No Man's Sky Beyond launch trailer shows off expanded multiplayer and rideable aliens

The No Man's Sky Beyond launch trailer is here, and it finally feels like it's meeting and exceeding the promise of that infamous CGI announcement trailer - all with in-game footage. No Man's Sky Beyond itself is still set to arrive on August 14, but at least you can enjoy the trailer's scenes of lush foliage, expanded multiplayer, and strange new monolithic technologies until then.

According to developer Hello Games, No Man's Sky Beyond was originally meant to be three separate updates that would add virtual reality to the game, significantly grow the multiplayer experience that was introduced in No Man's Sky Next, and make other far-reaching changes.

"The more we got into development however, the more those individual pieces started to coalesce and become interdependent on each other," Hello Games studio head Sean Murray wrote in a new post on the official site. "Virtual Reality is cool and a major undertaking for a procedurally generated universe, but virtual reality becomes all the more enjoyable and immersive when you’re playing with friends, be they VR players or not. Bringing the social multiplayer enhancements we wanted to make together with VR seemed not only desirable and natural but unstoppable."

Murray says Hello Games will share more information about other parts of No Man's Sky Beyond "very soon," adding that this update feels like the most important one for the game yet. Whatever else the developers have in store, it's tough to argue with a huge, free update for all players.

Read our interview with Sean Murray about how now is the time for Hello Games to be even more ambitious than it was at the start of No Man's Sky.