How Do You Smuggle Contraband in Starfield?

Surya Kumar
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<div class="paragraphs"><p>How Do You Smuggle Contraband in Starfield?</p></div>

How Do You Smuggle Contraband in Starfield?

Cover-Credits: 

Highlights
Becoming a skilled smuggler and selling contraband in Starfield requires you to engage in certain questionable practices.
Contraband will be scanned at docking ports and it is denoted with a little yellow icon in your inventory.
Joining the Crimson Fleet provides you with an advantage in exploration and looting.

Starfield has finally hit the early access stage and fans are going gaga over it. This new space RPG from Bethesda has certainly kept players busy, as they explore its vast universe, figuring out how things work in a space-colonized society. Similar to the studio’s previous titles, this game also features a comprehensive looting mechanism that allows you to steal or even pickpocket items from NPCs and sell the contraband at many storefronts. However, there is a catch to it. Let’s take a look.

So How Do You Hide Contraband?

As mentioned above, the game has a mechanism that allows you to sell stolen items to various traders present in the game. Selling contraband requires you to dock your ship on a specific planet. If this planet seems to be under the regime of the United Colonies (UC) or the Freestyle Collective (FC), you could land in serious trouble, as it is illegal to sell your stolen wares there.

The authorities will scan your ship and if you happen to possess contraband, you’re in deep waters.

If you want to avoid being thrown into space jail or pay a hefty fine, the game presents you with a secretive way to avoid it, although you might have to shell out a bit of cash. Players who wish to smuggle contraband must equip their ship with a shielded cargo unit to keep it untraceable while going through these cargo scans. You can install these parts on your ship through some questionable pirate merchants of the Crimson Fleet.

The Key

The game presents you with various paths to join the Crimson Fleet but as a beginner, the easiest way to go about it is to join the United Colonies in New Atlantis and infiltrate the Fleet as a covert agent. This takes about three simple missions until you have access to the Key in the Kryx system, which acts as the HQ for Crimson Fleet pirates.

Note:  Although these shielded cargo units do provide security against scans, they are not guaranteed to work 100% of the time. There are rare occasions when the authorities may find you suspicious. It depends on the quantity of your contraband or its value. You will be notified with a percentage as you dock at these scanning ports.

How Do You Sell Contrabands in Starfield?

Once you get past these pesky scanning ports, you are free to sell your contraband to most merchants even in the UC and FC-occupied regions. If you choose to become a member of the Crimson Fleet, you can directly sell your items at the Key. 

Note that the Key does not have any scanning ports so if you really are looking to side with the pirates, Starfield definitely permits that.


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Surya has been an avid gamer all his life with an emphasis on single-player titles since the PlayStation 2 era. After switching to PC, he has also dabbled in the world of Valorant ever since its beta. He aims to spread his passion for gaming through his writing.