We reported a little while ago that No Man’s Sky was being investigated for false advertising by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), a UK-based regulator for media advertising. The case was specifically aimed against the Steam version of the project from Hello Games, and as of today, all 23 complaints filed against the game were found to be not true. This means that No Man’s Sky did not deceive consumers in any substantial way.
You can go through the entire investigation here, with statements from Hello Games and the ASA, but the summation is that no charge against the game was upheld. If anything, the document helps to cement the ambitious and wildly varied nature of the game. You also get a clearer understanding of features that the game has due to Hello Games having to explain why things are the way they are. For example, I wasn’t even aware that warp times between systems were shorter if less planets were in the system. That makes a lot of sense, but is subtle and not conveyed to the consumer.
It seems like a lot of the complaints waged against Hello Games were because of a lack of understanding on how the behind-the-scenes mechanics operate. There are some instances where the ASA cite minor differences between the footage and the gameplay itself, but they shrug them off as inconsequential and one specific example discourages the idea that a consumer could be swayed by a feature. The ASA states “Although animals in the trailer were shown moving large trees, which was not observed in the footage or during gameplay, we considered that this was a fleeting and incidental scene, unlikely in itself to influence materially a consumer’s decision to purchase the game.”
This information all comes out a couple days after Hello Games released a new update for No Man’s Sky that includes building bases, buying freighters and new game modes. This will be the first of several free updates that make their way to the game.
I for one, am happy that Sean Murray might feel a little bit more comfortable coming out and discussing the game in greater detail. Especially with a third-party having combed through their entire game and given them a thumbs up.
Source: Advertising Standards Authority