No Man’s Sky Invites Players to The Abyss

The next larger-scale content update for the space survival game No Man’s Sky is letting players find out if it is indeed better down where it’s wetter. The Abyss update has brought on a significant level of…er…depth to the game’s underwater worlds, with new buildings and pursuits as of today.

the abyss update

The underwater locations of No Man’s Sky’s planets have gone through an overhaul, with an expanded variety of underwater life, new materials to collect and a number of new missions for players to take up. Several things can be scavenged from underwater, from lost cargo to sunken ruins to even rare crashed starships that can be brought back to the skies.

Exploring the deep is also being refined with a variety of new submersible building parts to let players craft underwater bases and a new Nautilon submarine. The Nautilon can be summoned to any ocean, and can even be customized both visually and in terms of equipment loadout with mining or combat equipment.

The update has also brought a new vehicle shop merchant to the space stations in the game, and has made tweaks to frigates that lets them be scanned by the Analysis Visor and allows players repair friendly frigates in multiplayer. The full patch notes can be found here while a trailer showcasing the new underwater goodies is below.

Our Thoughts

We actually hadn’t considered that the underwater segments of No Man’s Sky needed an overhaul, but we’re certainly glad to see it! It’s looking like things will be significantly busier in the various oceans of this game’s universe.

Source: official site

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MMO Money: Tencent’s $20 Billion Loss and Fortnite’s Decline

After having taken a little bit of time off for the end of convention season the weekly online gaming business article is back with more amazing news. We have Superdata’s latest gaming revenue charts, the UK’s weekly gaming chart, a little bit of lockbox news, and a company that lost $20 billion in value and is still going strong.

 

Superdata July Charts

Fortnite's Decline

Superdata released their monthly look at the gaming charts around the world with some interesting findings for July. First up, League of Legends drops down to second in terms of earnings on PC. It was overtaken by Dungeon Fighter Online which is massively popular in the east. In fact, only 2 of the top 5 PC games at the moment are from the West; LoL, and Fortnite. Speaking of Fortnite, the game’s earnings were only up 2% in July over June which is prompting many to say that the game’s peak is now behind us and Fortnite’s decline is imminent. However, it is still growing…for now. And, if they can get past all the security issues, Fortnite does still have the Android release coming which will be massive for the game’s population and revenue.

Overwatch, despite having a very stable player base is seeing revenue continue to drop month after month. In fact, the game is no longer charting at all but looking back as far as December, this isn’t the first time that has happened this year. It was also the case in February and April. In December 2017 and January it was number 10 on the PC chart. It hasn’t appeared on the chart for PC again since then. Looking at the charts for all of 2017 Overwatch ranked number 2 on the revenue charts for all Premium PC games. So, while it may not be on the charts right now, there is every chance for it to come back as it has done previously. On the other end of the spectrum, No Man’s Sky had its best month since it launched, and GTA V had its second best.

Fortnite still hasn’t managed to make it into the charts for Mobile games and in fact, the mobile chart changed very little from June to July. The one change was Fate/Grand Order overtaking Monster Strike. Until Fortnite has a global release on Android we’re unlikely to see it push into the mobile charts. Even then, the early security issues may have done enough lasting damage to make sure they don’t chart.

Source: Superdata

 

Tencent Market Value Drops by $20 Billion…but its ok

Tencent mobile financials - MMOGames.com - Your source for MMOs & MMORPGs

If any other company besides Tencent had lost $20 billion in market value the company would be done for. For Tencent though, that was just 5%. While they did lose a massive amount of money, the real story is why. China has been cracking down on games from other countries for quite some time. Tencent has been able to profit off of this. They know the laws better than any Western studio so they can offer to publish the game in China and deal with all the red tape themselves, but recently China has been making it even harder for game studios.

What triggered this massive loss for Tecent was China’s new regulation that will restrict the number of new online games that are released as well as implementing age-appropriate restrictions on games, including how long you can play them. The reason they give for doing this is the massive number of nearsightedness found in Chinese youth. Though there hasn’t been any scientific backing of the claim that screen time has any impact on vision. All of this puts Tencent’s current business model in jeopardy and they will have to make some changes if they want to continue. If you’re interested in reading more on this check out our recent news post that goes into more detail.

 

UK Charts Gaming Charts

Minecraft MMO Money: Tencent's $20 Billion Loss and Fortnite's Decline

The UK is one of the few countries that release gaming charts on a weekly basis. We’ve decided to add them to our weekly business article as they give us some idea of how games are performing, not just in the UK but among all western audiences. At the top of the charts this week was F1 2018, managing to hold out against a new game on the chart, PES 2019. In third is Grand Theft Auto V which actually climbed one place from last week. PUBG managed to climb up from 11th to 7th this week. Amazingly, Minecraft is still in the top 20, last week it was at 14 and this week it dropped to 20. Check out the top 10 for the week ending on September 1st below.

