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The best Starfield builds

Here are the ultimate Starfield builds, including the best ranged, stealth, and melee build, as well as how to create your ideal starting and endgame character.

What are the best Starfield builds? From our own Sol system to Starfield’s most notable galaxy, Alpha Centauri, choosing the best Starfield build is a must if you want to soar through the skies with minimal difficulty.

We’ve got an expert list of every Starfield build type, created after dozens of hours of play, and all of them excel in different areas, meaning we’ve got something for you no matter your preferred play style. You may find having particular Starfield companions or wielding certain Starfield weapons that complement your combat style comes in handy, but as our Starfield review details, you’ll need to brush up on your knowledge with our handy build guides below.

What are the best Starfield builds?

Here are the best Starfield builds:

  • Bash build
  • Sneaky build
  • Rifle build
  • Sniper build
  • Indestructible build
  • Boostpack build

A first person view of the player character approaching a pirate in full red armor with a knife that takes full advantage of the best Starfield builds for melee weapon users.

Starfield bash build

Background Ronin
Traits Introverted
Combat skills Dueling (4) (if armed)
Physical skills Boxing (4) (if unarmed)
Concealment (4)
Gymnastics (4)
Martial Arts (4)
Stealth (4)
Wellness (1)
Science skills Medicine (4)
Weapon Engineering (4)
Social skills Intimidation (2)
Tech skills No mandatory choices

The best Starfield melee build relies on getting up close and personal with your enemies. Our dedicated guide gets into the details of how to beat your way out of almost any situation, but the most important aspects of the build are which skills to choose.

You’ll want to focus on wellness to increase your health and martial arts to ensure that any melee attacks hit as hard as possible. We recommend you at least carry some blade or melee weapon for this build, but you can easily swap out Dueling in combat skills for the same amount of points in Boxing (physical) if you want to punch things instead.

Since you’re taking the Ronin background, it makes perfect sense also to take the Introverted trait. This is because both are negatively affected when companions accompany you, so it’s best to go in alone for combat.  You’ll also want to take some points in Medicine so you can heal quickly if required and bring us closer to Weapon Engineering.

The player is hiding behind the diner counter as the owner stares straight at her. She clearly does not have the best Starfield builds focusing on stealth.

Starfield sneaky build

Background Cyber Runner
Traits Introvert
Combat skills Dueling (4)
Physical skills Cellular Regeneration (2)
Concealment (4)
Decontamination (2)
Gymnastics (4)
Stealth (4)
Science skills No mandatory choices
Social skills Isolation (4)
Theft (4)
Tech skills Boost Pack Training (4)
Security (4)

The best Starfield stealth build is all about the art of sneaking around. Our advice is to remain undetected as you steal and pickpocket until your targets are dry and then to stay out of trouble when it’s most important. If you are spotted while plundering, your boost pack training will help you to make a quick getaway.

We also highly recommend that you go with an Introverted character, as companions have a nasty habit of giving away your position by yelling obscenities at your foes. To help you along the way, our dedicated guide has the intricacies of the build, including why you should be taking some less obvious perks, such as dueling.

One of the best Starfield builds is the ranged one that gives you medium range combat advantages, such as firing at the pirate below the player as shown here.

Starfield rifle build

Background Soldier
Traits Any traits will work here
Combat skills Ballistics (4)
Marksmanship (4)
Rapid Reloading (4)
Rifle Certification (4)
Armor Penetration (4)
Physical skills Rejuvenation (4)
Gymnastics (4)
Wellness (4)
Science skills No mandatory choices
Social skills No mandatory choices
Tech skills Boost Pack Training (4)

The Starfield ranged build is about keeping distance between you and anyone (or thing) that might do you harm. It focuses on weapon specialties and ballistics expertise. Your enemies won’t be able to keep up with the pace you set in a combat environment.

We recommend taking the Soldier background for this one as this gives you extra bonuses in Fitness, Ballistics, and Boost Pack Training to help you move around a bit. Your main guns of choice will be any rifle, but you may wish to specialize in fully automatic ones where possible. Armor Penetration will also be very handy for dealing with robots and other heavily armored foes.

A sniper is aiming down the sights at a Va'Ruun Zealot at the other end of a frozen dilapidated room, while using the best Starfield builds for a sniper.

