Tag Archives: No Man’s Sky

Finding Challenge in No Man’s Sky in 2020

No Man’s Sky is an almost perfect game. Almost. Boring repeatable quests aside, the biggest problem with the game is that it’s just too easy, even in “Survival Mode”. Consequently, I have spent a fair amount of time trying to find ways to challenge myself within the game.

In the past I have made new characters and ignored the quest line, just wondering off into the distance to see how well I could survive. I’ve never died doing this. Indeed, I decided to do it again the other day and after walking about an hour away…

I ended up with an S-Class scanner upgrade, an S-Class underwater protection upgrade, and this other stuff,

Yup that’s 127K Units without even finding a location to sell anything. If you think that’s impressive, I also had 450K worth of salvaged data modules in my cargo that I found literally floating in the air at several locations.


I love the game, but it’s too damned easy! And after as long as I have played it (on my main GOG saves alone), it’s lost any sense of excitement and achievement.

Normally this is the point where I would start a new character, but in my experiencing starting over is both confusing and a huge, boring grind. With the story being exactly the same each time and all of the worlds looking so similar, it really is mind bending trying to remember what you did in one game or another. And after unlocking everything at least 3 different times, I just don’t feel like doing it again – it’s not an accomplishment, just a massive time sink.

So with that in mind, I decided that I would reset my GOG Survival Mode game. I accomplished this by,

1. Deleting all my stuff.

2. Deleting all but two of my bases. I kept my castle and my house, neither of which serve any purpose other than to make me happy.

3. Trading my freighter for a crummy C-Class one and deleting my fleet.


4. Trading my Multi-tool for one similar to the starter one.

5. Deleting all my ships, except little C-Class 16/3 fighter that I liked the look of and never upgraded.

6. Using the NMS Save Editor to disable most of my inventory/cargo upgrades and to delete my Units and Nanites. Based on my previous tests, 31 inventory and 8 Cargo is the best balance.

7. Pairing down my already minimal Exosuit upgrades to these:

8. Purposely resetting my game play experience by restarting in a new galaxy.

Unfortunately step 8 didn’t work out as planned. I incorrectly thought that I could go back to the Atlas station and pick up from where I left off on the quest that ends with allowing the player to travel to a different galaxy. As it turns out, that quest was a one time deal and when I completed it last year, I chose to stay in the starting galaxy. So much for Plan A…

On to Plan B, I guess! After a bit of thought, I figured it would be good enough to travel through a local black hole and then intentionally crash on a planet in the new system.

Have I mentioned that the game is easy? It’s almost impossible to destroy your ship in combat, let alone by ramming it into the ground. Indeed, I had to intentionally hump this building for over a minute just to get the shields down…

And then when I finally died, the game crashed. ๐Ÿ˜

setting me back to a point before I even went to the Atlas station. Silly me forgot to make a new save point. *sigh*

On to Plan C, which was to go back through that portal, land on the planet with extreme sentinels, agro some sentinels by stealing a glowy blossom thing, and then flying into space, picking up aggressive sentinel ships, then flying back to surface to have said ships kill me.

After about an hour of prodding, this finally worked, but the game crashed and I was reset to before I died. Yay…

Plan D worked. I flew up to the local space station and shot at it until 8 sentinels ships appeared and killed me. It’s tremendously pathetic that it took almost two minutes for them to destroy my stationary, “worse than the default”, ship. Game… too… easy… Finally, I ended up on a planet with a broken ship!

And then I fell through the world when I spawned in and died again! lol… This is precisely why I say it’s not worth playing perma-death – you absolutely WILL be killed by bugs in this game.

And just like that, it was kinda sorta like I started all over again. My ship was damaged…

And thanks to the bug, the scanner and analysis visor on my multi-tool were also broken. Weehee, challenges!!!

It took less than 5 minutes to scrounge the immediate area to find everything I needed to make my repairs and be on my way. With that done, I flew over the planet a little while, landed, and logged out to do some other stuff.

Sitting here now a while later, I contemplating the possibility of flying over to the moon with aggressive sentinels, landing somewhere remote, logging out, and then using the NMS Save Editor to delete my ship. Can your only ship be deleted? I don’t know! Let me check… Nope. It says I can’t delete the only ship I have. Bummer.

I guess I could pretend that my ship is broken beyond repair (breaking your ship isn’t an option in NMSE). Then I could wonder away from it, in search of a new ship to buy and the valuables required to pay for it… Yeah, that sounds reasonable… that’s what I’ll do!

The things I’ll do to find some challenge in No Man’s Sky, eh? ๐Ÿ™‚

Here are my personal guidelines for trying to maintain some semblance of challenge in the game. You may notice the absence of any “game mods“; The game is updated so frequently that “mods” are more trouble than they’re worth, especially if I’m the one maintaining them.

– My normal mindset is not to use exploits, bugs, or easily exploited content (such as buying and scrapping ships every ship that enters a space station, because using this method to collect inventory augmentations is at least 10x cheaper than directly paying for inventory slot upgrades).
– No farming, because it completely and easily negates the need to explore! A few decorative plants are fine though.

Income Limits:
– Can only use ship storage space when “space truck’n”. This just makes sense to me!
– No grinding expensive items that can be easily found, such as salvaged data or “pirating” in space with absolutely 0 chance of failure/danger.
– Can only craft expensive items based on the components I loot or earn through frigate missions.

Suit Limits:
– 31 Inventory
– 8 Cargo
– 14 Technology
– No shield upgrades
– Only the two quest granted health upgrades
– Environmental Protection: Only underwater, because fun!

Multitool Limits:
– Use two small, modest ones rather than a single uber amazing one…
– Utility (Max 10 slots):
– Analysis Visor
– Survey Device
– Terrain Manipulator
– Scanner
– S-Class Scanner Upgrade
– Mining Beam
– Advanced Mining Laser
– Optical Drill
– Pulse Spitter
– Ricochet Module
– Combat (Max 8 slots):
– Analysis Visor
– Scanner
– Personal Force Field
– Scatter Blaster
– Shell Greaser
– Blaze Javelin
– Mass Accelerator
– Plasma Launcher (how many times can I blow myself up??)

