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Leave the grinding behind with these ‘No Man’s Sky’ crafting tips

The beauty of No Man’s Sky is that it doesn’t force players to follow a linear story, but rather encourages them to forge their own path through its near-infinite universe. Whether you opt to blaze your own trail or chase after its enigmatic endgame, though, crafting is going to play an integral role in your progression.

Like many of the survival game’s systems and mechanics, players are largely left to figure out the ins and outs of crafting for themselves. That sense of discovery is a huge part of the game’s appeal, but it can also serve as an obstacle for those who just want to jump in and get their passport stamped on every single planet.

Related: How to survive your first star system in No Man’s Sky

While No Man’s Sky‘s procedural generation guarantees everyone a unique adventure, it makes it impossible to compile a crafting guide that suits every player’s specific path through its gazillion star systems. With that in mind, we’ve put together eight essential tips to help you streamline your crafting regardless of where your adventure takes you.

1. Follow the story… at first

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When you initially enter No Man’s Sky‘s vast world, it’s extremely tempting to run off in random directions, point your multi-tool at anything that moves, and ignore the game’s tips to set you on the right path. You’re certainly welcome to do your own thing right out of the gate, gathering resources and crafting them to get your ship zipping around the galaxy.

Heed the game’s early advice, though, and you’ll be led to necessary items — even that coveted Antimatter — much quicker. We recommend following the game’s objectives, and its accompanying checkpoints, as closely as possible until you at least have your Hyperdrive installed. Once you break lightspeed, feel free to author your own adventure.

2. Be a resource snob

Resources are everything in this game, but that doesn’t mean you have to mine every rock and plant within spitting distance. While elements are plentiful, your starship and exosuit have extremely limited inventory space. Grabbing everything in sight will fill your valuable cargo space fast, and force you to spend more time managing and moving useless items.

If you do end up with a surplus of unwanted  inventory items, don’t be afraid to discard or dismantle them to make space for the essentials. Even so-called “rare” resources should be jettisoned if they’re taking up space and keeping you from efficiently filling your inventory with the elements you actually need.

3. Read, scan, repeat

Scanning (NMS)

Aimlessly exploring and mining offers some great sightseeing opportunities, but it’s not going to help you get that cool new ship upgrade any time soon. Whether you’re looking to install a new technology or craft a product, read — and remember — their ingredients so you don’t end up wasting time and your mining beam’s energy.

Once you know exactly what’s needed to complete a blueprint, use your scanner to identify resources and elements around you. A quick scan will highlight element types within range with colorful icons, while closer inspection will identify the specific resource within the element family.

4. Upgrade wisely

Upgrading your multi-tool’s mining capabilities is a no-brainer for the master crafter, but it’s equally important to focus on any enhancements that will make you a more efficient resource gatherer. Technologies and upgrades that increase your stamina or give your jetpack an extra boost will allow you to explore and mine much quicker.

Sure, upgrading your scanner with a better pulse radius might not sound as sexy as investing in a Boltcaster for your multi-tool, but it will pay off in the long run.

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