starfield ship controls xbox

Mastering Starfield Ship Controls on Xbox: A Comprehensive Understanding for Game Enthusiasts

When it comes to exploring the vast and captivating universe of Starfield, you’ll find yourself spending a significant amount of time navigating through different systems to discover unexplored territories and unique resources. However, mastering the mechanics of your spaceship can be challenging, given the multitude of controls at your disposal. To assist you on your epic journey, we’re here to provide you with a comprehensive guide on all the Starfield ship controls, as well as some tips to enhance your speed and efficiency.

Understanding Starfield Ship Controls

The ship controls in Starfield are similar to those in other space adventure games, but there are a few nuances that set them apart. For instance, you don’t need to continuously hold down the throttle to move forward; the ship will automatically maintain its speed in the set direction. Additionally, the Power Subsystem of your vessel plays a crucial role. As a player, you’ll have the power to redirect these subsystems, enhancing or reducing their effects as per your requirements.

Starfield Ship Controls for Xbox:

  • Steer ship: Right Stick (RS)
  • Adjust throttle: Left Stick (LS) – push forward to accelerate or pull backward to decrease
  • Roll: Left Stick (LS) – move left or right
  • Boost: Press Left Stick (LS)
  • Free Look: Hold the ‘View’ button
  • Toggle Perspective: ‘View’ button
  • Select Power Subsystems: Left or right on the D-pad
  • Increase/Decrease Subsystem Power: Up or down on the D-pad
  • Exit pilot seat: Hold B
  • Undock: Y
  • Take-off to orbit: Hold Y
  • Select target: A
  • Fire Weapon 1: Right Trigger (RT)
  • Fire Weapon 2: Left Trigger (LT)
  • Fire Weapon 3: Y
  • Repair Ship: Right Stick (RS)
  • Scan an environment: Left Bumper (LB)
  • Open Data Menu: ‘Menu’ button

Starfield Ship Controls for PC:

  • Steer ship: WASD
  • Camera controls: Mouse
  • Toggle Perspective: Q
  • Switch Flight Modes: Space Bar
  • Ship Action: R
  • Ship Alternate Control Hold: Left ‘ALT’
  • Boost: Left ‘Shift’
  • Select Power Subsystems: LEFT/RIGHT arrows
  • Increase/Decrease Subsystem Power: UP/Down arrows
  • Select target: E
  • Fire Weapon 1: Left Mouse Button (Button 1)
  • Fire Weapon 2: Right Mouse Button (Button 2)
  • Fire Weapon 3: G
  • Repair Ship: O
  • Scan an environment: F
  • Cancel: ESC

Mastery of the Power Subsystem mechanics is essential, as it allows strategic allocation of power based on the scenario at hand. For instance, when entering battle mode, boosting shields to withstand enemy attacks and diverting power to various weapons can be a game-changer. At times, sacrificing certain features to allocate more power to others becomes necessary, depending on the situation you find yourself in.

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In Starfield, you have the flexibility to dock your ship in various locations, including other ships, whether they are friendly or hostile. If you can’t find the option to dock, simply press the ‘A’ button to select the target, and this will trigger the docking interaction.

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Although you can’t travel directly from planet to planet in open space, you can set your course for a specific destination by focusing your gaze towards it and holding the ‘X’ button. This will ensure that your ship is headed towards your desired mission.

Understanding Ship System Controls in Starfield

The Power Subsystem in Starfield consists of eight sections: LAS, BAL, MSL, ENG, SHD, GRV, PAR, and EM. It might seem overwhelming with all the acronyms, but fear not! We’re here to break it down for you:

  • LAS: Laser
  • BAL: Ballistic
  • MSL: Missile
  • ENG: Engine
  • SHD: Shield
  • GRV: Grav Drive
  • PAR: Particle Beam
  • EM: Electromagnetic

Maximizing the power levels of a subsystem will unlock incredible abilities, such as extended speed duration or increased firepower. However, if you wish to deactivate a specific feature, you must decrease its power level completely.

Unlock the Power of Lasers

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Starfield’s Lasers are your key to victory in combat against enemy ships. With their power, you can efficiently neutralize enemy shields and other crucial components, making it much easier to take down your foes. Your journey begins with the Dragon 221P MW Pulse Laser, a reliable weapon that will continue to serve you well as you advance in the game.

Discover the power of Ballistic Lasers

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Once you’ve successfully brought down your opponent’s shield, it’s time to unleash the power of the Ballistic to drain their Hull meter. While it may not have the same power and range as Missiles, the Ballistic’s rapid fire rate can prove to be extremely valuable, particularly when paired with the appropriate ship parts.


