Gamasutra: The Art & Business of Making Gamesspacer
View All     RSS
July 25, 2016
arrowPress Releases
July 25, 2016
PR Newswire
View All






If you enjoy reading this site, you might also want to check out these UBM Tech sites:


Designing the procedurally generated universe of No Man's Sky
Designing the procedurally generated universe of  No Man's Sky
February 19, 2016 | By Chris Kerr




"We have people that will fly down from a space station onto a planet and when they fly back up, the station isn't there anymore; the planet has rotated. People have filed that as a bug."

- Hello Games managing director and No Man's Sky chief architect Sean Murray speaking to The Atlantic.

What's the main difference between procedurally generated space explorer, No Man's Sky, and its nearest rivals?

According to the game's chief architect, Sean Murray, speaking to The Atlantic, the biggest difference is that No Man's Sky's incomprehensibly large universe is, above all else, authentic. 

Murray and the rest of the Hello Games team have spent years playing God; shaping a vast digital starscape in their own image -- learning to strike a careful balance between order and chaos, so that, when the time comes, they can let players explore its depths. 

“The physics of every other game—it’s faked,” explained Murray, speaking to The Atlantic. "When you’re on a planet, you’re surrounded by a skybox—a cube that someone has painted stars or clouds onto. If there is a day to night cycle, it happens because they are slowly transitioning between a series of different boxes.”

"Our day to night cycle is happening because the planet is rotating on its axis as it spins around the sun. There is real physics to that. We have people that will fly down from a space station onto a planet and when they fly back up, the station isn't there anymore; the planet has rotated. People have filed that as a bug."

The universe of No Man's Sky might be procedurally generated, but its rules are set in stone. So, it doesn't matter whether a planet, creature, or star is directly in front of a player or light-years away; they still exist, buried somewhere in the game's countless lines of code. 

"Creatures on a distant planet that nobody has ever visited are drinking from a watering hole or falling asleep because they’re following a formula that determines where they go and what they do; we just don’t run the formula for a place until we get there," Murray continues. 

"Whatever is around you, it actually doesn't matter whether it exists or not, because even the things you don’t see are still going about their business."

Head on over to The Atlantic for the complete interview.



Related Jobs

Nintendo of America Inc.
Nintendo of America Inc. — Austin, Texas, United States
[07.22.16]

RETRO STUDIOS - Tools Engineer
Telltale Games
Telltale Games — San Rafael, California, United States
[07.22.16]

Senior Graphics Engineer
War Drum Studios
War Drum Studios — Gainesville, Florida, United States
[07.22.16]

Game and Systems Programmer
Bohemia Interactive Simulations
Bohemia Interactive Simulations — Orlando, Florida, United States
[07.22.16]

Associate Producer









Loading Comments

loader image