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No Man's Sky trailer offers a look at how trade works

The business of space is business

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

The latest trailer for No Man’s Sky touches on trade, showing off the ways in which players collect items that they can then exchange for important upgrades to their suit, weapon and ship.

Gathering resources is a crucial part of No Man’s Sky. Resources often take the form of natural elements and minerals that you mine from planets, like carbon or iron oxide. You can use some of these resources to craft new weapons and items, as long as you’ve learned the associated "technology," which you can think of as a crafting recipe.

As you come in contact with alien races in No Man’s Sky, you’ll want to trade resources with them, since interacting with other sentient species is how you gradually learn the language that each of them speaks. This is where it’ll be important to understand resource scarcity — a mineral that’s abundant on one planet may be rare somewhere else, which would make it very valuable there. It’ll be possible to play No Man’s Sky entirely as a trader, living off the profits from the hard work of mining.

For more on No Man’s Sky, which launches Aug. 9 on PlayStation 4 and Windows PC, read our hands-on preview. You can also check out the first two trailers in this four-part series: exploration and combat.

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