Exocraft Limits:
– Roamer and Sub keep with engine/boost upgrades, because fun!
– All others reset to default
– No mining lasers. They suck anyway.
– No scanners, because they remove the purpose of navigation data…
– No cannons, except for on the Mech

Rambling Side Note:
I don’t really like using the Mech. It’s a pain to navigate and not its movement in general is annoying. To add insult to injury, exocraft don’t have their own health and shield, so the only way to make the Mech able to stand up against sentinel walkers is to load up my character itself with shield and health mods. Yeah, no. I’m going to make the whole game easier just to shooty-shooty-pew-pew with the mech, thanks.

Freighter Limits:
– No matter beam, because it’s just too easy. Imagine if you could always have the answer to any problem you encounter, the very instant you encounter it. *yawn*

Frigate Limits:
– Start with C-Class only. I’ve done this on every character actually. It’s neat to watch them upgrade over time!
– Purposely hire frigates with poor fuel economy, because there aren’t enough “credit sinks” in this game.

Ship Limits:
– Buy C-Class only. This is a bummer, but it helps to keep the combat stats as low as possible.
– Default shield, no upgrades.
– Default pulse cannon, no upgrades.
– Can only scrap ships that I legitimately no longer want or that I found crashed on a planet. This means I will have to spend more Units on ship upgrades, which is great, because there really isn’t anything else of note to spend Units on!

Evening Update:
I walked away from my “broken” starship, on this wintery planet, for maybe an hour in real world time tonight. There weren’t any storms and apart from when I shot up a depot, the journey was rather prosaic. I probably should have “crashed” on the moon with aggressive sentinels and worse weather.

Anyway, I encountered a waypoint tower that pointed me towards a minor settlement a mere 10 hour walk into the distance. Not having anywhere else better to go, I set out towards it. Luckily I stumbled upon another minor settlement only 20 minutes or so later. Now I have a place to sell my junk, rest my legs, and maybe buy a ship if one ever happens to land here.

A nice brisk stroll…

Inventory before selling junk

Inventory after selling junk. Wowzers!

Pretty crazy haul for simply walking in a mostly straight line, picking up and harvesting what I came across along the way. Now imagine being able to build giant mining operations that pump out tens of thousands of resources every hour, for free, even when the game isn’t running. And so many other ways one can generate currency and resources with little to no effort. Maybe some folks find the “cornucopia of gaming” fun, but to me it sucks all of the fun out of the experience. By no means do not I like punishing games, especially games that are full of obnoxious “gotcha” gimmicks. I just feel there is a happy medium between “enjoyable effort” and “feels like work” that Hello Games is far from reaching with the current state of No Man’s Sky.

No Man’s Sky No Longer Needs Mods to Be Great

Truth be told, I have played way too much No Man’s Sky since I purchased it in March 2019. I started off playing it on Steam, because I thought the multiplayer aspect would be important to me. Turned out that it wasn’t, so bought the GOG version and washed my hands of Steam (Steam, never been a fan). Then at one point during the version 1.77 era,I realized the game was super easy, so I went about modding it to be more challenging. It was a bit of an obsession…

Anyway, I have since been playing the current versions of the game and I have to say that honestly, the game no longer needs mods. Hello Games has simply added so much fun content and adjusted so many systems that, while even easier in Normal Mode and still as easy as ever in Survival Mode, the game is quite enjoyable just as it is.

With this in mind, I decided to pair down my several game saves to just two:

1. My GOG Normal Mode save. This is where I have made it to “GOG Civilized Space“, made a few cool bases, and made some friends.

2. My previously offline-only GOG version 1.77 Survival Mode save.

I have over 115 hours of play time in each of these modes and thus, they are my most developed, meaningful characters. Having played about 5 other characters at times, I can safely say that each one is so similar to the other that it makes my brain go squirrely trying to keep them separated! Pairing down to just one character per game mode, and playing both of those characters in the same version of the game, is good for my old-man brain!

I am happy to report that copying the GOG 1.77 offline save files into the profiles directory of my GOG online profiles folder worked without issues. When playing offline your character is always called “Traveler”, so some of previous discoveries are listed as Traveler rather than Tatwi, but that’s OK. New discoveries are being attributed to Tatwi and some of the older ones are too, so that’s great!

So now Survival Mode players on all platforms, from PS4 to PC, can visit the castle I built in my previously offline-only game save! Pretty cool, eh?

I prefer to play in Survival Mode and I still have plenty of character development to poke away at, in no small part because it needs to catch up on unlocking new features since version 1.77. The biggest difference between default NMS and my modded version of 1.77 is that space combat is super easy in the default version. Ah well, I’m happy to take the good with the bad there, because it’s means I can just hop in and play without first making my mods work with new updates to the game. Is that lazy? Maybe, but I prefer to think of it as the default game being so awesome that I no longer feel compelled to change it. ๐Ÿ™‚

See you out there in Euclid, a galaxy not so far away!

Rambling Tangent:

I will say that you have to be careful moving save files around, because the file names (save4.hg, etc) aren’t as important to the game as the information inside the files. I discovered that if you want to put two versions of “save3.hg” into the same folder, it’s not enough to rename one of them “save4.hg”. You’ll have to first open one of the save files using the NMS Save Editor and export it to a different save slot number. Then it will likely show up on your drive as “save5.hg” or something, which you can copy over and the game will show it occupying the save game slot you chose when exporting. Before I did the export step, I just renamed the second save3.hg to save4.hg and didn’t show up in the game.

Keeping different profile folders for different versions of the GOG game requires keeping two versions of the Default folder and renaming the one you want to use to Default before running the game. The save files are located in,

C:\Users\YOUR_USERNAME\AppData\Roaming\Hello Games\NMS\Default

If you also use the Steam version of the game, it’s save folder is named st_###…, where ###… is string of numbers likely related to your Steam ID.

I found when using the NMS Save Editor that it only looked into the GOG Default folder, but perhaps that’s the way I setup it up at some point. So to move my offline save to a different slot I renamed Default_177 to Default, then opened the Save File Editor, exported my save to another save slot, then I copied the new save file into the Default folder that I use for the current version of the game.

My Journey to the Center of Euclid

I have reached the center of the galaxy in No Man’s Sky for the first time. From the game play mechanics perspective, the only reason to do so is if you want to jump through the center of the galaxy so you can magically pop out on the outer rim of a different galaxy. However, I don’t actually want to do that, because I would rather stick around in the starting galaxy and take part in the GOG multiplayer community (which happens to be near the center of the galaxy).

Being somewhat of a nerd, I decided to keep a travel log. Near the half way point I realized it would take two thirds of nine-ever if I kept stopping to smell the roses and to write down the addresses of the systems I passed though, which is why the log got a lot more boring near the end. Ah well, I am there, I did it, yay me!

