Master Lockpicking in Starfield: A Comprehensive Guide

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Master Lockpicking in Starfield: A Comprehensive Guide

Understand the basics of lockpicking with our comprehensive guide and master the art to unlock secrets, loot, and treasures in the vast universe of Starfield

Lockpicking has been a staple mechanic in many modern RPGs, offering players the thrill of uncovering hidden treasures and secrets. In the highly anticipated space-faring RPG Starfield, picking locks takes center stage with its unique Digipick system and engaging mini-game. While the game provides a brief tutorial, this comprehensive guide will delve deeper into the mechanics, strategies, and tips for becoming the best locksmith in the universe.

How Lockpicking Works in Starfield

The art of picking locks revolves around the use of Digipicks, special consumable items similar to traditional lockpicks. Players will encounter various locked doors, safes, lockers, and containers throughout the game. To unlock these, you need at least one Digipick in your inventory. However, it's important to note that initiating the lockpicking mini-game consumes one Digipick, and failing to pick the lock results in the loss of that Digipick.

The lockpicking mini-game consists of concentric circular security layers with gaps in them. These layers become more complex as the locks get harder. Your task is to use the keys provided by your Digipick to fill these gaps. Each layer must be fully unlocked before progressing to the next. Upgrading the Security skill will provide you with clues about which keys fit each layer, simplifying the process.

Master Lockpicking in Starfield: A Comprehensive Guide

The most efficient way to pick a lock in is to cycle through available keys using the shoulder buttons until you find one that fits all the gaps in the outermost layer. It's advisable to attempt keys with more pins first, as they may only fit in one specific position. You can rotate each key using the analog stick or D-Pad to align all its pins with the gaps in the outermost security layer. For complex locks, lining up all the keys needed for a layer before slotting them is a wise strategy.

Once you've positioned a key to align all its pins correctly with the gaps, press the A button to slot it, then move on to the next key. Repeat this process until you've unlocked all security layers. Some keys only work on specific layers, so the order in which you use them matters. If a Digipick doesn't align with the outermost layer, move on and return to it later. For a more in-depth analysis, check out our guide

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Acquiring Digipicks 

Mastering Lockpicking in Starfield: A Comprehensive Guide

As Digipicks are crucial for lockpicking, knowing where to find them is essential. Fortunately, these valuable tools can be discovered in various locations throughout the game.

  • Looting: One way to acquire Digipicks is by looting them from defeated enemies. They may also be pickpocketed from living characters if you have the Theft skill unlocked.
  • Merchant Purchases: Most general-purpose merchants offer Digipicks for sale in the miscellaneous section of their inventories. The standard price is 35 Credits, but players can obtain discounts by unlocking and upgrading the Commerce skill.

Making Lockpicking Easier 

Picking a lock can be a challenging endeavor, but there are several strategies and methods to make the process more manageable.

Upgrade Your Security Skill

Strengthening your Security skill offers several advantages. Notably, it causes the outer ring of a lock to turn blue when a selected Digipick key fits an available slot. This visual cue simplifies key selection, allowing you to quickly identify the correct key.

Pre-align Keys

Before slotting any keys, it's a good practice to pre-align them with empty slots on each ring. This strategy enables you to make adjustments or switch keys if necessary, reducing the risk of mistakes.

Utilize Auto Slot

If you possess auto attempts, you can use the ‘Auto Slot' function, which automatically selects the correct key for the current ring. Auto attempts are earned by successfully picking locks and can be banked by upgrading your Security skill Ranks.

Use ‘Undo' Sparingly 

While the ‘Undo' button can revert your last key usage and restore empty slots, it consumes a Digipick each time you use it. Reserve ‘Undo' for critical situations to avoid excessive Digipick consumption.

Consider Starfield Mods 

PC players have the option to use Starfield mods to simplify lockpicking. For instance, the “Easy Digipick” mod by Ixion XVII allows players to skip the lockpicking mini-game entirely.

The Lockpicking Skill

The Security skill is closely tied to lockpicking. Initially, players can only attempt to pick Novice level locks. To access more advanced locks (Advanced, Expert, or Master), you must increase your Security skill Rank. Here's what each rank offers:

  • Rank 1: Allows attempts to hack Advanced locks and permits banking of 2 auto attempts.
  • Rank 2: Grants the ability to attempt Expert locks, offers 3 auto attempts, and causes rings to turn blue when a pick can be slotted.
  • Rank 3: Enables attempts at Master-level locks and provides 4 auto attempts.
  • Rank 4: Allows you to expend a Digipick to eliminate unnecessary keys and lets you bank 5 auto attempts.
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Mastering Lockpicking in Starfield: A Comprehensive Guide

Boosting your Security skill involves picking locks, with specific lockpicking tasks required to achieve each rank. As you explore various planets and space stations, you'll naturally progress through these ranks, enhancing your lockpicking abilities.

Locations to Find Digipicks 

Exploration plays a significant role in your journey through the Settled Systems. To ensure you have an ample supply of Digipicks for picking locks in your adventures, search for Digipicks in the random bases and installations scattered across planets and moons. You won't have to search long before amassing enough Digipicks to last you a while.

Types of Locks 

Novice locks: These locks don't require Lockpicking skill points, but having some can be advantageous for extra auto-attempts. When dealing with a novice lock, you'll see the lock's image in the center of your screen, four digipick patterns, and the remaining digipicks. Each pattern consumes one digipick, and failing means backtracking, incurring a digipick cost. The goal is to fill the gaps in the lock to open it. Locks have multiple rings, and you start with the outermost, moving inward. Avoid locking positions unless you're certain; mistakes force a complete redo, costing a digipick.

Advanced locks: These locks are far more complex with additional variations. Some patterns may apply to both internal and external locks, so solve both before confirming choices to save digipicks.

For Expert and Master: These locks force you to have to invest in the Security skill tree for significant advantages. You gain the ability to determine if your digipick suits the selected ring, making lockpicking easier.

The Art of Lockpicking

Lockpicking is more than just a skill; it's an art form that can lead to valuable loot, hidden lore, and unforgettable adventures. By following the strategies and tips outlined in this comprehensive guide, you'll become a master locksmith in the vast and captivating universe of Starfield. As you pick your way through locks of increasing complexity, the rewards and mysteries of the Settled Systems await your discovery. Lock on, intrepid space explorer, and unlock the secrets of the cosmos!


Master Lockpicking in Starfield: A Comprehensive Guide
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