Sometimes…well, most times, really, games will get a lot of hype, then release to some very underwhelming reception from reviews, the public, or any number of different things. Point being, it doesn’t live up to the hype. Maybe it gets patched. Maybe things get fixed, but the taste has already soured and there’s little hope for redemption until the studio makes a new game or they release a sequel.
Then there’s No Man’s Sky. A game with a tremendous amount of hype and promise that absolutely failed on release. The backlash from everyone was tremendous and, at the time, I’d say it was warranted. And to be clear, I don’t mean the hateful backlash – the kind involving death threats and just the horrible things thrown their way for not being the game that was promised. I’m talking about the criticism of the game and even to the point of comparing the talking points given from the developers to what was actually released.
Except, if you did that now, you’d be underselling the game. They brought in everything they promised and a whole big bag of things they never even mentioned way back when. No Man’s Sky is now the game the developers always wanted it to be and even more so, it continues to grow and evolve.
It is one of the more impressive redemption arcs in gaming that we’ve probably ever seen. Given the flak, they really shouldn’t have survived but they kept going and, even better, the audience received them. They didn’t abandon the game and with the quality of life changes and improvements made, they brought in more people. Even now they are being compared with something like Starfield – a massive game from a major studio with likely hundreds of people working on it and being compared to this little studio of less than 50 people who made a game 6 years ago that still impresses, improves, and, apparently, inspires.
What’s not inspiring? Well…Ubisoft it’s been 3,252 days since the last Splinter Cell game (non-animated series or guest spot in another game franchise, remake, or VR exclusive).