Here are a few images, one at the core, one on my way to GOG Civilized Space, and one of me standing on the destination planet!

Now all I have to do is poke my imagination until it comes up with something fun to build. Hmmm… I guess I could also poke my nose over the neighbor’s fence and see what they’re up to too, now that I have neighbors. ๐Ÿ™‚

Captain’s Log


– Started in The Moon system, 719,485 LY due east of the core.

– Traversed two black holes and decided I had best start a log in case I get destroyed at some point!

Beokayas System:
– Beokayas Prime (113C013F25B7) is a delightful world with beautiful weather, brownish-purple grass, blue-green water, and blues skies. No Sentinel activity to speak of either.

Musash-Yunn System:
– Found merchant on space station selling S-Class 24 Slot Rifle. Also had S-Class Upgrades for Scanner, Mining Beam, Blaze Javelin, Geo Cannon, and Pulse Spitter.
– Interesting empty planet Yisiternd V (4070040e76d0).

– Accidentally overloaded Geology Cannon on new rifle. My capital ship crew located my remains in a cave once occupied by some large mollusk type creatures. Thankfully my essence had earlier been transferred to a Korvax Convergence Cube and my crew felt compelled to source a carapace for me. I am now an honorary Korvax! The geology cannon was removed from my multi-tool, replaced by a blaze javelin it would seem… (I actually did kill myself with the Geo-cannon, while base building (twice!) in an earlier save file and decided it just wasn’t for me! lol…).

– My new exo-suit excels at communication, but is less robust in hazardous environments. Thankfully it has some measure of protection from radiation. (I removed all my weather protection items and downgraded to C-Class radiation protection, because it was just so easy nothing felt dangerous).

Eorgiy System:
– Landed Trade Outpost on moon Avok (3079040e76cc).
– Recruited Korvax Mining frigate. Decided it was a good time to build a fleet of quality vessels that need a chance to prove themselves (C-Class with as nice stats as possible).
– Took black hole, ended up in Edithos System (102c034f44a9).

Yubara VIII System:
– Landed on a strange planet, Hinnel Minor (11b8034f04a5). The scanner picked up as a “harsh blue globe”. Atmospheric turbulence caused light to absorbed such that all the world looked black and white, with dull red highlights on infrared sources. Excellent source of Activated Indium and Storm Crystals, despite the dreary weather.

Hapaye XIII System:
– Landed Trade Outpost on planet Ulompt Gamma (1079034ec4a1).
– Traversed black hole, ended up in Quanna System (10240294dfe0) on the other side of the galaxy! Considerably closer to the center, none the less.

Renushny System:
– Recruited Gek Science, Supply, and Merchant vessels.

Puolin V System:
– Last stop on a stretch of Kovakrun systems before using the portal to do some work back at New Vertiform City. I had been hoping trade our enormous bucket of rusty bolts for a smaller, newer S-Class frigate; I’d rather have less storage and nicer design as my home in space!


– Took portal from Fallen Earth to Gogus Proxima in the [GOG-87] – Omning Lidkorjah system. Visited several bases created by other travelers. Found the entry for this system in my discoveries log was out of order, ran diagnostic, but logging tool reports all OK.

– Portaled back to Puolin V system and set waypoint to [GOG-87] – Omning Lidkorjah system.

Prunnum System:
– Made a deal to take command of a very nice (Star Destroyer style) white A-Class, 32 Slot capital ship. It was much larger than the S-Class style I was hoping to find, but after considering the scrap value of our old ship (C-Class, 28 Slot) and the fact that I bailed out this ship’s hapless gunners by taking out some equally hapless pirates, the 83M Unit transaction was too good of a deal to pass up. Most likely will keep this capital ship a very long time.

– Recruited Supply vessel The Kunecer War-Spear

– Bit of a bleak system, but I decided to explore a little anyway. Was curious about how there may be ancient bones on the airless moon _, discovered upon excavation they were the remains of the ancestors of the biological horrors that currently lay their eggs on the surface. Need to tune the scanner to ignore them – gross!

– Landed on moon that supports minimal amount of life. Strange that such a large body orbits inside the ring of dust. I wonder if further study would show the rings consist largely of the casting and dander of the large worms who I suspect burrow deeply here… Found many crashed freighters; Again, is it the rings? Dust storms chipping paint. Time to move on from Caklephi Beta and this system as a whole.


– Entered black hole in Lolberg-Tianu system, ended up in Oevush system. 662,662 from the core!

Amkvabase System:
– Recruited Vy’keen C-Class combat vessel “The Dance of Air”. Comes equipped with tremendous cannons. Vy’keen rock!

Nanino System:
– Recruited Korvax combat vessel The Shield of the Abyss. Nifty red/blue paint job. Hope they don’t scuff it up too often… Also picked up the science vessel MV-3 Michig

Iquang System:
– 648,285 LY from the core, west side of galaxy. Jumped into black hole. Ended up in Daemonas system at 642,472 LY from the core on the east side of the galaxy.

Rumamaga-Enc System:
– 638,179 LY from core. Took black hole, ended up in Nukiha system on the NW side of the galaxy 631,531 LY from the core.

Eiyodate System:
– 607,485 LY from the core, encountered a large fleet of Vy’keen support ships. Recruited The Omen of the Horizon support ship.

Rivoik VII System:
– Single planet in this system is a beautiful tropical oasis, with blue skies, blue water, and deep reddish grass. Excellent place to get eaten by hungry and aggressive wildlife!
– 599,010 LY from core. Took black hole, ended up in Gakish-Oili III 593,593 LY from the core.

Gusuki-One System:
– 589,640 LY from the core. Took black hole, ended up in Geding-Nabru XVII system 582,951 from the core.

Shkennec System:
– Recruited GeK Mining (CS-3 Mitoi) and Combat (DSV-4 Atter) frigates. Had second thoughts about building an all Vy’keen combat force, just in case tempers run hot at some point.

Pajular-Enya II System:
– 570,707 LY from the core and I made an exception my reciting rule. Hired a B-Class Vy’keen mining vessel, as it had two +6 Industrial bonuses and uses only 8 tons of fuel per LY.
– Some nifty looking fighters and shuttles in this system.

Etsenn-Rumid System:
– 558,005 LY due west of core. Took black hole, ended up in Utioae-Ulph system 552,172 LY NE of the core.

