While it's still early days, No Man's Sky already has a small modding scene. Most of the best examples so far fix some niggling UI issues, but the vast majority are small novelties which, as the scene grows, are likely to be relegated to history's dust bin. Still! They're sometimes fun.
As always, install mods at your own risk, and if you're precious about progress make sure to backup your save file. Also, be sure to read the instructions on each individual mod page before you progress.
Without further ado, here's the best of what we've seen so far, but we'll keep updating as new stuff comes to hand.
It's an issue that has irritated players from day one: you can't really skim the surface of planets—nor accurately pick your landing spot—while zooming around in your spaceship. This mod lets you fly as low to the ground as you like (and even crash into it), fly inside caves and under floating rocks, and even underwater. You can hover too! Finally.
Stepping foot on an alien planet should be daunting, even if it isn't raining battery acid. This mod cranks up the size of things like plants, trees, and rocks, which will add a bit more wonder when you pop out of your spaceship. Even resource crystals may now loom over you, adding a little more of a wow-factor to the planets you visit.
Reduced Launch Cost
Plutonium is never hard to find, but that doesn't mean it's not mildly irritating to have to look for it when your launch thrusters run out of juice. And they run out often. This mod reduces the cost of refueling those thrusters. You can set it to use half or one-quarter the cost, or make it so you never have to fuel them at all, which is maybe how the game should have worked in the first place.
It's kinda cool when other ships warp into the space you're in or blast through the sky of the planet you're on, but there's typically only a handful of ships to gawk at. This mod increases the spawn rates of freighters and starships, and even makes pirates more common. Hate pirates? There's a version of this mod that removes them but leaves in the rest of the added company.
There are three versions of this mod that makes alien creatures bigger and thus more interesting. The first version keeps some creatures small, while enlarging others. The second does away with small creatures, meaning you'll only find medium-sized and huge ones. The third version makes every creature huge so you can really feel like you've entered an alien dinosaur park.
Refresh Icons Menu
This mod cleans things up your menu a bit, providing inventory icons for your warp drive, grenades, pulse engines, health, and shields that have been slickly redesigned but still match the game's aesthetics. These new icons carry over to your HUD as well. There's also a black background rather than a transparent one for a cleaner look.
Fast Actions (ie, quicker clicks)
Having to hold the mouse button down while the circle cursor fills is one of the most infuriating aspects of the No Man's Sky interface. This handy mod removes that delay, meaning when you click, stuff gets clicked good and quick.
NOHUD (quick HUD toggling)
You're probably taking dozens of screenshots during an average No Man's Sky session. Turning the HUD off and on is a right pain at the moment, especially if you don't have the Quick Actions mod installed. Thankfully, NO HUD does as the name implies: it enables HUD toggling with F5, meaning you won't have to navigate menus anymore.
ShutUp (disable audio warnings)
Being constantly warned about the status of your life support and protection systems can get annoying, especially if you're holidaying on a lush, tropical planet. ShutUp lets you disable those, and you can choose whether you want to remove all of them or just a few. The mod allows you to listen to voiceover samples before you disable them.
Remove chromatic aberration, vignetting and scanlines
Does what it says on the tin. If you're not a fan of the visual filters used in No Man's Sky, this will remove them for you. With this mod you'll feel less like you're wandering around with a space helmet on (which technically you are, but never mind). If this doesn't work quite the way you want, try the Instagram Filter Removal mod.
Internal resolution multiplier
If you're finding that No Man's Sky won't cooperate with you on resolution, this mod is a quick fix. Some players are reporting that, even when instructed otherwise, the game will render at a lower resolution. As the modder explains, this mod works by "editing the PIPELINEDEFFERED.BIN file and replacing some of the 'scale' values". Give it a go if you're at a loss.
Replace scanner with binoculars
Not a fan of the scanner for some reason? If you'd prefer some ye olde binoculars, there is a mod for that. It obviously reduces your field of view, but if you just really love binoculars for some reason, well, here you go.