This Week Game Last Week
1 F1 2018 1
2 Pro Evolution Soccer 2019 New Entry
3 Grand Theft Auto V 4
4 Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy 3
5 Yakuza Kiwami 2 New Entry
6 Mario Kart 8 Deluxe 5
7 PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds 11
8 God of War 6
9 Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate New Entry
10 Fifa 18 10

Source: Press Release

 

Lootboxes

Overwatch Winter Wonderland - Christmas Loot Boxes

There hasn’t been a whole lot to talk about on the lootbox front. It seems like the world is slowly moving on and forgetting the topic altogether. Or maybe there’s a whole lot going on in the background that is going to take time to come into being. Either way, the big news recently is that Blizzard is disabling Overwatch and Heroes of the Storm lockboxes for Belgian players. Earlier this year Belgium was one of the first countries to investigate lootboxes in online games and issued threats to ban multiple games. Valve very quickly took action for CSGO and Dota 2.

Blizzard announced that they would be doing this on the official forums. In it they said…

“In April 2018, the Belgian Gaming Commission published a report that was endorsed by the Belgian Ministry of Justice in which they concluded that paid loot boxes in Overwatch are considered gambling under local law. While we at Blizzard were surprised by this conclusion and do not share the same opinion, we have decided to comply with their interpretation of Belgian law. As a result, we have no choice but to implement measures that will prevent Overwatch and Heroes of the Storm players located in Belgium from purchasing in-game loot boxes and loot chests with real money and gems.

No matter what, we want to make sure that our players around the world have the best entertainment experience possible. While players in Belgium will no longer be able to purchase paid loot boxes in Overwatch and loot chests in Heroes of the Storm, they’ll still be able to earn them by playing the games, and they’ll still have access to all in-game content.

These measures will be implemented shortly. We also remain open to further discussions with the Belgian Gaming Commission and Ministry of Justice on this topic.”

Source: Overwatch Forums

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No Man’s Sky Releases its First Community Event

The NEXT update of No Man’s Sky has arguably done a lot of good for the spacefaring survival sandbox’s community, and now that community will be able to get a little more busy. The first No Man’s Sky community event has gone live, introducing the first iteration of the NEXT update’s promise of regular content for players to enjoy.

no man's sky community event

To take part in this new event, players will have to have completed their first Space Anomaly mission and speak with Specialist Polo to get started. The task seems simple enough on paper: head to a corner of space, excavate strange objects and bring them back.

Doing so will reward a currency known as Quicksilver, which players can trade in for a variety of cosmetic items including base decals, unique base decorations, a new emote and a character customization item.

This is the first of planned weekly events for No Man’s Sky, with future events offering even more unique rewards such as additional base parts, emotes, customizations and exocraft. All told, over 50 new items are planned to be added. Methods of earning Quicksilver and event functionality will also expand in future updates.

For the time being, full details can be found on the No Man’s Sky website.

Our Thoughts

While that might not seem like a particularly taxing event in the grander MMO or multiplayer scheme of things, the No Man’s Sky community does seem to enjoy sharing their more laid back and chill experiences, so this seems to be right up their alley. That said, we’re looking forward to seeing these weekly events expand in scope and depth.

Source: official site

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GOG Version of No Man’s Sky Won’t Get Multiplayer Until Later

The NEXT update of No Man’s Sky, as mentioned by us plenty of times before, is pretty honkin’ big, but one of the biggest aspects of the update is the introduction of true multiplayer. So imagine people’s reaction, then, when they learned that the No Man’s Sky GOG version isn’t getting the multiplayer features of NEXT until later.

no man's sky gog version

As a result of technical issues that appear to stem from GOG’s DRM-free business model, players of the PC version who got No Man’s Sky on the distribution platform are going to have to wait until some time later this year in order for multiplayer to come online:

“For a small, independent studio, developing the feature across multiple platforms is a hugely ambitious and technical challenge which resulted in this delayed release. Hello Games is however joining forces with GOG.COM to introduce full multiplayer via the GOG Galaxy platform.

“We appreciate your immense support and patience.”

The statement does mention that other features of the NEXT update, including all of the content and visual upgrades, will still be playable on the GOG version regardless. However, the timing of the announcement that GOG users won’t get multiplayer – putting the reveal at about midnight UK time – has upset several people.

As for the NEXT update itself, a patch that seeks to correct a number of bugs has hit the PTS-like Experimental Branch on GOG and Steam, and is reportedly making its way through certification on PS4 and Xbox One. Details on what those fixes involve can be found here.

