As details about No Man’s Sky NEXT continue to pour in, one of the most surprising nuggets is the revelation that NEXT will introduce weekly updates to the space sim. This marks a move away from the large, sporadic updates Hello Games has favored up to now. Since release, the developer has released three sizeable updates with months of silence in-between.
The developer is intent on adopting the new format to ensure a steady stream of content in the form of community led challenges in the same vein as Fortnite’s Event Pass. Though Hello Games was quick to qualify ‘this is not a loot box thing, it’s not a micro transaction thing, it’s 100% free’, according to IGN.
Players will work towards unlocking community challenges such as traveling to a specific area of the galaxy for an in-game event inspired by mass scale events already occurring among the game’s remarkably devoted community of players, and various missions. When successfully completed, players will earn units for a second in-game currency that can be redeemed in a brand new rewards shop against cosmetic flare, emotes, and in the long run special spaceships.
In another community focused step, Hello Games is launching the Galactic Atlas, a web site that essentially catalogues and documents the evolving world of No Man’s Sky. Events will be highlighted as will be discoveries, points of interests, hubs, bases, and anything in between. In other words, a fleshed out galactic map.
The Galactic Atlas is also set to feature a leader board ranking player discoveries for all to see and admire and a list of Portal addresses to simplify cross-galactic travel for players. This addition seems particularly apt given that NEXT aims to create the sense of a living and breathing universe littered with stories, structures, and signs of the passage of other players.
Reading between the lines of the news, we may find Hello Games being considerable more communicative post-NEXT release, which is no bad thing given the developer’s tendency to limit interactions with fans and the press in the wake of No Man’s Sky‘s sketchy release back in August 2016.
No Man’s Sky NEXT launches on PS4, PC, and Xbox One on July 24th and is set to be the game’s biggest update yet with full-fledged multiplayer, improved and unlimited base building, a graphic overhaul, improved AI, and a long list of other new features and improvements.