Please use a html5 video capable browser to watch videos.
This video has an invalid file format.
00:00:00
Sorry, but you can't access this content!
Please enter your date of birth to view this video

By clicking 'enter', you agree to GameSpot's
Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

Feature Article

Biggest Changes In No Man's Sky Next Update: Xenomorphs, Space Pirates, Fleet Building, And More

Time to team up for some true multiplayer in No Man's Sky.

Hello Games has launched a new update for No Man's Sky, called Next. The free update makes massive overhauls to the game by adding multiplayer, character customization, command freighters, and visual upgrades. Next is the fourth major update to No Man's Sky, following Foundation, Pathfinder, and Atlas Rises. However, it's perhaps the most substantial of them all, and we're continuing to find more and more as we spend more time with it.

No Man's Sky originally launched on PS4 and PC in August 2016, and was harshly criticized for a perceived lack of content. Although multiple updates have since expanded the number of activities that players can do, Sony management admits the PR strategy "wasn't great" and No Man Sky designer Sean Murray acknowledged that he made "mistakes."

Despite the initial backlash at launch, No Man's Sky's updates have slowly earned the game a growing playerbase. "One day I hope to reach a point where I feel No Man's Sky is 'finished,' but luckily there's still so much more we want to do," Murray said.

The major changes in No Man's Sky Next are outlined below, but you can read the full patch notes and bug fixes on No Man's Sky's blog. Though it's not in the patch notes, Murray tweeted out that Next also allows players to command their in-game avatar to sit down--a feature that players have been asking for. Perhaps a few more playful secrets are hidden within the game's newest update. We do know that a new patch is already on the way to fix problems that have emerged, as are weekly updates to keep things fresh. We'll keep you updated as we learn more.

Multiplayer And Character Customization

Multiplayer is the largest change to No Man's Sky. Though it was never confirmed whether multiplayer would be included prior to launch, many players wished to explore the galaxy with their friends however they wanted. Next adds a lot of the mechanics those players wanted, as well as a few more.

You can now join up with random strangers, or team up with a small contingent of friends to construct colonies of small shelters, race exocraft, or engage in space battles against other players. You'll be able to team up with friends right from the start, as the multiplayer extends to No Man's Sky's story and tutorial missions.

To help differentiate between avatars, Next adds character customization so that everyone can personalize their in-game appearance. You'll be able to switch up your race and change your outfits too. Depending on the species of your character, you'll even be able to change your hairstyle. Next allows players to be a Gek, Vy’keen, Korvax, Traveller, or Anomaly.

Not every player you meet is a friendly face, so when you run into another player in the midst of exploring the stars, it's best to be cautious. Although a stranger could be a harmless passerby or a future ally, Next allows players to prey on others to survive. A collection of ships approaching on the horizon might be a crew of players acting as space pirates who rely on the stolen loot of others.

Please use a html5 video capable browser to watch videos.
This video has an invalid file format.
00:00:00
Sorry, but you can't access this content!
Please enter your date of birth to view this video

By clicking 'enter', you agree to GameSpot's
Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

Building And Crafting

You'll be able to invite your friends onto your very own command freighter to tackle challenging multiplayer missions. If you're still having trouble, you'll be able to build and upgrade a whole fleet of frigates, which you can then customize to specialize in combat, exploration, trade, industry, or support.

You can use what you've found to build bases, which can now be built anywhere on any planet. You'll even be able to build on top of mountains and beneath the sea. And if you don't like how the terrain is affecting the shape of your base, the improved terrain manipulator allows players to sculpt the planet's surface to their needs. The manipulator can be used to excavate ancient treasures too, which can be sold in the new Space Station Marketplace.

There are hundreds of new base parts that allow you to build bases that are larger and more complex so you can construct your perfect hideout. Next also lets players own multiple bases and place teleporters anywhere so travel goes much faster.

The resources used to customize your fleet and bases, as well as craft your gear and equipment, have all been reworked and rebalanced. Many of the resources you remember from the original No Man's Sky have received new names and been given completely different uses. Planetary resources have been expanded, and a planet's biome, weather, and classification have a much larger effect on what type of materials you'll find there.

No Caption Provided
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9Gallery image 10Gallery image 11Gallery image 12Gallery image 13Gallery image 14Gallery image 15Gallery image 16Gallery image 17Gallery image 18Gallery image 19Gallery image 20

To help you excavate the larger amounts of materials you'll discover, the deployable tech used in resource collection can now be easily picked up and carried in your inventory. The improved analysis visor makes it easier to locate terrain resources as well. You can also quickly find your bearings while exploring, thanks to visible latitude and longitude coordinates and the ability to tag points of interest with a marker.

