Sean Murray, lead designer of Hello Games with his title No Man’s Sky recently spoke to Official PlayStation Magazine, and discussed the feature of discovering and naming planets, animals and tech. Of course, the studio are aware of the dangers of giving players control of the naming process, but there’s only so much filtering they can do.
“The first person to the planet will probably be the person who discovers it. If they do, they can go to a beacon and then you can upload that information,” says Murray. “You upload that you found it and you get to name it as well. Then once you upload it, if another player comes here and they’re online they’ll see the name. Probably some terribly crude name.”
We expect to find quite a few tongue in cheek jokes, some atrocious slang and outright crudeness, but what’s to say that Hello Games won’t be able to alter these titles once they’re uploaded and shared? They could easily warn the individual via a message that their choice of name is unacceptable, and force a change within 24 hours maybe? That, or face the penalty of losing ownership completely if a deliberately selected name is too distasteful.
“There will be a filter. But the human race is very ingenious, they find a way,” laughs Murray. “They always find the way to write the name of genitals for a planet. That will be the name people will see and that’s not just for planets. The same goes for creatures, discoveries like types of ship, type of weapons. All of them are procedural, all of them have their own names.”
No Man’s Spoilers
In another interview with The Guardian, Sean Murray spoke about how every game these days gets spoiled online with social media, whether it’s the ending, the plot twist or an epic scene, it’s hard to avoid it all, and with No Man’s Sky, the game is literally spoiler free, because of its procedurally generated worlds and environments.
“In this era, in which footage of every game is recorded and uploaded to YouTube, we wanted a game where, even if you watched every video, it still wouldn’t be spoiled for you,” he said. “And we wanted those discoveries to be meaningful in the sense that they could be shared with other players, all of whom existed in the exact same universe, rather than inside their own random dimension.”