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Thread: "No Man's Sky" is procedural sci-fi exploration, and *purdy*.

  1. #76
    Registered: Aug 2004
    So the Jimquisition is down because he had the temerity to say what everybody else is saying (if perhaps a bit less politely) and got DoS'd for it.

  2. #77
    Registered: Apr 2000
    Location: The Akkala Highlands
    Some of the stuff he mentions in his review is exactly what I was concerned with - not having enough to do and exploring a bunch of worlds that are all the same. Whenever I hear the term "procedurally generated" it makes me cringe because while it allows for creating a huge gamespace, the one it creates is usually bland and samey. How can you provide unique encounters and experiences when they're just being manufactured by some algorithm?

    I'm not saying game/set/match here though, this really is just one guy's opinion.

  3. #78
    Registered: Aug 2004
    One guy's opinion? It seems to be more-or-less everybody's opinion. As Muzman put it, even the positive reviews describe it the same way, just glowingly instead of insultingly.

  4. #79

  5. #80
    Registered: Jun 1999
    Location: Procrastination, Australia
    There are also hovering buildings, floating off the ground like bad Unity projects, some of which end up “built” into mountains and hills with no way to enter their half-buried doors. This is not deliberate, mind you – the buildings quite clearly lack some collision detection when they’re haphazardly plonked into the surroundings.
    It's nice to know that even big budget Triple A procedurally generated stuff can't avoid some of the hurdles faced by Sir, You Are Being Hunted.

    Similar to that game, it's funny how a lot of what's missing does seem like a lot to ask given what the game is actually doing in the first place. In Sir- it was people not wanting to just see buildings but also go inside them and all sort of other stuff. Here it's "I don't just want to meet alien ships in a huge ever changing universe. I want the aliens to get out and wander around" "Now that I've seen procedurally generated wildlife, I want to ride it as well" etc etc. There's some lesson for developers in all that; your base systems might be amazing, but if getting them to work makes it too hard to finesse or add to those small player moments and desires it's going to count for less.

    Still, as Jim says, if you haven't waded through every single DayZ-alike and minecraft clone like he has you might be ok with it. In the video he was briefly showing a bit of shooting and flying and seemed unimpressed. But just watching it I thought that looked pretty fun in a lite-space/Freelancer kind of way. It almost goes without saying that it's probably way better on PC too.

  6. #81
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Quote Originally Posted by Muzman View Post
    big budget Triple A procedurally generated stuff
    From what I've read they started the development with 4 team members and currently are listing 15 people on their About Us page, so they're not exactly triple-A.

  7. #82
    Registered: Jun 1999
    Location: Procrastination, Australia
    Yeah, fair point. Probably means we should lower our expectations accordingly as well. Still, they've got all that Joe Danger money to call on, which is more than some

  8. #83
    PC Gamering Smartey Man
    I <3 consoles and gamepads

    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: New Zealand
    Quote Originally Posted by henke View Post
    From what I've read they started the development with 4 team members and currently are listing 15 people on their About Us page, so they're not exactly triple-A.
    Sony bankrolled some of the development. I'd wager that it was probably more than less.

  9. #84
    I don't think it matters if everything is pretty similar if it's FUN to play. Because then you're doing something FUN, and you get a bunch of nice environmental variety into the bargain. You can treat it like many games of something much smaller and simpler, rather than a single game of something big.

    If the gameplay isn't fun, though... well, that could be a problem.

  10. #85
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    Yeah, but you're treating the two things as separate. For some players, if not for many, variety and fun are closely linked. Their fun is diminished if they feel that in fundamental ways every place generated in the game is pretty much the same place.

  11. #86
    Registered: Jan 2006
    Location: On the tip of your tongue.
    I'm having a blast with it so far. It's everything I expected and wanted it to be. It has the same appeal as quietly going around gathering resources in Minecraft. Which is to say, it's not gonna be everyone's cup of tea, but if that's your idea of a relaxing good time, you'll love No Man's Sky.

