Welcome to this most unconventional review of a most unconventional title, broken up into short “captain’s log” updates for your enjoyment as I can’t quite put into words exactly how I feel about No Man’s Sky as I would normally for most titles, that alone should speak volumes as to just what an awe inspiring, truly and radically fundamentally different kind of experience No Man’s Sky really is. But is it an experience for you? Read on and decide for yourself.
In orbit around a barren, toxic world, raging with acidic storms clouding the atmosphere and concealing mysterious ruins, dare I land? Suddenly a hostile scan from deep space forces my hand, not equipped for combat with pirates I shove the stick forward and dig into the atmosphere of this strange world, evading my pursuers planetside, they are not willing to leave open space it seems. Below me I see sprawling rocky plains, interspersed with occasional mineral outcroppings and sparse vegetation, touching down in front of an ancient monolith I marvel for a moment at the civilization that had constructed this imposing tower, quickly I make haste with it’s secrets in tow and after mining a bit of fuel I once more take to the stars.
Coming out of this last jump lands me near a space station, a welcome beacon of light in the darkness and a place to offload the meager bits of treasure in my hold as well as a chance to chat and barter with a few colorful aliens in order to obtain a new ship. After crafting a bit more fuel for my warp drive I’m once more off to explore. Exiting the station I launch towards one the the worlds of this system nearby at full pulse speed, a green and blue friendly looking sphere that is inviting as it is familiar. Upon hopping out of my ship I’m met by a temperate world with docile sentinels, abundant resources and a trade depot that pops up on my scope, a lucky day indeed.
After the good fortune of yesterday today brought a good day of trade and an upgrade the warp drive on the boat to give her a bit more range. With my souped up machine I once more jumped to parts unknown, this time not faring so well as I was dumped out of space directly into the middle of an asteroid field. Fortunately shields held and absorbed the brunt of the blow as I surveyed my surroundings, a strange pulsating red anomaly beckoned in the distance, yielding many ancient secrets and technology, the journey continues.
Dropped out of warp into a system inhabited by strange cyborg creatures, although I understand very little of their language we manage to trade goods without issue. Upon departing the cyborg controlled station my good fortune continues and I stumble upon a world rich in valuable resources, quickly accruing a large amount of credits with a few mining runs which allows me to upgrade my exosuit further to carry additional items and survive the increasingly hostile conditions I am facing planetside. With my newfound riches I fully charge my warp drive and once more venture into the inky darkness of space, an insignificant mote in a seemingly endless universe. The rather limited carrying capacity of my ship has become an issue and as such I will be keeping a watchful eye out for a replacement as I venture ever forward into the unknown.
Fortune truly smiles on my journey on this day. Through careful wheeling and dealing a new ship, worthy of the trip ahead of her is mine, I waste no time fueling up my hyperdrive and make haste jumping onward to the next system. Not since the very first rumble bumble ship I had acquired in the beginning was finally launched from the surface of the planet I had started on so many light years away had I felt this excited. Coming out of warp lands me within a rich system, the very first planet I touch down on is crawling with heavy sentinel activity and littered with gravitino balls. As such I very carefully fill my pockets and beat a hasty retreat amid laser bursts, apparently the sentinels do not appreciate my presence on this world.
After making a jump out of the hostile system where I left off I was greeted with the largest fleet I had yet seen and wouldn’t you know it they were smack dab in the middle of an intergalactic throwdown with a few pirates. After making quick work of the threat I was greeted by a transmission from the largest ship in the fleet, inviting me to dock and speak to their captain. Unable to refuse an honor like that I quickly made my way towards the colossal ship where I found a docking bay waiting for my ship. Making my way inside I spoke with the captain who rewarded me handsomely in fuel resources for coming to their assistance. The captain then continues on, offering command of his trade freighter to me, for the right price of course.
Unable to afford the seven million credits it would require to purchase the freighter I struck out, leaving the brightly lit landing bay of the massive ship behind me and scanning this new system, hopeful that a planet rich in valuable resources turns up on the scopes. Instead I’m greeted by a message informing me that a habitable base of operations is available on one of the nearby worlds.
Wasting no time I head towards this unknown beacon, curious as to what I might find, upon arrival I’m met with a simple round building, mostly intact and ready to be customized. With the resources on hand I build a few simple rooms, expanding my new operations center quickly and constructing a workbench as well in the process. After installing the workbench I’m informed that I can now hire workers, as such I make haste to the nearby space station and hire on a friendly geck from the bar. Returning to my small base my newly hired geck has a mission for me to undertake in order to help expand the fledgling facility. Of course this means once more striking out into the unknown, this time with renewed purpose.
To Be Continued