At Geoff Keighley's Game Awards 2014, one of the games that received a bit of world premiere gameplay footage was Hello Games' No Man's Sky. The game is an intergalactic adventure title that kind of pushes the definition of “open world” to galactic heights. Check it out below.
All the videos for No Man's Sky are almost kind of disparate in a way; we see some things in one video that almost have nothing to do with other things featured in the next video. I still have no idea how No Man's Sky is actually played other than being a first-person adventure/exploration game. This is either a testament to the massive scope of the game or a testament to the potential overreaching goals set by the developers; I think the verdict is still out on that one.
Nevertheless, in this current video we see a brief night time segment that introduces us to another ship taking off. I have no idea if that other ship is player controlled or just an NPC going about their business. The actual organic nature of the game's ecosystem and functionality make it hard to tell players from computers... which is a good thing, I suppose.
Following the one ship taking flight to the sky, the player-character heads to their own ship where we see a mech rising to its full stature and moving about. This small yet significant segment within the video poses a very interesting question: can players commandeer the mechs?
I know there's a lot of procedurally generated content in the game, but I do wonder how much of it is actually interactive? We do get a small sampling of that interactivity when the player makes a leap across the universe and heads to a planet where there appears to be a teleportation gate. In the video, the player walks through the gate only to be teleported to either another segment of the planet or perhaps an entirely different part of the galaxy. I have no idea since that's where the video comes to an end.
Some of the things I do wonder about is how well player-affected planets mesh with other seeds from other players? And how will NPCs be affected in one player's seed when they enter into a shard with another player? Will this change the NPC's behavior or will it stay its course? I mean, take for example that in Player A's world they enrage a certain NPC faction. If Player A manages to go to a planet that houses Player B, and Player B is on friendly terms with the NPC faction, will what occurred in Player A's world – enraging the NPC faction and turning them into enemies – affect what will happen to Player B?
Those are a few of the things I wonder about with No Man's Sky. There's a lot of metadata that seems like it could be affected by all the different players doing their own thing in this shared and yet secular universe. It's an ambitious game but I still have my doubts about it.
I guess we'll find out more about how it all works as it nears release for home consoles and PC. You can learn more about No Man's Sky by paying a visit to the official website.