Missions

The opening section of No Man's Sky has been updated with new story elements, as well as a tutorial that teaches you advanced gameplay features. Mission chains help get players started with exploring planets and starting bases.

Once past the tutorial, new types of missions are available to complete. Exploring is still at the core of No Man's Sky, but new photography, feeding, freighter attack and defense, archaeology, and hunting missions expand the amount of activities that players can do. Players won't be getting all of their objectives from the same NPC either, as a diverse assortment of random NPCs on different stations offer missions.

It Basically Has The Xenomorph From Alien

The update introduces a variety of new enemies to deal with, but perhaps the most terrifying and interesting of the bunch are what it refers to as Biological Horrors. As recounted on Twitter by Xalavier Nelson Jr., this essentially amounts to the Xenomorph from the Alien franchise. It sounds terrifying--and awesome, provided you don't mind dying.

There Are Some Drab Planets Out There

No Caption Provided

While the diversity of the geography you've encountered has changed, and there are many colorful, beautiful planets to explore, the update also adds some that are a bit different--but nonetheless striking. In our time with the update, we came across a planet that was largely devoid of color, almost to the point of being monochrome. You can take a peek at it above.

Patch Notes

Hello Games has released detailed patch notes for Next that outline everything that's changed, including the extreme minutia. Beyond all of the major features above you can see adjustments to controls (like the ability to manually holster the Multi-Tool), the overhaul to space station interiors, bug fixes, and much more.

Quality-of-Life Improvements

While something like multiplayer is obviously the big draw of this update, there are smaller but still very appreciated changes and additions that players have been coming across. Case in point: one of the best is a tweak to pulse jumps, which previously would send your ship moving in a straight line. Now, you can use it to follow the curve of the planet you're in the atmosphere of, more or less allowing you to orbit the planet and more easily relocate to a different spot.

Galactic Atlas

No Caption Provided

Just prior to the Next update going live, Hello Games launched a new website called the Galactic Atlas. This is essentially a guide to a specific area of the game--the Euclid Galaxy--that Hello seeded but will leave in the hands of players to explore and grow. From the site, you can track the progress of the galaxy, highlight points of interest, and join hubs or factions.

New Visuals

The visuals to No Man's Sky have also gotten an overhaul. Terrain generates faster and ground, water, and cloud textures have been upgraded. Ships, NPCs, and buildings have more detail too. No Man's Sky is also now fully playable in both first- and third-person, whether you're walking on the surface of a planet or soaring amongst the stars.

Draw distance has been improved so planets appear more dense and a new colour palette paints the forests, oceans, and plains of each world with added vibrancy. The hazardous storms that can spell the doom of smaller aircraft use new biome-specific particle effects to look more dangerous than ever before.

Fauna And Flora

The creatures you'll discover on your travels will now act more enthusiastically towards you if you feed them, letting you herd them together. The creatures' AI has also been revamped so they act more intelligently, responding to players they recognize as friendly and fleeing as a group from a perceived danger. Not all of the new animals and plantlife are friendly, however. Keep on the lookout for new hazardous species, as they will kill you if you're not careful.

Release Date/Time

No Man's Sky is available on PS4, PC, and Xbox One. Next is live on all platforms.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Back To Top
56 Comments  RefreshSorted By 
  • 56 results
  • 1
  • 2
GameSpot has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to toxic conduct in comments. Any abusive, racist, sexist, threatening, bullying, vulgar, and otherwise objectionable behavior will result in moderation and/or account termination. Please keep your discussion civil.

Avatar image for nyran125tk
nyran125tk

The same randomisation creatures have, the bases should have to, within guidelines and there needs to be loads more interesting diverse architecture. 3 races and they all pretty much have the same buildings? Over 18 quintillion planets? Just china and America on earth alone is diverse as hell. Lol.

Avatar image for untouchables111
untouchables111

never played the game before. played several hours now and i must say its addicting. have not been able to play with others yet (PC) but! as a science nerd im amazed at the infinite options for planets. i DO see where the game get stale in a short amount of time. more advancements on on the multiplayer front will help to make the game last longer. need more missions and gear to be added to promote more time investment.

