It is one of the few indie games which price is comparable to the price of AAA-title games like Assassin’s Creed or GTA 5. To me this mere fact sounds good, since why are only big companies allowed to set high prices? Especially considering the fact, they cannot guarantee a quality product.
However, the price in this case is not a sign of an outstanding game. Why is it too high for No Man’s Sky in my opinion?
- Empty promises and the hype out of nothing
Not a game itself affects players’ impression about it, but the whole story. Players should stop being that naïve already, but a game developer also does not have a right to lie or gloss over a game. You do not have time or money to add multiplayer? No need to respond with a “Yeah” to “Will you be able to play with your friends?”
What do I mean by the hype out of nothing? Nothing is the only right conclusion we could make based on the fact that Sean Murray used to work for Electronic Arts. But people like stories when X game designer(s) leave AAA game studios to create games with a soul, which should mean they have an excellent idea to sacrifice a well-paid job for, right? Not necessarily. Was Joe Danger that good to hope for much much more?
- No version for other OS
I do not know how many gamers use Linux, but there is a certain number of those who use OS X. Macs are not for games, but it does not mean you cannot play on them at all, especially considering the technical requirements being not high. I managed to play NMS on my laptop since I partitioned the hard drive and it went smoothly. It eats 10 Gb, so that was when a good duplicate file finder for a Mac came in handy to free up some space. As it came out, Mac owners have nothing to regret about, but still, having a possibility is always better.
- Discrediting procedural generation’s usage
Procedural generation is a good instrument when you supply the algorithm with enough information so it could generate something valuable. Dead Cells is a good example, which proves that less is more.
What is the point in over 18 quintillion different planets when in fact they are so alike? Sean Murray told, "We haven't seen most of what this universe can create, so in this really real way we are starting players off and letting them go out and explore for us." After 10 hours of playing I have explored the NMS universe and made some conclusions. The gameplays looks something like this. You land on a planet, collect resources to fuel your spaceship, find a couple of artefacts, fly to another planet and do the same again and again. Technically, on the most primitive level, planets differ from one another… mainly by colors. On every single planet you will see flying robots trying to hinder you and mysterious abandoned constructions. What do they do there? Does that mean all the planets are under control of a super powerful race? You will never find the answer.
Like Piers Harding-Rolls from HIS said, the game’s success “…depends on how they build the survival aspect and the trading aspects of the game and what you can discover, how you can upgrade, how that experience develops over time.” You can discover much less than in Subnautica. It is still in the early access, but provides you with much more interesting experience, while you stay on one planet and only underwater.
I’d say, No Man’s Sky really has a potential, but for now, it feels like the bigger part of the game was made by a robot, which did not care about creativity and similar stuff and worked according to the technical specification with minimum efforts.