    Here, have a video:

  12. #87
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Looking good!

    Can you look around while sitting in your ship? Without turning the ship I mean.

    btw, is it just me, or are embedded videos on TTLG not working properly? All I see is a black screen with a "You" in the lower right corner.

  13. #88
    Registered: Jun 1999
    Location: Procrastination, Australia
    Quote Originally Posted by nicked View Post
    I'm having a blast with it so far. It's everything I expected and wanted it to be. It has the same appeal as quietly going around gathering resources in Minecraft. Which is to say, it's not gonna be everyone's cup of tea, but if that's your idea of a relaxing good time, you'll love No Man's Sky.
    Cool. That fits the impression I get from reading about it, even by people who hated it. You need a bit of a taste for 'pastoral gaming' to enjoy it.

    Walker seems fairly even handed on it also

    He brings up one thing that stuck out to me back in the previews and that's having things like Sentinels buzzing around like the cops in a GTA game. It kind of ruins that sense of isolation knowing that there's a galaxy spanning robotic EPA that's going to come down on you for picking too many flowers.
    Ruins, outposts and sentinels here and there is fine. But hopefully they aren't ubiquitous.

    How have you found that aspect so far?

  14. #89
    Registered: Jan 2006
    Location: On the tip of your tongue.
    When you land on a planet, one of the stats it'll give you is Sentinel activity - some planets have hardly any, and you can pretty much relax and mine to your heart's content, just watching out for the odd scanner. Others, they are more active. For the most part though, they'll just buzz up to you disapprovingly, and they won't attack unless you keep mining obliviously. They're only really a threat if you try to break into a locked bunker, or you start attacking trade ships etc.

    I have found that it does really maintain the feeling of isolation, even when there are alien ships buzzing around everywhere. They will ignore you if you ignore them.

    Also, yes, embedding seems to be broken! :s

  15. #90
    That is at least a good thing that both positive and negative reviews are consistent. Its a long ways from turds like DA2 where the good and bad were wildly divergent.

    Though this genre is by definition a love it or hate it game amd both opinions are perfectly valid since they are based on subjective reactions to the same elements.

  16. #91
    Registered: Mar 2004
    Well, PC Port is out. Mostly negative reviews on Steam, citing performance issues and crashes, and dropped off the steam top sellers list almost instantly.

  17. #92
    Registered: Apr 2003
    Location: flapping in the wind
    The top sellers list has to be an error, I can't see it in at least the top 100.

    Anyway, seems to be completely broken.

  18. #93
    Registered: Jun 2004
    Really looking like a broken release, all the top Steam reviews are pretty much "crashes after 10mins, GG"

    For shame, but I'm sure they will patch it up quickly.

  19. #94
    Registered: Jun 1999
    Location: Procrastination, Australia
    No Man’s Sky Is Steam’s Biggest Release Of 2016

    (based on 'current player' data anyway. but it's probably true all round)

    'tis weird though. Early trouble shooting seems to suggest they tested it on one brand spanking new top spec nvidia/intel machine by running it once or something. Weird. Oh well, I expect it'll come good eventually.

    Although you see all the dramatic stuff people go on with, like here, and I must admit I'm happy as fuck I don't give that much of a shit about games anymore. (You might say I'm a "casual gamer".)

  20. #95
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Location: Earth
    I know it's one guy's opinion but I found this review to be a fairly good indicator of what this game provides. I've also read from other people.. Polygon for example gave it a 6 out of 10. And yeah, the PC release appears to be borked. I will personally wait for a massive discount or not buy it at all. I'm not really compelled to buy it at this point. If I do, it'll be on PS4.

    As was said already in this thread, if you like resource collecting, ala minecraft, then you'll probably be fine with this game. But what I read about it suggests it's too heavily survival based and doesn't really let you explore as much as you like, because you are too busy resource managing. Personally, that's a bummer to me. As the reviewer said, maybe there should be a "explorer mode", much like in minecraft where you can play creative mode and not really worry about stuff attacking you. I think more people from what I've read online were looking forward to just exploring and not having to worry so much about survival.

