At GDC 2017, Managing Director of Hello Games Sean Murray finally broke his silence and provided details about the problems that went on during the development of No Man’s Sky. One of the biggest problems Sean Murray and his team faced was running out of funds while in the middle of making the game. He stated the difficulty of trying to handle the studio’s financial situation while also trying to finish No Man’s Sky was a constant source of worry for the studio.
Another major problem that came up during the game’s development was caused by underestimating the number of players that would be present at launch. After seeing the number of players at the launch Ubisoft’s Far Cry Primal, Sean Murray and his team estimated that their game would likely have no more than 14,000 concurrent players. At its launch, No Man’s Sky had a total of 500,000 players and about half of those players were on PC. This was a major problem because not only did they severely underestimate how many people would be playing concurrently but their networking team consisted of only one person and that wasn’t even his sole responsibility at the time.
Being unprepared to handle so many concurrent players and only having one person delegated to handle any network issues are two big reasons why there were so many problems at the launch of No Man’s Sky.