Best Starfield Build: Stealth

Discover the best Stealth Build in Starfield and how to create a powerful character with recommended skills, background, traits, weapons, and armor.

Starfield Sneaking System and Combat

This build was updated for game version Starfield Update 1.11.33 – May 2024.

Stealth Build Introduction in Starfield

Starfield Best Stealth Build

The Stealth build in Starfield emphasizes undetected attacks and sneak damage bonuses. There are multiple ways to increase your sneak damage and gain massive damage in multiplayer. Using perks like Stealth, Concealment, and Ballasitics makes the Sneak and Stealth build deadly with multiple weapons. You can use range and sneak around striking with a 3.5x multiplier, one-shotting any enemy at a distance. Players familiar with Bethesda games will want to play the stealth build if they enjoy sneaking around in other RPGs.

However, the downside of the stealth build is dependency on weapons and suppressor weapon modifications. Thus, expect to invest some skill points into crafting to ensure you can modify weapons. This build is skill-point-dense and will forgo other skills to do the most damage possible. Therefore, there is an expectation of an increase in outpost engineering and starship building at later levels.

Stealth Build ProsStealth Build Cons
Undetected MovementWeapon Dependent
The Most DamageRequires Suppressor Mod
Far RangeNeeds Many Skill Points

Features and Mechanics for Best Stealth Build in Starfield

The following list presents all the essential Stealth Build Mechanics and Features in Starfield:

  • Damage: Ballistic
  • Range: 100 meters
  • Weapon: Rifle
  • Best Skills: Stealth, Concealment, Sniper Certification
  • Starborn Power: Void Form
  • Background: Cyber Runner
  • Traits: Neon Street Rat
  • Companion: Sam Coe

Stealth and Sneak in Starfield Explained

Starfield Detection bar

The stealth mechanic in Starfield works with a “hidden” bar on the top center of the screen. As you become detected or concealed, the bar moves back and forth. You can also get a sneak damage multiplier while stealth, including using silencers.

The idea behind stealth is to “crouch” outside combat to enable the “HIDDEN” bar at the top of your screen. This will activate the Stealth and Concealment skills and increase your damage. Then your goal is to move undetected without alerting enemies, including melee or ranged damage, while stealthed. For this build, it’s recommended to use a Pistol and Rifle with Suppressor. The suppressor is key to increasing damage and remaining undetected. You can craft that through the Weapon Engineering skill via the Science skill tree.


Starfield Cyber Runner Background

Cyber Runner is the best background for a stealth build in Starfield because it gives you Stealth, Security, and Theft skills at level 1. Here’s skills for the Cyber Runner in Starfield:

  • Stealth: Adds a Stealth Meter. You are 25% more difficult to detect when sneaking. Suppressed weapons do an additional 5% sneak attack damage.
  • Security: You can attempt to hack Advanced locks, and 2 auto attempts can be banked.
  • Theft: Unlock the ability to pickpocket targets.

These skills are given to you at level 1, and you progress by using the skill or some other function. With the Stealth skill, you can level by sneaking (crouching) and making stealth attacks similar to Skyrim with a bow. Security: look for Digipick locks and complete that mechanic. For theft, you will need to sneak and then try to pickpock targets. When in doubt, read the skill on how to level it, which is quite easy.


Starfield Neon Street Rat Trait

The best trait for a stealth build in Starfield is the Neon Street Rat because it unlocks better rewards for Neon and fits the profile of a stealth player with a Cyber Runner background. Another option is Wanted, which will boost your damage the lower your health goes, but mercenaries show up. Terra Firma can help if you plan on playing on planets primarily. There are no traits that amplify or improve stealth, and mostly, they are used for additional fun factors or story elements to add immersion.

Traits are optional customization options in Character Creation. Players can select up to three attributes from a comprehensive list of traits to further shape their protagonists. The May 2024 update allows players to change their traits on a New Game + (Unity). Thus, you can change them both in the game and in a new game, which keeps your progress but starts the universe over.


Best Skill for Stealth build in Starfield

The best skill for a stealth build in Starfield is Concealment. This increases your stealth multiplier damage up to 4x, with the base being 2x. You pair that with Sniper Certification from the Combat skill tree to further increase scoped weapon damage. You will need to spread your skill points in Physical to reach Concealmement and Combat to reach Sniper Certification. Lastly, you will need a decent investment in science to modify weapons, which is very important because you need to use Suppersor to increase damage with stealth skills.

Here is the list of the best and recommended skills for the Stealth Build in Starfield:

  • Concealment – increase stealth and sneak multiplier, giving you the most damage possible.
  • Sniper Certification – increases damage by 50% with scoped weapons.
  • Stealth – helps avoid detection and increases damage for suppressed (silenced) weapons
  • Weapon Engineering – allows you to craft and modify weapons, specifically suppressors
  • Boost Pack Training – best mobility perk in Starfield.

