Starfield - Advanced Shipbuilding Guide

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Starfield: Ship
Credit: Bethesda

Starships are an integral part of Starfield, becoming your home among the stars; preparing carefully before starting your journey is essential.

Thankfully, Starfield offers the ability to customize your ship to your heart's content, with some players even taking inspiration from galaxies far - but not too far - away.

Customization options include increased storage, extra crew quarters, and more advanced weaponry.

With so many options, it can prove daunting when starting out, and so to help, we have created an advanced shipbuilding guide for Starfield.

Starfield Shipbuilding: How to Begin

Getting stuck into shipbuilding and customizing your ship, isn't something available to you from the outset.

To unlock shipbuilding, you must visit the Ship Services Technician. You can find similar stations on many planets, but the first one is on New Atlantis.

Once there, you'll have to find the Starship Technician, a local NPC near the landing pad. After approaching him, start a conversation.

Starfield: Starship Technician
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Credit: Bethesda

There will be several things you can ask of the technician, including a request to repair your current ship (for a fee), but the option we want is the following:

  • "I'd like to view and modify my ships."

This will end the dialogue, and you will see the shipbuilding interface, which will contain a lot of statistics, details, and information that is quite difficult to understand for a beginner.

Starfield: Shipbuilder Interface

Before we move on to upgrading, we would like to draw your attention to the interface of this menu. From the bottom, you can see the main statistics of your ship, such as weapon damage, total cargo capacity, shield strength, number of crew that can fit, mobility, and others, depending on the type of vehicle you are using.

Starfield: Ship Builder Interface
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Credit: Bethesda

As you level up your ship, these stats will change; the main task is maximising them. You can see such statistics by selecting an individual module, where you can see further information.

Also, it would be best to watch for errors that may occur when you improve or modify your ship. The error indicator is on the right side of the screen and glows blue if everything is fine and red if there is a problem. Occasionally, errors occur because you have incorrectly connected modules or used several parts with identical functions.

To fix this, remove the unnecessary parts and connect the modules correctly. In other cases, you will need to disassemble the structure to prevent the error, so we recommend not wasting time building a complex ship if you don't know how to avoid it.

How to Use the Shipbuilder

Starfield: Ship
click to enlarge
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Credit: Bethesda

Well, when you finally get to build and modify, you'll first need to figure out the basic interface management. Here's the information you need for Xbox and PC players.

Action Xbox PC
Cargo HoldXF
ExitBEsc or Tab
Home shipPauseH
InspectRS (press)X
Next shipRBT
Previous shipLBQ
Register shipViewG
RemoveLS (press)Delete

So, the next thing you'll need to do is select the ship you're going to interact with. When you do that, you'll have two options to choose from when upgrading, namely:

  • Upgrade specific systems immediately in the menu on the side.
  • Enter the Shipbuilder mode to change the structure or put in new modules.

In the first option, you can only improve the modules installed on your ship, such as weapons and shields. To do this, select the part you want to upgrade and ensure you have enough credits to pay for it. This way, you can upgrade all necessary systems and continue your journey.

If you want a more advanced system of upgrades, you can go to the shipbuilder, where you will have access to all options for customizing your ship.

You can buy new modules, remove old ones, and even build a ship to your specifications in unique shapes and with different stats, depending on the systems you use. Use all your imagination to build a ship from scratch, but be wary of mistakes that can occur.

For your ship to fly, you will need to install the following modules:

  • Bay
  • Cargo Hold
  • Cockpit
  • Cowling
  • Docker
  • Engines
  • Fuel Tanks
  • Grav Drive
  • Hab
  • Landing Gears
  • Reactor
  • Shield Generator
  • Weapons

Depending on the type of ship you want to create, you must prioritize the parts you use because you can't have a fast, protected ship with a powerful attack strength and a large cargo capacity. Thus, choose the type of ship that best suits your play style. As you may have noticed, the game classifies ships into three types, namely:

  • Exploration (A class) - high mobility but low attack and cargo capacity.
  • Transport (B class) - a balanced ship with average speed and attack, prioritising cargo capacity.
  • Combat (C class) - powerful attacks but weak shields and cargo capacity.

Based on this information, you can create your ideal ship if you follow all the rules. Don't waste credits on unnecessary extras, and be smart about your creation.

Starfield: Advanced Ships


If you want to improve your ship's power or have built a ship and are struggling to navigate it, Tech skills will help you with this.

Starfield: Piloting Skill
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Credit: Bethesda

Upgrading these skills will significantly improve your ship's stats and provide new benefits. We want to highlight two skills among the others, namely:

In the first case, when you level up the skill, you can control class B and C ships, which allows you to build even more fabulous designs to conquer space. In the second case, you can buy and install high-quality parts for your ship to make it a killing machine or a suitable cargo carrier.

By the way, if you want more information about this game, check out our guide on upgrading your ship in Starfield. You can also take a look at our article on getting a ship in Starfield if you'd like to learn more.

For all things Starfield, stick with us at Starfield Portal.

For more articles like this, take a look at our Guides and Starship Guides page.