I know what it’s like to be late to a game. That’s perfectly normal, and even Eurogamer’s video team is frequently Late to the Party. I have however developed a curious love-hate relationship with games that indulge my habit to dawdle.
My most recent example for this is No Man’s Sky, currently enjoying a resurgence in popularity thanks to its NEXT multiplayer update. While everyone seems to be zooming from planet to planet, their journeys carefully documented on social media with breathtaking screenshots, I’ve been spending six hours on the same dustpile, collecting rocks, voluntarily.
Now, collecting said rocks is an important gameplay element of No Man’s Sky, as you need resources to power your equipment and build bases, but the game gets me stuck in a vicious loop in which I fall victim to my own distracted nature. I walk around for a while, and before I know it I walk around some more because my hazard protection is going to run out of energy, and before I know it I’ve lost sight of both my ship and my sense of time.
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