These incredible photos show how hard it was to create 'No Man's Sky'

What’s it like creating a game on the scale of “No Man’s Sky” — a game with 18 quintillion planets to explore, all planet-sized — with a team of under 20?

It’s really, really hard. Incredibly hard. Not quite “running the United States” levels of difficulty, but its effect on the human body isn’t far off. We present Exhibit A:

That’s Hello Games’ managing director Sean Murray — he’s one half of the directing duo in charge of creating “No Man’s Sky,” which launches on Tuesday, August 9 for PlayStation 4 and Friday, August 12 for PC.

The game’s been in development for years at this point. It was first debuted back in December 2013, but the team at Hello Games was already working on it for several years at that point. In so many words, Murray’s been working on “No Man’s Sky” for the last four to six years of his life. And the game finally comes out this week. No pressure!

For context, your average blockbuster video game (read: “Call of Duty,” “Uncharted,” etc.) is created by hundreds of employees working at major, multinational game studios. To accomplish what Hello Games have is huge, incredibly tiring, and, apparently, capable of straight up ageing you.

We’ve seen similar effects other places, of course. Look no further than photos of President Barack Obama from his initial 2008 inauguration comparatively with photos of him now.

Sure, it’s been eight years, but he’s clearly aged about 20 years in that time. Too bad he didn’t grow a gnarly beard like Murray.

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