Avatar image for stridsvagnen
stridsvagnen

I was foolish enough to pre-order it for the PS4, but because of this update, i'm gonna give it another chance, looks intriguing

Avatar image for dmdavenport
dmdavenport

Enjoying the changes, all are an improvement over the original. But the game crashes about once every session, the frame rate stutters are persistent and entering my ship often results in clipping - letting me see only the floor, or only the right side, or no cockpit walls on the left. I renamed my ship Rusty’s Buggy Crapfest, and that’s kinda how I would describe the state of the game.

Avatar image for chakan2
chakan2

I've spent 10 hours or so with this so far...it still sucks. I want to like this so bad...I'm a big fan of Elite Dangerous, and this is like Elite lite. But the gameplay loop is such a drag and so boring. If they'd half the cost of building, I think it'd be more interesting. It's heartbreaking to be so excited to see a new planet, but know I'm going to have to spend the next 30 - 45 minutes grinding away picking up the basic elements I need to get back off the planet.

It's just not a fun game.

Avatar image for SprSynJn
SprSynJn

@chakan2: I call bullshit on this. There is no way you can be a fan of Elite and think this game is boring. There are countless people who say that NMS is now what Elite has wanted to be.

Avatar image for bongaconga
BongaConga

@SprSynJn: lol, keep telling yourself that

Avatar image for chakan2
chakan2

@SprSynJn: Elite is 5x as good as NMS. The grind is no where near as bad. I'll take shooting space pirates over rocks any day of the week.

Combat is more engaging, the trade system is better. Co pilots are interesting. Factions give it some depth...

NMS... I get to shoot rocks... Sometimes shiny rocks, sometime dull rocks... And maybe mine a rock here and there.

Avatar image for deactivated-5b6fdad101071

@chakan2: Do anything with engineers, and that's pretty much the same thing you do, shoot rocks.

Avatar image for chakan2
chakan2

@pmcollectorboy: True, but that was like 5% to 10% of my play time, and completely avoidable if I choose to ignore it... Rocks in NMS are 75% of the game play loop.

Avatar image for tenorsounds
TenorSounds

@chakan2: Eh, it's not that bad on normal mode. I also was annoyed that I was having to mine to just leave a planet, but eventually I realized I didn't have to do that and just specifically focused on stocking up on launch fuel.

Takes a sec to do but way better than living "planet to planet", as it were.

Avatar image for chakan2
chakan2

@tenorsounds: I'm playing normal...Maybe I just don't have the patience for it. God it's a lot of wasted time to get the basics. I usually load up on 5-10 launch cells...but it's still a chore.


Avatar image for chubby170
Chubby170

Sounds like they changed everything to go against how it was originally intended. The feeling of being lost in space, alone and trying to survive is now gone with all the crap they have added.

Avatar image for bryanweary
BryanWeary

Played for a few months after getting it at launch, and really enjoyed my time with it for what it was. Looking forward to starting fresh now that this patch is out(deleted my save to begin anew).

Avatar image for attirex
attirex

Sean Murry should give up and go work at McDonald's.

Avatar image for muzza93
muzza93

@attirex: he could def buy a few McDonalds franchises

Avatar image for bongaconga
BongaConga

@attirex: why McDonalds? He must hAve made around 5 million euros at least. His life is set.

Avatar image for attirex
attirex

@bongaconga:

McDonald's Lit Edition?

Avatar image for SprSynJn
SprSynJn

@attirex: So you can work with him?

Avatar image for attirex
attirex

@SprSynJn:

If he works drive-through, I'll get on the fryer....

Avatar image for dbeaulieu
dbeaulieu

@attirex: why? Its good...

Avatar image for santinegrete
santinegrete

So they adding so much you could say it is an expansion worthy of a sequel. But they added it to the current game because the initial backlash prevents the sequel for being something as hot and hyped as the game originally was. It is costly, but a smart thing to do.

Avatar image for gamingdevil800
gamingdevil800

Sounds like its how the game should of launched.

Avatar image for siarhei
siarhei

@gamingdevil800: I might actually play it on X1... next year maybe?

Avatar image for timothyss10
timothySS10

to get this straight i can now play with my friends, is this soonish from the start, or 50 hours into the game after long flights?

Avatar image for chopsbenedict
chopsbenedict

@timothyss10: right away. if you join a friend in the game youll get put down in the same planetary system as they, on the ground near your broken starship. I've now shepherded a few friends from the start through the initial setup. They will have to fly to you or wait for you to get up and running, flying within the system is a couple minutes, waiting for you to get setup depends how fast you are gathering and repairing, not long though.

