A new update for No Man’s Sky, releasing today, brings a variety of different fixes and features to the expansive galaxy exploration game. The headline feature from this latest free update is the introduction of cross-play, allowing players on PC, Playstation, and Xbox to team up together for the game’s multiplayer.
It’s not all that long ago that Playstation and Xbox were completely walled gardens, with self-contained multiplayer communities, where the only way to join players on either of those systems was to use one yourself. Both Microsoft and Sony gradually opened up to the idea of cross-platform multiplayer with PC players, but there’s still only a small number of games that allow multiplayer with both Playstation and Xbox players.
With this new update, No Man’s Sky joins the ranks of titles like Fortnite, Minecraft, Call of Duty and Need for Speed: Heat, in offering shared multiplayer with players on PC, Playstation and Xbox.
Hello games provided these notes on how the cross-platform multiplayer works:
Replaced the entire network backend, so that players can now make multiplayer connections across all platforms.
Cross-platform groups can be created or joined in game, or from the frontend.
Ambient multiplayer on the Space Anomaly, in space, or on planets, can now match you with players from any platform.
Players from your own platform are identified by your platform’s icon. Players from another platform are identified by a controller icon.
They’ve also added some new chat options, including adding support for automatic transcribing and translation. Lieutenant Uhura would be proud. Managing friends has also been streamlined, with a few new options available for adding people to your friends list. There’s also some refinements to the VR support, and a host of bug fixes and refinements. You can read the full patch notes here.
It’s always great to see a game that had some teething issues out of the gate turn it around. No Man’s Sky fell short of some player’s expectations at launch, and to be fair I think some of those expectations were reasonable based on the pre-release communication surrounding the game, but clearly Hello Games have remained extremely committed to continuing to work on the game after release. There aren’t many games originally released in 2016 that are still getting this kind of support, and certainly not when there are no microtransactions or other monetization. Even if the day one version of the game didn’t live up to some people’s expectations, I think the post-launch support has been far beyond any reasonable expectation.
For people subscribed to Xbox Game Pass for PC, the game has also been made available there, and the update will be going out to the various platforms the game is available at some point today.
Will you be jumping back into No Man’s Sky with this update? Are there any other games you’d love to see cross-platform multiplayer added to? Let us know in the comments.