copy of No Man’s Sky. I eagerly placed the disc into my PS4 and waited for great things to happen. I immediately was placed on a planet where I had to repair my ship before I could take off to the stars. I thought this was an interesting way to start the game, but I seldom complained. It provided me with a chance to figure out the mechanics of the game and explore the wild life. About an hour later, I had everything I needed to fix my ship. I hurriedly fixed it and set off towards the stars. Flying through space at top speed was an enormous amount of fun.
Then I landed on a second planet. It seemed eerily similar to the first planet. The animals and landscape was very similar to the first planet. I looked around and then set off for another planet. Again, I found a planet similar to the other two. It was maybe a bit emptier than the other planets, but it had similar animals, annoying hostile sentries, and a similar landscape. I had spent about four hours playing No Man’s Sky that night, and I ended up disappointed. It took me a while to figure out why I was so disappointed. You see, the problem with this game was a problem a lot of games had: too much hype.
Please understand, this game is tons of fun. Still, the advertising and interviews with developers led me to believe that this game was going to be entirely different. The trailer for the game showed dinosaur-like creatures, diverse environments, and majestic space travel. These elements are present in the game but to a lesser degree. The animals are strange but widely similar. There is a variety of environments, but the variety is not significant. The space travel is mostly boring. This isn’t a problem with No Man’s Sky so much as it is with the gaming industry. Video games are costly (they cost about 5x more than a movie ticket). As a result, a gamer has to be picky with the games they buy. This also means that developers and advertisers have to wow gamers. They might even have to exaggerate to separate themselves from other games. All of this exaggeration eventually creates a level of hype the game has no chance of reaching. This is the problem that No Man’s Sky has. It was presented as a groundbreaking game, but it ended up being average. You can fly to different planets in the game, but I’m upset because I was unable to fly into the sun. That’s a beautiful metaphor if you think about it (please don’t think about it).
I am curious about what you all think about it. Did it live up to the hype for you? Share your opinion on our Twitter and Facebook pages.