Our Thoughts

Yikes. The fact that a delay is necessary is perfectly fine, of course, but a bit of advance warning would certainly have been nice. Perhaps the team assumed they would have whatever technical hurdles that prevented multiplayer on GOG cleared in time for NEXT’s arrival? In any case, here’s hoping “later this year” isn’t too late.

Sources: GOG forums, Steam via Twitter

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No Man’s Sky NEXT Gets its Full Release Details

At the time of this writing, my husband is right next to me playing the No Man’s Sky NEXT update while I’m at my desk watching a bit. But for now, and for people like myself who otherwise can’t be in-game, we’ve got a full-on release website loaded with details on the content update to scour.

no man's sky next

The landing page for the NEXT update is pretty much loaded with practically every detail that Update 1.5 brings to the survival sandbox’s table, with deep dives into a number of features that fans are likely already familiar with and a few bits of information that perhaps wasn’t otherwise revealed.

Among these updates are a rebalancing of every resource and substance in the game, which now take a planet’s biome, weather and stellar classification into account in terms of its location. Crafting has also seen a new layer with the addition of buildable refiners that let players refine raw materials into more valuable materials for advanced recipes.

Exploration can now involve digging up things in addition to charting the stars and planets in this update, with the Terrain Manipulator now able to be used to unearth things like buried ruins and technology modules that can be converted into base parts with a Blueprint Analyzer.

Those are just a couple of highlights from a significantly-sized list of features, so you’re welcome to look it all over right here.

Our Thoughts

Yep, that is a whole lot of new stuff to explore and find out, and even more for us to unpack as this update continues to play out. We’re looking forward to seeing how this whole new chapter of No Man’s Sky plays out. And I, personally, am going to have to ignore my husband playing the game literally three feet away from me.

Source: official site

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Weekly Updates Planned After No Man’s Sky NEXT Launches

To call the No Man’s Sky NEXT update a game-changer isn’t really a huge reach considering all of the features arriving with it. However, the devs are not going to let up after the update arrives as No Man’s Sky weekly updates are on-deck after NEXT goes live.

no man's sky weekly updates

The weekly updates for the survival sandbox will arrive in the form of missions or events, with most of them focusing on bringing players to a specific part of the game’s galaxy or achieving community goals. Successfully completing these weekly missions will net players a secondary in-game currency to purchase things like emotes and customization parts, and will eventually also offer unique ships and vehicles.

Hello Games’ Sean Murray was quick to mention that the currency and its related in-game store are not tied to any microtransaction model. “This is not a loot box thing, it’s not a microtransaction thing, it’s 100% free,” he said.

No Man’s Sky will also be launching a new website known as the Galactic Atlas, which will let players see in-game events on a galaxy map and let players create their own points of interest. Portions of the galaxy most visited by players will also be officially recognized on the Galactic Atlas.

The first of these weekly updates is due to arrive to No Man’s Sky the week following NEXT’s launch on Tuesday, July 24th.

Our Thoughts

Clearly, it appears the folks at Hello Games got the memo about there not being a whole lot to do in No Man’s Sky. We hope that these new events are interesting enough for fans of the survival sandbox and that the dev team are able to keep up this weekly cadence.

Sources: IGN, Eurogamer

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No Man’s Sky Multiplayer Gets Firm Details and a Trailer

We all have been waiting pretty patiently to learn what No Man’s Sky online multiplayer is actually going to look like, and now our patience has been rewarded. A significant update from the devs has offered deeper information about the NEXT update along with a trailer showing off multiplayer in action in the sandbox.

no man's sky online multiplayer

The most striking part of the NEXT update, of course, is the new third-person camera, letting players of the game experience life outside of their own digital skulls on-foot or in their spaceships. The new camera view is part of a visual overhaul for No Man’s Sky with improved planetary terrain generation, textures, and other graphical goodies.

Multiplayer itself appears to be a generally open affair, with the announcement heralding the ability for players to play online with friends or complete strangers. The announcement also makes note that it’s up to players to decide whether to help people stay alive or prey on others.

Base building in the game is also getting a major upgrade, letting players build significantly larger bases as well as multiple bases on multiple planets. Additional base pieces are also being added and multiplayer will let others put together entire colonies.

Finally, freighter command is also seeing an expansion, with players being granted the power to command an entire fleet of frigates. These fleets can either come along with you as you explore or be deployed to search other parts of the galaxy, and the freighter will also have access to multiplayer missions that can be taken up via the Galactic Command Station on the bridge.

Of course, reading about it is one thing, but seeing it in action – however staged it may well be – is completely another, so there’s a trailer showing off gameplay in action below.

Our Thoughts

Naturally, all of this certainly looks and sounds great, and we definitely are fans of the third-person perspective, but the most important question remains unanswered in this announcement: how will PvP flagging work, if at all? From the information granted in this presser, it would appear PvP flagging will be non-existent, which might be a significant turn off for some.