– Landed on what looked like a nice planet to set up camp, Wesandov III, but it wasn’t long before I was swarmed by football sized crabs that would happily devour me, suit and all. I slept in my ship, thankfully they couldn’t eat that too.


Etsenn-Rumid System:
– Woke up refreshed. So many strange dreams since moving to this Korvax body… How many lives have I lived before? Have I? Do I? I don’t know… It’s a beautiful day!

– Waited for the fleet to catch up. Thankfully not problems traversing black holes. Dispatched two wings on missions.

– Non-Korvax entities aboard capital ship grew tired of eating rations since the cabin fire and subsequent ban of personal cooking equipment. Called upon Farmer stationed at New Vertiform City to setup and maintain a mess hall on capital ship. He was very eager to accept this new adventure! Armorer agreed to watch over plants in the city when off duty; I knew he liked flowers.

Baksanog XVII System:
– Landed on Ranc VIII (218e02b95310), as the scanner had some kind of malfunction, listing the planet planet as [REDACTED]. Worth investigating further. Found a dark, rainy world that is nice if you don’t mind the rain and you can find shelter during the occasionally deadly storm. Mined 1700 units of Dioxite (safely from a cut out that I made in the hill) while looking for some Activated Indium.
– Unable to locate any Activated Indium, but may return to Ranc VIII someday.

– Visisted Polo and Nada on the Anomoly. Got waypoint to black hole in Kodias III system 550,467 LY from the core. Warped there, traversed black hole, ended up in Lasdals-Olonq system 544,382 LY from the core. Not worth the repairs to hyperdrive upgrades, as that was only 2 jumps (with each jump only using 2% of my warp fuel).

Hidden Jem System:
– In my quest to find a heavily combat equipped science vessel, I found a Vy’keen system called Hidden Jem, due north of the galactic core. Not sure if that is a translation error, though I did find a mineral deep in a cave, on the one giant planet in this system, that a local indicated was called simply “Jem”. The planet, called Jewel of Nal (118001ab504c), appears to be an idyllic refuge for scientific minded Vy’keen. Lush blue grass and green skies, it truly is a hidden gem!

Vidius-Tish System:
– (212101ab804d) Found a dealer who sells all red versions of the Radiant Pillar in various qualities. Also sells a nice symmetric gull wing hauler in red. Wealthy system, so lots of nice models available.
– Station merchant had a slick looking S-Class Rifle (16 Slots).

Eakeni System:
– At 535,128 LY from the core, hired final science vessel for the fleet. Top notch Vy’keen explorers (+6 Exploration bonus). Was hoping to find a crew with more combat experience, but this crew and their ship are the best explorers in our fleet, so no complaints!


– Unable to relocate the Eakeni System. Restarted journey to the core at Vidius-Tish System 541,597 from the core

– Aebashim System puts me at 500,265 LY from the core. Stopped in the next system for tea, because it wasn’t at war and we all know that war and tea don’t mix.

Lolsboro System:
– You’d think that was name chosen by another traveler, but nope, it was generated by Atlas itself!

– System is 495,955 LY N from the core. Took blackhole (107902b2a049) and ended up in Inskyvi III system (1065004c4f9d) 489,814 LY S of the core. No damage taken!

– Next black hole jump, had to repair though.

– Doing a series of black hole jumps without documentation, but the gist is: Jump approx 2,000 LY to next black hole on scanner, take black hole, repair, repeat. Stopped in Gameaumon XVIII system 458,020 LY from the core to buy some wiring looms. Seems the combination of warp jumps and being stretched in black holes takes its toll on wiring. I feel fine though! Also purchased 2,173 units of Residual Goop, because “Goop + Poop = Gold” and that makes me happy.

Ugyuang System:
– Having now reached the Ugyuang system 343,945 LY from the core, I have to say that the two times I did a black hole jump and didn’t need to make repairs were both flukes! I’d look into buying better equipment if I didn’t already have the best Nanites can buy.

– Landed at space station to rest for the night. Almost at the halfway point from where I started!


Netiluy-lonq system:
– Did some more jumping today. Caught a signal for some salvageable scrap on Nisiylvan (105dfc2ee05f), a frozen planet in the Netiluy-lonq system. Located a component in perfect condition worth about 2.4MU. Not bad for wanting to stretch my legs! That said, traveling to the core goes a lot faster than thought it would when I just jump without taking a break.

Fokadamal System:
– 251,399 LY SW of the core. Nothing of interest to note.

Dagbokbe System:
– Less than 200K LY to go! Bought some Phosphorus here for a decent price.

Ifrosv System:
– 117,642 LY W of the core. Ran out of cobalt mirrors to repair the launch system recharger. Will check station for supplies, if none found, will leave broken.

Anooga System:
– 98,408 LY from the core, finally broke the 100K LY mark!

Arinqi II System:
– 44,287 LY from the core. The first system on my trip that was discovered by another traveler! Discovered by gjennings two years ago. I stopped here to use the black hole.

Hooey-Avr System:
– Two black holes later at 28,335 LY, and I am in a system discovered by Root Boy Slim only eight months ago. Looks like he was also just passing though. I decided to land on the purple planet of Urmipp to catch a breather. Aggressive sentinels abound, so I stayed on top of a high pillar of stone to avoid them, but one of the buggers found me anyway when I scanning the birds flying below.

Laftalli System:
– Reached 3,497 LY SE from the core, checked map and there aren’t ANY stars beyond 400 LY from here toward the core! Crazy! Had a good laugh out loud when I found a system on the edge of the core named. “I spent 60 euros on this”. Of course, I had to go there too.

I spent 60 euros on this System:
– Discovered by AxeWorld three years ago. He also discovered the planet, “Prepare for disappointment”.

– Defeated 4 pirates with my default pulse cannon, again. Sigh…

– Doesn’t seem to be anything of interest here. Visited Polo on the Anomaly to request coordinates for an Atlas Interface. Maybe that will help… Did some reading, figured out I need to reach a gateway system, which can be found using the Galactic Core bookmark on the galactic map.

Niquntain XVIII System:
– 3,000 LY from the core, I could now jump into the center if I wanted! How’s that for crazy, eh? I don’t actually want to travel there though, as that would send me off to another galaxy. Instead I wish to end this journey by beginning another in the [GoG-87] – Omning Lidkorjah system where other travelers have settled!

New Vertiform City – A No Man’s Sky Base

A reference to a classic Star Trek: The Next Generation episode, New Vertiform City is the first base that I build since restarting No Man’s Sky on GOG Galaxy. I wanted to make my home somewhere that was both useful and engaging, so I set out to find a good Electromagnetic Power Hotspot in the blistering hell of a planet with extremely radioactive wind storms.

