Not many people would argue that Hello Games has redeemed itself after No Man’s Sky’s abysmal launch. Not only has the studio delivered what it initially promised, but it has also continued on with a long string of very well received DLC updates. And to make it all the better, all of this content has been free from day one. No season passes, no extra payout, just free. Kudos to HG for going above and beyond to bring such a beautiful and fun game to fans.
The latest major update to No Man’s Sky dropped on Tuesday. The DLC, titled Exo Mech, is version 2.4 of the rags to riches sci-fi sandbox. As the name suggests, the most exciting feature is a new exocraft that is a colossal walking robot for you to pilot.
The mech is called the Minotaur Heavy and joins the line up of exocraft already in the game — the Nomad (light hovercraft), the Roamer (mid-range buggy), the Colossus (heavy supply carrier), the Pilgrim (fast bike), and the Nautilon (mini-sub).
The Minotaur is relatively slow, but traversing terrain is a cakewalk (no pun intended). It can leap with a boosted jump that can speed things up and overcome obstacles like wide crevasses. While I have not gotten to pilot one yet (possibly tonight), the boosted jump is likely limited in a similar way as the jetpack with a certain amount of power before having to rest for a recharge.
What really stands out is the cockpit of the Minotaur when in first-person mode or VR. It looks like a lot of attention to detail went into designing the controls and instrument panels in the mech. The only drawback is the more limited visibility while viewing from inside. However, it does add an extra layer of immersion, especially in VR.
The mech also provides a better way to collect materials than other exocraft. It is immune to all planetary hazards and can gather mats directly without having to leave the cockpit. It is also equipped with a terrain manipulator, so mining and other tasks that require physically exiting the vehicle are not a problem.
The 2.4 update also adds a variety of new exocraft technologies. Vehicles can now be outfitted with solar panels to recharge engines as long as there is daylight. The scanning capabilities have been expanded as well. Now Travelers can scan for nearby points of interest without having to get out and use the Analysis Visor.
A new piece of equipment called the “Orbital Exocraft Materialiser” has been added to the freighter loadout. This device allows players to summon exocraft from anywhere as long as the freighter is equipped with the tech and is in the same star system.
Several other minor features are also available, including exocraft decals, overall visual improvements, GTAO performance optimization, and resolution scaling that does not affect the user interface (PC version only).
Two other changes that are considered minor but were highly needed and requested are the Electrical Cloaking Unit (ECU) and a base complexity toggle. After installing the ECU, your base’s power lines will be hidden unless you are in construction mode, so no more messy crisscrossing wires. Although I have to admit, I kind of enjoy figuring out creative ways to hide power lines.
Additionally, console players can now disable the base complexity limit. If massive complexes are your bag, then have at it. But be warned: The bigger the base, the more hits to performance you will take. Get too expansive, and stability issues will likely arise, which is why the limit was put in place to begin with.
The patch is available as of today for consoles and PC, and as always, this is a free DLC. If you haven’t played it yet.