[Top 10] No Man's Sky Best Ships (And How To Get Them)

Living ship flying through space
We might not be CarFax, but we are the next best thing.

Ships can be so beautiful, soaring through the vastness of space! Aesthetics are everything.

Deep in space, far from any respectable source of civilization, you suddenly find yourself surrounded by sentinels. They are after you and your ill-gotten gains. What do you do? If you aren’t careful or don’t have the proper ship, you will likely find yourself blown into the next generation with a destroyed ship and a lost inventory. 

But do not fret! I am here to tell you it doesn’t have to end that way. Well, if you are smart about how you choose your ship that is. I am going to tell you the top fifteen ships that will help you avoid meeting the icy grip of death deep in space. We will also go over the best methods for finding your ship in the ever-expanding universe that is No Man’s Sky (NMS).

If you have spent any time in NMS, you will likely realize what a feat it is to hunt for a specific ship. With theoretically infinite galaxies and space stations, it is difficult to decide where to begin. But like most good stories, we are going to start at the obvious spot. The beginning! 

Before we get to the beginning, however, I wanted to share which solar systems have the best odds of finding each class ship. The odds are based on the economy rating (poor, average, wealthy, outlaw) and change in class as we get progressively more wealth. 

  • C-class ships can be found anywhere but have the highest odds in poor systems and outlaw systems
  • B-class ships are most commonly found in average or wealthy systems
  • A-class ships show up in (you guessed it) the average or wealthy systems
  • S-class ships are incredibly rare, they show up in outlaw systems the most often, but only a 5% chance (better than average or wealthy which only hold a 1% and 2% respectively)

Since there are no duplicate ships (as each is an individual instance for each player) we are going to break this up into a manageable-sized bite. We will identify the top fifteen ships you can find based on their base stats (that is, without adding upgrades to your ship.)

I am here to be your CarFax of the No Man’s Sky universe, I will give you the specs on all the ships that you should need to find your way safely through the vastness that is space. 


#10- RNG gods be kind! Your starting ship, a C-class fighter, that is.

From small beginnings your adventure begins...

Now, this might strike you as obvious, but the best way to start in No Man’s Sky is to keep the starting ship. It is free, barely damaged, and as a C-class fighter, it has the following boosts to its stats

  • Between 8%-15% damage boost
  • No Boost to shield
  • Between 5%-15% Agility 
  • Very High Maneuverability (Between 388-445)

How do you find starting the ship:

You spawn on a planet, and it has crash-landed close by. Since money is tight in No Man’s Sky at first, it makes the beginning easier if you can manage with this ship. It won’t help you conquer the galaxy but will let you travel through it.


#9 Solar C-class Ship

Soaring through space in a solar starship!

Solar class ships arrived in Endurance update and they are incredibly useful. They are the best second ship to acquire. It has the most balanced stats, and the best C-Class ship that units can buy. Another big reason to buy a solar ship is that you don’t need to charge the launch thrusters all the time. Fuel can be hard to come by and it is never fun to run out in the middle of exploring.

All solar ships can recharge the launch systems while flying through space. That saves you energy, materials, and units all while flying through space. On top of the solar sails looking cool, the C-class ship only costs at most up to 7 million units. While it can take you a bit to save up enough units, if you trade in the old ship, it is manageable during the early days of the space journey. It also adds two boosts to your from ship number one, adding a boost to your hyperdrive and the shield!

Their stats include all categories

  • Between 8%-15% boost to Damage
  • Between 8%-15% boost to Shield
  • Between 8%-15% boost to Hyperdrive
  • Between 5%-10% boost to Agility
  • Has High Maneuverability

How to find a Solar C-class Ship:

They are most commonly found in Outlaw Stations, but you can encounter them in any star system. Outlaw Stations are labeled by a skull on the galactic map. This ship is a solid second ship and will help you survive until we get to our next stepping stone ship. 


#8 Fighter B-class Ship

Your enemies won't know what hit them!

Moving onward, evolving and adapting are important. When you inevitably cross paths with a fighter plane, make sure it is a B-class, and buy it. This ship will provide you with more damage and shields, and while it loses some boost to the hyperdrive, it has high maneuverability. 

The base stat boosts for Fighters in the B-class are

  • Between 24%-45% boost to damage
  • Between 8%-15% boost to shield
  • Between 15%-20% boost to agility
  • Very High Maneuverability

How to find a Fighter B-class Ship:

These ships will be relatively affordable and they shouldn’t require much searching. You have the best odds of finding these ships in Vykeen-controlled systems that have an average or wealthy economy. If you go explore the space station here, it shouldn’t be long until you see one arrive.


#7 Solar B-class Ship

Much like the Solar C-class, these ships have balanced stats that will help you survive the vastness of space, whether you are a merchant, bounty hunter, or outlaw. It might have slightly less damage than the Fighter B-class we just discussed, but it helps you to advance through space significantly faster with an added boost to the hyperdrive ability. 

