No Man's Sky Pre-Review Diary - Day 1
In the beginning...
Here it is: No Man's Sky. As much as I tried to avoid hype in the months leading up to this moment, I found it difficult to control my excitement. I was fueled by fascination, not only with what I hoped to discover during my journey, but broadly speaking, with figuring out what No Man's Sky really is.
As I near the full review of No Man's Sky, I will chronicle my adventure on a daily basis, sharing my overall experience, insights into trading and exploration, and images of my most interesting discoveries.
I hate Mondays.
The first thing I saw when the curtains drew was a strange and colorful world. More importantly, I saw my ship, damaged and useless. "Time to get to work," I thought. But something else caught my eye...
In Atlas I trust?
There lay a beacon next to my ship, and after I examined it, thoughts of a supreme being crept into my consciousness. "Atlas" was calling my name. Given a choice to seek Atlas, or forge my own path in a completely alien world, I chose the former. I prayed I had made the right decision.
Hey little fellah!
As I set out to gather materials in order to repair my ship, I kept noticing these things buzzing overhead, and occasionally spying on my activities. Are they agents of Atlas? I soon realize they are called "sentinels," but their purpose was still a mystery.
After gathering resources and repairing my ship--details far too mundane to report in full--I continued to wander the land. It was after a series of valleys and hills that I spotted a small outpost. Inside, I met a stranger. It spoke an odd language that was entirely foreign to me. All I could go on was its body language, which communicated a stern demand for silicates. I'm alone, without my wits. I comply out of fear of retribution.
Load 'em up.
After spending a fair amount of time gathering resources, it became clear that my backpack was, let's say, small. Imagine my relief when I spotted an upgrade station that gave me an extra slot to carry resources and valuable trade commodities.
Now we're talking. The being I met earlier was a Korvax, and while I knew next to nothing about the Korvax dialect, this monolith taught me a Korvax word, and a valuable lesson: to explore is to learn--if you're lucky.
Ship repaired, and a few discoveries under my belt, I set sail for the stars. As I flew up and up, the cosmos opened up to me, revealing mysterious celestial bodies, strange lines in the sky--which I soon learned were evidence of trade routes--and seemingly infinite possibilities. If I could see something, I knew I could touch it. I was simultaneously inspired and frightened. Am I ready for this? Can I commit to a journey that may never end? There was only one way to find out: to go for it.
My first space station.
An icon in my overhead display tipped me off to a nearby space station. I jetted over to the strange, polygonal object, engaging various thrusters to cover incredible distances in mere seconds. When I pulled up, a tractor beam took control of my ship and began to pull me inward.
Friends or foes?
After I arrived at the space station, it didn't take long for others to arrive. It was difficult to know if they were friend or foe at first, but when they simply parked their ships and remained inside, I felt compelled to investigate. It turns out, despite their different backgrounds and occupations, they were at the station to trade.
Can I just make a down payment?
These traders weren't just selling materials and other small goods; they were open to selling their ships. I had a fair chunk of change in my coffers from a lot of legwork on my first planet, but this and the other ships were far out of my price range. Time to go back to work.
The return of Atlas.
After heading down to the surface of an undiscovered planet, I found this. While I was glad to know that I hadn't seen the last of Atlas, this monument, placed in the middle of a desolate landscape, was eerie. It seemed ancient and important. There's history to Atlas that I hadn't guessed before. I prayed that I wasn't getting in over my head.
Keep your eyes peeled.
To clear my head after visiting the odd Atlas monument, I set out on foot to hunt for resources, and really, some kind of purpose. Day turned to night, and I began to worry that I had effectively stranded myself. Then I found an observatory, which housed some health replenishments, a new blueprint to upgrade my tools, and a respite from crushing isolation.
Come to papa.
Though I was assuaged by the comforts of the observatory, it was this beacon that did me the most good. I was miles away from my ship--a half hour or more on foot--but after crafting a simple item, I was able to activate this beacon, and in turn, my starship. It was then that Atlas pinged me, telling me to head for the stars. What I saw next blew me away.
Trust your instincts.
Per Atlas' orders, I activated my hyperdrive and jumped to a new solar system. When I slowed and my vision cleared, there Atlas stood. Well, it wasn't actually Atlas, but an embodiment of what Atlas is. More than my earlier decisions, entering this chamber carried personal significance. My brain said to run away, but my gut told me to dive in. My gut won.
Into the belly of the beast.
After entering the inner chamber, I was met with an alien temple and an undulating red orb that seemed to breath; to be alive. I began to sweat. I was OK with broken conversations with aliens and irradiated environments, but Atlas' presence--or whatever I felt--stirred up anxiety. When my ship landed, I walked up to the altar. "Here goes nothing," I thought.
With arms wide open.
Strange though it made me feel at first, Atlas' presence ultimately offered comfort. I may not understand it, and how I can serve its purpose, but Atlas seems to offer a path toward knowledge. In a world filled with questions, I couldn't ignore its offer. I thought to myself: "I'm with you Atlas: until the bitter end."
Come back tomorrow for Day 2 of our No Man's Sky diary.
With Atlas on my side, I set out with a new purpose in mind. Time will tell if I made the right decision. Check back tomorrow for the next chapter of my incredible journey into the unknown.