Well that’ll do!

With an astonishing amount of unlimited power found, I put together a nifty little outpost with the following features…

Galactic Region: Umukait

System: The Moon (a late night naming error…)

  • F7f // Water (Yellow)
  • Vy’keen
  • Mathmatical (Scientific / Blue)
  • Conflict Level Destructive

Planet: Fallen Earth

  • Extreme Radioactivity
  • Frequent, long lasting storms
  • Minimal Sentinels
  • Silver, Uranium, Activated Copper, Gamma Root

City Functions

  • Mining Oyxgen (48Ku/day)
  • Mining Uranium (24Ku/day)
  • Harvesting Gamma Root (~50 Plants)
  • Crafting Liquid Explosives & Living Glass

City Amenities

  • Trade Terminal
  • Large and Medium Refiners
  • Roamer and Colossis Exocraft Terminals
  • Two Landing Pads
  • Antimater Harvester
  • Livestock Unit & Feeder

What’s Nearby

  • Storm Crystals
  • Ancient Bones
  • Large Oxygen patch and several Gamma Root patches
  • Trade Outpost (marked with beacon)
  • Ancient Data Structure
  • Water and Caves

For my purposes, those Uranium and Oxygen harvesters provide me with effectively an unlimited supply of several important resources. Also, the ability to make approx 12 million “Units” (currency) worth of crafted items every day (on top of being able to collect Storm Crystals and Ancient Bones!) is plenty to keep me happy. The game is too easy as it is, so I don’t see the point of ruining the experience by creating yet another Activated Indium mine that can max out one’s Units (4.2 billion) in few days. Nope, for me it’s about the journey, so I would rather set goals and work at them a little at time.

Anyhow, if you’re playing on GOG Galaxy (PC) and want to check it out, here is the portal address for the planet:

You can see here on the galactic map and translates into the following alpha-numeric values 2242013FD5C8. New Vertiform City is located at the coordinates -54, +162, which is pretty far away from the portal, so don’t forget you can call your ship or plop down an exo-craft terminal if you’re coming to visit.

Restarted No Man’s Sky on GOG Galaxy

After some initial horrible performance issues with the 2.0 Beyond update, which happened to be caused by the Steam client eating up a massive amount of CPU/Disk/Network resources rather than a problem with NMS itself, I decided to throw in the towel with Steam. I never liked it anyway, so no loss there! ๐Ÿ™‚

Anyway, having played more than 200 hours on four different save files, 1 Survival Mode and 1 Normal Mode on both Steam and GOG, I decided it would be best for me to take some time off the game to reset my brain and come back to start a fresh game. Let me tell ya, it’s hard to keep all those different games straight when the world looks and feels identical in all of them! Also, I figured I would be less likely to encounter any issues if I did a completely clean installation using the GOG Galaxy program.

No Man’s Sky is as close to the perfect game for me as I am likely to ever get, so it would be a shame to spend all of that time playing it without ever encountering the creations of others or others encountering my own. As such, I decided to go “all in” on Normal Mode on GOG, simply playing the game the way Hello Games intended it, despite the sad reality that the game is disappointingly easy. “Take the good with the bad”, they say! The good is that I don’t have to do anything other than log in and enjoy the game and that’s OK with me – less work, more play! That said, I will keep my modified 1.77 version of the game installed and the repository for those “mods” around in case all hell breaks loose or I am driven insane by some of the annoying new features in version 2.0 of the game.

With all that said, I finally got all of the portal glyphs again and I am looking forward to taking part in the GOG Civilized Space project. Along the way I created a nifty base that I called, “New Vertiform City”, which I used to complete all the base related quests and to collect Storm Crystals, etc. I’ll create a post about it later, because it’s pretty nifty and it will be my main base for a good long time I bet.

See you in the great beyond!

(Pun intended, of course.)

My lowly A-Class fighter that can utterly wreck the hardest encounters in the game!
(I can beat them in the unmodified starter ship too…)

Playing Normal Mode Normally on Steam

Update 2019.07.23: The “Kicked back to Game Select” bug is still happening, so I am forced to either play the GoG version or play the Steam version in offline to avoid literally wasting my life playing the game. As a result, I am just going to continue playing the GoG version offline, because playing online is not worth the aggravation. I’ll reevaluate when the Beyond update has released.

When I started playing No Man’s Sky earlier this year, my first play through was in Normal Mode on Steam. I put in 62 hours noob’n it up until I reached a point where I thought perhaps I was selling my self short by playing in normal rather than survival mode, so I made a new game. After playing quite some time in Survival Mode on Steam, I encountered a bug that kicked me unexpectedly to the main menu, causing me to lose all progress since my last save point. That wasn’t very fun and it didn’t happen if I played with Steam in off-line mode, so I picked up the GoG version of the game, as it was on sale and it could be played without connecting to the Internet at all. I went on to play a while in Normal Mode on GoG only to find everything was too easy, which lead me to restarting on Survival Mode and going so far as to make a whack of game balance adjustments to make the game more what I was expecting. Here, have a graphic of my progress…

Anyway, after all the time I put into my off-line game, I find myself missing the opportunity to, at the very least, discover things out in the galaxy that other people have created. Sure the game itself has a crazy amount of stuff to discover, but I know from my time playing Star Wars Galaxies that there’s a special magic to coming across other player’s creations and I don’t want to miss out on that. As such, I have decided to put my game time into playing Normal Mode on Steam, where I may encounter other folks.

Why Normal Mode?
As far as multi-player on PC, Normal Mode on Steam in the Eulcid galaxy is where most of the action is. There’s even a cool map of the galaxy that is maintained by Hello Games, which makes it easier to know what’s going on and allows me to set some goals for what I’d like to see and do.

Why Normally, Without Mods?
Unwinding the mess of memories from playing four different save games is hard enough for this here old man, so I figured I would keep my Steam client as the default game, while my GoG version can be the one I mod. That way I can still enjoy the game the way it was intended to be played. As far as playing normally goes, I now have enough experience with the game to know how to keep Normal Mode feeling fun without having to adhere to any strict rules; “I’ma do what’s fun, yo!”, as the kids would say. ๐Ÿ™‚

Where Am I?
That’s a good question! Despite playing over 60 hours on my first game, I have yet to finish all the quests and unlock all the base parts, vehicles, etc. so it might not shock you to learn that I also haven’t found any portals either. Noobs, eh? ๐Ÿ™‚ I did make small bases on each of the planets of the system I started in, with my main base being on my starting planet, which I named Hondo Florrum. I’ll post again when I figure out where I am what I’m doing!

