24

Stuff Or Things

August 1, 2018 by Tim

Okay, so as much as the game has improved from launch, I did also want to acknowledge that No Man’s Sky does still suffer from some issues. Apart from the bugs, I think the grindiness of it is the biggest shortcoming.

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You can distill most games down to a very basic mechanic if you try hard enough; I could say Super Mario Bros. was only about running and jumping. It’d be true, but it also doesn’t  tell the whole story, or mean that it wasn’t fun.

And while NMS was grindy at launch, it feels to me like they’ve added even more things to harvest and more things to build with the stuff you harvest.

That’s a good thing, to a degree, but it also goes to such an extent that it starts to feel like perhaps they’ve added a lot of busywork to compensate for the fact that, outside of that, they still don’t have much for you to do. The dogfighting is less of a pain in the ass than it used to be, I’ve noticed, but it’s also not (from what I’ve experienced) a particularly deep system. It’s a thing that happens as you’re out and about, but not something you could decided to do as a focus, for instance (perhaps being a bounty hunter or hiring out to protect convoys, etc).

Similarly, combat with sentinels or the occasional aggressive animal are none-too-complex either.

The alien species are still essentially computer terminals with skin; you don’t encounter them out and about on a planet anywhere, doing a thing. They’re standing or sitting in a building, waiting for you to talk to them.

So basically the majority of the game seems to be making a thing, and then making the next thing. And I’ll admit, it’s often enough of a carrot that I’ll disappear an hour or two just farming to assemble aforementioned things. Because I think there are different types of grinds, and No Man’s Sky, for me, is actually a pretty relaxing grind.

Sort of a “turn off my brain, relax and run around doing stuff” grind that can be pretty enjoyable in small doses. But that’s not to say I don’t think there’s still room to expand. For as far as they’ve come in the past two years, sometimes it does still feel a little barren.

Hopefully the response to No Man’s Sky NEXT, the surge of new players (and funds) will provide them with the runway for another two years of work and updates.

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Joystick
Joystick
3 years ago

HOPEFULLY. I want the game, but everyone else tells me NO, GO DIE IN A HOLE. Should I get it regardless (and maybe get a completely overhauled awesome version in 2020)?

Joystick
Joystick
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

^
What I hope for

DannyboyO1
DannyboyO1
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

If you like crafting with light survival, a space ship, and running around a really big sandbox looking at things… cool. If you’re not entirely sold, wishlist and wait for sale.

Joystick
Joystick
3 years ago
Reply to  DannyboyO1

Well, I have kernel space program.
*hears about space game*
Me: SPAAAAACE.
I like games with interstellar travel. Sadly, I do t have enough ram. What can I do (the installed ram is less than I need)

Joystick
Joystick
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

For NMS

please enjoy majima
please enjoy majima
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

You can buy more RAM.

That’s it. I could tell you to download more RAM (and I’m surprised nobody else has yet), but that’s a joke and not a thing you can actually do. You have to buy more RAM if you need more RAM.

Robert Loughrey
Robert Loughrey
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

This may be a radical idea, but buy more RAM?

Joystick
Joystick
3 years ago

How do I install it?

Somewhere
Somewhere
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

It depends on what kind of ram. Most rams are the standard male sheep and can easily be installed into virtually any farm. While some argue they are too aggressive for petting zoos, most farms will appreicate their intricate horns and their succulent rameat. If you are talking about a BATTERING ram, then you should install it either into the front of a tank/vehicle or alternatively you should place it atop the vehicle. If you are doing the latter, the ram should be no lower than a quarter meter off the ground and no higher than a full meter off… Read more »

Ctown
Ctown
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

Man just search youtube for how to install more ram. Its simple and theres a million and two videos that can show you far more effectively than a comic comment.

The Asztalnok
The Asztalnok
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

I think this may be relevant again.
http://lmgtfy.com/?q=how+do+I+install+ram

Melkior
Melkior
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

Your options are to buy more RAM or to use less RAM. MineCraft for example gets around the RAM requirement to some extent by dividing the world into relatively small “chunks” and then only loading into RAM the chunks which the player would be able to see. When the player moves, if they move far enough then some of the loaded chunks behind them will be saved out to disk and the chunks ahead of them will be loaded in from disk. Another option is to use a lower graphics resolution so that your graphics take up less space. Or… Read more »

Robert Loughrey
Robert Loughrey
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

Or you can wait until 2020 and see if it actually materializes before spending the money. If you don’t have a bunch of friends playing this game now, then it will keep.

