A year ago, at VGX (the last of the VGAs), Hello Games, a studio mostly known for their Joe Danger games, lifted the lid on their next project, and in the process blew minds around world.
That might sound like hyperbole, but it's true. Jaws were dropping everywhere when No Man's Sky was unveiled, and a year on, the game continues to be an indie darling. Perhaps even the indie darling.
If you don't know about the game, then let's quickly explain why it's such an exciting proposition. First and foremost it's about exploration, about seeing a place somewhere off in the distance and going to explore it. And we're not talking about locations on a map here, we're talking about planets in a huge procedurally generated galaxy. The scale of the ambition here is bordering on dizzying.
"It's almost exactly a year ago today that we revealed No Man's Sky at the VGAs, on December 7, 2013, the beginning of a roller coaster 12 months that have changed all our lives. Until yesterday, we've only showed the game off once since, at E3, but we've been working super hard on the game, and this weekend we've finally had a chance to give everyone a glimpse at what we've been up to," Hello Games emailed us from Las Vegas.
"The most amazing news for us is being able to tell you about 65daysofstatic's album. We're genuinely huge fans of theirs, and they're Sean's favourite band, so having been able to meet them, become friends and then collaborate on music written especially for our game has been a wonderful experience for us."
The music will be deconstructed and procedurally generated, so while there are tracks you won't hear the same tunes over and over, and this is also tied into the system that generates the content on planet surfaces.
"Seeing [65daysofstatic] play against Matt DiVito's beautiful video was incredible, too. Matt created No Man's Sky's logo, and has made videos for music before, so we had to ask him whether he'd be interested in making one for 65daysofstatic's No Man's Sky debut, too."
During a discussion with Hello Games' Sean Murray at PlayStation Experience, a few interesting points were also mentioned. One was that the game will be a fairly small download (Sean joked they first thought it would fit on a floppy disc). Everything is created on the fly and then thrown away. Another was the fact that players will want to gravitate towards the centre of the galaxy (for better ships, better loot, better weapons). Sean also revealed that while most people tend to think of the game as mainly about exploration and trade, personally he enjoys the "arcadey" combat the most.
Two new trailers have been shown off in Las Vegas (one at The Game Awards, the other at PlayStation Experience), and the studio had the following to say about them:
Portal, which we showed at The Game Awards, shows you five ways of travelling through the galaxy: walking across planet surfaces, flying through their atmospheres, jetting into space, warping to new systems and going through strange portals.
Galaxy, which we showed this morning during Sony's PlayStation Experience keynote, is about getting across the scale of No Man's Sky. We've talked a lot about it being infinite (or, at 18,446,744,073,709,551,616 possible planets, in practical terms at least), and we hope this trailer will give a sense of what that means, and your place in it.
While Hello Games have purposely been showing things that remind us of Earth thus far (dinosaur-like creatures for example) - there are many more fantastic planets possible - including planets where the surface is underwater, but with water that may not look anything like the water we're used, and with creatures that may not look anything like the fish we're familiar with. There is so much still to find out, and it appears that we're just scratching the surface.
We're hoping to find out even more about the game and its development from Hello Games in the very near future, so stay tuned to Gamereactor for more insight into No Man's Sky.