Normally, when you want to promote video or gameplay footage o..."/> Normally, when you want to promote video or gameplay footage o..."/>

In No Man’s Sky, Stephen Colbert Now Owns A Planet (Video)


Normally, when you want to promote video or gameplay footage of your upcoming video game, it comes through either stage reveals at giant conferences like E3, gamescom or The Game Awards. If your game has already been revealed, updates would come on your Youtube or Twitch channels. Understanding his game might be larger than that on a fundamental level (that, or he’s got a great marketing team), Sean Murray of Hello Games went on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert last night to show off No Man’s Sky to an audience that likely has far fewer gaming enthusiasts than you’d expect.

Right off the top, Stephen Colbert asked Sean Murray if No Man’s Sky has a release date, seeing how he’s showing off the game on his show. Unfortunately, no news to report in that regard, dashing the hopes we had last week when Colbert’s guests for this week were announced. For the first two and a half minutes of the above video, mostly, it’s Sean just describing the basics of the game (which have been explained and shown off numerous times before). It’s only when the gameplay kicks in that you start to see Stephen Colbert marvel at the game.

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Of all the No Man’s Sky demos we’ve seen, because this is for a live audience, the gameplay footage shown is decidedly more on rails. The game launches above a planet, where Sean has a cheat mode running that allows him to jump from planet to planet within the solar system. Something I noticed is that their algorithms for computational input of how each planet is detailed runs a lot faster and smoother than what we’ve seen before. When Sean jumps onto the planet Loyk, it takes about 4 seconds for the world around him to be created. Whether the demo was running on PS4 or PC is unknown, although Sean is using a DualShock 4.

The main exploration mechanic was the focus yet again for this audience, a good move for a group that probably hasn’t seen No Man’s Sky before. Pointing a lazer at new discoveries, Sean playing as @StephenAtHome (Stephen Colbert’s personal Twitter account) goes on to name a bison and mole-like species as Colbison and Molebert, respectively. In addition to a species of fish and dinosaur, we even have a planet somewhere in the game called Colbert Prime.

What made the segment so special was the fact that Colbert (before likely pre-interviews) seemed to understand the magnitude of each aspect of No Man’s Sky, and how it is something not typically possible in games prior to this. The notion of a game and its universe running its own periodic table, exploring solar systems and local clusters as each planet shares its own ecological habitat seems genuinely exciting to Colbert in a way that goes beyond playing nice for the guest as a host of a talk show. Nothing new was shown off in No Man’s Sky today; it’s the newness of the audience and their reaction that makes this special.

No Man’s Sky still doesn’t have a release date, but it will launch for the PC and PS4 at the same time, whenever that is.

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