Wait, What?
Wait, What?
3 years ago

This strip was sponsored by Bernie Sanders

foducool
foducool
3 years ago

endless threadmill of turning stuff into things?
welcome to factorio

Ven
Ven
3 years ago
Reply to  foducool

YOU SON OF A BITCH. With that one comment, I asked “What’s Factorio?”. Now I’m down $30, and this thing has taken over my life! I’ve only scratched the surface of immense complexity, and GODDAMNIT, I love efficient designs! You just cost me several years of my life! Curse your suggestion of an addictively brilliant game!

Also, a lot of it is a LITERAL fucking treadmill. Belts everywhere

foducool
foducool
3 years ago
Reply to  Ven

yup XD

Tokke
Tokke
3 years ago

“They key is…” I think you made a typo.

please enjoy majima
please enjoy majima
3 years ago

How to play No Man’s Sky:

Don’t. Yakuza 0 releases on PC in just a few hours from the time I’m writing this comment. Play that instead, it’s brilliant.

(don’t me, No Man Boys)

Somewhere
Somewhere
3 years ago

Presumably this is assuming there is not another game that has just come out that you also would want to play.

Kaitensatsuma
Kaitensatsuma
3 years ago

And yet we will love this endless treadmill bullshit when it comes to PC next week in the form of Monster Hunter: World

To be clear, that isn’t a criticism, that’s just a statement of fact. I don’t get to talk with 1000 hours of Warframe under my belt.

raven0ak
raven0ak
3 years ago
Reply to  Kaitensatsuma

In end though you likely spend far more time levelling and grinding prime parts than grinding materials to build those blueprints of prime parts

raven0ak
raven0ak
3 years ago
Reply to  raven0ak

(expect with oxium, thats the grind material)

Kaitensatsuma
Kaitensatsuma
3 years ago
Reply to  raven0ak

One Word: Hema
Then Two more Words: Mutagen Samples

cr0ft
cr0ft
3 years ago

“The planets will be procedurally created” was enough to warn me off in the earliest day of this project. Because what that translates to is “everything is meaningless and whatever you discover you don’t really discover, it was just whipped up for you from some basic rules and randomly thrown together”. Procedural generation certainly has a place, but making that your entire basic premise just shouts out “shit game ahead”. I’d so much rather play a game where humans have crafted a compelling story and where you discover some awesome alien secrets and tech etc, even though that was imagined… Read more »

Eldest Gruff
Eldest Gruff
3 years ago
Reply to  cr0ft

Procedurally generated content doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s bad; it’s just a lot harder to do procedural generation right than most developers think. When I think of good procedural generation, I often think of Minecraft; it has so many different types of land features and biomes and underground cavern features and endless variety. And because there are so many different resources and very interesting things to DO with those resources, there’s often a reward for exploring that next hillside or crossing that sea or diving into that ocean – even if the reward is just a beautiful (procedurally generated!) vista.… Read more »

MightyThor34
MightyThor34
3 years ago
Reply to  Eldest Gruff

Exactly, all they really had to do was do Minecraft in space with cool toys, give me a reason to do base defense, give me a way to do cool things, give me a reason to explore and find loot. Hard, but really not that hard. They just focused on the wrong things.

Dizrupt
Dizrupt
3 years ago
Reply to  MightyThor34

If you want space Minecraft, try Space Engineers

Joystick
Joystick
3 years ago
Reply to  MightyThor34

How did they focus on the wrong things? Not criticism, I’m actually asking.

Wumbo
Wumbo
1 year ago
Reply to  MightyThor34

I’m pretty sute someone made a mod in Minecraft for that. Lol.
Minecraft is good because you can tell there is a story (Even though it’s kinda shallow) and the procedural generation makes a lot of sense now. NMS dosen’t really have a preset story and the procedural geneneration is kinda crazy and nonsensical.

Joystick
Joystick
3 years ago
Reply to  cr0ft

Want that where a human discovers a alien race no longer there and saves a planet? Then you need Subnautica!

