Shot Thru the Sentinel Heart

Without skipping a single step, let us continue on to the next segment of our discussion on No Man’s Sky’s combat mechanics but this time, we will be on foot.

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Innovation comes from passion. No doubt you’ve heard of a game called Call of Duty. Now if you haven’t perhaps you’ve reached this blog by accident.Most likely, now you’re wondering how you got to the public library and why you’re wearing a paper bag as a hat. These are all very good questions. Another good question is how a studio with no previous accomplishments could single handily change the face of the first-person shooter genre. I am most certainly talking about Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (1 and 2) a shooter that introduced revolutionary shooter mechanics. Some would say they practically perfected it. So then another superb question is raised. How, in the world, can a developer screw up shooting mechanics so horribly when the template of perfection has been handed to them for the last decade. Where does one begin with this jumble of monstrosity?

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This is a case of flawed mechanics creating a challenge in the negative direction. When a player encounters a portion of a game that they do not like, it is natural for them to try their hardest to avoid playing any of that part of the game. Mind you the developers has to try really hard for that to happen. Floaty, disconnected, and wonky. Every attempt to free aim in this game makes the screen chug at a meter to a mile per minute. You push up and half a second later the game finally realizes that you inputted a command. Everything about it is wrong. I mean it feels like the developers realized this when they play tested it. Why else would they allow the players to a mod their weapons with auto-aim? If you thought the on-planet battles were poorly done before just wait until you have auto-aim, and suddenly everything becomes a breeze. No challenge from the enemy AIs. No challenge present in the shooting gameplay. No challenge seemed to be No Man’s Sky’s theme. If feels like the game wants the players to be bored.

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I understand that my assessment of the game can be perceived as almost cruel but this is a necessary evil. Or perhaps, this was simply a simple comfort for a fan who waited tirelessly for a game that never arrived. Some would say the developers shot me through the heart and gave the industry a bad, bad name. Just a thought.

Next post will mark the end of our great No Man’s Sky saga. A conclusion on how I ultimately perceive the game. Where it truly failed overall and why I will still hope for the future of space exploration games.

Signing off,

John

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