No Man’s Sky Looks Like Mass Effect In New 3.8 Sentinel Update

A space explorer takes on a bunch of alien robots with their laser gun.

Screenshot: Hello Games

I have no idea how to even describe the game that No Man’s Sky has become at this point, and its latest free update called Sentinel is a perfect illustration of why. It overhauls combat and adds new enemies, among many, many other things, leading to missions that seem to have more in common with Mass Effect than a serene space-fairing sim. Also the mechs? You can build your own now.

Sentinels are a mysterious legion of combat drones that harass No Man’s Sky players throughout the galaxy, and the latest free update, which went live today, gives them a big upgrade. There are new types of Sentinels called Heavy Combat Drones, as well as new weapons for them to deploy, like long-distance explosive mortars that scar the planet’s surface. But players will have access to new tools of their own, including mid-fight cloaking technology, and colorful improvements to jetpacks.

Here’s the trailer:

I’m not going to go through everything in the meaty 3.8 patch notes, but here are a few other cool additions worth highlighting:

  • Build your own drone companion
  • Customize your mech with new Sentinel upgrades
  • Give your mech autopilot
  • Addition of Sentinel Pillars hiding information about their origins
  • Mobile cover in the form of holographic energy shields
  • New rapid travel system between planets
  • Multi-axis rotation during building mode
  • Neutron Cannon that can rapid fire or charge up blasts
  • Improved frame rate and image quality for players with high-end PCs

I’ve only listed half of what’s in the Sentinel update and it’s already an impressive amount of stuff, but what’s even wilder is that No Man’s Sky continues to get free expansions like this almost six years after launch. In addition to being a poster child for the disaster-at-launch redemption arc, Hello Games’ ambitious survival game continues to be one of the biggest live service success stories.

The next milestone on that journey is porting No Man’s Sky to Nintendo Switch later this year. We’ll see how that pans out, but in the meantime, the wait to learn whatever Hello Games has planned for its major 4.0 update continues.

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