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Star Atlas Career Guide

The 2024 roadmap that was recently published lists License Leveling as one of the features coming (first) to SAGE with Season 0. However, thanks to Michael (CEO), we know that the initial, bare minimum version of Licenses will already be introduced in Starbased. With that game launching imminently, it seems like a great time to look at Licenses, Careers, and what these are all about!

The White Paper

In January of 2021, the founders of Star Atlas released their White Paper. It painted a universe beyond anything anyone had ever seen! Among the 35 pages describing the team’s vision was a single page listing 19 potential professions players could adopt, plus another 21 different roles for a player’s crew. A game that deep and with ambitions that high, it is no wonder it immediately caught people’s attention and sparked their imagination.

Now, with the 2024 roadmap released, many professions reappear as careers that players can pursue within the Unreal Engine 5 game (UE5).

The White Paper lists the following options as professions players may want to pursue:

Transport, Rescue, Freight, Repair, Construction, Refueling,
Miner, Salvage, Entrepreneur, CEO, Broker, Bounty Hunter,
Pirate, Smuggler, Data Runner, Commander, General, Mercenary,
and Scientist.

The bold ones are all careers planned for UE5. There are a few more that the team came up with after the White Paper was released, but there are also a few in the White Paper that don’t (yet) have an in-game career path defined. That said, professions such as General, Mercenary, Entrepreneur, CEO, and Broker appear to be careers that could exist on a higher meta-level instead. It may be difficult to capture their progress using in-game activity.

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Star Atlas – Pearce D9 Salvage ship [Concept Art] – by Jort van Welbergen


It’s not just the Unreal Engine game, however. SAGE is getting a License system that, to a very large extent, overlaps with the careers. This is no coincidence, as UE5 Careers rely on the exact same mechanics as SAGE Licenses. Careers are licenses, just named differently.

Let’s take a step back and look at the tech first:

When Starbased goes live, the initial license system will go live with it. The team published a new Solana Program through which they can define new licenses, allowing players to accumulate and store progress on them. Of course, the team will also need to hook up certain kinds of in-game activity to trigger this accumulation.

In the future, when the full system is in place, players will also be able to level up their licenses at specific progress intervals and unlock new perks.

In general, there will be two different ways to gain progress in a specific license:

  • Performing an in-game activity related to that license
  • Completing in-game missions related to the license

The first approach is how players will accumulate progress on the licenses that will come online with Starbased. You will automatically level up these licenses by simply performing the different available actions in the game. The first four licenses cover Movement & Freighting (Pilot), Mining, Scanning, and Crafting.

The second way requires the team to introduce missions. It is unclear if these will ever be available in SAGE, but they will definitely be in UE5. And good news: the team plans to bring their Mission Generator online this year.


As mentioned before, Starbased will introduce the very first version of the License system, which is barebones. Players will be able to accumulate progress on the licenses, but that is all. There are no levels, no rewards, and no items unlocked in the Loyalty Point store.

That does not mean it’s not valuable, however, because the progress is permanent! This means that once the full system comes online, you will level up instantly and unlock any perks the team added to the game!

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Star Atlas – Mined Asteroids [Concept Art] – by Sören Meding


Careers are specific to UE5, but they use the exact same license system under the hood! In fact, careers in UE5 are directly linked to their equivalent SAGE licenses, such as Data Running and Bounty Hunting. All licenses introduced to SAGE will, over time, be introduced as Careers in UE5.

The opposite may not be entirely true. Some careers seem to have no equivalent in SAGE, such as Game Hunting or Politician. That said, at this stage, it is not really clear how Poli(s)tician will be implemented at all.

Note: We’ll shed more light on these bold statements near the end of the article!

Loyalty Points

Loyalty Points will be introduced with Starbased. In that release of SAGE, however, their only purpose is to buy a slice of the daily (well, epoch-ly) ATLAS emission pie.

But, in future releases, when the full License system is online, the LP store will provide additional purchase options for players who have reached a certain level with their license. This is in addition to the mechanical bonuses that players unlock by leveling up a license!

As none of these perks are known at this stage, feel free to let your imagination run wild!

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Star Atlas – Racing Track [Concept Art] – by Sören Meding

The License/Career Roadmap

Finally, we will list the licenses and careers coming to the game over time before looking into the discrepancies. There is an explanation for these!

Licenses coming to SAGE

Season 0:

  • Pilot
  • Combat
  • Data Running

Season 3:

  • Freight
  • Racing
  • Rescue
  • Refuel
  • Repair
  • Salvage/Tow

Season 4:

  • Bounty Hunting

Careers coming to UE5

Season 0:

  • Racing
  • Fighter

Season 1:

  • Space Miner

Season 2:

  • Game Hunting

Season 3:

  • Bounty Hunting

Season 4:

  • Freighter
  • Smuggler

Season 5:

  • Land Miner
  • Manufacturer

Season 6:

  • Data Runner
  • Transport

Season 7:

  • Repair
  • Salvage

Season 8:

  • Refuel
  • Politician
  • Rescue


Besides UE5 Careers being introduced at different moments in the development than their SAGE License counterparts, you may notice some discrepancies in names, and some careers going without a SAGE License equivalent.

The team is aware of these discrepancies and will address them over time. They have kicked off monthly roadmap reviews to ensure it stays as up-to-date as possible!

For now, we know that Transport will come to SAGE as well, as do Smuggling, Mining and Manufacturing. Furthermore, Combat and Fighter share the same license. And yes, there will likely be a way for players to level up their Pilot license in UE5 as well.

That’s a wrap! Thanks for reading!