An unsolvable problem for space sim gaming technology is the seamless transition from space to planetfall and back again. A tiny four-man game company called Hello Games has finally cracked it.
This year at E3 2014, Sony held a press conference to tell the attendees about this amazing new offering. The entire universe is procedurally generated, meaning that instead of the worlds being prebuilt and stored, they’re constructed on the fly by the game engine. This includes vegetation, atmosphere, sea life, animal life, continents, oceans, civilizations, entire planetary systems and the stars they orbit, clusters, nebulae and a galaxy for them all to inhabit.

The universe is effectively limitless. Every player starts out on their own separate planet, so no two players will have the same experience playing the game.

The one thing that has us bummed out is that so far they have only announced this for the PS4, meaning that if you want a piece of this action you have to pony up for Yet Another Game Console, but Sony hasn’t had any trouble selling the boxes. When it launched in November of 2013, Sony sold a million units in 24 hours.

There have been other attempts to create seamless procedural universes for space exploration games, such as Limit Theory, the engine being developed by I-Novae Studios, and the Space Engine, created by Vladimir Romanyuk. While these come close, none are so rich and lush a simulation as No Man’s Sky.

Watch this amazing demonstration video. Then watch it again. It’s an amazing achievement.

Then start saving your shekels. To get your hands on this is going to set you back at least the price of a new PS4.

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SCIFI Radio Staff

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