Starfield is a ginormous game. There are endless things to do, and it seems I keep figuring out new things every time I play. For the record, I absolutely love this. One of these things is finding contraband. It’s not just your normal piece of gear, so we’ll walk you through the intricacies of transporting it and selling it without getting caught and sending yourself to space jail.
Like any Bethesda game, you can loot basically anything in Starfield. This ranges from a used Styrofoam coffee mug to an actual human organ. The latter is the contraband, obviously. This is 1 example of many different kinds of prohibited material in the game. You can tell them apart by the yellow box icon next to their name on the inventory screen.
Hiding contraband is a bit more difficult. First off, if you keep the item on your player you’ll get caught immediately on the space scan 100% of the time. These scans take place instantly every single time you jump into a system patrolled by the UC or Freestar. You’ll need to make sure your ship has either an extra shielded cargo hold or you use a scan jammer. Of course, both of these are hard to find. These ships are higher-level ships you’ll need to board and take over, and the jammer is rare while also expensive as hell. You can tell if your ship has a shielded cargo by scanning it. Underneath the cargo capacity section, you will see a separate shielded cargo.
These space cops aren’t stupid, though, and they can tell the weight of your ship. The more or heavier contraband items you have, the harder it is to smuggle. This is because it’s easier to get caught with the items, even in a shielded hold, if their weight is closer to the weight limit of the shielded hold itself. So, make sure you make separate trips each time. It’s worth it.
Now, you’ll need to sell the items in order to go full Han Solo and earn those credits. Of course, not every shop purveyor is going to be so excited to deal with stolen goods. This results in finding separate stores that do so. Fortunately, these spots are called Trade Authority. I admittedly don’t know all the locations in a game with over 1,000 planets, but I did find two of them. Near the start of the game, you can go to Cydonia on Mars or Neon. Both these locations accept the contraband.
Again, you’ll need to find the store as the pop-up stands at the ship dock don’t take them. I’m figuring it’s because it’s “too close” to the cops, as again Bethesda maintained a high level of detail.
I hope this helps and allows you to stock up on lots of your pirated goods in Starfield. Good luck out there explorers!