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[Ars] No Man’s Sky Windows port launched today, is kind of a mess

post #1 of 96
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But if you've been anywhere near PC gaming for the past few years, you won't be surprised to find out that combining "small development team," "video game that promises 18 quintillion planets," and "worldwide simultaneous launch on all kinds of PCs" is a dangerous mix.
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Ars Technica is running two NMS test sessions on high-end PCs at the moment, and both of them are running GTX 980Ti cards with SSD drives, 16GB of RAM, and either a Skylake i5 or a Haswell i7 Intel chip. We're seeing inconsistent framerates, in spite of both computers in question having fully updated drivers on Windows 10. The game's PC version defaults to a 30 FPS cap, which can be disabled in the normal options menus. But with this setting turned on, the game can't help but hitch down to an apparent 20 FPS on a regular basis, not to mention throw up frequent display hitches of half a second at a time. Removing that framerate cap can get play up to a smooth 60 frames per second, and we enjoyed more consistent framerates without the cap. But even those framerates can bounce down to 30 or less at random intervals. The game also suffers from freezing hitches, even without apparent spikes in visible geometry like creatures or spaceships.
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A patch was already uploaded within minutes of the game's 1pm EDT launch on Friday, but Ars' tests came after that patch went live.
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Beyond these rendering-engine issues, we've noticed some surprising sloppiness in how NMS treats PC gamers.

Source.



From the latest support note on Steam it seems that some of the stuttering is due to a
Quote:
Shader Cache issue – means that framerate is initially stuttering on some cards. Whilst it resolves itself over time (~1 hour of play), we will fix this issue in a patch.

Also, people on AMD Phenom II X4 or X6 CPUs, which lack SSE 4.1 (they only have SSE 4a) can't even run the game at all, crashing at the start (although for some other reason people on modern Intel CPUs also have the game crashing at startup).
Quote:
SSE 4 – for CPUs that do not support SSE 4, it is causing the game to crash on boot (some of these area [sic] technically below min spec, but we don’t want it to crash!)

They specify a Core i3 in the minimum requirements, but forget that that starts at the Core i3 530, which is a contemporary of the Phenom II X4 and X6 CPUs, and is slower than these latter as it's only a dual core with HT.

The tone of this note is a bit uncomfortable as if they are doing people a favour by fixing the game. Things like the two above: "Whilst it resolves itself over time (~1 hour of play), we will fix this issue in a patch.", as if people should endure 1 hour of stuttering gameplay every game session until the issue fixes itself, but ok, ok, we will fix it. Or trying to excuse themselves by saying that some of the CPUs that don't have SSE 4.1 are technically below spec when they only vaguely specify an Intel Core i3 as a minimum. If we were to be technical about it as they say, then people with AMD CPUs shouldn't even apply at all since they aren't mentioned to begin with.
Edited by tpi2007 - 8/12/16 at 7:38pm
 
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post #2 of 96
"We will offer the game on PC Aug. 12 pre- order now!"
Me: Sweet! I will! Waiiitttt I should probably wait for reviews.

So glad I did...

Apparently I wouldn't even be able to run it with my lowly Phenom II X4 thats running at 4ghz frown.gif
post #3 of 96
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Originally Posted by thx1138 View Post

"We will offer the game on PC Aug. 12 pre- order now!"
Me: Sweet! I will! Waiiitttt I should probably wait for reviews.

So glad I did...

Apparently I wouldn't even be able to run it with my lowly Phenom II X4 thats running at 4ghz frown.gif

I don't really see the issue with pre-ordering these days on Steam. If the game ends up being crap, I can simply get a refund.

tpi2007, you can probably add this as well.

http://www.no-mans-sky.com/2016/08/issues/
Quote:
We’ve brought a new QA team on board today (larger than the entire Hello Games team!). This will complement the existing Sony QA team.
We are working on fixes for the most critical issues, which will be in a patch in the near future.
^_^
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post #4 of 96
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Originally Posted by dmasteR View Post

I don't really see the issue with pre-ordering these days on Steam. If the game ends up being crap, I can simply get a refund.

Yeah, I'm really not trying to jump on the hate bandwagon. I was hoping this was going to be a successful launch so I could play it over the weekend but after hearing about all these issues I'm thinking I'll wait until a sale. I've been burned by pre-orders in the past. Back when asking for a refund on steam was laughed at.

I hope they get all the issues fixed for the sake of the people who gave them their hard earned money. And hopefully they get a better writer so their progress updates don't sound so indifferent about valid complaints.
post #5 of 96
Its $60 for an indie game, i wasn't going to buy it day one to begin with. Knowing now how poorly it runs i'm glad i'm not buying it. I'll buy it on sale for $20 a year from now maybe
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post #6 of 96

I'm glad I waited. If/when the issues get resolved, and they add the features they were promising, I'll take another look at it.

post #7 of 96
Yeah, sounds like a huge mess
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post #8 of 96
Thread Starter 
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Originally Posted by dmasteR View Post

tpi2007, you can probably add this as well.

http://www.no-mans-sky.com/2016/08/issues/
Quote:
We’ve brought a new QA team on board today (larger than the entire Hello Games team!). This will complement the existing Sony QA team.
We are working on fixes for the most critical issues, which will be in a patch in the near future.

I'm not sure what that means because if you read the whole thing it appears that it only applies to the PS4 version. Furthermore, they have a separate page for the PC issues and a link at the bottom for the PS4 issues that links to an identical article to the one on the page you mentioned but with a different title. Even that is weird because other than the title, the text on the pages below is identical:

http://www.no-mans-sky.com/2016/08/issues/
http://www.no-mans-sky.com/2016/08/ps4-support/


All in all, I'm not sure if they have anybody besides their small team to do QA on the PC version.
Edited by tpi2007 - 8/12/16 at 9:02pm
 
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post #9 of 96
For a $60 game I was expecting more content / features.

I'll buy it on sale at 80% this christmas.
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post #10 of 96
At default settings the game is borderline broken. I've managed to get it running at a fairly smooth 60fps@4k now. Borderless window, vsync off, adaptive sync through the nvidia panel, setting in game fps to 90, default settings (high textures, medium everything else). Also plays better with a controller as the look sensitivity is good but seems to not apply to the mouse (e.g broken).

I've had some fun with the game and won't refund but in all honesty it feels like a early access game. If the devs do continue to add features that will be cool.
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