After players first mission in Starfield that involves infiltrating an enemy base, they will already have an assortment of weapons and items at their disposal.
However, scavenging in Starfield is still necessary for success, and when using the scanner mechanic, players will notice a yellow symbol over certain items, such as stolen goods or black-market items hiding on enemy ships, known as contraband.
While contraband does not have any effect on in-game RPG elements, NPCs, like player squads, will judge them if they get caught with it.
These are events that can trigger when traveling to certain planets, as before landing, security of the designated planet will scan for contraband prior to allowing players to land. If players fail a contraband scan, they will have to suffer the consequences, such as loss of credits, arrest, or a gunfight, as well as the loss of contraband items and experience, and not to mention an unhappy crew.
Even so, contraband is still worth the trouble since it is useful towards in-game credits. As a result, this can make things tricky if players aren’t sure what to do with contraband or where to hide it between the moments of trading it in and pushing forward in the game since it can’t necessarily be traveled with unless players are taking precautions.
Luckily, there are a few useful tricks that players might want to know ahead of time to properly navigate these situations. Besides, Sarah Morgan, the companion that accompanies players on their Starfield adventure, would advise against making enemies over items that are supposed to be hidden and aid in the Starfield journey.
More Contraband, More Problems
Every good space pirate needs to be prepared for contraband scans. In Starfield, there are designated trade authority ships, but if these can’t be accessed then players will have to smuggle the items onto a planet to sell it. To do this, players will need either a shielded cargo hold, which the Mantis Ship will assist with, or a scan jammer.
Players will also want to unlock the Deception skill and Commerce skill to aid with contraband holding and trading, both of which can be accessed from the skill tree. These tips will allow for easier navigation to and from planets so that players can bypass scanners and earn more money from scavenged items. However, if players are not prepared for contraband scans, then they will only have a few seconds to fast travel out of the vicinity.
Best Place to Sell Contraband
The best place to sell contraband is a military base space station called The Den in The Wolf System, near Sol and Alpha Centuri. Despite the space station being UC military, the player will not be scanned for contraband when they arrive.
Once players dock, they are free to explore the station and can find the Trade Authority, which will have a few chairs located in front of it. If the player is able to drain the vender of all their credits, they can reset the vender by waiting 48 in game hours and do it all again until they do not have any contraband left to sell.
If a player does happen to get caught with contraband, there are a few options presented on how the player wants to proceed. The player can either pay the fine, serve their time in jail, attempt to escape, or if the player has the Negotiation skill, they can attempt to bribe their way out of it.
Starfield has many interesting systems, but in order to navigate them players should learn how to be successful and discreet space pirates, which also includes the best Starfield traits. Knowing how to manage and travel with contraband is an important aspect to scouring the galaxy.