The base damage output is only slightly lower, which is for the low range of the bonuses. The range for the solar ships is 23% to 45% bonus to damage, whereas the fighter class bonus is 25% to 45% bonus damage. This two percent is easily made up by the time and effort you save by having a more efficient hyperdrive.

The base stat boosts for solar ships in the B-class are

  • Between 23%-45% boost to damage
  • Between 8%-30% boost to shield
  • Between 15%-30% boost to hyperdrive
  • Between 10%-20% boost to agility
  • High Maneuverability

How to find a Solar B-class Ship:

It has been brought up that solar ships have a higher spawn rate in outlaw stations, but there is a higher spawn chance for B-class, A-class, and S-class ships in wealthier systems, so you have a better chance by finding a wealthy system and hanging out in the hangar. Wealthy systems are labeled in the galactic map under the economy category with words such as advanced, affluent, booming, flourishing, high supply, opulent, prosperous, and wealthy.


#6 Living Ship

Not an alien invasion, just cool ships. Well, unless you consider yourself an alien.

A break from those solar ships. The living ship is a unique ship that showed up during the Origins Story Missions. This was an update. The lore speaks of them as a living ship that showed up as a result of a Korvax experiment. The player needs to complete a mission to build their first Living Ship. 

I won’t go into the details of this in this article, so to avoid spoilers. These ships are all S-Class ships and they are excellent ships to have. They have great boosts

  • Between 50%-75% boost to damage
  • Between 15%-38% boost to the shield
  • Between 75%-95% boost to hyperdrive
  • Between 10%-15% boost to agility
  • Low Maneuverability

All Living ships are S-Classes, but the low maneuverability and the low agility both make your odds of surviving space attack lower. Overall they aren’t at the top of the list for our journey.

How to find a Living Ship:

As mentioned above, you acquire this ship through a storyline known as Origins. This storyline has you build the ship parts, follow the path of a dead traveler, and rewards you with a living ship. This ship also requires a lot of time to build and materials to find, as opposed to just buying your ship. 


#5 Solar A-class Ship

When they are landed they still look cooler than the other ships!

A solar ship is the next best ship, as you approach mid-game. Usually, at this point in No Man’s Sky, you will be preparing to need materials that are found on more dangerous planets. At least if you are like me and prefer to just fight the sentinels and rob the Gek of their precious metals. 

This solar ship is much better than all A-class ships except the Fighter A-class ship, which we will take a look at later in the list.

The base stat boosts for solar ships in the C-class are

  • Between 45%-60% boost to damage
  • Between 23%-38% boost to shield
  • Between 30%-45% boost to hyperdrive
  • Between 20%-30% boost to agility
  • High Maneuverability

One important stat to point out is the boost to the agility of the ship. At A-Class, it becomes very close between the solar ships and the fighters, as they only differ by the amount of damage output. Depending on your play style you might want to switch these, but for most people, this is the next best ship to have.

How to find a Solar A-class Ship:

One thing to note with No Man’s Sky and hunting for that perfect ship: as we move onward up the ranks, from B-class to S-class, the odds of encountering them rapidly drops. A-Class ships have, at their highest odds, a 28% chance of showing up. The best plan is to jump from wealthy system to wealthy system until you encounter the ships. Each time you land in a galaxy, the ships that arrived reset, even if the models won’t. 

One trick for hunting for that “special ship”: dropping a save beacon, and if your ship didn’t arrive right away, reload the save. It speeds up ship hunting greatly if you don’t mind this method.


#4 Solar S-class Ship

Let those sails fly!

No surprise to anyone that these made the top 4 ships on this list. Honestly, these ships are probably the best class to use if you want a balanced play style. With this ship, you can dispatch the occasional pirate and save a lot with regard to fuel costs. 

  • They have great stats across the board
  • Between 60%-75% boost to damage
  • Between a 23%-50% boost to a shield
  • Between a 38%-50% boost to hyperdrive
  • Between a 35%-40% boost to agility
  • and high maneuverability

They are a great ship to use, and they look the coolest out of all non-exotic ships, including the living ship. The ability to charge while flying is probably one of the most useful recharging abilities in the game. It charges the launch thrusters AND these ships have the best pulse engine stats (after upgrades) in the game. Makes for easy hit-and-run attacks on freighters.

How to find a Solar S-class Ship:

In the deep recesses of space, where the RNG gods smile upon you. Just kidding. But it does come down to the drop rates for S-class solar ships. In the systems that are listed as being more likely to find a solar ship, Outlaw systems, there is only a 5% chance of finding one. The good news about this? This is the highest spawn rate for S-class ships out of all of the space systems.

