All Starfield Backgrounds Explained: Starting Skills and Traits

As the Spacefarer, decide your own story behind what brings you to sail the cosmos.

by J.R. Waugh


Starfield is coming soon, and spacefaring RPG fans will be delighted to know this could be one of the biggest games ever made.  While it touches upon familiar space exploration territory such as through Elite: Dangerous or No Man’s Sky, it implements that extra dose of Bethesda magic with a massive blend of gameplay elements and potentially countless hours of quests and tasks.  Leaning further into the RPG side of the game, you’ll be able to customize your character from the beginning onward, and one of the fundamental parts of the character creation will be your background.  Read on for our guide on All Starfield Backgrounds: Starting Skills and Traits!

All Starfield Backgrounds Explained: Starting Skills and Traits


Customizing your unique Spacefarer will lead you to a choice of what you wish the Argos Extractors to find about your background, and each background comes with complementary skills to aid you in your journey.  These are essentially starter preset builds to help you decide the type of character you want to make and provide a healthy base to set you in the right direction to learn more skills that fit with your ultimate chosen build.  There are currently 16 known backgrounds, and information has only been shown for a few of them at this time, but we’ve gone ahead and provided a list of everything we know so far:

Background Skills
Beast Hunter TBD
Bouncer TBD
Bounty Hunter TBD
Chef – “While the unrefined masses scarfed down Chunks by the shipload, you catered to those with a more… discerning palate. In your kitchen, countless alien species became true culinary masterpieces.”
  • Gastronomy – Food and Drink crafting, and can research new recipes at a Research Lab.
  • Dueling – Melee Weapons do +10% damage.
  • Wellness – Burst Healing, 30 points of Health restored.
Combat Medic – “Leave it to human beings to fight over something as infinite as outer space. That’s where you come in. You’ve never been afraid to take on the enemy… but you’d much rather take care of your friends.”
  • Pistol Certification – Pistols do +10% damage.
  • Medicine – Med packs provide +10% Healing.
  • Weight Lifting – +10KG for Carrying Capacity.
Cyber Runner – “From Neon to New Atlantis, the megacorps stand as monuments to power, prestige, and profit. You’ve worked both for and against them, on the inside and out, often sacrificing conscience for credits.”
  • Pistol Certification – Pistols do +10% damage.
  • Security – You can hack Advanced Locks, with 2 auto attempts available.
  • Persuasion – Greater chance of success in Speech Challenges.
Cyberneticist – “Robots? Mere toys. Neuroamps? Good for parlor tricks. The Colony War may have made implants and upgrades available to veterans, but you once saw a greater future. Humans and machines, as one.”
  • Medicine – Med packs provide +10% Healing.
  • Robotics – You deal +10% damage to Robots and Turrets.
  • Lasers – Laser weapons do +10% damage.
Diplomat – “The wars are over. Peace now reigns the Settled Systems. But only because there are those quietly fighting to keep it. Because of you, agreements were signed, words were heeded… lives were spared.”
  • Persuasion – Greater chance of success in Speech Challenges.
  • Diplomacy – Target and NPC at or below your level, and force them to stop fighting temporarily.
  • Bargaining – Buy items for 5% less, sell for 10% more.
Explorer TBD
Gangster TBD
Homesteader TBD
Industrialist TBD
Long Hauler TBD
Pilgrim TBD
Professor TBD
Ronin TBD


You may notice some overlap of skills, as they are presets but in general these are starter builds geared toward your preferred type of roles, such as crafting, combat, being a shrewd merchant, or a charismatic leader of the people.  It appears to take cues from the Fallout series, but there’s still much we have yet to learn about the character creation in Starfield so far.  The backgrounds option of Starfield essentially puts a bit of flavor into the origins of your character and an explanation for why they know what they know, and it’s up to the player to determine what else the Spacefarer learns from there.

This concludes our guide on All Starfield Backgrounds: Starting Skills and Traits!  Be sure to keep an eye out for updates on this massive game, and keep your eyes peeled for the incredible secrets across a whopping 1000 explorable planets.

Starfield releases in 2023 as an Xbox Console exclusive, as well as on PC.  The game will also feature as a day one release on Xbox Game Pass, so this will be an accessible, must-play title.

Trending on AOTF