Back in March, we got word that Hello Games would be releasing a massive update for No Man’s Sky this summer called “NEXT.” Billed as “the biggest ever,” Sean Murray was vague with the release date and details. However, it was speculated that the devs would finally give the space sandbox a full-fledged multiplayer mode.
Today Murray confirmed that the update would indeed bring genuine multiplayer to the game. The previous iteration of multiplayer left little to be desired.
“We are letting people know that you’ll be able to play No Man’s Sky as a full multiplayer experience with your friends in NEXT,” said the studio head. “We wanted to share our new cover art too.”
Murray had previously explained that they had decided to call the update NEXT because it was the “next step in a longer journey” for the studio and the players. Adding multiplayer support is undoubtedly a big step in the right direction when you consider Murray had said the game would be multiplayer at launch.
While he did note that the universe is so massive that the odds of two players ending up in the same location would be remote, this turned out to be a lie. There was no multiplayer support when the title released, and the company endured a massive amount of criticism over the issue.
It did come to light later that Sony had pushed Hello Games to release the game even though they knew it was not ready. Murray and team buckled to the pressure and launched a product that had no chance to live up to the hype.
To the studio’s credit, it has worked very hard over the last almost two years to improve the title, and there is no argument that the game has changed for the good. All the added content from the three major updates — Foundation, Pathfinder, Atlas Rises — has been free, and the fourth installment will be no different. Multiplayer support is the NEXT step in bringing No Man’s Sky to the level of quality that Hello Games promised.
The NEXT update will hit PlayStation 4 and PC on July 24. This date coincides with the launch of the long-awaited Xbox One version of the game.