Edit: Here I am!

And after that monstrosity of a graphic, please take a moment to enjoy this beautiful vista taken on Hondo Florrum.

I Built A Castle! (in No Man’s Sky)

Earlier in the week I finished the Artemis Path on my shiny new GOG single player Survival Mode game and chose to go to the happy rainbows galaxy, Eissentam. I repaired my ship and set out into the void once more, but after an hour or two I realized that really, it just plumb doesn’t matter what galaxy one chooses to play in and I didn’t actually want to start over again in a new galaxy. I had bases in the starting galaxy that I liked, on planets I had barely explored, and I was in a decent region of space, with plenty more to do and see. So, I loaded up my last manual save, rewinding time back to before I completed the Atlas Path quest line. And then, I set out to build this castle on my main planet, because why not! ๐Ÿ™‚

Ultimately, the game itself tells you that shit happens and there’s nothing you can do about it, so you may as well just forget about the state of the universe and enjoy the ride. It’s a pretty terrible story to be honest, full of tired tropes and incoherence, but the worst part is that it forces a narrative upon your character that may well be entirely the opposite of what you want for your character. Sigh, that’s video games for ya! The game itself is excellent at “facilitating the enjoyment of the experience” though and that just so happens to be how I define the purpose of games in general, so I am happy with it. Anyway… So, I figured I may as well just keep myself busy by taking the time to thoroughly explore the planets and to build whatever happens to tickle my fancy at the time.

The castle walls are made using the concrete wall parts, because I found them both easy to work with and affordable. I wasn’t really paying attention to the cost, but I started with 30 point something million and I still have more than 28 million left after buying a few inventories full of Ferrite Dust. I considered using the cuboid rooms, but they require significantly more Ferrite per block and I didn’t think they looked the part as well as the basic walls and wooden floors. The whole structure is put together using the standard snap-to-fit method. I made a “gallery of oddities” in the lower front section and placed a room for my Korvax scientist to live while he studies them. I made a manual landing pad area to avoid having the sky filled with NPC ships circling endlessly if I land on my normal pad (I discovered an issue where even if you have 6 base landing pads, the NPC ships will only ever use the last one your ship was parked at, so there’s no point in having more than one). I even added a few secret passageways, because what’s a castle without secret passageways! Oh, and I also have a garage for my two favorite vehicles, the Roamer and the Colossus.

You won’t be able to visit this base, as it’s offline. If the upcoming Beyond update is any good, I might build something similar on my Steam profile and open it to the public. We’ll see. None the less, here is the planet address:

Update: I replaced the landing pad with a garage for the bike, because even with the empty landing pad I had at least five ships circling loudly over the castle at all times and the only the solution I have found is to simply not use the base landing pad (which is a bummer).

Creating Challenge in No Man’s Sky

Also, Steam still sucks and I regret having signed up for it to purchase the game there at a discount. I am now happily playing No Man’s Sky using the GOG version of the game! (Completely off-line, because multi-player doesn’t interest me and neither does bloated, privacy invading software). Yeah I bought it on sale twice, so it’s like I paid full price for it, but that’s OK, because it’s awesome and worth it! Anyway…

No Manโ€™s Sky is an amazing game, but itโ€™s so easy even on Survival Mode. I just started playing the game in 2019 and from what I have read it used to be much harder than it is now. Theyโ€™ve added so much convenience that theyโ€™ve undermined the challenge of the game beyond the first 20 minutes. Initially I figured that adhering to a personal challenge would be enough to satisfy my desires for how the game should feel, but it was still too easy. Next, I came up with the ill conceived idea of using the NMS Save File Editor to basically nerf every ship and Multi-Tool I found, but that was both a huge pain in the rear and it kinda sucked the fun out of finding new things. So I decided to just go ahead and โ€œmod the gameโ€, because it wouldnโ€™t require any regular fiddling around, allowing me to โ€œjust play the gameโ€.

As a result, I did some reading and learned how 99% of the “mods” to NMS are made: by editing existing values in the text files that ship with the game. It’s a bit more involved than that, but honestly that’s an apt description of the process. As a person who has done a “total conversion mod” on SuperTux 0.3.3 to create Rescue Girlies, which required loads of custom C++ and Squirrel programming, it does piss me off when I read bitchy comments from “modders” about how others are “using their mods” to No Man’s Sky when their mod was literally achieved by them opening a file, changing a “false” to “true”, and then saving the file. I’m sorry, but that’s not modding and you’ve got no right to complain about others making the same adjustments. Fucking people, man… Sigh…

Anyway (again), I made a GitHub repository to track the adjustments I make to the game play and to potentially host any real mods I may make for the game down the road. The No Man’s Sky blog page in the Game Mods menu has all the details of the changes I have made and why I made them.

Here, have a screenshot!

No Man’s Sky: My Personal Challenge Mode

No Man’s Sky is a really fun game, but as I played through the main quest lines on Normal Mode, I discovered there are some aspects of the game that trivialize its challenges. The most notable of these issues are the teleporters on space stations and in player created bases – the first time I used one and I saw that my ship had magically followed me though the teleporter too, I literally said out loud, “awe, that’s a little cheaty, isn’t it?”. What follows is thus a few self imposed limitations that help make the game feel more like what I had hoped it would be.

1. Play in Survival Mode
I’ve never liked the concept of perma-death in computer games, but the death penalties in Survival Mode strike a good balance between punishment and a fun challenge. Starting out is definitely harder and one’s you’re over that hump, things like extreme weather are still a major concern (where as on normal, I was jaunting around in a radioactive super storm collecting crystals like it was a beautiful summer’s day). The biggest difference I have found is that the terrain manipulator chews through its charge much more quickly than on normal mode, meaning it takes more resources to mine the same amount (thereby increasing the usefulness of automated harvesters!).

2. No Cheating Death
One can cheat the death penalty by frequently dropping a save-game machine and creating a manual save point that they can go back to should they die. It’s totally fine to do this if the death was caused by a bug, a power outage, if your arm fell off and you had to be rushed to the hospital, etc. but to do it as a way to avoid the consequences of foolishness is just plain old cheating.