Arcanum
Arcanum
3 years ago

The game is, and always has been, a sci-fi book cover simulator. Wander the universe and find interesting vistas reminiscent of old-school pulpy sci-fi book and magazine covers. If you were the kind of person who liked wandering around Minecraft worlds and seeing what you could find, it appealed to you. The big updates have added a lot of other options for stuff to do in addition to exploring and seeing what there is to see. Building bases and having more structures missions are the major improvements. Nevertheless, the core of the game is still the exploration and taking cool… Read more »

Kaitensatsuma
Kaitensatsuma
3 years ago
Reply to  Arcanum

Your recall of “Old-School Pulpy sci-fi” is much different from mine.

Mine was more along the lines of “GORDON’S ALIVE” and also sexy green ladies.

Joystick
Joystick
3 years ago

Subnautica is effectively sea No Mans Sky, but with story! You might want a external graphics card to play properly.

Somewhere
Somewhere
3 years ago
Reply to  Joystick

What makes No Man’s Sky unique is the uniqueness.
Seriously.
Every venture will be completely different. Not in the Minecraft sense of “different arrangment” but in the near-fundamental “everything is different”. Different entities, different living signposts, different planets to traverse. You don’t play NMS for the story- you play for the sake of seeing what exists.
And you should pack a working screenshot button if you play, because some things are simply majestic

Joystick
Joystick
3 years ago
Reply to  Somewhere

I love subnautica and NMS and both are very unique. But try both.

DeusFever
DeusFever
3 years ago

In No Man’s Sky, you can grind as much as I want to grind. You can enjoy the exploration, and use the spoils of your exploration to buy the things you need. I may try a game as a pirate just to see how viable it can be.

Noble One
Noble One
3 years ago

i got the game way back and after a couple hours playing it i uninstalled as there wasnt really anything to keep me playing. what really ticked me off was landing on different places and EVERY SINGLE ONE WAS POISONOUS GAS!! so it kinda killed it for me, that and finally getting to a space station only to be screwed over due to the lingo barrier.

Tim van der Meij
Tim van der Meij
3 years ago
Reply to  Noble One

To keep you posted on how the game is now, the amount of lethal biome worlds have been reduced, and new and truly alien ones have been introduced as well. Plus you can now scan planets from space to find out what biome they are and which resources they contain. In regards to the language barrier, for most interactions what the characters say isn’t really that important; you can get through almost all interactions with just what the game tells you in the description box afterwards. The words are only truly important for Manufacturing Plants to help solve the puzzles… Read more »

Ctown
Ctown
3 years ago

@Tim While the comic was funny, I’m a little disappointed that you got suckered into the “its all a grind” mentality. The game offers so many easy ways out of grinding, that if grinding isn’t your flavor, you can usually get around it. For example: Just landing on a planet (and getting out) can offer you 15 Nanite clusters if you upload the Planet’s discovery. Each creature scanned is 10-20 (rarity dependent) The star itself, the moment you warp in, is worth 20. These Nanoclusters are the currency for a huge array of upgrade modules. One of these S class… Read more »

Ctown
Ctown
3 years ago
Reply to  Tim

But…. If I never bothered to actually focus on gathering the nanites, rather, they just fall in your lap all the time whether you want them to or not, that’s NOT grinding. Shoot a sentinel in his little bitch face? He craps nanites when he dies. Find a random shack in the middle of nowhere just to hide from a firestorm? 10 Nanites on the wall. The game easily plays into the grinding effort and actually does very well as an interesting and diverse….. grinder. BUT… Its not mandatory. That’s my key point here. You don’t HAVE to grind, and… Read more »

Derek
Derek
3 years ago
Reply to  Tim

I agree with your assessment completely. After the initial “this is cool feeling” you do start to realize there is not any real “end game” or story to it. What exactly do I do with this giant Fleet of frigates and freighters , colonize empty worlds? My hope is that these are building blocks to more substantive missions or content.

Casra
Casra
3 years ago

I don’t get the hate. Yes, there is grinding. Wow you grind, D3, grind, Minecraft you grind… Grinds are part of gaming. I just restarted NMS on PC as the PS4 is borked and keeps crashing on me. Not only can I run it at max with tessellation on (looks AMAZING BTW) it’s not crashing. Thing about grinding for Nanites? Go talk to the Korvax in the Anomaly, the more you have seen and done the more Nanites he gives you. Make sure you have an A and S Class scanner upgrade and make bank on each world. I love… Read more »

MasterofBalance
MasterofBalance
4 months ago

Me brain make noise? Me go make-um things