Avatar image for skipper847
skipper847

stuck on first space station and doesnt sell the resources I need to refuel. Also looked a dozen times on space ships what lands on the station but still no look. lol. Ive completed no mans sky in 57 minutes. :P

Avatar image for dbeaulieu
dbeaulieu

@skipper847: your not doing it right then.

Avatar image for Bastion00
Bastion00

@skipper847: You can shoot asteroids for minimal fuel to get you back to a planet to get more fuel for your thrusters and such. The game doesn't checkmate you like that.

Avatar image for Bastion00
Bastion00

I hate to bash them in any way after all the work they put in to fix their mistake but. It still just feels.. shallow. Empty and pointless. The RNG aspect of the planets make them feel artificial an uninteresting. And then the lack of anything inside of the frigates kind of did me in. I'm sure lots of people can enjoy it now but for some reason I can't get into it.

Their work towards this game is impressive none the less.

Avatar image for Deckard2323
Deckard2323

@Bastion00: "RNG aspect"

You do realize everything is procedurally generated, correct? Game uses world generation formula. Every planet, every plant, every rock, every creature are all generated through that formula. So, yes, it's all random.

Avatar image for juninhotorres
juninhotorres

@Deckard2323: but that's exactly what makes it uninteresting for some...

Avatar image for Bastion00
Bastion00

@Deckard2323: Yes? When did I state I didn't understand that? What are you trying to say by stating the obvious?

Avatar image for mugg1n10
Mugg1n10

Started it up last night with a few friends hoping for the best. However, i was burned once again. Its partly my fault, with all the updates i believed that it would somehow be a better/different game. Its not, and still stand by my review on steam from almost 2 years ago.

Avatar image for SprSynJn
SprSynJn

@mugg1n10: Sorry bro, but you don't know your ass from your elbow if you cannot see how the game has changed. It's so in your face when you start it up. You just want to hide behind that review of yours I think. It's alright if you cannot handle it, there are easier games out there.

Avatar image for chakan2
chakan2

@mugg1n10: It was close...so close...but god the build times are soul crushing...Hey I found a rock I need, crap...out of that other rock...Oh before I can get that one I have to go cut down a tree...

Woot, I did all that...Oh yea, you need this other complex multipart recipe too...

They need to take a note from emporium, and after you've built something once, it'll build all the mid tier components for you if you have the base materials.

Avatar image for robertbyronz
robertbyronz

only go so far on ps4, but picked this up on Xbox with the idea that this is where I would really play it. Loaded it up last night, and wow night and day difference. great job guys!

Avatar image for scatterbrain007
scatterbrain007

Really upset they had to wipe out my base that had a circuit board farm. Uggghh!! I'm loving the update but dammit, my farm!! Lol

Avatar image for phoenix1289
phoenix1289

@scatterbrain007: Sean Murray addressed this, hopefully should fix your issue.

https://twitter.com/NoMansSky/status/1021885951138770945

Avatar image for pumpkinnuggets
PumpkinNuggets

@phoenix1289: just another lie from Murray. No, nothing can be restored from base computers. Amazing how a community of dunces just accept blatant bs.

Avatar image for deactivated-5b6fdad101071

Oh for crying out loud. They even created a tutorial mission specifically for the purposes of showing how to reclaim an old base.

I, however, happily restarted a new save because I wanted a fresh experience. Stop seeing malicious intent where none exists.

Avatar image for scatterbrain007
scatterbrain007

@phoenix1289: Yeah, read that in the patch notes a few hours ago. From that twitter feed it seems like a lot of people are having trouble with it though.

Avatar image for rodoxthedark
rodoxthedark

Iv been trying to find out how much better it looks on Xbox x vs ps pro, and if it’s worth buying it again on x, games really good now and figured if it’s loads better looking on x I’ll get it for that, no fan boy answers please!! :)

Avatar image for dbeaulieu
dbeaulieu

@rodoxthedark: well, xbonex has better graphics capabilities in general but I don't know that it really matters for this game. Its not really a graphical masterpiece. The one thing that matters in this is going to be the rendering.

Avatar image for xantufrog
xantufrog

Sounds awesome. I can't wait to give it a try this weekend. It sounds like if I don't start a new game then I will miss some really helpful tutorials and unlockable missions though...

Moderator
Avatar image for Bastion00
Bastion00

@xantufrog: Well I gave it another shot. I was initially impressed but once again I just didn't really feel anything for it. Kudos to them for working so hard to make it better but it's still just not for me.

  • 56 results
  • 1
  • 2