"No Man's Sky," the incomprehensibly huge, procedurally-generated outer space survival video game, has been embroiled in controversy ever since it came out in August.
Since day one, players have been frustrated by the developers' lack of clarity regarding the presence of multiplayer (or lack thereof), and the stark difference between the game's early trailers and the released product. Many feel that lead developer Sean Murray was misleading when he spoke about the game's features in the months and years before it came out.
That controversy has reached a new peak, as the British Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has launched an investigation into the game's advertisements after receiving enough complaints to warrant a look. Specifically, the investigation will look at the game's page on the Steam storefront, which features trailers and screenshots that players believe do not represent the final product.
If the ASA finds that its regulations have been violated, the organization can impose sanctions and have the ads essentially removed from the internet, according to Eurogamer. Theoretically, the end-game here is for the supposedly misleading trailers and screenshots to be removed from official online storefronts.
It's worth noting that the ASA has different standards than the American Federal Trade Commission, even allowing easy submission of inaccurate advertisements by the public on its website.
"No Man's Sky" promised an infinitely varied universe where players could find majestic creatures and unique topography on any given planet. The game as it exists now is still impressive on a technical level, but there's no denying that the trailers didn't completely depict the game accurately.
Still, there's an argument to be made that "No Man's Sky" has been put under an unfair microscope, as the game was made by a small development team, which inherently limits what the game can be. Games with much larger budgets and development teams have undergone similar changes between their announcements and their releases, but few have been targeted quite like "No Man's Sky."
Hello Games did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
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