No Man’s Sky’s Adrift expedition offers a lonely and hostile ‘alternative universe’


No Man’s Sky has spent years shoring up its MMO bona fides, and now, it’s doing the opposite with today’s Adrift update, which shrinks it all back down. “[I] have great memories of early unreleased versions of No Man’s Sky where there were no NPCs, no shops, no help… just you the player as a tiny dot lost in the infinite,” Hello Games’ Sean Murray says. “For our next update we wanted to allow players to experience an alternative universe. We are calling it Adrift, and for the first time players can be truly alone in No Man’s Sky.”

Apparently, Adrift was meant to be just a new expedition, but it “ballooned out into an update.”

“Removing other lifeforms means no shops, no trading, no shortcuts and no help, providing a very different survival experience,” the studio explains. “This alternative universe is more dangerous too, with sandworms now roaming free and fiend eggs spreading across planets. Buildings are broken and rusted, the few remaining landmarks the graves of lost Travellers. In space, a new ghostly frigate beckons, allowing players to recruit a piece of this lonely universe.”

“During the expedition, every star system has become abandoned, removing all NPCs, all active starships, and destroying system economies. A number of other gameplay changes have been made to reflect the strange nature of this universe, including to gameplay events, to player communications, and to the distribution of various hostile entities.”

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