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The Sentinels are policing drones with mysterious origins and purposes.

Summary[edit | edit source]

You have overstepped your boundaries!

The Sentinels are Mechanical Lifeforms; self-replicating, non-organic machines that are similar to the Korvax, another Mechanical Lifeform in No Man's Sky's Universe. Their origins are unknown but they are seemingly deployed on every known planet to balance the efforts and actions of the player within the procedurally generated ecosystem. Sentinels act as the workhorse machines of The Atlas and as universal police, policing the actions of those who reside within the universe.

They are, in essence, the "gardeners" of the No Man's Sky. If the player makes an attempt to alter the environment while they are around, they will not hesitate to defend their "garden." They will attack the player if caught harming the ecosystem of a Planet. A Sentinel will also defend itself if the player shoots it, alerting other Sentinels in the area.

In planets with rare trade commodities like Albumen Pearls or Gravitino Balls, the Sentinels will attack the Player instantly after scanning them once. These Sentinels are classified as "Frenzied" or "High-Security".

Lore[edit | edit source]

According to records scavenged from various ruins, traveler logs, and plaques - Sentinels are also known as The Aerons, and have existed longer than most of the entities. The exact time of their first appearance in the Outer Edge is yet to be discovered. They quickly spread across the entire No Man's Sky universe due to the fact that the Vy'keen Alliance were attacked by the Gek Dominion coming from the core while they desperately tried to remove the Aerons from existence.

To end the war between the Dominion and the Alliance the enslaved Korvax 'injected' the breeding pools of the Gek with their nanites. This forced the First Spawns to work for the Atlas and its loyal Aerons. During their short conflicts, the Gek quickly came to realize that these sentinels were far more vicious than they themselves. They are so powerful that even the more intellectual entities such as the Korvax started to worship them and deemed the Aerons to be the rule-keepers among the galaxy in the name of their god Atlas.

On all exotic worlds the 'Last Traveller' can find Boundary Failures that tell the story of the multiverse from Telamon's point of view, a safety program of the Atlas.

One describes that the sentinels did go out of control once before and the entire universe had to be deleted from the multiverse. This could happen again, but this time unchecked, as the Atlas is slowly losing control of its own defense program.

Some blackbox reports of crashed freighters state that they come from a universe with different skies. Some of them were attacked by sentinels which during their last moments fought among themselves for an unknown reason. It is possible that those are the rogue sentinels which annihilated all life in their respective multiverses and had to be deleted by the Atlas Protection Program 'Telamon' in return. It is likely Telamon used some sentinels to fight the corrupted ones, before giving the order to wipe the universe clean. A similar behavior can be seen in No Man's Sky, as some branches of sentinels are overly aggressive, although for now only to foreigners, especially the player who is accompanied by the Telamon AI as their guide.

Motivations[edit | edit source]

Bipedal walker

According to an article published in the January 2015 Game Informer, it is suggested that Sentinels, formerly known as The Malevolent Force, were not all that malevolent to start off with:

"This robotic enemy army isn't all that malevolent as far as motivations go. They are simply trying to maintain the balance of the universe. On some planets they patrol, keeping an eye out for anyone who kills creatures, carves out resources, or generally changes the environment. If you're just strolling around scanning things in, they leave you alone. If you draw their attention, they attack like traditional first-person shooter enemies, shooting lasers, strafing, and taking cover."[1]

In a separate interview with The Guardian published in October 2014, Sean Murray said:

"It's dangerous on planets. Each one has an ecology, and you're not always at the top of the food chain; we've shown large creatures that attack you. There's also something else we haven't shown. There is a malevolent force in the universe that does provide a lot of combat and more core gameplay at times. We wanted that; we wanted players to wander around exploring planets but never to feel entirely safe."[2]

Background information has been found within abandoned structures on 'Derelict' consoles. These belong to a race that was active before the Vy'Keen, but were annihilated during a war with the sentinels. This information describes the inability of any race to ever truly destroy enough of the Sentinels to eliminate them, and alludes to the mystery of how they are produced.

Types[edit | edit source]

The most common type of Sentinels are flying drones, which will hover above the ground, patrolling the planets. However, larger, more dangerous Sentinels, such as bipedal or quadrupedal combat units, will also appear. All of these are equipped with sensors and turrets meant to protect planets from harm. Interceptors will attack players in space to protect transports.