Starfield sniper build

Background Combat Medic
Traits Introvert
Combat skills Armor Penetration (4)
Ballistics (4)
Marksmanship (4)
Rapid Reloading (1)
Rifle Certification (4)
Sharpshooting (4)
Sniper Certification (4)
Physical skills Stealth (1)
Pain Tolerance (3)
Wellness (4)
Science skills Astrodynamics (1)
Medicine (2)
Research Methods (1)
Weapon Engineering (4)
Social skills Instigation (4)
Isolation (4)
Persuasion (2)
Scavenging (2)
Tech skills No mandatory choices

This Starfield sniper build relies on the Isolation skill to gain a massive damage bonus while rolling solo. You’ll want to focus on skills in Wellness and Ballistics and take the Combat Medic background to make the most of your self-preservation skills.

Many of the combat skills here focus on maximizing the amount of damage each sniper round hits enemies for, so be sure to get those. As for your social skills, persuasion helps you avoid trouble if interrogated, while an increased Scavenging skill ensures you don’t run out of bullets. As for your weapons of choice, use the best sniper rifle that uses real bullets exclusively where possible, but keep a shorter-range rifle if you need to fight in closer quarters.

A person covered head to toe in a space suit made from the toughest materials, making it great for the best Starfield tank build. They're beside their spaceship hangar.

Starfield indestructible build

Background Combat Medic
Traits Alien DNA
Terra Firma
Combat skills Shotgun Certification (3)
Heavy Weapons Certification (4)
Physical skills Energy Weapon Dissipation (4)
Nutrition (4)
Pain Tolerance (4)
Rejuvenation (4)
Wellness (4)
Science skills Medicine (4)
Spacesuit Design (4)
Social skills Gastronomy (4)
Isolation (4)
Tech skills No mandatory choices

Every good team needs a beefy unit that can take damage and support allies, and this Starfield tank build is no different. Focus on gastronomy, medicine, wellness, pain tolerance, and energy weapon dissipation to make good use of your healing via food and drink and reach heavy weapon certification, making this build one of the strongest in Bethesda’s space game.

The Alien DNA does make it so that you’re eating a lot more than normal, but the extra max health is worth it. We also recommend taking the Terra Firma as you’re more likely to spend time in combat on planets than in space, so it seems silly not to get the extra health and oxygen. Shotguns are your best choice for weapons where possible as they give you the most bang for your buck.

A spaceship lifting off that has increased mobility thanks to the best Starfield build.

Starfield boostpack build

Background Bounty Hunter
Traits Either Spaced or Terra Firma
Combat skills Shotgun Certification (4)
Ballistics (4)
Targeting (4)
Physical skills Fitness (4)
Gymnastics (4)
Rejuvenation (4)
Wellness (4)
Science skills No mandatory choices
Social skills No mandatory choices
Tech skills Boost Assault Training (4)
Boost Pack Training (4)
Engine Systems (4)
Piloting (2)
Targeting Control Systems (4)

Taking the bounty hunter background for this Starfield boostpack build is a surefire way to boost your effectiveness. Make sure to train with the Starfield boost pack for maximum mobility and take combat skills in shotgun certification, ballistics, and targeting to hit hard and take enemies down.

You’ll likely be traveling with a companion, so taking the Extrovert trait can help out here, and depending on whether or not you’ll be doing most of your exploration in deep space or on planets, Spaced or Terra Firma will give you extra oxygen in certain situations.

Speaking of space, you can’t use a lot of these mobility skills while piloting a spaceship, but the majority of the tech skills here can help you with space combat, and in particular, getting into positions where you can fire your weapons at an exposed weak spot.

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Considering your own play style and the situations you expect to find yourself in are both key to perfecting the best Starfield build. If you want to go aggressively, you’ll want to check out the best Starfield skills to help you along the way. Skills such as instigation can cause your opponents to turn on one another, and utilizing ballistics can introduce devastating damage.

If you’re looking to take a more defensive line, then the optimal Starfield background and Starfield traits could be the early-game difference between make and break for your space adventure. Alien DNA can give you increased health at the cost of decreased effectiveness for healing items, whereas the introvert trait will make it easier to sneak around alone, for example.

Still looking for more? While a good Starfield wiki can be a handy source of information, our new Starfield Database goes further, offering you daily news, searchable databanks, and even interactive tools.