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Hello Games has finally reemerged with more content for No Man’s Sky, and a lot has changed for the universe-exploring simulator. But it’s also potentially already too late to pull the game out of its nosedive.
On Sunday, the studio pushed out No Man’s Sky version 1.1, which it’s calling the Foundation update. This major patch adds base building, new modes, and a number of other changes to the procedurally generated universe of 18 quadrillion planets. I’ve tried it, and the update has already affected how I approach the game. Before, I was collecting resources so that I could have a better ship and suit to help me gather more resources. It was a shallow loop. Now, I need resources (at least in Survival mode) to build my home base and all of the specialized equipment I can place inside of it.
Building a base is simple, and plays like a more refined version of the town-building feature from Fallout 4. Once you have your headquarters all set up, you can start building special terminals and hydroponics stations to make it easier to gather certain resources without having to push out into the harsh surface of your home planet. You can also staff your base with technicians that you recruit from space stations. Using this new mechanic, you can research and develop new technologies for your ship and multi-tool directly from your HQ.
I’ve only played around with these new elements for a few hours. I built a base in the new Creative mode, and I quickly died in remixed and more difficult Survival game type. But through my experience, I am noticing that I’m formulating a new strategy for taking on the challenges of No Man’s Sky. I want to start new Survival game, and I want to spend most of my first several hours building up a base at my spawn location before I try to track down my ship. That alone is a massive change to the way it used to play — with you pointlessly jumping from star system to start system — that I’m appreciating the work Hello put into Foundation.
At the same time, I’m afraid I won’t let myself dig too deep into everything the revamped No Man’s Sky has to offer — even as someone who liked the original release. Maybe the game’s window has passed.
Is it too late for No Man’s Sky?
Well, we tackled that subject on the GamesBeat Decides podcast this week, and you can listen to our discussion by clicking play on the clip below:
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