No Man's Sky for PC got three patches this week; here's what they fixed

Hello Games released three patches for the PC version of its space-based sandbox-survival game No Man's Sky this past week. Today, the company finally revealed what issues were fixed in those updates.

The long awaited and much hyped game launched for the PC eight days ago but the release was plagued with many bugs and performance issues. Hello Games quickly released a patch a few hours after it launched last week but many problems remained.

In a post on the No Man's Sky community page on Steam, Hello Games released change logs for the three patches that were released in the past week. Here's what the first patch fixed, which concentrated on adding support for more hardware:

  • AMD Phenom Support - Game is now confirmed working on Phenom CPUs. Thousands of lines of assembly have been rewritten to support AMD CPUs. The game code no longer relies on anything above SSE 2, Havok Physics has also now created new libs for us to add Phenom support.
  • Alt-Tab has improved - Some systems/configs were crashing or not pausing correctly on Alt Tab. This should now be resolved.
  • Improved Performance - On CPUs with 4 threads or fewer, performance has been improved. On CPUs with exactly 8 threads, performance has also been significantly improved.
  • Framerate Stuttering due to Shader Caching - Framerate was initially stuttering due to shaders not being correctly cached by the GPU on some systems. We have replaced the GPU caching system. You may notice some stutter during the Galactic Map intro to the game (the very first time you run), but it should be smoother from then on. This is particularly true on ATI cards.
  • Max FPS Cap - On some CPU/GPU configurations, setting Max FPS to 60 or 30 was not giving 60 or 30 FPS (causing stuttering). This has been fixed.
  • Radeon 6xxx - Added support for this GPU, which doesn't support OpenGL 4.5 fully.
  • Save Corruption - Solution to try to prevent saves getting corrupted no matter what's going on in background processes (see Patch 3 below, where we also are attempting to recover corrupted saves).
  • Intel GPU Detection - We do not currently support Intel GPUS. We are working on this for a future patch, to expand our min spec. In the meantime, the game will now let you know if you are trying to run with an unsupported GPU. This will hopefully flag for some users that their high end GPU has not been selected.
  • Gsync - Gsync has been disabled by default, which was causing an issue for some users
  • Mouse Smoothing - Generally this is most helpful for players with sub-30 FPS. Smoothing on mouse movement has been improved to prevent hitching or stuttering, and is now adjustable through the Options menu in "Mouse Smoothing". It defaults to off. If you feel micro stutters in framerate affecting controls, feel free to turn this up. If you feel the framerate is "slow" or "lumpy", please make sure that this is turned off

Here's what was included in the game's second patch. Its main goal was to go after major bugs and crashes:

  • Stuck under the world - It was possible for players to save their game stuck under the terrain, leaving them stuck. This was caused by getting shot down in atmosphere, and their ship reaching ridiculous speeds as it crashed to the planet. This has been resolved. Whilst it won't happen anymore, if you are currently already stuck under the world, we detect this and do our best to rescue you.
  • Crash after warping - Occasionally at random the game would lock up after a warp, or return to desktop. This was due to very specific timing in hardware (a threading specific bug) – meaning that unfortunately for some people it was regular, and for others they would never be able to recreate it. This was our most reported crash during gameplay, and has now been resolved.
  • Game failing to save until you died - If the player died, and then loaded the game ten times without saving, and then died, player progress wouldn't be saved from then on until you died again. This is fixed now! This was also causing player's saves to grow in size.
  • Crash fixes in scanning - Quite a rare crash, but in certain scenarios it was possible to scan from space or on planet and crash the game.
  • Crash warping inside a freighter - When warping into a battle sometimes the player warped into the inside of a freighter and everything went crazy :( This is fixed now.

Finally, the third patch fixed some more crash issues, along with problems with corrupt save files and getting stranded in the game:

  • Stranded in Space Station - If you died in your ship while in atmosphere of a planet with a damaged ship, you could respawn in a space station with your launch thrusters and pulse engine damaged. If you did not have the resources to fix them then you could no longer take off and be stuck there. This will no longer happen.
  • Loading Corrupted Save Files - Some players have corrupted save files, we've been working with them to still load saves even if they are corrupted (this can happen for many reasons outside of the games control). This fix has allowed many players to still load their save even if they have become corrupt on PC.
  • Crash fixes for next three most commonly reported issues: As the player gathers a huge amount of discoveries, there was a threading issue that becomes more prevalent the more discoveries you have, and could cause the game to crash. If you had collected a large number of blueprints, in a specific order it was possible to crash the game when you received a new blueprint. This has been fixed. Players who set a large number of waypoints could find themselves in a situation where they could crash the game in the Galactic Map, this is remedied now (PS. A better waypoint system is coming).

Hello Games has at least one more patch for No Man's Sky that will be released next week, and after all of their support issues have been fixed, the team plans to release updates that will add new features. Even with alll of its post-launch issues, the game remains the best selling title on Steam as of this writing.

Have you had a better experience playing No Man's Sky with the release of these patches? Let us know in the comments!

John Callaham