Even in wealthy systems, there is only a 2% chance of S-classes spawning, and even less in the other two. If you find one in a poor economy PLEASE take a screenshot and share it.


#3 Fighter A-class Ship

My personal favorite, even if it isn't the best ship in the game.

Final 3 ships, here we go. The fighter A-class is one of the best ship classes, allowing you to get hours of usage despite not being the best ship in the game.

This ship ends up being one of the best in the game. High damage, high agility, high maneuverability, and a decent shield. Honestly, the reason it is ranked this high is the importance of the high maneuverability and damage. Being able to make those sharp turns while dogfighting makes the difference.

Stats of the Fighter A-class

  • Between 75%-90% boost to damage
  • Between 34%-30% boost to shields
  • Between 20%-30% boost to agility
  • Very High Maneuverability

This brings up a major point for the other ships, the ability to make things die very quickly. Most ships have a decent boost to hyperdrive, BUT, it doesn’t matter how far you can jump if you get jumped. Better to be able to obliterate/survive an assault in the stars than have to fix your ships.

How to find a Fighter A-Class Ship:

The best place to find an A-Class starship would be in a Vykeen-controlled system that was wealthy. You are looking at about a 30% spawn rate, which is the best spawn rate for all spaceships. It shouldn’t take you very long if you are patient and have enough units to drop. It is not super cheap to buy an A-class outright. Especially if you can find a top-tier one, with the best stats, it can run in the price range of 49,000,000 units. 


#2 Fighter S-class Ship

Looks like an A-Class, but better.

These ships will make you death incarnate. You can blast your way through any ship in the galaxy without care. I love them because on principle I dislike authorities, and the sentinels check that box. If you are looking to live the Vykeen lifestyle and obliterate sentinels left and right, go with this ship. 

The only downside to these ships is the low shields compared to other S-ranked ships:

  • Between 70%-90% boost to damage
  • Between 24%-38% boost to shield
  • Between 35%-45% boost to agility
  • Very High Maneuverability

If this boost to the shield were higher, it would have bought itself a first-place ribbon. But not quite there. Truly a fun ship to blast your way through space, plus it gives you a great boost to survivability as you escape sentinels after raiding planetary deposits, or simply for mining on the surface of the planet.


How to find a Fighter S-class Ship:

As I said for the S-class solar ship, these are fairly uncommon to come across. The best thing to change these odds was Outlaw systems. Find yourself an outlaw system and land, and pretend to be Han Solo. Except you aren’t going to shoot anyone (probably). The rate of spawn goes up to 5%. All it requires is time and units. 


#1 Exotic class Ship

Ooooooh. Shiny!

Finally, here we are at the end of the list, the best ship for late game for a balanced play-through. 

Exotic ships. 

 This is not solely because they are cool looking, or the go-to for “best ship in the game.” These ships simply have a very well-rounded base stats, thus easier to have as a high-powered ship. 

They boast the following stats

  • Between 50%-75% boost to damage
  • Between 70%-90% boost to shield
  • Between 75%-95% boost to hyperdrive
  • Between 40%-50% boost to agility
  • And high maneuverability

These ships essentially take the best of all of the ships and smash them together into one glorious lump of metal barreling through space. The two most important stats are the shield and the damage, as you can survive a long time and you can blast anyone who shows up to fight you.

But aside from that, it helps you lower the cost of exploring, making it easier to go further and make some distance toward the center of the universe. It helps you with both the storyline but also simply for deep space exploration. 

How to find an Exotic Class Ship:

These have a very low spawn rate, as they are the strongest ship class in the game. They have a spawn rate of 1%-2%. The rate is higher in any wealthy system. There is still some debate on whether or not Outlaw systems have a higher spawn rate, maybe I will run a test see (unless one of you wants to, then I would love that data!

Your best bet is to find a trading post on a planet, as more ships are there overall. If you use the save/reload trick, you will have a much higher chance of finding one here. If you don’t there are still more ships that land at trading posts, thus increasing your odds of getting this ship.

Crashed ships or shipwrecks?

I couldn’t find any statistics or odds of ships showing up from distress signals. Sounds like another data collection project to pull off…


No Man’s Sky is a beautiful game, yet somewhat unforgiving. There are infinite planets, systems, galaxies, and ships. Laced with plants, unforgiving terrain, creatures that will fight you, and a whole array of ships to shoot out of the sky. This challenge with this is just putting in the time and having the units. So get out there and find your dream ship. See you, space cowboy.

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A nordic giant from the frozen lands of Minnesota, Michael boasts a resistance to cold from his Norwegian blood. His biggest weakness are Steam sales and the overwhelming urge to play one more turn.
Gamer Since: 2000
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Remnant: From the Ashes, Vampire Survivors
Top 3 Favorite Games:The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - Dragonborn, State of Decay, XCOM 2

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