Following a period of agonizing that was brief but, well… agonizing, I decided to restart NMS from scratch with the new 1.3 update. It seemed to me that there had been so many significant changes, including extensive new and potentially altered narrative, that I wanted to experience the whole of it again - starting with those first few tentative steps on an unfamiliar world and leading outward to the mysterious journey into the cosmos.
I had my first play session last night and thus far I have no regrets with my decision to start from scratch. Shortly after my eyes opened upon the scene of a crashed ship and as I began to explore my surroundings, searching for resources and coming to grips with the hazards of the environment, a surprising thing happened. I found myself writing a journal, from the point of view of my character, about the experience. No game has inspired me to do that for many a long year!
I am sharing what I wrote here in the hopes that others will respond with their own experiences and perhaps even post their own creative work inspired by this incredible game.
1A. Nothing of my past remains. No memories. No images of days gone by. No joy, no grief. Whoever I am, I start this day as one new born, albeit in a body that is fully mature, possessed of reason and one overwhelming need. The stars beckon. Their call resonates within every fiber of my being. I will go to them if I can.
1A-1. Near where I awakened there is a ship. A starship. I don’t know how I can be certain of this, but I am. Wisps of smoke and steam curl upward from the damaged ship, rising languidly in the frigid air. Did I crash here, damaging my memory along with the ship? Yet… I am free of pain. I cannot reconcile that with the scene that surrounds me.
1A-2. I have repaired the hand tool I found. It appears to have many uses, serving as both a weapon and a tool for gathering resources. Should I be surprised at the sophistication of this technology? I am not. Perhaps my lack of surprise ought to be revealing, but insight does not come. For now, survival.
1A-3. This world is cold. Very cold. This suit that I inhabit affords me protection for a time, but ultimately it cannot maintain the temperature I need to sustain life. Fortunately the ship is warm. I ensconce myself within it like a caterpillar preparing to become a butterfly, planning the tasks I must perform in order to take flight.
1A-4. Work progresses upon the ship. My ship. I have christened it the Ad Astra. Soon the repairs will be complete and we, the ship and I together, will depart to the stars.
1A-5. It struck me today that I have given my ship a thing that I currently lack - a name. What use is a name when you are wholly alone and possess no past? Yet it has come into my mind to leave some trace of myself, of the beginnings of my journey, upon this world. To do this I will need a name. I shall call myself Malveka Starwind. The words mean little to me at this time, but perhaps we shall grow to fit another, my name and me, in the travels to come.
1A-6. Repairs on the ship are complete. I have gathered only a modicum of the materials I will need in order to launch the ship and make it spaceworthy. Before leaving this world I will need more. It strikes me as odd that all the resources I needed to repair the ship have been near at hand. Challenging to obtain, yes, but just enough so that I have become adept at using the tools at hand. I cannot help but wonder if my circumstance was contrived to be thus. It is a strange thought.
1A-7. The crater in which I lived and worked for that past several days is now behind me. It was with no small trepidation that I strapped myself into the Ad Astra and initiated the launch sequence in earnest. Though I have lived but a meager scrap of life following the blankness of before, I have no desire to lose the little that I have gained! And the future spreads before me like a magnificent feast. The wings of the butterfly have unfurled. I left behind a fragment of my cocoon. A technological shell containing the briefest of messages for any that may travel this path after me.
Comm Station:Starting Location: 1A Here it begins. Ad astra.
1B. Today I discovered an edifice of inky black stone. Its geometric lines sprang skyward and a line of fulgent blue light shone from within it. It spoke to me. It spoke to me with a clarity that surpassed ordinary language, attuning its message directly to my thoughts. Alas, the communication was one of arrogance and violent intent. A message to inspire despair. I am disquieted. The stars have touched this world, but the transaction was not a happy one. I take this as a sign. It is time for me to depart. My ship is ready. Tomorrow I will point its nose to the heavens and ascend into the mystery that calls to me.
Comm Station:Monolith: 1B Disquiet. Yet the stars still await.