The Scrap Dealer is an NPC in No Man’s Sky players will find setting up a rather less conventional shop on most Space Stations. When players chat with them, they’ll find a curious offer of coordinates for the not insignificant sum of five million units, along with some other items for sale that require Tainted Metal to buy. Yes, it’s a huge sum of money, but those coordinates will provide you with the location of a Derelict Freighter, packed with loads of rare resources to scavenge, including some of that Tainted Metal. This guide explains whether the Scrap Dealer’s missions are worth it and what they accomplish in No Man’s Sky.
The big question, then, is whether players are going to at least make their money back with this endeavor ― especially for those starting out for whom money might be tight. In fairness, the short answer is probably no, because it’s something of a lottery, and the chances are players will end up running a loss. However, the upside is that they’ll also find a good number of upgrades and other potentially useful items, which can turn it into a somewhat more rewarding, if not profitable, outcome. If nothing else, the ghost ship exploration makes for a fun challenge — plus, players can find more Derelict Freighters for free later on.
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How to Find the Scrap Dealer and Derelict Freighters in No Man’s Sky
As mentioned, players can find the Scrap Dealer on most Space Stations, close to the upgrade merchants. Once they’ve handed over the five million units, they’ll receive a single-use Emergency Broadcast Receiver that can be activated from the Exosuit inventory. Then, players just need to jump into their starship, head into space, and hit the pulse drive for a few seconds until the Derelict Freighter appears in front of them. Land on the top, and you can head inside to follow the instructions through to the end.
Be warned, the freighter will be a hazardous environment that will drain Exosuit energy pretty quickly, so players should bring plenty of sodium to keep topping it up. There’ll also be a fair few enemies to take out, but as long as players are used to dealing with some low-level Sentinels, they shouldn’t have too much trouble. Most of the enemies can be dodged by walking calmly past their egg sacs. Running will aggravate them and cause them to spawn and attack in a swarm.
The trick players need to grasp is to check every crate, cabinet, and corner of the ship quickly and efficiently to ensure they grab as much loot as possible (it’s a good move to clear up some inventory space in advance). Once they’ve cleared every room and bagged the Captain’s Log, Crew Manifest, and Engineering Unit from the various terminals, players can head back to the Space Station to make good on their haul, either by selling it all to the Scrap Dealer or at the Trade Terminal.
Are the Scrap Dealer Missions in No Man’s Sky Worth it?
In most cases, no. Scrap Dealer missions often aren’t worth the price they cost to start, but they do give players access to a unique activity and help progress certain other in-game quests for paths they might be following.
For that five million unit outlay, players will be lucky to make their money back simply by selling their newly-plundered hoard of goods, so if they can’t really afford it, they should probably hold out for a while. However, each freighter run will provide them with several useful upgrades for their suit, multitool, starship, and/or freighter, including new inventory slots, which can be expensive to buy on their own (but have a nominal sell-on fee). If players have got room for improvement, then it’s a fun way to roll the dice and see what they end up with ― but there are certainly better ways to make money and far more reliable options to ensure they get the upgrades they really need.
The Tainted Metal does hold a decent value, either to be sold on or used to buy some highly-rated modules and other nicely-priced items via the Scrap Dealer’s ‘Suspicious Packages.’ There are also healthy rewards upon delivery of the freighter’s log and manifest (alternatively, players can trade them with the Guild Envoy on the other side of the station for a sizeable boost in their faction standing). Along with other rare goods, players will also find some unique decor and banner items if they fancy giving their base a somewhat darker look. Tainted Metal can also be refined with Nanite Clusters to double their number, which isn’t a bad way to help finance further upgrades.
It’s worth noting that repeating these missions on the same day increases the Scrap Dealer’s asking price (10 million for the second, up to a maximum of 30 million), so players won’t want to be doing multiple runs in succession unless they’re swimming in disposable cash. The good news is that Helios on the Space Anomaly will offer up an Emergency Broadcast Receiver for FREE once a week, so that’s a very useful Golden Ticket to keep in mind. The only thing is, players, must have completed at least one Derelict Freighter to trigger Helios’ help, so you’re going to need to visit the Scrap Dealer and pay up at least once to get that ball rolling, but this should make it well worth it in the long run.