3. No Cheating the Randomness
Rather than just playing the game, some folks cheat by constantly reloading their saved game to force new ships or multi-tools to spawn until the one they want finally spawns for them. I don’t see the fun in that type of behavior. For me, the mystery of what’s next and making due with what I have are large parts of what I find so compelling about the game play experience. As my daughter’s friend said on cupcake day, “You get what you get and you don’t get upset”. ๐Ÿ™‚

4. No Base/Station Teleporter Use
Update: I hadn’t considered the problem of doing the quest to go to the center of the galaxy while still enjoying the fun base building aspect of the game. With that in mind, it makes sense to have a single portal at my “cool awesome base” that I can go back to whenever I’d like, so that’s the only use I will make of the teleporter system.

Being able to teleport to and from any space station you have visited, as well as any base you made and bothered to create a portal at, completely trivializes space travel and makes the game waaaay too easy. Add to that the fact that your ship (and it’s cargo contents) magically travel with you too, and you’ve got a game play system that takes convenience a tad too far. I’m just going to go ahead and pretend it’s not there, because I definitely didn’t expect it to exist anyway (and using it on my first play in Normal Mode quickly made me realize it’s ridiculously over powered).

5. Inventory and Technology Limitations
I was straight up shocked when I read on the wiki that one can unlock 48 high capacity cargo slots. That’s insane! Sure, some people groan and whine about inventory management in games, but the truth is that inventory limitations encourage the player to make decisions and compromises that can later put the player into situations where they are forced to overcome adversity and it’s rising to those challenges that makes games (and life!) so rewarding. If you’re able to tote around the solution to everything, then you’re robbing yourself of the chance to find joy in creative success. With that in mind, here are my personal limitations on inventory and technology:

  • 36 General Inventory slots (48 max)
  • 16 High Capacity Cargo slots (48 max)
  • 12 Technology slots (14 max)

I considered limiting myself to only using pistol type multi-tools, due to their 10 technology slots (compared to the 24 of rifles), but that would be pretty boring. I already have a 10 slot A class pistol that I have fully loaded to my liking, so yeah, it would be pretty boring to leave it like that forever. Who knows when I will find something else I like better!

Similarly to multi-tools, I am not placing any limitations on myself for ships, freighters, frigates, and upgrades, as that would just limit my ability to have fun; Adhering to the intended randomness of the game is both a good throttle on “power creep” and an excellent incentive to keep exploring. Indeed, I was super excited when the crashed ship I found as part of the story was an S class shuttle! How cool is that, eh? I had just upgraded from the starter ship to an A class shuttle that I also really liked, so I will just keep using the A class model while I poke away at fixing the S class.

Apart from the above points, I’m just going to take it easy in general, enjoying the experience at a casual pace without trying to “min/max” or otherwise subvert the challenges and rob myself of the experience.

No Man’s Sky is Everything I Wanted from a Game

With the exception of pets and pet crafting, I suppose, but hot-damn does this game deliver in all other respects! Seriously, having played No Man’s Sky over the past couple of weeks, I have absolutely no desire to ever play Star Wars Galaxies or work on SWGEmu mods ever again! I mean, why bother when NMS has everything in it that I like about science fiction, crafting, creating, collecting, treasure hunting, and it looks amazing, and it plays great…

No Man's Sky

No Man’s Sky

Without any exaggeration, I spent thousands of hours of research and development on the four iterations of my solo SWGEmu based Star Wars Galaxies server, Legend of Hondo, only to find that it’s not really fun to play. Here’s why…

Being “the man behind the curtain” of Legend of Hondo, creating all the mods and molding the game into exactly what I thought a solo version of SWG should be, also meant that there wasn’t any mystery; In order to make it, I had to know exactly how everything worked! Worse yet, I also knew where to find all the loot, all the creatures, all the quests, and so on, which didn’t feel very fun. Short of reprogramming everything to be completely random (and I doubt that would even be fun anyway), I’m not sure how one can avoid that problem when programming an RPG.

And then the real kicker is the enormously massive, gargantuan amount of effort that almost all mods to Core3 and the SWG client require. Why? Well, neither have a proper programming reference guide, Core3 is a convoluted nightmare of a program, and the whole damned thing is based on the reverse engineering of Sony Online Entertainment’s buggy mess of a game client. I recently helped out with some programming for the Tarkin’s Revenge server, but I decided to throw in the towel when I took a step back and saw how working with the SWGEmu code base and SWG client utterly consumes my life. Things that would take 15 minutes to do in other projects can take literal days of head-desk stumbling over syntax in custom libraries and multiple languages, waiting for compilations, waiting for the server to boot, testing every possible permutation of the thing to catch the inevitable “gotcha” that some end user will uncover, and so on. In the end, it’s really not that fun to work on SWGEmu mods and given that programming is my hobby, what the hell is the point of doing it at all if it’s not fun? I mean, I love helping friends, but I literally giggled like a schoolgirl when I uninstalled Microsoft Visual Studio 2017, having used it only to help my friends when they were desperate to have their launcher updated. I hate to say it, but I get the same sort of joy when I think about not working on anything related to SWGEmu ever again.

I’d rather work on stuff like RocketTux and play No Man’s Sky!

Hard to believe that I am a year and half behind on finishing RocketTux. Apparently shit doesn’t get done when you don’t do it. Who knew?! ๐Ÿ™‚ I ended up boring myself by rigidly sticking to the goal of finishing the art and levels rather than just doing what I felt like doing (which really is what one should do with their personal hobby projects). But I digress…

What’s so great about No Man’s Sky?

1. No Division of Labor? No Problem!
It was basically designed from the ground up to be the polar opposite of Star War Galaxies, in terms of what can be achieved by a single player. Fundamental changes to the combat system aside, much of my time modding SWGEmu was spent attempting to make a game that was explicitly designed to make it difficult for a single person to play alone, into a game that, at the very least, functioned properly for only one person. That’s totally not an issue with NMS, because even though it has multiplayer aspects, it is most definitely a game that can be enjoyed from start to “finish” by a single player.

