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No Man's Sky Atlas Pass - How to get Atlas Passes v1, v2 and v3

Tracking down No Man's Sky's elusive tickets into locked off areas.

Atlas Pass v1, plus the Atlas Pass v2 and Atlas Pass v3, are three hard-to-track-down items that you're soon going to be hunting in No Man's Sky, especially if you're the curious sort who wants to go poking around behind those closed doors in Space Stations.

The NEXT update tweaked the usual formaula for finding these - although it's still fairly similar to before - so here on this page we'll explain How to get the Atlas Pass v1, v2 and v3 as well as just what exactly the Atlas Passes do, too.

Please note that our No Man's Sky guides are in the process of being updated after the launch of No Man's Sky BEYOND - for now, this page may still have plenty of useful info, but bear in mind it's due a refresh! If you're looking for more on that big update though, our guide to what's new in the No Man's Sky BEYOND update and its release time on Xbox One, PC, PS4, our big list of No Man's Sky patch notes, or our guide to the new No Man's Sky multiplayer and Nexus hub are the best places to start!

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What are Atlas Passes for in No Man's Sky?

Atlas Passes - v1, v2 and v3 - are essentially infinite-use key cards which unlock certain doors or storage containers throughout the game. You'll need to find a Blueprint for each one, and then the required materials to craft them yourself, in order to get them. Their uses seem to vary slightly, but generally you'll find they work as follows:

Better get used to this little guy if you're looking for the v1.
  • Atlas Pass v1 - The v1 Pass is generally used to unlock one thing in post-NEXT update No Man's Sky: storage containers. You'll find these dotted around (in our experience there's one right next to your crashed ship at the start of the game, and then the odd one inside the occasional building on a planet's surface).
  • Atlas Pass v2 - The v2 Pass is largely used for opening doors on-planet, inside the various structures such as Colonial Outposts or Factories. At this point we haven't confirmed what lies inside - the v2 is weirdly rare - although it's normally a case of more loot, again.
  • Atlas Pass v3 - The v3 Pass is used for high-level doors, most notably within the inner sections of space stations. There will normally be a v3-locked door on the side of the space station that houses the appearace customiser.

How to get the Atlas Pass v1 in No Man's Sky

That Atlas Pass v1 is, as things stand, the only Pass which all players are pretty much guaranteed to acquire during a main story playthrough. Players will receive the recipe for an Atlas Pass v1 from a small Gek alien called Polo, inside the first Space Anomaly you encounter - although in our experience it wasn't on our first encounter...

Space Anomalies, if you aren't already aware, normally appear along the path of the Atlas, which you can select in your Galactic Map if you chose the option at the start of the game (or at any point after). The Space Anomaly appears in the third System you enter (so after warping twice, which you're encouraged to do early one by the story anyway), appearing when you scan the system from space as a purple marker on your HUD.

Polo and another alien, Nada, will be inside the Anomaly - which looks a bit like a standard space station, although there is also a space station in that system too.

Talk to Polo and he'll give you a quest to complete a fairly low-level Milestone, as well as a reward on the spot just for finding him. Complete the quest - maybe it's meet 20 aliens, or learn 10 alien words - and then return to him. He'll tell you to come back in two hours for your reward, where you can choose a technology blueprint for your Exosuit, Multi-Tool or Starship, and get another on-the-spot reward.

For us, the Atlas Pass v1 blueprint was given to us as one of his on-the-spot rewards after completing the second Milestone quest he gave us. The Atlas Pass v1 itself is crafted with 80 Copper (mined from resource veins on planet surfaces) and a Microprocessor (bought from vendors).

Cycle back to our main hub for what's new in what's new in No Man's Sky Beyond and more basic info on the big update, otherwise take a look at our deep dive on No Man's Sky multiplayer explained for more on teaming up, our guide to base building, an introduction into electrical wiring and powering your base, to how to expand your Exosuit, Ship and Multi-tool inventory space, and Freighters and Frigates explained. Plus other handy stuff like how to repair your ship and get the Hermetic Seal, Pure Ferrite, Metal Plating and Di-Hydrogen Jelly, locations of theAtlas Pass v1, v2 and v3, a guide to No Man's Sky money and how to earn Units fast, plushow to get Antimatter and the Antimatter recipe, and even how to save the game in No Man's Sky, too. Finally, we have pages on how to reach the centre of the galaxy, how to get Chromatic Metal, and a Journey Milestones list, too.

How to get the Atlas Pass v2 and v3 in No Man's Sky

The Atlas Pass v2 and v3 are a different proposition to the relatively easy to find v1. As things stand, according to the community on the No Man's Sky subreddit, the only known way to get blueprints for these is to repeatedly search Manufacturing Facilities on planet surfaces.

The easiest way to find Manufacturing Facilities is to build a temporary piece of equipment called a Signal Booster. When you interact with it you then have two options:

  • Locate Nearby Structures - this scans the nearby area and shows you the location of any structures close to you, which could be any of the various building types. See it as a sort of 'lucky dip'.
  • Input Data - this costs 1 Navigation Data, but allows you to narrow down the search to a specific structure type, and it'll then show you the location of a nearby structure of that type.

Navigation Data can be found in the little orange objects on desks inside Space Stations.

What you want to do, ideally, is select Input Data, and then select 'Scan Secure Frequencies' from the options. This will show you the location of either a Manufacturing Facility or a Supply Depot, both of which are 'secure' because they have locked doors that need to be destroyed with a weapon (such as a Boltcaster) in order to enter.

Once you've found one, head over and shoot down the door - Sentinels will attack but if you wiggle from side to side whilst shooting the door they'll mostly miss you with their attacks, and will lose sight of you once you run inside.

Inside is a console for you to interact with, and selecting the right answer will grant you a reward - normally some kind of blueprint for some rare technology, and hopefully, if you're lucky, an Atlas Pass v2 or v3! You could also find a blueprint for a Cryo-Pump which, as we explain in our guide to the fastest ways to make Money in No Man's Sky, is very useful for making cash quick.

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Chris Tapsell

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Chris Tapsell is Eurogamer's Deputy Editor and most decorated Football Manager. He used to write guides, and will send you links to his favourite spreadsheets if you ask him about League of Legends or competitive Pokémon.