How do you get Nanites in No Man's Sky? What's the best way to earn Nanite Clusters? How can you farm Nanites and get them quickly? Nanites, or Nanite Clusters, are a secondary currency in No Man's Sky, and essential if you want to purchase upgrades for your equipment. If you're looking to upgrade your exosuit, multitool, and starship, you'll want to have a healthy supply of Nanites. As part of our No Man's Sky guide, we're going to give you multiple methods for farming Nanites, as well as some hints about picking up a few easy ones along the way. If you want to know more about Nanites and No Man's Sky's other currencies, see our guide: No Man's Sky: What Are Units, Nanites, and Quicksilver Currencies?
No Man's Sky: How to Get Nanites As a Beginner
Below, we're going to tell you how to make buckets of Nanites, so you don't need to worry about them ever again. However, before we get into the thick of it, let's go over some simple ways to pick up handfuls of Nanites along your travels.
An easy way to get Nanites at any time is to upload your discoveries. When you press Options to pause the game, you can tab over to Discoveries, and here, you'll find all the planets you've found, as well as any flora and fauna you've scanned. From here, you can choose to upload these discoveries, and doing so will earn you a few Nanites. There's no harm in doing it, so why not?
Sentinels are those little flying robot droids that you'll find pretty frequently on the surface of planets in No Man's Sky. Their job is to maintain said planets and eliminate anything that threatens the balance. They also happen to contain Nanites if you blow them up, but obviously, this will alert them and they'll begin to shoot at you when you behave aggressively.
This is a relatively dangerous method of getting a few Nanites, but if you have a multitool with a half-decent weapon and are ready to take a few hits, this is one way to get some.
Look Inside Abandoned Buildings
Sometimes, you'll be able to find abandoned, derelict buildings on a planet's surface. These can contain various things, but will very often have some Nanites up for grabs. Search these buildings thoroughly when you come across them and you'll leave with a slightly heavier wallet.
Repair Damaged Machinery
Damaged Machinery is a pretty common sight when exploring planets in No Man's Sky. These pods can be spotted with your Analysis Visor and are easy to spot with their plumes of black smoke. When you inspect a Damaged Machinery, you'll need to fix it by removing a material. Once this is done, you'll almost certainly gain some Nanites for your trouble. Sometimes, you'll get something different, but the most common reward is Nanites.
On a space station, you will find a Mission Board, which will have some fairly straightforward missions for you to take on. These will have various objectives, such as collecting certain resources, destroying sentinels, defending a freighter from space pirates, and many more. The rewards for these missions do vary, but you can often get some Nanites for your efforts here, if you fancy taking on some additional objectives.
No Man's Sky: How to Farm Nanites
If you're really serious about netting a tonne of Nanites, you'll want to consider farming them. There are a few ways to farm Nanite Clusters in No Man's Sky, and we're going to outline them for you below. It's worth noting that all of these will take some time, either to set up certain parameters or to search for the right items, but the number of Nanites you will end up with will be worth the effort.
Refining Larval Cores
One pretty reliable way to get Nanites is also fairly risky. Outside of abandoned buildings (and on planets classified as dead or infested), you will find objects on the ground called Whispering Eggs. When these are destroyed (with your mining laser or an alternative weapon), they will release a few Larval Cores. Pick these up quickly, as they will disappear after a few seconds. When you have them in your inventory, you can then use a Refiner to turn Larval Cores into Nanites. The conversion rate is 1 Larval Core to 50 Nanites, so they're quite lucrative.
However, there is a catch! Destroying a Whispering Egg will instantly spawn multiple mean-looking creatures known as Biological Horrors. These alien beasties will constantly attack you with melee strikes or projectiles, and they hit pretty darn hard. You need to be aware that this will happen if you hope to turn Larval Cores into Nanites.
You can avoid them with some tricksy moves; before popping the Whispering Eggs, you can lay down some walls around them and box yourself in, meaning the creatures can't get to you while you harvest Larval Cores. Another option is to use the terrain manipulator to tunnel underneath the Whispering Eggs so they drop down below the surface — another safe way to collect them.
Scrapping starships is a more complex method of farming Nanites, but it can be a very effective way to earn them. To begin the process of ship scrapping, you will need a decent amount of Units first. For information on how to earn all the Units you need, see this guide: No Man's Sky: How to Make Money and Get Lots of Units Quickly.
Once you have a reliable and sustainable supply of Units, it's time to scrap some ships. So, head to a space station and clear out your exosuit inventory as much as you can. Hold onto things you know you'll use of course, but you want a bunch of slots clear for this. With that done, just hang out in the, er, hangar, and watch as other ships come in and land.
Ideally you're looking for top-tier ships, A or S class, that you can purchase from their owners. Talk to the NPC stood by a ship and, if the ship is suitable, buy it. As you can own up to six starships at a time, you can do this several times. Next, go into the new ship's inventory and dismantle all its technology that you can, then transfer the components to your suit inventory.
Next, head up to the starship outfitting station, making sure that the ship you're looking to scrap is your primary ship. To ensure this, hop into the cockpit and back out. In the starship outfitting menu, you want to then click 'Claim Scrap Worth X Units'. This will scrap the ship, turning it into resources that go in your inventory. You can then sell all these items to make most of your money back. This is why you'll need a steady supply of Units.
Anyway, when you scrap ships, you should find you end up with some technology upgrade modules. Hang onto these (unless there are any you want to install in your own ship of course). These upgrade modules are the things that'll win you a bunch of Nanites.
Head over to a technology vendor (to the right of the starship outfitting console) and they will exchange any of your surplus tech upgrades for hundreds of Nanites. And that's the process of scrapping ships for Nanites. It's a fair amount of busywork, but you'll end up with thousands of Nanites relatively fast if you stick with it.