Source: press release

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No Man’s Sky Lists 11 Major Changes Ahead of NEXT Update

While most fans of the soon-to-be-actually-multiplayer space survival sandbox No Man’s Sky wait for the NEXT update to arrive, it’s also possible that there are some former players of the game who were perhaps jaded by the title’s underwhelming launch. To that point, a new No Man’s Sky features video has outlined 11 of the largest updates the game has gotten since then.

no man's sky features video

The video takes you through some of the most notable improvements that have come to No Man’s Sky over the course of its three major titled updates, including base building, additional missions and story beats, terraforming, and a reason for those weird portal buildings to actually exist.

New information on just what’s actually in No Man’s Sky NEXT is still pretty much non-existent, but the reveal of the video has also included word of pre-order bonuses for players who purchase the game on Xbox One, including an Artios-VI multitool, 10,000 Units of in-game currency, and a special cosmetic space suit with a remarkably silly-looking helmet as pictured below (click the image to expand):

no man's sky features video

No Man’s Sky NEXT is arriving on July 24th for NA players and July 27th for European players. The “11 Things” video is embedded below.

Our Thoughts

Seems like the folks at Hello Games have learned their lesson about showing their hand too soon. While we were hoping to report on some more substantial news about No Man’s Sky NEXT, we’re just going to have to sit and wait until they post patch notes like everyone else, it looks like.

Source: press release

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No Man’s Sky Gets Full Multiplayer and Xbox One Release in July

One of the biggest features that was over-promised and woefully under-delivered was No Man’s Sky multiplayer – the real stuff, not that weird ghost meeting thing that happened in August of 2016 or the floaty orb thing from August 2017. Now, the Next update for the survival title will bring honest-to-goodness, real, actually literal multiplayer at long freaking last.

no man's sky multiplayer

The online multiplayer features of No Man’s Sky sound like standard stuff, overall. The game will be granting the opportunity to form small teams or meet total strangers in the game’s vast universe, with the potential to make new friends or be attacked on sight. Base building will expand to let colonies be created and visited by others online, and even let players build exocraft race tracks to play on and share. Finally, players can form up wings to take on enemies – and other players – in ship-to-ship dogfights.

“Multiplayer completely changes the No Man’s Sky experience,” notes Hello Games founder Sean Murray. “It’s emergent, fun and intense in ways we always wanted it to be. I’m so happy this is finally happening.”

In addition to the multiplayer Next update, No Man’s Sky will also be making its way to the Xbox One, arriving as a complete title with Next, Atlas Rises, Foundation and Pathfinder updates included along with all of the relevant patches. As for the Next update, it will be completely free for players who currently own the title.

No Man’s Sky’s final form and the Xbox One edition will launch on Tuesday, July 24th for NA players and Friday, July 27th for players in Europe.

Our Thoughts

Finally! While No Man’s Sky has been slowly making solid and notable improvements since its disastrous launch, it’s still heartening to see that this survival sandbox is becoming the thing it was always meant to be. We expect some more information on how multiplayer will work in the coming weeks, including how PvP flagging will work…if there will be any at all.

Source: press release

Articles Related to No Man’s Sky

No Man’s Sky Atlas Rises Update Introduces Multiplayer (Sort Of)
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No Man’s Sky Announces “Next” Update and Xbox One Release

The No Man’s Sky Next update is going to be the next update for No Man’s Sky. If that sentence is a bit confusing, I’d just advise to pay close attention to the capitalization of “next” in this report. Hope that helps.

no man's sky next update

Developer Hello Games announced the intention to both kick out this latest free update for the exploration sandbox as well as bring the game in full to Xbox One players, complete with all of the most recent updates including Foundation, Pathfinder and Atlas Rises.

As for what the Next update has to offer, Hello Games’ Sean Murray is keeping pretty mum on the specifics while also going ham on the PR in his statement:

“We are calling this No Man’s Sky NEXT because it is an important next step in a journey for No Man’s Sky, for Hello Games and for our devoted community. Each update for No Man’s Sky has been more successful than the last; this was especially true of our last update Atlas Rises. It emboldens the team to push ourselves further. This journey is far from over, and it’s exciting to be working again on something you know will surprise people.”

That’s about all that’s available regarding this upcoming content update for now. Further details are expected at some point soon, while the Xbox One edition of No Man’s Sky can be expected to launch later this year.

Our Thoughts

Well, that’s not an awful lot to go on. That said, at least something is coming to No Man’s Sky next with Next. We’re be sure to provide more concrete details in the near future.

Source: press release

Articles Related to No Man’s Sky

No Man’s Sky Atlas Rises Update Introduces Multiplayer (Sort Of)
A Deeper Look at the No Man’s Sky Foundation Update
No Man’s Sky Game Page

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