In No Man’s Sky things are waiting to kill you on every step of the path. When you spawn for the first time, the odds are good that you’ll immediately be facing at least one life-threatening hazard before you take more than five or ten steps. The careful cosmonaut can avoid death by employing an ass-covering combination of keeping a ready supply of minerals on hand and running like a frightened deer at the first sign of conflict.
Inevitably, though, you won’t run fast enough, or you’ll simply butt heads with something that’s way more powerful than you are. Then, you’re going to die. No big deal, though, because No Man’s Sky makes death a minor inconvenience at best. Plus you get to see a good quote from a famous writer, Battlefield-style, so that’s always edifying.
The repercussions of death are pretty similar to a lot of survival games, like Minecraft. In other words, when you die, you simply re-spawn in a safe location with an empty inventory. If you die on a planet, you’ll jump back to your ship having lost only the items in your suit. If you die in space, you’ll wake up in the nearest space station with nothing to your name.
If you want to get the stuff you lost, it’s a simple matter of hunting down your grave (which should be displayed on your HUD) and collecting your goods. Your graves stick around for a while, so there’s no rush to get your lost items. Even better, everything can be crafted with even the most basic materials (you just need the recipe), so there’s nothing you’ll lose that can’t be regained by heading in a completely different direction.
Given that No Man’s Sky utilizes a rather small selection of resources, getting back the items you lost is a breeze, at least early in the game. Keep in mind that the more you accrue and the better your ship, though, the more the loss of an entire inventory will be impactful, so caution is always advised.