2. A Strong Variety of Gameplay Systems
You know, No Man’s Sky is kind of a more complete version of Elite Dangerous, only it’s actually fun and it strikes a nice balance between simulation and arcade game… Huh. Anyway, from building your fleet of capital ships and sending them on missions, to cataloging the flora and fauna of millions of planets, there is a lot to do in No Man’s Sky and for the most part you are free to do it at your own pace and in your own way. Here’s a randomly organized point form list of different activities I have discovered:

  • Finding a cool ship to buy. There are two ways to go about this, one being standing in space stations and talking to the NPC pilots who fly in, the other being tracking down crashed ships to repair them.
  • Upgrading your suit and multi-tool, which can be done by traveling to new places in the galaxy to find merchants and treasure.
  • Shooting rocks. You can shoot holes right through’em!
  • Shooting rocks…. in space!
  • Seriously, shooting rocks is the basic manner in which one gathers resources. You can also punch trees when you upgrade to a Nintendo Power Glove.
  • Spelunking, aided by the terrain manipulator which can blast holes in the ground (or fill them in, if that’s how you roll).
  • Building bases, with the only limit being 20,000 items per base. You can have up to 5 bases per planet and there’s something like 18,446,744,073,709,551,616 planets, so hop to it, eh.
  • Building and upgrading a freighter fleet.
  • Sending your fleet on (imaginary) missions.
  • Building a base inside your capital ship. This impressed me when I whipped out curved hallway parts, but I literally exclaimed, “shut up! No way!” when I found that I can even add stairs and rooms! Imagine having your own custom Tantive IV and you’ll have a good grasp on feel of the interior.
  • Trading goods in a manner similar to other space truckin’ games. It’s less detailed than Elite Dangerous’s commodities system, yet one misses nothing in the process…
  • Fighting pirates in your ship. This includes attacking capital ships and looting the stuff that you shoot out of their holds.
  • Missions from various individual NPCs and the space station based guilds.
  • Learning languages and exploring the lore of the galaxy by chatting with NPCs and finding interesting places on the many worlds.
  • Building machines to harvest and process resources.
  • Collecting, upgrading, and using the different ground and water vehicles. Yup, there’s a frickin’ submarine even! I just got the basic car today and the handling of ground vehicles is similar to Unreal Engine or Crytek based games, with simplified controls. It’s definitely not like using a ground vehicle in Elite Dangerous, at all (though I actually liked that aspect of ED, for the most part).
  • Collecting stuff and using it to craft the items you need while doing the above things.

There are likely other things to do in the game that I forgot to mention (like following the main story line!), but I think that will give you a good idea of the breadth of the game. One thing that I really appreciate is how all of these things come together in a way that makes the game feel a lot more purposeful than Elite Dangerous. In ED there is basically only one game loop, which amounts to “earn money to get a bigger ship so you can earn money to get a bigger ship…”, and that’s very, very boring. Are there other aspects of ED? Sure, but they’re boring too. No Man’s Sky manages to offer a wide variety of things to do in a way that isn’t boring. Yay!

3. It’s Like I Stepped Into A Classic Science Fiction Novel
As a young man, I loved Issac Asimov’s Foundation series and robot books, and I also very much enjoyed Arthur C. Clarke’s Rendezvous with Rama, as well as other novels of the early scifi era. The art style of No Man’s Sky appears to be designed such that it’s as though the player has stepped into the cover art of a dusty book from store shelves past and begun an adventure almost as wild as their own imagination. While I suspect the post processing effects may be lost on the younger folks, I get what Hello Games was going for and I like it.

A few books I’ve kept though the years…

Now the game and its universe pales in comparison to those which are described by the great sages whose works defined the Science Fiction genre, but all things considered, given the gameplay systems and artwork, what they’ve created is phenomenal.

Picking Some Nits
From the perspective of a boy who grew up in the 80s and 90s on Star Trek reruns, TNG, Star Wars, and a plethora dusty old books, Hello Games has not let me down with No Man’s Sky. From the perspective of a man who went from playing a detailed online Star Wars game to later spending years modding that game into a single player experience, I can say with the utmost sincerity that Hello Games has not let me down with No Man’s Sky. It makes me wonder why I waited nearly three years to play it! That said, I do have a few thoughts on where I think it could improve a bit.

Let’s be real here, for all intents and purposes Earth is the Human universe. It’s literally the only place in the entirety of everything where we know we can exist. This tiny ball of dirt hurtling though the cosmos, slathered in water and a slight dusting of breathable air, is home to countless organisms which are as varied as the biomes in which they evolved. Alas, in No Man’s Sky, as far as I can tell, all celestial bodies have a single biome that covers their entire surface, meaning there are “snow planets”, “desert planets”, etc. (with the exception of planets that have both land and water biomes, I suppose). While it might be interesting to explore temperate transition zones, I can’t fault Hello Games for creating the planets without them, because it’s damned hard to do what they’ve done as it is!

Humans have been building paths, roads, towns, villages, and cities since the dawn of time and ya know what, other critters here on Earth build these types of structures too. In No Man’s Sky the entire galaxy appears to be inhabited by creatures who never considered these concept. Nope, they either roam aimlessly or they travel exclusively by space ship. Again, in a game as vast as this one, something’s gotta give – I can imagine the headaches it would cause to create procedurally generated cities, complete with buildings, people, shops, homes, and NPC activity, on a global scale. That could be a game in and of itself…

W = Forward
S = Backward
A = Turn Left
D = Turn Right
SHIFT = Turbo
L CTL = Brake
Mouse Movement = Camera Panning

That’s how ground vehicles are done on PC the man, come on! ๐Ÿ™‚ Seriously though, I can live with the mouse moving left/right for steering, as it’s light years better than vehicles in SWG. Space movement in No Man’s Sky also feels better than the Jump to Lightspeed space flight in SWG.

And finally, one space station interior? Really? Just one, for the whole galaxy? Where the NPCs all stand in the same locations? OK, but only because you wow’d the absolute crap out of me with the rest of the game!

So, No Man’s Sky…
It’s a good game. I like it a lot. I like it, because it’s chalked full of awesome; I like it, because I can shut it off and miss a damned thing!

Using the portal at base Psychedelic Hondo

Base Snow Hondo

Base Hondo Under No Man’s Sky

Ps. It play’s alright on my old as dirt computer (AMD FX-8320 CPU / AMD R9 270 2GB graphics / 24GB DDR3 1600MHz RAM) at 1080p using the default settings. I drop to 15 FPS when looking at my largest base (even from far away), but most other times I am in the 30 – 60 FPS range (with some hitching though). By comparison, I can run 3 instances of Star Wars Galaxies, at max settings with 4x AA and 16x AF forced in the driver, while also running the server in a virtual machine and using several tabs in Chrome without the computer breaking a sweat – these 8 core FX CPUs weren’t terrible at everything, eh. ๐Ÿ™‚