It wouldn’t be a Bethesda game without being able to pick locks, and lo and behold, Starfield has a futuristic take on the age-old lockpicking mini-game.

Lockpicking in Starfield works a tad differently from Bethesda’s previous RPGs. You’ll need to master the craft of picking locks to gain access to some of the best loot.

Thankfully, we’ll be going over the new lockpicking mechanic, as well as where to find and how to use Digipicks in Starfield.

In-game instructions for Starfield Lockpicking

How Does Lockpicking Work in Starfield?

To pick locks in Starfield, you’ll first need to have at least one Digipick in your inventory. You then need to use it to engage in a lockpicking mini-game to open the lock.

Follow these steps to pick locks successfully in Starfield:

  1. Make sure you have at least one Digipick in your inventory
    • You can find Digipicks on looted enemies and chests, or by purchasing them at a vendor
  1. Interact with the locked object
    • It could be a locked door or chest
Player interacting with a locked door in Starfield
  1. You’ll notice various layers of “rings” with empty slots along their perimeter
Ring layers in Starfield Lockpicking
  1. To the right, you’ll see various circular “keys” with a different set of “notches” for each one
    • Select a key you would like to use. Be sure to plan ahead as you can only use each one once!
Highlighting a key that is being used for lockpicking in Starfield
  1. You need to rotate these keys so that their notches fit into the empty slots within the circular rings
    • It’s useful to count the number of empty slots to help estimate which keys you’ll need to use
    • You can also estimate the required keys by seeing the distance between the notches at a glance
Highlighting the Slot Key button when lockpicking in Starfield
  1. Rotate and line up each key into the correct position before slotting them in
    • This will help save your Digipicks as you will spot errors more easily
  2. Press “Slot Key” to slot the keys into the empty slots when ready
    • This will remove the outer ring layer, revealing the next one
  3. If you have made a mistake you can press the “Undo” button – but doing so will use up a Digipick
Highlighting the Undo button when lockpicking in Starfield
  1. Do the above for any remaining ring layers
  2. Once all layers are correctly completed, you have successfully picked the lock!
Player interacting with a unlocked door in Starfield

We recommend planning ahead and saving the game before any lockpicking attempt, especially early on when Digipicks may be scarce!

Starfield Lockpicking Difficulty Tiers

Much like Bethesda’s other RPGs, there are four difficulty tiers for locks in Starfield. They are:

  • Novice
  • Advanced
  • Expert
  • Master

All players will be able to attempt Novice locks straight away in Starfield but will need to upgrade their Security skill to attempt more difficult locks.

Highlighting advanced lock when lockpicking in Starfield

How to Open Advanced, Expert, and Master Locks in Starfield

To open more difficult locks in Starfield, you need to put skill points into the Security skill. It is in Tier 1 of Starfield’s Tech Skill Tree.

Here are all four ranks of the Security skill:

  • Rank 1 – You can attempt to hack Advanced locks, and 2 auto attempts can be banked.
  • Rank 2 – You can attempt to hack Expert locks, and 3 auto attempts can be banked. Rings now turn blue when the pick can be slotted.
  • Rank 3 – You can attempt to hack Master-level locks, and 4 auto attempts can be banked.
  • Rank 4 – Expend a digipick to eliminate keys that aren’t required to solve the puzzle. 5 auto attempts can be banked.

To progress to each rank of Security you need to meet certain requirements so you can put a skill point to unlock that rank. For example, you need to pick a total of five locks to unlock the ability to put a skill point in rank 2, and so on.

What is Auto Slot in Starfield?

Pressing “Auto Slot” when lockpicking in Starfield will automatically rotate a key to its correct position for that ring layer when using a Digipick.

Highlighting the Auto Slot button when lockpicking in Starfield

This eliminates any margin for error for that layer, but you only have a limited number of “banked” Auto Slots.

Every completed layer will reward you with an Auto Slot attempt. The number you can bank is dependent on your Security skill level.

If your Security skill is at least Rank 2, the ring layer you are currently on will turn blue, highlighting that you can slot in that key. However, this does not guarantee that it is the right key, just that it fits in.

Highlighting the blue ring layer when lockpicking unlocked with Security skill level rank 2 in Starfield

Using this helpful hint in conjunction with the Suto Slot feature is a good method for guaranteeing success with picking locks in Starfield.

Where to Find Digipicks in Starfield

Digipicks are Starfield’s version of lockpicks. You find them by:

  1. Purchasing from vendors
  2. Looting from enemies and chests you encounter while exploring

The easiest and most reliable method to get Digipicks in Starfield is by purchasing them from vendors you encounter in the game.

You can buy Digipicks from two early vendors found in New Atlantis on the planet Jemison. You can buy them from Apex Electronics in the New Atlantis Well area and Jemison Mercantile in the New Atlantis spaceport area

You’ll find Digipicks in the “Misc.” section in a vendor’s inventory, costing 35 credits each.

Starfield New Atlantis Location

Another way of getting Digipicks in Starfield is to find it while looting defeated enemies or opening chests you encounter while exploring and playing the game.

Finding a Digipick in a chest in Starfield

You can even find it lying around as part of the game’s ‘set dressing’. for example, there’s a chance you’ll see it on shelves and tables while exploring:

Finding a Digipick on a table in Starfield

It’s handy to stock up on as many Digipicks as possible on your playthrough of Starfield. You can get some of the best loot by unlocking the game’s most difficult locks.

author
Staff Writer
Passionate gamer and writer, Alpay has been featured on GamingIntel, Stuff.tv, and TheGamer. When not writing, he delves into virtual worlds, enjoys high-concept TV shows, and splurges on Steam sales.