No Man’s Sky VR Review

No Man's Sky VR Review
No Man's Sky VR Review
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When No Man’s Sky was released in 2016 it received an overwhelmingly negative reception due to the many faults and bugs that were littered throughout the game. Fortunately, though, the developers (Hello Games) didn’t abandon the project and No Man’s Sky has seen numerous updates and patches over recent years.

Now, No Man’s Sky can confidently claim to be one of the best games available for the PS4, and with the addition of virtual reality capabilities, the game’s pull increased tenfold. Indeed, it seems VR gaming was designed for a title like No Man’s Sky – what could be better than navigating an entire universe full of umpteen quintillion planets for your perusal. In this article, we look at why the game is so good in virtual reality. Read on for our no Mans Sky VR review  

Background

No Man's Sky Starship
No Man’s Sky Starship

The premise of the game sounds ridiculously ambitious, and there was a time when that ambition seemed to be too overbearing for the capabilities of a video game. all games start the same for each player, you start on a planet in which you must traverse in order to find resources to repair your Starship.

The crazy thing is, though, that all players will have a different experience completing these initial missions – each game starts on an entirely new unique planet within the procedurally generated universe of No Man’s Sky. Additionally, each planet has its own unique landscape, flora and fauna. Once you’ve explored your current planet, simply jump in your starship and hyperspace travel to the next – your experience will be different.

No Man’s Sky Story

No Man's Sky VR Deep Sea Exploration
No Man’s Sky VR Deep Sea Exploration

Although the game is largely made up of exploration, colonisation, and intergalactic travel, there is a storyline which guides the main narrative. You play as a character simply known as “the Traveller”, who wakes up on an unknown planet with no recollection of how you got there.

After locating your starship you must travel to another planetary system. Things get tricky, though, when you encounter three different alien species – the Gek, the Vy’keen, and the Korvax. These species inhabit the Galaxy and all of them have different backgrounds and ideas as to how they think the universe should be utilized and navigated.

The protagonist also has a desire to reach the centre of the Galaxy, being drawn there by an unknown presence that compels the Traveller to delve deeper. A number of alien NPCs are encountered along the way, each providing new information about what to expect at the centre of the Galaxy. Ultimately, you learn that there is a strange being at the centre, and you are guided towards it via a black hole.

Without spoiling the rest of the story, it should be known that there is an intriguing plot line that nicely supplements the main exploration element of the gameplay, and it is well worth completing the main missions of No Man’s Sky to find out the Traveller’s journey.

VR Gameplay

No Man's Sky Terrain Manipulation
No Man’s Sky Terrain Manipulation

Travelling through an entire universe with a virtual reality headset provides a level of immersion that few games are able to provide. It would be easy to get a game of this scale so wrong, but the VR element of No Man’s Sky is executed to perfection.

One particular improvement that VR provides in the game is to the user interface navigation. On a regular console or PC, you have to continuously switch the screen to bring up the resources and other utility menus that you need to advance in the game. With the VR headset, however, this is cleverly worked into a holographic UI system that requires the player to point at the options they want to select in front of them, without changing the screen. It feels realistic in a futuristic sense and does wonders for maintaining the immersion. This may require some getting used to at first, but once you become more adept in navigating the system, it really adds to the fluidity of the gameplay.

If there’s one problem with the VR gameplay in No Man’s Sky, it’s that it’s too immersive. you can easily get lost inside the world and forget about reality for a while, and although some may say this level of escapism is a good thing (particularly in 2020…), it’s easy to get disoriented and discombobulated upon leaving the headset. For this reason, recommend taking regular breaks when playing the game.

Every aspect of the game was modified for the VR adaptation of moment Sky, from driving starships or moon buggies, to mining resources and manipulating the terrain. In fact, what could sometimes feel like monotonous tasks become much more enjoyable and hands-on tasks when you are carrying out the movements yourself through the VR headset.

The VR control options in No Man’s Sky are fairly typical of games in the genre. You have the option of switching between snap and smooth turning modes, you can enable or disable the VR vignette, and you can alter various other movement options.

Roundup

No Man's Sky VR - Starship Travel
No Man’s Sky VR – Starship Travel

No Man’s Sky VR feels like a completely different game to what was found in the original non-VR release. It’s different in a good way, though. There are still some issues (most notably with frame rates), but on the whole, the game delivers an incredible virtual reality experience and is a must-buy for fans of VR gaming.

As with most games, when you shine a light on specific aspects of No Man’s Sky VR, blemishes and flaws will become apparent, but this is more than outset by the level of immersion and incredible escapability that multi-planetary hopping within a video game provides. For anyone on the fence in this game, we suggest that you don’t err on the side caution and give it a go as soon as possible.  

Get in Touch

We hope you enjoyed reading our No Man’s Sky VR review. If you think that we missed any points about the virtual reality version of the game please let us know in the comments section below, we always enjoy hearing from our readers.

If you enjoyed this article, you may also like reading about the most realistic virtual reality games available right now – there we discuss games such as LA Noire: The VR Case Files and Lone Echo among others.

For any other enquiries, please contact me at richard@blogofgames.com

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