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Saturday, August 20, 2016

Let's Fix It: No Man's Sky

So ya, No Man's Sky has been a bust. Players are trying to return it, Steam's overall review of it is mixed at best and everyone seems to be on the witch hunt for Hello Games. I posted something before on how all of this was a possibility when the game was released but from all the stuff I've been seeing I actually want to try something different. The game is... unfinished to say the least. What I'm going to do is talk about how the game can get as close as possible to what we were promised. This is less of what we can do as players rather an idea of how Hello Games can get the game closer to what we were promised as most of us cannot code and even if we could we wouldn't have access to the build of the game in the sense we could easily manipulate the assets within a sensible period of time.

1: The World
Alright, so a lot of people have been talking about how the planets they've seen are actually not as detailed or up to snuff with what was promised. One video I saw talked about how there's no real variety from the desert planets. I don't believe people have that much problem with the other planets but the easiest way would be for us to create entirely new planets and plop them in random places. Of course we'd have to make sure they wouldn't clash with other planets but the universe is apparently so large that would be a very unusual occurrence. Unfortunately the majority of these planets would have be templates, like if we started with just a ball and then added some basic stuff to it. From there we could make it so the game would give these new planets some variety but ultimately they really won't be that much closer to what everyone wanted.

2: The Creatures
Now this is where it gets tricky and will have to be one of the biggest changes and probably the second most time consuming project. There's not much variation between creatures and they all seem kind of broken or buggy to say the least. What I suggest is using a model similar to Spore in which the player base creates a few creatures and they're sent off into the world. The studio would also have to create some themselves in order to deviate from the obvious amount of phallic and sexually designed creatures or just simply add in their own twists. The studio would be in charge of making some of the more interesting creatures like the giant sand worm we say before but seems to be absent.

3: The Ships
One thing that was mentioned was these large scale space battles and the ability to choose a side between the warring factions. This is probably where we draw the line in terms of making this feature available within the few months to come. The Old Republic is doing a similar thing where they've released a new expansion but they're doing it in little bits and pieces. So these new space battles will be heavily scripted at first but eventually the code could be implemented to where the game just randomly generates some battles here and there. I've also heard that ship designs are very basic and offer little to no customization. Again, a Spore element should be implemented making it so that player creations/discoveries are a viable thing.

4: The Multiplayer
Alright you knew this was coming and I saved it for last. This would literally be the biggest thing for the game in the sense of time consumption. I'm not entirely sure the code for the game supported multiplayer in the first place but being optimistic we're going to say that it did and work from there. It would have to be limited but not extremely restrictive. Players should have the ability to opt out of this at will and be able to play offline. For those who want to I would suggest a model similar to Warframe. In Warframe you can invite other players to a match or what have you on the fly. You add them to a group and they can vote on what mission to undertake. The limit I've seen for me is about 4 which isn't a terrible number to be honest. Warframe also allows your game to automatically connect to any party currently working on a mission and you can jump right in. In this case I would say that you can jump into a person via a planet or, at most, a galaxy wide thing. Anything more and you'd put a significant strain on connectivity. Unfortunately there would have to be some kind of invisible wall where if you stray too far from the other player you'll be notified to turn back or the group will be kicked.
On the worse end if we use the basis that the game never had any multiplayer features from the beginning and we'd have to start from scratch I would say scrap it entirely because that would take an insane amount of time to code and implement to a stable degree. Since the game has failed there's probably not any plan for DLC and the upkeep is going to be minimal at best fixing the bugs to make the game playable, though as we've seen players aren't happy so this game is on a ticking clock to make its consumers take interest in the game at all. It would be like if there was no audience for the PS3 port of Skyrim (which was one of the most broken ports of all time) so Bethesda simply scrapped working on it and the game stayed broken forever.

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