What I played this Summer (Sale)

Yes, I know the Steam Summer Sale event is still ongoing for about another week (until July 5th), but I have – to the best of my knowledge – bought what I plan to buy during this year’s sale, and thought I would discuss it a bit here.

To be specific, I bought “No Man’s Sky”, for $14.99.

It sucks.

But it doesn’t suck in the way everyone has been saying it sucks for the last year, oh no. I haven’t had nearly enough time to get that far into the game, to complain about the endless, boring planets and lackluster ending. No, I feel the game sucks because, right off the bat, from the very beginning, it is 100% lame.

Allow me to explain.

I started out with a six minute long loading screen. My gaming rig is beefy as hell, with a decent video card that is more than capable of playing this game, loaded on a very fast SSD. And yet it took six full minutes for the game to get past the loading screen, which just shows you flying through starfields. Very pretty, if you are feeling in a Zen mood, but I wasn’t, and thus it wasn’t. This was frankly, patently ridiculous!

Next, I lucked out by crash-landing on a very diverse planet, compared to ones I have seen in videos about NMS. Lots of nifty plants, animals, topography, etc. Too bad that everything you need is spread out over miles and miles of that interesting topography. I started out needing to repair one of my types of engines, which meant I needed Iron. Iron is found in rocks, I was told, so I used my mining laser to shoot rocks.

More to the point, I would stand next to the rock, aim my reticle directly at the rock, and shoot… missing completely. But I would adjust the aim, tear the rock apart, and collect a few bits of Iron. This went on until my laser ran out of power, at which point, I was told I could use the Melee skill to bash rocks with my mining laser, to do the exact same thing. Only now, besides Iron for my engine repairs, I needed to bash other things (it didn’t bother to tell me what) to find “Isotopes” to refuel my mining laser.

Eventually, after looking through my controls and other menus, I found out that, rather than fixing the engine, I would have been better off repairing the Sensor Array on my suit first, so I could start searching for bits like Iron much more effectively. You know, because Iron can only be found in some rocks, most drop nothing, but can also be found in rivets in the ground (I wish I had a screen shot of them, in placed it looks like the ground is screwed down with rock-sized rivets), let alone some stalagmites that drop a large amount of Iron each.

And that Isotopes come from certain flowers.

Or that Carbon (used as a rather weak Isotope, thus far) comes from Watermelon, but not from animals. Or other plants. Or pretty much anything you’d think was carbon-based.

Anyway, eventually I got the engine fixed, and my sensors, which led to needing to fix (and refuel) my main drives, so I could actually fly my poor, broken ship around. This led to trekking all over the terrain, chasing after this or that. At one point I needed 200 units of Unexplainium (or some other such thing) for my main engines, and for some reason, they came in a huge pillar of Stanley Kubrick inspired WTF? I got so excited that I’d found the Mother Lode that I went nuts, collected 500 units of the stuff, before forgetting that I’d have to spend the next hours bashing melons to refuel my mining laser, so I could go collect the Zinc I’d need to finish the job.

Speaking of which, I can’t find Zinc. Anywhere. This planet is devoid of Zinc, apparently. And without Zinc, I can’t repair my ship enough to leave, therefore I am trapped on this multicolored hellhole for the entire game!

But I digress.

Anyway, that’s why I hate NMS. It’s pretty, there is some fun to be had, but it is greatly outweighed by the tedium and frustration it causes. So I’ll be spending the rest of the Summer playing “Skyrim Special Edition” from a previous Steam sale.

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