As I type this post, the on-screen timer counting down the end of No Man’s Sky Expedition #1: The Pioneers reads 1 hour, 31 minutes left. After that, the mission will end and players’ Expedition save will convert to a Normal mode game save. Anyone who hasn’t completed all of the goals in the five phases of this first, two-month mission will find themselves bereft of victory.
On Wednesday, March 31, Hello Games released No Man’s Sky Expeditions (v3.3) which brought a new community focused play mode, Expedition, to the game. Expeditions involve a multi-stage mission along a preset path through the galaxy that must be completed within a set period of time (two months for Expedition #1), at which point the current Expedition will conclude and a new one set out by Hello Games will begin. Everyone embarking on the active Expedition starts off on the same planet, with a limited set of technologies, and will need to make their way many lightyears to the final destination point, fulfilling achievements along the way to progress through the mission’s various stages and on to full completion. Helpful awards are granted along the way as achievements are met and stages completed. Those who emerge victorious will be granted major awards, such as the Golden Alpha Vector fighter, which is the chief award for completing Expedition #1.
As a player fond of base building, I wanted to take advantage of the huge community aspect of Expeditions as an opportunity for a few bases of my construction to be visited by other players. (Unlike any of the other play modes, online players are everywhere in Expeditions, working their way, system-to-system, through the mission at their own pace.) As such, I took my time and built up my player by acquiring the many construction and technology blueprints necessary to build the bases that I felt would be a fitting mark to leave on this social undertaking within the No Man’s Sky universe.
Regular readers will know that I have a fondness for “tiny home” bases, and I have built two such bases on as many planets within the systems of Expedition #1, the first on planet Cogge in the starter system, Loytkara, and the second on the destination planet at the end of the mission, planet Ippen Omega in the system Pepbevis XVII. The time taken by base building in addition to completing the milestones of the Expedition #1 mission saw me spend about 70 hours playing through to completion, which I achieved one week ago. And, enjoyable hours they were; the achievements required to complete the phases of the mission made for solid gameplay, and the opportunity to build bases that would be seen by more than a few players was lovely. Expeditions is a great new way to play No Man’s Sky.
Wanting to share some of my experiences during Expedition #1: The Pioneers, I recorded quite a few video clips and screenshots here and there over the past two months and have assembled them here for those interested. (Many more images of my travels within the game, ranging back to 2016, can be seen in my gallery.) The embedded video first presents glimpses of my progress through the Expedition, encountering many bases and other players along the way (as well as a rather unexpected encounter in space that had a real “open the pod bay doors, Hal” vibe to it…), after which a short walk-through of my own aforementioned bases is shown [ bookmark to 12m 20s in ]. I hope they provide an interesting glimpse of just how busy things have been out there for players that sat this one out, or a look at perhaps a different approach to “getting the gold” for those who were there along with me on this first Expedition.
And, now, on to Expedition #2!