All items occupy a number of inventory slots in a square or rectangle shape. Small items like crafting materials and most personal equipment occupy only one slot in storage, while large items like the Waterproof Locker can occupy up to nine slots. A Reefback Leviathan that was grown in the Alien Containment (not possible in the final game without using debug codes to spawn an egg) will take up sixteen slots in storage.
The game will automatically sort items to maximize the use of inventory space, but it is worth noting that as well as items having to fit into the number of squares, they must also physically fit into the grid. For example, if a container has a 4×3 grid, it is not possible to fit three 2×2 items into it, as the first two will leave the remaining space as a 4×1 column.
In the beginning, the player only has their own inventory, which can be accessed by using the PDA, and the storage unit inside Lifepod 5. As the player progresses through the game, they will gain access to various other containers and built-in storage systems.
Most prepared food items and plant samples placed in storage will spoil after a set period of time, but live animals can be stored indefinitely in either the player's inventory or any other storage method without any issue.
Portable storage items such as the Carry-all or Waterproof Locker generally cannot be picked up if they contain items, or put down inside the Cyclops. However, fixed storage such as Wall Lockers can be built on the Cyclops' interior walls in the same way as at a base, and will function normally.
In general the only way for items to get into storage of any kind is for the player to put them there, and any storage encountered in the game world (typically carry-all bags) will be empty. The only real exception to this is when the player is using a Prawn Suit with a Drill Arm fitted: in this case, any items extracted with the drill will be automatically "sucked up" and placed in the Prawn Suit's back-mounted storage until it is filled.
Types of storage
|Picture||Name||Inventory slots (x|y)||Total inventory slots|
|Cyclops Storage Locker||3×6||18|
|Lifepod 5 Storage||4×8||32|
|Neptune Escape Rocket||3×6 (locker)|
2×3 (Time Capsule)
|Prawn Suit Storage||6×4|
(6×5 with one Storage Module, 6×6 with two, 6×7 with three, 6×8 with four)
(30 with one Storage Module, 36 with two, 42 with three, 48 with four)
|Seamoth Storage Module Container||4×4||
16 (one Storage Module)
- It is possible for the player's personal storage to exceed 48 slots: the most likely scenarios that cause this are removing a Battery from a tool when the player inventory is already full, or picking up a Time Capsule the contents of which exceed the available slots. If this occurs, the player is temporarily granted extra slots which are not displayed: removing items from the visible part of the PDA inventory will reveal the hidden ones.