The UK-based Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) is investigating developer Hello Games and No Man’s Sky based on one player’s formal complaint concerning the misleading promotional material of the game and its final product.
Based on Reddit user AzzerUK, the game’s trailers, screenshots and information used to promote No Man’s Sky on its Steam page are totally dissimilar to what it actually features in-game.
This is the reason why AzzerUK filed his complaint, leading him to seek help from the ASA, an independent regulator whose role is to regulate the content of advertisements, sales promotions and direct marketing in the UK by investigating consumers’ complaints on ads, sales promotions or direct marketing.
In an interview shared by PC GAMER, AzzerUK said, “I can’t speak about other countries, but in the UK [there] are regulations about providing advertising material that could mislead a consumer in some way—[for example] displaying things that do not, in fact, exist.”
According to AzzerUK, he wanted to reach out to the group not because he was particularly angry, and not even for a refund, but he was alarmed with how the trailers are completely different from the actual game.
Meanwhile, the complaint against No Man’s Sky is still ongoing. ASA is now in contact with Hello Games and Valve and have been told to respond to the following questions and issues basing on the several complaints that they have received including its graphics as shown on the game’s Steam page compared to the launch version and its apparent references to a lack of loading screens, trading systems between stars and factions vying over territory.
“We will ensure the advertisers are made aware of any points relating to other marketing materials under their control (such as the Hello Games YouTube channel and website),” ASA stated in a report shared by Game Spot.
However, because of the numerous number of complainants to ASA, the investigator also mentioned that the outcome of their investigation into No Man’s Sky’s Steam page could affect its listings on other marketplaces.
Stay tuned for more updates!