  21. #96
    I'm putting my twitc stream up for the next hour or so.

    Update: Techical difficulties and have to redownload something. Look for a Steam Broadcast from "The_Captain"
    Last edited by Tony_Tarantula; 14th Aug 2016 at 16:42.

  22. #97
    verbose douchebag
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: Lyon, France
    I've thrown a few hours at it so far. It's not bad. It has made me realise just how well hype can work for a game though.
    The 65DoS sound track is very light touch and a bit underwhelming, gameplay interruptions are a continual annoyance and general navigation between interfaces is clunky.
    Inventory limitations are feeling like an unnecessary annoyance, but I'n probably being impatient and it will serve as a mechanic to make you work to upgrade more.

    I'm sticking with it. The Pokemon scanning is a pretty cool way of making you pay attention to your environment. The PoI chasing is beginning to feel a little Ubisoft and the flora / fauna "procedural" variation is pretty much like a tarted up Spore, but all in all, it has the potential to either grow on me, or fail to maintain enough depth to keep me away from Grim Dawn.

  23. #98
    After 10 hours or so I think it's neither as good nor as bad people tend to describe it. It's kind of addicting in its boredom, as someone on polygon noticed. It kind of works for me, as I didn't play Elite: Dangerous or anything like that since... Frontier, and brief Eve online sessions a few years ago? Make no mistake, this isn't anything like that. Imagine Mako and planet exploration from Mass Effect 1 plus FTL choose-your-own-adventure moments and random encounters. That, some procedural generation, Frontier-like trade, and survival elements (but you can pretty much forget about survival aspect when your exosuit has over 30 slots and various advanced tech installed). That's basically it: a few elements from other indie games and an optional mode from AAA title. It really feels like an indie game, not 60 EUR title. It doesn't matter that I have quintillions of planets at my disposal, the scope of meaningful gameplay is still limited.

    Usually I don't give a damn about counting someone else's money, but it's kind of interesting to me what the consequences will be in the game industry, if the game is a commercial success. At first I liked what Jim Sterling pointed out, that's the price shouldn't be this big concern. If anything, it will help niche genres be more popular. It kind of surprised me how optimistic this is, as I thought about something much worse. Imagine corporate dicks meeting in Activision/EA/Ubisoft/WB Games headquarters: "Hey, these guys kickstarted a game with a scope of meta-game in AAA title, with 60 USD/EUR price tag and team of 15 people! And look, all those idiots bought it! Let's fire 90% of people in our 100-200 teams and do the same!"

  24. #99
    I should be able to gey twitch working tonight. Right now expect me to be on by 8PM CET. Goal will be looking for some crashed ships.

    Probably only going to do this once. Main reason I'm doing it is for the benefit of anyone who is curious about the game.
    Last edited by Tony_Tarantula; 15th Aug 2016 at 08:46.

  25. #100
    Registered: Jan 2006
    Location: On the tip of your tongue.
    Might not be for everyone, but I'm totally in love with this game. The most time I've spent on one planet is probably close to 10 hours now, just exploring and finding cool shit, hiding from radiation storms and tracking down the last few animals to scan.

    I've got a swanky new 28-slot ship, and a mega machine-gun multi-tool. I'm fluent in 2 alien languages and making headway on a third. I've been severely outnumbered by space pirates and won. I've run mad gauntlets on high security planets, farming gravitino balls from under the sentinels' noses, desperately jetpack-boosting away from laser fire. I've found planets with vast square arches and twisting ribbons of rock in the sky. I've been lost, fifteen minutes walk from my ship in a firestorm, alternating between hiding underwater where it's cool until my oxygen runs out and jetpacking out of the water for as long as my thermal protection lasts to restock my air. I've traded millions of units-worth of rare artifacts that I found in a cave. I've carved smiley faces into mineral deposits. I even named everything in an entire star system after Eighties hits.

    Haters gonna hate, but this game is excellent.

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