Hello Games’ ambitious sci-fi title No Man’s Sky has attracted some serious talent to help build its expansive universe.
The studio has teamed up with Dave Gibbons and James Swallow to build up the in-game history and lore behind the inhabitants and environments of its procedurally-generated galaxy.
Comic book writer and artist Gibbons is best-known for his work on the critically-acclaimed Watchmen, as well as his contribution to series including Batman, Superman and the roster of cult magazine 2000 AD.
Meanwhile, Swallow has written novels based in the worlds of Warhammer 40,000, Star Trek and Doctor Who, screenplays for Star Trek Voyager and video game scripts including those for Deus Ex entries Human Revolution and Mankind Divided, Fable: The Journey and Killzone 2.
Programmer Sean Murray explained the method behind the storytelling in the game on the PlayStation blog.
“With a universe as open as ours – with a near infinite number of planets out there to see – we want players to discover everything on their terms,” he said. “We don’t have huge cut scenes or a traditional linear story.
“There is, however, a real lore in the game. Hopefully everything you find has a reason for existing. When you see a building, we’ve tried to think of who might have built it, and why. It’s something we’re excited to see fans uncover as they play, and put their own interpretations on.”
Discussing Gibbons and Swallow’s contribution specifically, Murray revealed: “They have tried to create their own stories in our universe, hopefully just like players will. We called it the ‘Adventures in No Man’s Sky’ comic (part of the game’s Limited Edition).
"We all share a deep love of sci-fi, so for them to create their own tales in our universe – and to share their knowledge and help us develop some of the nitty gritty of the lore at the same time – felt like the perfect collaboration."