You should try to rank up skills by completing their requirements. For example, Boost Pack Training hits Boost Pack constantly in combat to level it up very quickly. Leave one enemy alive, continually boost the pack as you have fuel, and you can complete the progression in one encounter.

Level Progression

We recommend a Cyber Runner background for this build, which unlocks Stealth, Security, and Theft. Use the character creator and select any optional traits. The most crucial factor is the skill tree progression. If you do not have Ballistics ranked 2 at the suggested level, you can save a skill point or use Pistol Certification. The most critical pieces of the build are moving further down the skill line to reach Concealment and Sniper Certification.

Starfield leveling progression system gives you three skills at level one via your background, then one skill per level without a level cap. You will need several skill points in each tree to move to the next level and pick higher-tier skills. Unlike other Bethesda games, Starfield requires you to use or complete specific objectives with your skills to take a higher rank. For instance, in Boost Pack Training, hit Boost Pack constantly in combat to level it up very quickly. Leave one enemy alive, continually boost the pack as you have fuel, and you can complete the progression in one encounter. This is why we jump from tree to tree, giving you time to level up your skill ranks. Come back or take another skill in the progression if you haven’t reached the level.

Levels 1 – 10

Here’s a list of the best skills to select from levels 1 – 10 with the Stealth Build Guide in Starfield:

  • Level 1 – Stealth, Security, and Theft
  • Level 2 – Boost Pack Training
  • Level 3 – Ballistics
  • Level 4 – Medicine
  • Level 5 – Astrodynamics
  • Level 6 – Fitness
  • Level 7 – Wellness
  • Level 8 – Stealth Rank 2
  • Level 9 – Medicine Rank 2
  • Level 10 – Astrodynamics Rank 2

Levels 11 – 20

Here’s a list of the best skills to select from levels 11 – 20 with the Stealth Build Guide in Starfield:

  • Level 11 – Weapon Engineering
  • Level 12 – Spacesuit Design
  • Level 13 – Ballistics Rank 2
  • Level 14 – Stealth Rank 3
  • Level 15 – Wellness Rank 2
  • Level 16 – Fitness Rank 2
  • Level 17 – Weapon Engineering Rank 2
  • Level 18 – Ballistics Rank 3
  • Level 19 – Boost Pack Training 2
  • Level 20 – Security 2

Levels 21 – 30

Here’s a list of the best skills to select from levels 21 – 30 with the Stealth Build Guide in Starfield:

  • Level 21 – Ballistics Rank 4
  • Level 22 – Rifle Certification
  • Level 23 – Stealth Rank 4
  • Level 24 – Wellness Rank 3
  • Level 25 – Fitness Rank 3
  • Level 26 – Boost Pack Training 3
  • Level 27 – Security 3
  • Level 28 – Spacesuit Design 2
  • Level 29 – Weapon Engineering Rank 3
  • Level 30 – Rifle Certification 2

Levels 31 – 40

Here’s a list of the best skills to select from levels 31 – 40 with the Stealth Build Guide in Starfield:

  • Level 31 – Wellness Rank 4
  • Level 32 – Fitness Rank 4
  • Level 33 – Concealment
  • Level 34 – Boost Pack Training 4
  • Level 35 – Rifle Certification 3
  • Level 36 – Demolitions
  • Level 37 – Sniper Certification
  • Level 38 – Concealment 2
  • Level 39 – Rifle Certification 4
  • Level 40 – Weapon Engineering Rank 4

Levels 41 – 50

Here’s a list of the best skills to select from levels 41 to 50 with the Stealth Build Guide in Starfield:

  • Level 41 – Sniper Certification 2
  • Level 42 – Concealment 3
  • Level 43 – Marksmanship
  • Level 44 – Demolitions 2
  • Level 45 – Marksmanship 2
  • Level 46 – Sniper Certification 3
  • Level 47 – Sniper Certification 4
  • Level 48 – Marksmanship 3
  • Level 49 – Marksmanship 4
  • Level 50 – Concealment 4


Starfield Magsniper Rifle
Magsniper Rifle
Starfield Calibrated Urban Eagle Weapon
Urban Eagle Pistol

The best weapon for Stealth Build is Magsniper because its damage and range, once modified, are second to none. The ammunition for this weapon is readily available, and once you progress weapon engineering, the damage is staggering at range from stealth. An alternative is the Hard Target Rifle, Lawgiver, or the Old Earth Hunting Rifle early in the game. The second option is a close-range weapon, Urban Eagle Pistol. This is helpful when inside buildings or in close-quarters combat. The benefit of this Pistol is you can attach a suppressor and get the stealth damage bonus.

