No Man’s Sky developer Hello Games has detailed a significant update that will introduce a number of much requested features to the massive, sci-fi exploration game. Titled “Next,” the update will be available for free for PS4, Xbox One, and PC players from July 24. Perhaps the biggest new addition is multiplayer, which allows players to team up with a small team of friends and explore the universe together, or be joined by random members of the community.
“You can help friends to stay alive, or prey on others to survive,” the studio explains. “You can build tiny shelters or complex colonies that are shared for all players. Fight as a pirate or a wingman in epic space battles with friends and enemies. Race exocraft across weird alien terrains, creating race tracks and trails to share online. The character customisation allows you to personalise your appearance.”
The game will also receive a visual makeover that, according to Hello Games, has “dramatically improved planetary terrain generation, ground textures, water, and clouds.” Additionally, there’s “also significantly more detail added to ships, NPCs and buildings.” New planetary rings and improved space visuals have also been introduced. On top of that, the game’s is now playable in the third-person perspective.
Base building has undergone some changes for the Next update, and players will now be able to construct multiple bases anywhere on a planet. What you can craft has also increased in complexity and the size limits have been reduced. There’s new base parts too.
Finally, there’s the ability to command freighters, which involves assembling and upgrading a fleet of frigates. You can then send them out into the universe or have them assist you as you explore systems. You do this all from a freighter, which effectively functions as a capital ship. Friends can be invited on board and you can embark on multiplayer missions from the Galactic Commission Station that is found on the bridge. Check out the trailer above to see everything included in No Man Sky’s Next update.
“Nearly two years ago our small team of friends, with a shared love of sci-fi, opened up the universe of No Man’s Sky for the first time,” Hello Games said in a press release. “It was an innovative, weird and at times lonely game. I loved that, it reminded me of the science fiction books I grew up with.
“It was broad in a way that almost no other game is, but with four updates it has become broader and so much deeper too. That will be even more true with the launch of Next, bringing a full multiplayer experience. We can’t wait for people to play, and hopefully you can see from the trailer this is a very new experience.”
In GameSpot’s No Man’s Sky review, Peter Brown awarded it a 7/10, praising its “massive, seamless world, impressive tech, and unfetter freedom to explore.” However, he also highlighted frustrating item management and UI, shallow variety, and the lack of NPCs with meaningful personalities.
Some time after its initial launch, Hello Games released the Atlas Rises update, which introduced a story mode. Reviewer Justin Clark said that made the game more robust, welcoming, and accessible. You can see the way the game has evolved in our video looking at 11 things that have changed in No Man’s Sky since launch.