Things became so bad for Guildford-based developer Hello Games in the wake of No Man's Sky's launch that the studio had to turn to Scotland Yard and the Metropolitan Police following death threats.
That's according to an interview with studio founder Sean Murray with Eurogamer in which the game maker opens up about the vitriolic aftermath of the ambitious sci-fi game's release.
No Man's Sky launched in August 2016 and drew the ire of the internet due to what was considered false advertising - Murray and co had talked up the game ahead of its release and the Day One version did not include many of the features mentioned, such as multiplayer.
Many of these features have been added in the last two years, with an expansive update coming out this week that introduces multiplayer to the game.
"You know what the internet can do. They crowdsource ways to be mean to people," Murray said.
"They did all the things they can do. I was dealing with the Met[ropolitan Police], Scotland Yard, stuff like that. It was serious and it was real. I'd say, personally, I wasn't a fan. I think the internet isn't necessarily really good at knowing how to deal with people in the fairest way, I think. They are right in a lot of the mistakes they point out. I looked at a bunch of that stuff and thought, yeah... We talked about the game too early. We were naively excited about the game, and we talked to other people who were naively excited about the game and they interviewed us and we all talked really excitedly! And I will not do that again."
Murray also spoke to The Guardian and said that even though the studio would have loved more time to work on the project he reckons that No Man's Sky is better for having come out when it did.
“In the lead up to launch, oh my god, I would have chopped off my own arm to have more time,” Murray said.
“We were under enormous pressure from the community and external forces. We were out of money. We were working so hard, way too hard. We’ve gotten much better balance in our lives now.
“[But] if we hadn’t released No Man’s Sky when we had, and I was sat down talking to you now after we delayed it for two years, we would not have a game as good as it is right now. Now and then you’ll see a comment thread where somebody will say: ‘It’s my favourite game of all time.’ That’s fantastic. I never expected to work on something that would have people saying that about it.”