Behavior and wanted level[edit | edit source]

Flying drone being destroyed

Sentinels behave differently on each planet. Normally, Sentinels only react to players when witnessing them violate a universal law (such as killing an animal unprovoked, or over-mining a planet's resources). Engaging in combat with Sentinels will accrue wanted levels located on the top right corner of player's screen. As this level increases, the number of Sentinels will increase, and stronger Sentinels will start to reinforce.

Behavior[edit | edit source]

Here are some examples of Sentinels behaviors:

Does not engage player regardless of any actions player done to the planet Sentinels reside on.

May become active if you continue mining near its presence or when it starts scanning.

Most common and normal state of Sentinels. Will engage player once they witness the player killing an animal unprovoked, or over-mining a planet's resources.
Frenzied, High Security
Sentinels kill on sight after spot player and scan for 5 seconds
Sentinels are more sensitive in comparison to "Active" behavior.
Sentinels are noted to be almost similar to "Active" behavior, but move faster and slightly more accurate.
Sentinels are less engaging in comparison to "Active" behavior. Does not get provoked by any actions other than a player direct engaging in combat with them.
Sentinels are far less engaging in comparison to "Active" behavior. Scouting speed reduced and they often ignore the player even if they are mischievous.:
Sentinels will always attack on sight after immediately spotting a player. Extremely accurate aiming and moves faster.

Sentinel alerts[edit | edit source]

Doing these actions always alert sentinels (regardless of sentinel presence):

Collecting resources[edit | edit source]

Attacking behavior[edit | edit source]

Doing these actions with a sentinel witnessing the action will alert the sentinels:

Avoiding detection[edit | edit source]

If a player provokes a Sentinel, the only other option other than fighting them is to avoid detection. It is best to hide in a cave, as it is difficult for Drones and Quadrupedal Sentinels to enter. You can also dig a hole using your Plasma launcher or Terrain Manipulator. It's best to make an L-shaped hole, since Drones can spot you from overhead, and may fly into your dugout.

After about 20–30 seconds of evasion, Drones will be "deactivated" and return to their passive behaviour. However, Quadrupedal and Bipedal sentinels act differently. After deactivation, they will wander around the terrain and simply make noises, even having the "un-scanned animal" icon under them if they are viewed through the Analysis Visor. In this state, they are passive, and will only attack when attacked or the Sentinel force is alerted through any means.

Expected appearance[edit | edit source]

As the wanted level increases, so does the sentinel presence. Here are some examples of what a player may encounter:

Level 1 1-2 Sentinel Drones
Level 2 3 Sentinel Drones
Level 3 1-3 Sentinel Drones / 1 Quadrupedal Sentinel - Places level 1 space wanted level on player.
Level 4 2 Sentinel Drones / 1 Bipedal Walker - places level 1 space wanted level on player.
Level 5 4 Sentinels / 2 Quadrupeds / 2 Bipedal Walkers - Obtained after destroying Bipedal Walker from level 4, places level 1 space wanted level on player, and wanted level stays until player leaves the planet.
Level 1 1 Sentinel Starship
Level 2 2 Sentinel Starship
Level 3 4 Sentinel Starship
Level 4 6 Sentinel Starship
Level 5 1 Sentinel Starship Carrier - Carrier of spawning 3-5 Sentinel Starship at once. Will immediately disappear when 5 stars alarm deactivate.

Additional information[edit | edit source]

If a sentinel is destroyed, the broken pieces may be salvaged for resources. They have been known to drop:


Quadrupedal Sentinels:

  • 60-80 Titanium
  • Debris: 12-25 Nanite Clusters or 1 Dimensional Matrix

Walker Sentinels:

  • 70-100 Titanium
  • Debris: 28-60 Nanite Clusters and 1 Dimensional Matrix


The sentinel starship's model name is "Sapporoz S94".

Note: Blueprint drops have been replaced by Nanite Clusters.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Vore, Bryan (January 2015). Unraveling the Mysteries of the Universe. Game Informer. Retrieved 18 February 2015.
  2. Stuart, Keith (28 October 2014). No Man's Sky creator: 'We wanted to build a universe'. The Guardian. Retrieved 18 February 2015.
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