The Story of How No Man’s Sky Came to Be

Today, in a video posted by Sony on YouTube, the history of Hello Games from the Joe Danger series to No Man’s Sky was shown for the first time. The video (posted below), takes a good look behind the scenes of the game and shows the ups and downs Hello Games has had to go through while developing No Man’s Sky.

Initially deemed Project Skyscraper, No Man’s Sky’s development started about a year and a half ago according to Managing Director of Hello Games, Sean Murray. “…we always knew the type of game we wanted to make, and we’d known it before we even started,” Murray states.

The project really began when Murray and three other Hello Games employees locked themselves away from the rest of the team to work on a prototype. For a year they worked by themselves, even going as far as using a separate entrance to the office than the rest of the team. “…and we actually didn’t show the rest of the team,” Murray says, “because we just wanted, almost the pressure and the isolation. Almost like it was a start up within this small studio that had to prove themselves.”

Murray goes on to talk about the flood that hit their studio just before Christmas and right after the initial reveal of No Man’s Sky at last year’s VGX. “Christmas Eve I got a text and then a call saying like, the office is starting to flood. This kind of space we had done up ourselves and everything and it was like, you know, kind of quite personal to us I guess, and was pretty much kind of wiped out in a few hours basically.”

Within a few weeks Hello Games was set back up for the most part, but the flood made them realize not everything can go smoothly.  Murray talks about how it feels to be on such a high from announcing a game to having your world turned around by something out of your control, “…and that was definitely indie development in like a microcosm. Its like the highs of like you’ve announced a game! People love it, to you’ve been flooded, you’re destitute, everything is gone, its wiped out. Go bankrupt.”

The video then goes on to recount their trip to E3 where the game was shown at Sony’s E3 Press Conference and the great reaction the they received from gamers after the reveal. It was the boost they really needed after the flood and it refueled their spirits.

Finally the video focuses on the game itself. Murray explains the game is being made out of love for the old sci-fi books they grew up with. The game really built itself around that dream of exploring your own universe and never knowing what you would find next. That is what this game is about and if Hello Games can nail that feeling when No Man’s Sky eventually releases, they may just become more than just an indie studio.

My Opinion:

This game has been on my radar ever since it was announced at the VGX, and getting to see the behinds the scene stuff for it has only made me more excited. I’ve always dreamt of being able to explore my own universe, go planet to planet with no load screens and it looks like Hello Games might just be able to pull it off with No Man’s Sky. I can’t wait to find out if they can.

Shaun Fales works at a video game store and is clearly way too excited for anything related to space. You can follow him on IGN, Twitch, and Twitter.

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