Nailing Starfield Ship Theft: A Complete Guide on Hijacking Spaceships

This article provides an in-depth guide on how to steal and register ships in Starfield, the associated profits and risks, and how to garner the required piloting skills.

Mastering Spaceship Theft in Starfield: Is It Worth Your Time?

One of the intriguing aspects of the Starfield game is the ability to steal ships, providing players with an attractive workaround to acquiring new vessels without dipping into their earned credits. This could be a handy trick for individuals embodying the role of a space pirate or someone needing to upgrade their current ships with better options they've spotted nearby. While the process might seem daunting initially, it becomes straightforward once you grasp the concept. However, one challenge in this approach is the associated high fees to claim these seized vessels as your own before performing any transactions.

The Complication: Proficiency in Piloting

There's an exciting twist to stealing ships in Starfield. Even after successfully overpowering your boat of interest, there's the off chance that you don't possess the required skills to pilot it away. This is more likely if you have not invested in the necessary personal upgrades. Despite this little snag, an array of ships are ready to be hijacked from the get-go.

How to Steal Ships in Starfield: The Detailed Breakdown

Let's guide you through the process of successfully hot-wiring a ship. Take note of the following steps:

  1. Identify the ship you want to hijack and turn it off in combat. Use targeted lock-ons to ensure you take out its engines without causing overall destruction.
  2. Once the ship is disabled, board it. For a detailed guide on onboarding, refer to Starfield's shipboarding strategy writeup.
  3. Once you're on board, get rid of any enemy NPCs.
  4. Navigate your way to the cockpit and interact with the pilot's seat. Be wary that if the ship is grade B or C, you'll require several ranks in Piloting, a critical Starfield skill in the Tech tree, to fly it.
  5. If you can pilot the ship, undock from your former boat and take the hijacked one to a spaceport. Your left-behind ship will automatically join your fleet and can be retrieved from any port.
  6. Discuss with the spaceport technician to view your vehicles, then select the option to 'Register' your newly stolen ship. However, this would cost some credits but makes the boat officially yours.

Piracy and Profits: Is Ship Theft Really Worth It?

Although it might seem counter-intuitive, registering a ship isn't essential to stealing one. However, it becomes crucial when you need to customize or resell the hijacked ship since you cannot carry out either operation without registering it first. This does imply that piracy isn't as profitable as it appears at face value due to the significant expense involved in ship registration.

Despite this, a calculated risk might turn profitable, especially when you salvage the hijacked ship's hold and captain's locker for credits and cargo. Still, there may be occasional situations where ships aren't accessible, with no clear conditions, except for ensuring the vessel is NPC-free. Also, it's possible to seize parked ships on planets by following the process outlined above from stage 3, involving combat in the landing bay instead of turning off ship engines.

Stealing a New Ship: What Becomes of Your Old Ship?

Rest assured, your former ship is safe after you seize a new one. Such owned and deserted vessels will be automatically shielded and can be collected from any starport from your regular ships list. We aren't sure about the logistics, but your ship seems to be transported autonomously to a secured location. So, in a nutshell, you don't have much to worry about.