Hello Games really has put in a herculean effort with No Man’s Sky after its divisive launch. We’ve had numerous free content updates, including base building, vehicles, and more, as well as the prospect of VR support and full-blown multiplayer. There’s one more treat for PC gamers though, with the surprise announcement of Vulkan support for No Man’s Sky.
The Vulkan graphics API is supported in No Man’s Sky right now thanks to a new patch yesterday. Previously, No Man’s Sky supported the aging OpenGL standard, and this should mean a dramatic performance improvement, particularly for those with AMD Radeon graphics cards, which excel at Vulkan performance.
“As part of our optimisation work, we have added Vulkan support to the game”, writes Hello Games. “We have been able to do this not only for Beyond, but for the current live version of the game. As such, we wanted to release this to you as soon as possible.
“Final Vulkan support will bring many PC players an immediate performance improvement, but it also helps us increase our options as we continue to make significant engine changes. It is only one portion of a large body of work that will see technical improvements for all players on all platforms.”
It’s a pretty major change to the core of No Man’s Sky and so Hello Games is rolling the update out to the experimental branch of the game first. It is recommended you back up your save files before doing this, by making a local copy of the st_[userid] folder found here: %appdata%\HelloGames\NMS\
You just need to change which branch you’re running by right-clicking No Man’s Sky in your Steam library, select ‘Properties’, then select the ‘Betas’ tab and select Experimental Branch from the drop-down list.
It is highly recommended you update your graphics card drivers to the very latest version if you want to give this a go.