James L. had spent hours and hours scouring the stars, landing on countless planets and sizing up the biomes. After finally finding a planet that reminded him of Earth with a mellow breeze, he settled in and spent more time building his own personal base. It was a small project, but it was his, and it would serve as his headquarters and base as he explored the galaxy.
“Honestly, I feel like deleting [the game],” James told Polygon over Reddit DMs. “I was one of these people on the hunt to find the perfect Earth like planet, and after spending soooo many hours hunting for it, then spending so many hours building a few big builds on it... it all seems for nothing now.”
Origins, which released in late September, is a massive patch that adds flora, fauna, mountain ranges, deep ocean caves, fish school behavior, storms, tornadoes, sandworms, and more to the sandbox space exploration game. So far, the reaction has been largely positive as players discover a new galaxy. But some players are more distraught, and the community is already organizing to lend them a hand. When there’s a need, there’s room for a resource, and long-time community members have organized a new system to find beautiful homeworlds for a fresh start.
D. Macneill is one of these players, and he’s organized a group for others to easily find beautiful homeworlds with no storms or hostile Sentinels. Macneill runs a group called No Man Sky’s Habitable Planets. The group was originally intended for nomads who were okay with uprooting for a new home, but Origins made their mission much more urgent for many players.
“Looking for a new planet to call home? This group is dedicating [sic] to exploring the vast universe for the most perfect and habitable planets,” the Reddit page reads. “NO STORMS NO SENTINELS!!”
“The goal was to have enough planets in our page so that someone could ideally just search what they want ‘green grass, blue skies’ and a planet with their desired features would come up.” Macneill told Polygon over Reddit.
Emily R., another player who is looking for a new home after aggressive fauna swarmed her base with the Origins update, now has a home in a world that looks abandoned. Fortunately, she can now just go on the Habitable Planets project and scroll through a selection of planets.
“It’s a little like Tinder,” Emily laughs. “I’m like, brown water? Ew, no. Mountain ranges? I don’t want to deal with that. Purple planet? Yeah, that’s cute, swipe right!”
Within a few hours, Origins doubled the size of the Habitable Planet’s player base to 700 members and 2000 visitors, with fans flocking to the group in order to find their new home. The project continues to grow.
Origins made Macneill’s project even easier to execute, as well as swelling with the demand. Portals are a teleportation system in the game that instantly take you from a station to a planet, or from one base to another. Origins ironed out how said portals work, and you can now build on a planet you access via portal, whereas before you had to manually find the planet and could only arrive on it after seeing it via a portal.
“We used to require [people posting planets to the page] to be available to give [players interested in the planet they posted] rides to their desired destinations; if you travel by portal, you wouldn’t be able to put a base down, due to portal interference,” Macneill explains. The new update allows players to put a glyph down, teleporting their friends to the planet and allowing them to get to work instantly.
There are also practical considerations for players. One player, Shakey_Shaman, spoke about how he had built a mineral farm over 25-30 hours, slowly building up piles of metal plating and teleporting them to and fro, then carefully placing them. Then, he logged in to find all of that work 200 feet in the air, with his production cut down to a mere quarter of its efficiency.
But there are upsides to the update for many players who have logged into find homeworlds changed. One player, Teiju, had his planet change into something straight out of Doom, which he described as “beautiful”, and a welcome change over the plain scorched planet he had been on before.
Shaky_Shaman agrees, planning to set back off and create more bases — and new carefully crafted farms — across the planets. “After hundreds and hundreds of hours in this game, the fact that I now again have probably more and more hours of new exploration content now, is one of the driving factors that, despite the hardships we have gone through, keep drawing us back to the game.”