No Man’s Sky’s recent update changed a whole bunch of things about the game, but one thing that didn’t change is that it’s a game full of currencies and resources that you will need to grind.
Among the most important are Units, the game’s basic currency, and Nanite Clusters, a secondary currency that you can use to purchase blueprints and modules to upgrade your gear, ship and exosuit.
This is how to get those currencies as quickly as possible.
Sentinels are the best source of Nanites
You’ll find Nanites in small amounts scattered around in buildings, and missions you get on Space Stations award some as well. But the best way to grind out several thousand is to get them as drops from Sentinels.
Sentinels are the robotic cops that attack if they spot you blasting native flora and fauna to feed your need for resources. The first wave will just be one little floating drone. If you kill it, a second wave of two drones will show up. If you kill those, two more drones will come, along with a “Quadrupedal Sentinel,” which is a robot dog with a laser for a face.
If you can handle that, you’ll get a couple of drones and a huge walker. Things go haywire if you beat the walker: You then get two drones, two of the dogs and another walker, all at the same time. After that, the final wave will repeat over and over.
You need to craft a bunch of projectile ammo if you want to farm a few of the big waves for nanites. Your Boltcaster and Scatter Blaster will chew through ammunition through this process, so craft more than you think you need.
Luckily, projectile ammo stacks to a thousand and is pretty cheap. It’s made from the Ferrite Dust you get from the common rocks that can be found all over the place. Be sure to keep a large supply of that as well; it’s hard to scrounge for dust once the Sentinels start attacking in larger numbers.
The best way to farm Nanites is to find an Outpost with a landing pad and a Galactic Trade Terminal inside. The landing pad is important; the dogs have a melee lunge attack that can deal a lot of damage, but they can’t get up on the landing pad. You can stand on the pad and attack with near impunity. Their laser attacks often also hit the landing pad railing, depending on their positioning, so you may want to experiment a bit with placement.
Being at an Outpost allows you to run inside for a few seconds to let your shields or hazmat protection recharge if you take too much damage. You want to be at the Outpost, because if your shields take a bunch of damage, you can run inside the building and wait for about 20 seconds, and your shields will recharge.
This makes it a lot easier to manage the larger waves: You can take out the drones and the dogs, step into the building to recover and then go back out at full strength to handle the walker. The drones and dogs are easy to kill: Just shoot them until they die, but make sure to kill the drones first so they don’t repair the dogs during the fight.
The walker is a little more complicated, but not terribly difficult. It first shoots you with a laser which does a lot of damage, so be sure not to stand in the beam.
The walker has armor plating on the upper and lower parts of its legs and on its main chassis, and shooting it away makes the walker vulnerable to damage. The critical spot is on the front of the unit, where the lasers come from. I like to switch from the Boltcaster to the Scatter Blaster once the armor is off; No Man’s Sky’s aiming is a little wonky, and it seems easier to hit the correct spot with the Scatter Blaster.
The walker switches from the laser beam to a machine gun attack once its armor is gone. These projectiles are very predictable and slow, so just strafe to dodge them. Try to strafe back and forth in front of the walker rather than in a circle around it to keep shooting it in the face.
Once you get the hang of it, the machine gun weapon will hit you so rarely that your shields will recharge before it becomes a problem.
All the Sentinels drop an element called Pugneum, the dogs drop an item called a Quad Servo and the walker drops an item called a Walker Brain. These resources have uses, eventually, but inventory space is always scarce in No Man’s Sky, so you should just dump these for credits for now. You can always get more when you need them later.
If there’s one thing the galaxy has no shortage of, it’s Sentinels. Selling this stuff will net you a few hundred thousand units for every thousand nanites you farm.
This strategy is not a bad way to farm units, but it’s also not the best way.
S-tier scanner upgrades and galactic trade arbitrage
Units are still important, although most upgrades are purchased with Nanites. You will want to buy ships, better multi-tools and freighters. And these things can cost millions, or even hundreds of millions, of units.
Fortunately, you can still cheese the game’s economy. When the game first came out in 2016, we quickly realized that you could amass what was then a massive fortune by combining common ingredients into goods that sold for high prices on the Global Trade Network vendor network. The numbers are bigger these days, but the idea is still the same.
You need to find a blueprint to make a Cryo-Pump, and that blueprint can be found in Manufacturing Facilities. You can find them by flying around and looking at the landscape, but you can also ask for directions at space stations and trading posts or use the navigation data that you can buy from the vendors at outposts in your signal booster. Search for “Secure Signals” to get directed to a manufacturing facility.
Once you have the blueprint to make a Cryo-Pump, you can buy the components for the pump from merchants for about half a million units, craft the pump and quadruple your money when you sell it.
Sell a few hundred pumps, and you can be the admiral of a crazy starfleet! It really is that easy.
Alternatively, scanner upgrades now add sizable multipliers to the unit bonuses you get for scanning flora and fauna as you explore planets. With S-tier upgrades, you can get hundreds of thousands of units per scan. That’s a lot of skrilla, but it will take a lot of scans to pull together enough units to buy yourself an S-tier freighter. Cryo-pumps are probably faster.
Stuff to look out for
Copper can be refined into Chromatic Metal, which you need for a variety of things, including fuel for your warp drive. It’s not terribly common considering how useful it is, but it’s cheap to buy on the Galactic Trade Network, so that’s probably the easiest place to get it. The same goes for Cobalt, a somewhat-rare material that you need to build teleporters at your bases and repair drop pods to expand your inventory.
Thruster Fuel, which powers your ability to take off from each planet’s surface, is made from the blue crystals of DiHydrogen and a metal sheet, which you make from Ferrite Dust. Thruster fuel stacks to 20, so you might as well try to keep a stack on hand.
There seems to be a patch of blue crystals near almost every point of interest, but there’s not a huge quantity in each patch, so it’s better to remember to grab some whenever it’s around than running out to go looking for it if you find yourself stranded.
The best way to explore the cosmos is with a lot of money
Since No Man’s Sky is random and procedurally-generated, rare, high-quality or exotic ships, tools and upgrades can turn up at any time. It really sucks to find those things and be unable to afford them, so it’s therefore important to get as many resources as you can, as quickly as possible.
These strategies should put you on the path to buying whatever you want, as fast as you want. Have a good time out there.