Made in Guildford, sent around the houses via Betelgeuse – No Man’s Sky

A game 5 years in the making.  Made right here in Guildford.  Just around the back of Guildford’s train station.  No Man’s Sky surely must be one of the most anticipated games of the decade.  It was released on Wednesday 10th, but unfortunately, due to Royal Mail/Amazon problems, it’s only just arrived today.

Made in Guildford, to be played by me somewhere halfway between Woking and Guildford.
Made in Guildford, to be played by me somewhere halfway between Woking and Guildford.

This game is extraordinary as it allows the player to explore some 18 quintillion procedurally generated planets.  All seemingly teeming with new plant and animal life.  Maybe the odd monolith or two.  And the occasional base, with friendly (or not so friendly) aliens.  Your first task is to repair your spaceship (which has crashed), and you do this by exploring and collecting minerals to craft relevant parts for your ship.

The whole thing reminded me of Elite: Dangerous, the modern 21st Century version of the classic Elite meets Minecraft.  I own a copy of Elite: Dangerous, but the thing is so complex that I don’t really get much fun out of it.  Plus to get planetary exploration requires an additional fee (which is fair enough – modular and upgradeable games are the future – though I think we’re ultimately going to go for GaaS – Games as a Service along with everything that is “as a service” – a fancy way of saying it’ll all become part of a subscription model).

Already some 10 million species have been discovered and catalogued since the game’s launch.   Hopefully there’s still room for more discovery in that area.  But at least I’ll get to discover new planets and give them all names, so that in the unlikely event another player stumbles across my discovery, their time spent on planet “ARGHH! ARGHHHHHH!” will be all worthwhile.

As I’ll be on-call for the next week and a few days, this will be my downtime – chilling out, exploring planets, flying through space, and learning new alien languages to meet and greet new species.  To boldly go where no-one from Surrey has gone before!