Your priority with our suggestion weapon loadout is adding a Suppressor for stealth damage bonus. Next, modify the barrel, which has low resources and requires research—work towards Magazine and Internal modification, which adds the most damage. Make sure to attach a Scope to Hard Target and leave Urban Eagle without so it can help in tight fights without space.

Weapons can have up to 8 modifications depending on the type. Each mod requires materials or resources and the Weapon Engineering skill from the Science skill tree. You will also have to research mod upgrades via a research station, and it can take some time to unlock the full potential of the gun and weapons. Weapons have four qualities: white, blue, purple, and legendary yellow. If a weapon is blue or greater in rarity, it comes with a perk or a trait. These add additional effects in addition to modifications.

Primary Weapon

The following table lists the best mods for Magsniper Rifle weapons:

Magsniper Weapon SlotMod
BarrelFluted Barrel
LaserRecon Laser Sight
OpticLong Scope
Magazine and BatteryPenetrator Rounds
InternalHigh Powered

Here are the best weapon traits and perks for the Magsniper Rifle weapon in Starfield:

  • Handloading: Volatile rounds are designed to pack a bigger punch but aren’t as stable and can fail occasionally.
  • Hitman: +15% damage while aiming
  • Shattering: Breakthrough even the strongest armor.

Secondary Weapon

The following table lists the best mods for the Urban Eagle Pistol weapon:

Urban Eagle Weapon SlotMod
BarrelLong Barrel
LaserRecon Laser Sight
OpticReflex Sight
Grip & StockTactical Grip
Magazine and BatteryPenetrator Rounds
InternalHigh Powered

Here are the best weapon traits and perks for the Urban Eagle Pistol weapon in Starfield:

  • Corrosive: Randomly deals corrosive damage and reduces the targets’ armor over 6 seconds.
  • Crippling: Deals +30% damage on the next attack after hitting a target’s limbs.
  • Furious: Each consecutive hit deals more damage.


Operative Suit - Starfield

The Operative Suit and Operative Helmet are the best armor and apparel items for the Stealth and Sneak Build. The Operative Suit is an appeal item worn under your space suit and grants a 25% harder-to-become-detected bonus. This is perfect for sneak and stealth gameplay, optimizing your damage for the Cyber Runner.

Additionally, look for spacesuits and mods that grant the Chameleon perk. This rare perk is randomly granted to armor mods, which blend with the environment while sneaking and not moving. It doesn’t matter which armor set you gain, but the Chameleon perk is a powerful and the best armor trait for the Cyber Runner build.

Armors are available in four distinct qualities: white, blue, purple, and the legendary yellow. If an armor piece holds the rarity of blue or higher, it boasts an accompanying perk or trait. These augmentations introduce supplementary effects alongside any modifications. For instance, the “Beast Hunter” perk reduces damage from Alien enemies by 15%. Inspect each blue or greater armor mod and see if the trait and perk align with your build.

Starborn Power

Starfield Void Form Power

The Void Form Starborn Power allows you to Cloak yourself in the void and become invisible for a few seconds. Combined with the Concealment skill, Void Form gives you multiple forms of invisibility and evasion from the enemy.

Starborn Powers are earned through the main story campaign. You will encounter artifacts early on and acquire more of them as you progress. Using Vlad, located in the eye, and the Constellation group, located at the Lodge, to find more. Spend time discovering and exploring Temples to progress this power.


Starfield Sam Coe Companion

The best companion for the Stealth Build is Sam Coe because he plays at range with Rifle Certification along with two Tech skills you lack. Here’s a list of Sam Cole’s skills:

  • Piloting: You can now utilize ship thrusters.
  • Rifle Certification: Rifles do 10% more damage.
  • Payloads: Ship cargo holds have 10% more capacity.
  • Geology: Get more common and uncommon inorganic resources from surface objects.

You can also play solo, but it requires a heavy investment in your social skill tree. In the second skill level, you find isolation, which increases your damage and reduces damage when playing solo. This would be the ultimate goal later in the game, post-level 50, with abundant skill points.

Build Summary – Stealth Best Build for Starfield

Background – Cyber Runner

Traits – Neon Street Rat

Primary Weapon – Magsniper Rifle

Secondary Weapon – Urban Eagle Pistol

Armor – Chameleon Trait

CompanionSam Coe


  • Concealment
  • Sniper Certification
  • Stealth
  • Weapon Engineering
  • Ballistics
  • Pistol Certification
  • Boost Pack Training
  • Rifle Certification
  • Gymnastics
  • Wellness

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