Starfield has finally been released on PC, Xbox, and even the Steam Deck, after first being revealed over five years ago and it is certain to scratch the itch for fans of The Elder Scrolls and Fallout as it will be a very long time before the next games in those franchises will be released. As you expand the hundreds of planets across the solar system, you will encounter various locks that need picking in order to access new areas and loot weapons and items. There is one problem though, unlike The Elder Scrolls and Fallout, Bethesda has made this mechanic incredibly frustrating to figure out and it will likely leave you perplexed when you first encounter a lock. Fortunately, this handy guide has everything you need to know to become a master lock picker in no time.
How The Lockpicking Mini-Game Works in Starfield
In Starfield you will encounter many locks that you can pick in order to gain access to new areas or the loot that is hidden inside the safe. This is done by collecting and using a Digipick (Digital Lockpick). Once you’ve collected one and interacted with the lock it will start the mini-game.
Once started you will be met with a circular lock with multiple rings with gaps in each of them as well as four smaller rings to the right which are your keys to picking the lock. The goal is to match the Digipick rings to the gaps in the lock, filling all of the gaps will unlock that ring and allow you to move on to the next. In order to maximize your chances of success you should spend some time and figure out which keys are the correct ones before attempting the puzzle. If you make a mistake and want to redo the puzzle it will cost you a Digipick, as will leaving the mini-game.
Check out the images below of a successfully completed mini-game to see how the lockpicking mechanic works in Starfield.
The solution for this first ring was the second and third options. Count the gaps in the ring and then figure out the possible combinations using the four solutions you are given.
This Novice lock only has two rings, as the second and third options were used in lock one, the solution for this was options one and four.
The Different Types of Locks in Starfield
Just because you picked your first lock don’t think you’re suddenly Jill Valentine, you’re not the “Master of Unlocking” just yet. There are four different levels of locks, with each becoming more complex to complete as well as requiring a higher Security skill.
In order to tackle the more advanced locks in Starfield you need the following Security skill ranks.
Advanced Locks – Security Rank 1
Expert Locks – Security Rank 2
Master Locks – Security Rank 3
As you will encounter many locks throughout your time playing Starfield you should upgrade your Security in the Skill Tree as soon as possible. You can get a head start on this by choosing certain backgrounds when creating your character at the beginning of the game. The Bouncer, Cyber Runner, Cyberneticist, and Industrialist backgrounds will grant you Security rank 1 from the beginning of the game so you can open Advanced Locks immediately.
Tips and Tricks to Pick Locks in Starfield
The more you pick locks in Starfield the easier it will become as you begin to understand how the mechanic works. But to help you master lockpicking quickly, here are our tips and tricks.
Level up your Security skills – This will allow you to tackle more complex locks as well as give you access to Auto-Attempts, which shows you the solution for the ring you’re currently on.
Don’t rush – Being a single-player game, the world around you pauses as you attempt the locks so you don’t need to worry about enemies. Take all the time that you need as rushing will lead to mistakes and cost you valuable Digipicks.
Always be on the lookout for Digipicks – Digipicks can be found by searching enemies and your surroundings. They are fairly plentiful but if you don’t actively scavenge you will likely find yourself without one when you really need it.
Try and unlock it on your first attempt – The lockpick mini-game changes the solution every time you attempt it, meaning that if you run out of Digipicks you won’t be able to pick up where you left off. And leaving the mini-game costs Digipicks and they’re not a resource you can afford to waste.