Feeding Iteration: Cronus
Iteration: Cronus is an NPC found aboard the Space Anomaly. If you talk to them, you'll quickly learn they're a chef and obsessed with food. We can use this to our advantage by offering him food in exchange for, yes, Nanites.
In order to do this, you will need to get your hands on the Nutrient Processor, a device that cooks raw ingredients to turn them into all kinds of foods. No Man's Sky has hundreds of cooking recipes, and most of them will result in some Nanites when given to Iteration: Cronus. The number you get will depend on the complexity and rarity of the food being offered. Obviously, the more effort you put into cooking, the more lucrative the rewards. Perhaps the easiest and best option is to make Delicious Vegetable Stew.
To make a tonne of Delicious Vegetable Stew, you need to set some stuff up first. To start with, you need to know how to make Fungal Clusters. You can acquire the seed blueprint for this plant from the Space Anomaly — the blueprint costs 3 Salvaged Data. To craft these seeds, you will need 50 Fungal Mould and 25 Ammonia. Once you have the seeds, you will need to plant them in a base.
To do that, you'll need to know how to build Hydroponic Trays. The blueprint is also found on the Space Anomaly. You'll need 30 Pure Ferrite, 2 Metal Plating, and 20 Carbon to build one. Ideally, you want to establish a base using a Base Computer, then put down lots of Hydroponic Trays, then plant Fungal Clusters in all of them. Once planted, the Fungal Clusters will take four real-time hours to grow.
At this point, you can harvest Fungal Mould from all the Fungal Clusters. Now, you need some Nutrient Processors — a couple at least, more if you can. Follow these steps to turn Fungal Mould into Delicious Vegetable Stew:
- Process 50 or more Fungal Mould in each Nutrient Processor. This turns it into Non-Toxic Mushrooms.
- Process 50 or more Non-Toxic Mushrooms in two Nutrient Processors. These will turn into Steamed Vegetables.
- In one Nutrient Processor, process two stacks of Non-Toxic Mushrooms together to make Fibrous Stew.
- Take the two stacks of Steamed Vegetables and process them together in a single Nutrient Processor. This will make Flavoursome Sauce.
- Finally, process the Flavoursome Sauce and Fibrous Stew together in one Nutrient Processor. This results in Delicious Vegetable Stew.
Repeat this process as much as you want. The next step is to visit Iteration: Cronus in the Space Anomaly. When you talk to them, you can present them with 1 Delicious Vegetable Stew at a time, and they will reward you with Nanites. Repeat this in order to "sell" all your Delicious Vegetable Stew. It's a tedious way to go about getting Nanites, but you can make tens of thousands of Nanites pretty fast if you can stomach it.
Farming Curious Deposits
Occasionally, you may come across planets that have clusters of large, round objects, usually found on hills. These things are called Curious Deposits, and when you mine them, they give you lots of Runaway Mould. This resource can be refined into Nanites. The best part is that the group of Curious Deposits you find will respawn, effectively giving you an infinite supply of Nanites. This is probably the most straightforward way to get Nanite Clusters — the only trouble is finding those Curious Deposits in the first place.
There doesn't appear to be an exact science to which types of planets they appear on, but they are more likely to be found in the more advanced star systems. While you could technically find them anywhere, there are some planet traits you should look for to increase your chances.
In the first instance, start scanning planets from space with L3. From the info you receive, you're looking for a couple of tags: Fungal Mould, Indium, and High Sentinel Activity. If you find a planet with at least these notes, fly down to it. Again, it's possible to find Curious Deposits in any star system, but the more exotic systems, like the green or blue ones, may be more likely to feature them.
Hovering just above the planet's surface, fly slowly across and begin looking for Curious Deposits. As mentioned, they're almost always found on hills and will be in fairly tight clusters. They're pretty big and will be brightly coloured, so they shouldn't be too hard to spot. This part of the process is what takes the most time, but stick with it.
Once you find a group of Curious Deposits, land nearby. If you go to mine them at this point, you'll notice they will immediately start rolling down the hill, and your mining laser will push them away. You can still gather up all the Runaway Mould from them like this, but it's kind of a pain.
To combat this, you have a couple of options. Firstly, you could either dig a trench at the bottom of the hill or build a wall using the terrain manipulator to catch the Curious Deposits. This will stop them from getting away from you. Your second option is to construct some walls from the base building menus, again to catch the Curious Deposits.
Remember, Curious Deposits respawn after you either travel away a certain distance or you reload in. To start farming Nanites from Curious Deposits and the resulting Runaway Mould, you need to lay down a small base.
Next to the Curious Deposits and your method to catch them, put down a Base Computer and claim it as a base. Next, build a sheltered structure with room inside for a couple of Medium or Large Refiners, whatever you like. This little building will also keep you safe from angry Sentinels as well as any dangerous weather. It's also a good idea to build a Save Beacon if you can.
Now, mine those Curious Deposits if you haven't already, and you should end up with a few thousand of Runaway Mould. Put this material into one of your Refiners. It'll tell you the process will take a few minutes, so set that in motion.
At this point, you can do one of a few things in order to respawn the Curious Deposits. You could hop in your starship, fly away for a few seconds, and then fly back. You could create a manual save with your Save Beacon, then reload that new save. You could also place down a Base Teleport Module and Biofuel Reactor to power it, and then use it to warp to the very base you're currently at. Any of these will bring back the Curious Deposits, and then you can mine them up all over again, giving you more Runaway Mould to refine into Nanites. Once you've got a system in place that you're happy with, you can repeat this process over and over to accrue masses of Nanites.
These are a handful of ways of how to get Nanites in No Man's Sky. Which method do you use, or do you get Nanites some other way? Tell us in the comments section below, and check out ourNo Man's Sky guide for lots more.