In No Man’s Sky you will need to spend Units to upgrade your ship in a variety of ways. You can earn Units by trading in resources at space stations and discovering new planets and species to add information to the Atlas. These Units are almost as important as money in the real world, so make sure you understand what you’re going to need to spend them on.
It’s important to note that you can only have one ship at a time. We covered some of the general tips (including useful ship information) in our No Man’s Sky guide hub. For the purposes of this article, just know that dying in space means you lose your ship. That means you need to pick your battles wisely. If the Sentinels are on you because you over-mined a planet, it may be best to run instead of putting up a fight. The same can be said if you happen to run into space pirates.
If you come across two factions battling it out in space, it can be beneficial to help one faction with their fight. In the future, that faction may come to your aid if another faction attacks or you’re being chased by space pirates. But above all else, try not to die while in space because you will lose your ship, items and discoveries as you respawn at the nearest space station. If this happens, you can still use the basic ship with no hyperdrive until you have the Units to buy a better one.
There are several different types of ships you can purchase in No Man’s Sky. However, since you can only use one ship at a time, make sure you know what you plan on doing before you pick up a new ship. There’s no use buying a cargo ship if you plan to fight off space pirates all the time.
Cargo Ships - If you find a good trade route that can make you a lot of Units, pick up a cargo ship so you can hold a lot of cargo and make a lot more money each time you stop at a space station.
Fighter Ships - If you’ve had a few run-ins with the Sentinels or you enjoy fighting off space pirates or joining factions, you may want to invest in a fighter ship. These ships generally have advanced weaponry and can travel at faster speeds than most other ship types.
Exploration Ships - There are over 18 quintillion planets in No Man’s Sky. Even if millions of people play the game, you won’t run into other people very often and there will always be something new to discover. Having an exploration ship means you will have a jump drive that can go longer distances. That also means you can make it to the center of the universe a little faster.
Space Stations and Upgrades
You can buy and sell goods at almost any space station you come across. The prices of items will vary considerably depending on which space station you’re at, so if you’re trying to sell off some goods and the price just isn’t right, move on to the next space station to see if the prices get any better. However, if you’re in the market for a new ship, pick one up as soon as you see a ship you like. Space stations have a rolling stock of ships, which means that if you miss your opportunity to buy a ship, you may not see it for sale again for some time.
If you plan on exploring the universe, one of your most common purchases will be hyperdrive fuel. You need hyperdrive fuel for the jump drive so you can move from galaxy to galaxy with relative ease. You will also spend Units on upgrading the speed, maneuverability, weaponry and jump drive range of your ship. Just like your ship selection, know what you plan to do before you put Units into upgrading your ship.
Exploration ships should be upgraded with longer jump drive range. However, if you plan on fighting pirates or Sentinels, you may want to invest in upgrading your weaponry or maneuverability. Keep in mind you can pick up an exploration ship and still upgrade the weaponry if you want to enhance your defenses. Just remember it can sometimes be better to run instead of fight, especially if you’re in a cargo ship and not a fighter ship.
We’ll have a more detailed look at how to upgrade your ship and what you should be spending your hard-earned Units on in the coming weeks, but for now this should get you off to a good start.