No Man's Sky 'Atlas Rises' Update Speeds Up Travel Via Portals, Launches Next Week

Hello Games is putting the final touches on a major update to No Man's Sky, the planetary exploration and survival game that stumbled out of the gate a year ago with performance issues and a lack of expected content. Since then Hello Games has been steadily improving the experience. That continues with update 1.3, otherwise known as Atlas Rises, which is another free expansion.

The developer explained in email to the game's followers that Atlas Rises "focuses on improving the central story of No Man's Sky" while also adding the ability to quick travel between locations using portals. The latter is a welcome (and overdue) feature that has been rumored for a long time now.

No Man's Sky

Hello Games said it will release patch notes shortly before the update goes live. That suggests there will be more to Atlas Rises than improving the central story and adding quick travel via portals, though what exactly the developer has in store remains to be seen.

"It has been a year since No Man's Sky first released, and it's been an exciting, intense and emotional year for us at Hello Games. We have been quiet, but we have been listening intently," Hello Games said. "We've spent that year working hard on free updates for this game our team cares about so much."

No Man's Sky was surrounded by hype when it launched last August. The idea of a procedurally generated open universe ripe with wonderful things to discover captured the attention of gamers, as did the promise of 18 quintillion planets to explore. Unfortunately the original release did not live up to expectations, leading to a rash of negative reviews and allegations of false advertising, prompting an investigation by UK's Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

Hello Games was ultimately cleared of the allegations by ASA. The developer also followed up the launch by releasing a major update a few months later that addressed many of the complaints players had with the game. While the game's overall rating on Steam is still "Mostly Negative," it has a "Mixed" rating among more than 450 recent reviews.