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According to nomanssky.gamepedia.com (starship) the Explorer ship has better stealth capabilities:

Explorer starships have better engines and hyperdrives than other ships, allowing for faster and further travel. Additionally, ships in this class have better stealth capabilities, improving their pilots' ability to remain undetected during exploration.

How does stealth work in NMS? I haven't seen any sort of cloaking or other means. Perhaps it's passive to prevent pirates from seeing you?

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    I haven't seen anything in game. I've seen a ton of features that were advertised in the past and even showed up in old gameplay footage that don't seem to be in the current version of the game. It would not surprise me if this were one of them. – Sterno Aug 14 '16 at 2:56
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    From what I can tell every ship is a blank canvas and what makes it a science/explorer/combat ship is what power ups you add after the fact. – LoganGoesPlaces Aug 16 '16 at 17:32
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    I won't put this as an answer since I don't have anything to back it up, but i may refer to the likelihood of being attacked by pirates; a higher "stealth" ship would be scanned/attacked less often. I also know that the ships aren't entirely "blank canvases"...I've only used a few ships, but I've noticed some minor differences: for example, one one ship, the Photon Cannon would auto-target and required no refueling. On my next ship, the Photon Cannon wouldn't auto-target, but the mining laser would. – Liesmith Aug 19 '16 at 6:33
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As of right now, there are no functional differences in "ship types," despite what was advertised. There is no known way to prevent pirates from attacking, though carrying less valuable inventory may lower your encounter rate, though this also isn't exactly confirmed.

it doesn’t look like the actual multi-tool or starship you end up picking matters outside of the slot space it offers.

Source: https://www.inverse.com/article/19827-no-man-s-sky-ship-roles-are-basically-meaningless

  • The real difference is that some of the components cannot be broken down and therefore cannot be relocated on the grid. Contiguous grid locations (i think diagonal is not counted (?)) give bonuses, therefore, earlier in the game when you have fewer slots, the random placement of such slots prevents you from linking shield upgrades, etc. Some of the variability in e.g. auto targeting may be from some link bonuse (assuming it is not a bug), but I have not tested this in any way. – Yorik Sep 1 '16 at 16:47
  • @Yorik, that's not dependent on ship "types" though, is it? I thought that inventory shape/slots were just random – Vemonus Sep 1 '16 at 17:23
  • No it isn't but, until you have a 48-slot ship, the grid layout is in fact a differentiating feature. I only mention this because the often expressed idea that ships are interchangeable isn't strictly true until you get grids that allow you to configure the features the same between them. There may be other, undocumented differences, but I am unaware of any. – Yorik Sep 1 '16 at 18:28

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