Credits: @KristinaEbanez /

Starfield’s Missile Launcher is an absolute powerhouse, delivering an impressive amount of power and boasting an extended range. Its capability to lock onto enemy vessels ensures that you can unleash its fiery destruction with pinpoint accuracy. The Launcher’s engine is a key component that enables it to propel missiles towards their intended targets with incredible force.

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The Engine is the lifeblood of any ship, responsible for its speed and maneuverability. Without a functioning engine, you’ll find yourself stranded in the vastness of space, unable to move forward. However, savvy players can strategically turn off the engine during stealth missions, allowing for slow and silent movement. Additionally, with the Engine’s powers fully engaged, the ship’s Acceleration can be enhanced, resulting in longer and more powerful boosts.


Credits: @KristinaEbanez /

Engaging in intergalactic combat can be a thrilling yet demanding experience, as you navigate through a barrage of attacks while attempting to command your Subsystems effectively. In order to ensure the safety of your ship and crew, it is crucial to prioritize certain actions, such as raising your shields and utilizing the Repair option, which can significantly increase your chances of survival.

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The Power of the Grav Drive

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For gaming enthusiasts who love the thrill of fast travel, the Gravity Drive in this game takes the experience to a whole new level. By upgrading the Gravity Drive, players can seamlessly jump from one solar system to another, enhancing their overall gaming experience. This feature is essential for traveling between locations, as it allows players to explore different solar systems efficiently. Additionally, players have the option to increase their jump range through upgrades, making it even easier to traverse the vastness of the galaxy.

Unleash the Power of the Particle Beam

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When it comes to space battles, some ships go beyond traditional laser weaponry and opt for a more advanced weapon known as the Particle Beam. Unlike lasers, Particle Beams have the ability to inflict damage on multiple ships simultaneously. With their immense energy, these powerful beams can even penetrate shields, damage ballistics, compromise hulls, and disrupt electromagnetic systems.

Powerful Electromagnetic Systems

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EM Weapon Systems presents a powerful solution for disabling enemy vessels through electromagnetic damage. This feature proves invaluable when you want to incapacitate an opponent’s ship without completely destroying it, allowing you to safely approach and infiltrate their base.

Now that we’ve covered ship controls, let’s explore some techniques to enhance your vessel’s movement:

  • For PC: Hold down the W key. For Xbox: Push the Left Stick forward.
  • Increase the power of your Engine Subsystem.
  • Engage the Acceleration function for a temporary speed boost.
  • Upgrade your Engine for improved performance.
  • Raise the level of the Tech’s Engine Systems skill.

One of the simplest ways to increase your speed in Starfield is to maximize the speed level. Xbox users can achieve this by pushing the Left Stick forward for a few seconds, initiating the vessel’s acceleration. While it may be tempting to continuously hold the stick forward, this is unnecessary as the speed will automatically be maintained until you choose to decelerate.

The Engine Subsystem is your greatest ally in achieving top speed. By allocating power from other vessel features to the Engine, you can reach maximum velocity. This mechanic also extends the duration of the Acceleration function, allowing for swift evasive maneuvers when confronted by hostile ships.

Credits: @KristinaEbanez /

When it comes to traveling faster in your favorite space exploration game, upgrading your Engine is a game-changer. The Ship Services Technician, located on planets like Jemison (in the Mast District near your ship), is your go-to person for this task. They grant you access to the modification system, where you can either opt to ‘Upgrade Ship’ with pre-made parts or customize each piece in the Ship Builder.

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If speed is your priority, you can even consider purchasing a new vessel that is specifically designed to excel in this department. By selecting the new Engine part, you can compare the numbers and see the improvement instantly. Look out for the blue-colored numbers with an arrow pointing up, indicating an increase in performance.

But that’s not all. Upgrading your ship also has an impact on the overall power of the Subsystems. So, not only will you experience a boost in speed, but also enjoy an increase in power in various aspects of your ship.

To further enhance your ship’s speed, don’t forget to level up your Engine Systems skill through the Tech section. This skill improvement will have a direct positive impact on your ship’s performance and speed.

Credits: @KristinaEbanez /

Are you ready to take your skills to the next level? In this exciting game, you can challenge yourself and gradually improve your speed by up to 20 percent. But that’s not all – there are other attributes that can help enhance your ship’s movement, such as Piloting and Starship Design. These attributes will unlock more advanced vessels that not only boost your performance but also improve all other stats.

Now that you have a handle on all the ship controls, it’s time to embark on an epic journey in this game. But before you set course, make sure to check out the links below for more information on Starfield content, including the highly anticipated release date for the DLC.

About the author

Kristina Ebanez

Kristina is a talented Staff Writer who has been passionately covering various gaming topics for Twinfinite for over a year. Her expertise spans across a wide range of games, from Minecraft and The Sims 4 to Disney Dreamlight Valley and Call of Duty. She’s always up-to-date with the latest releases and enjoys sharing her insights with the gaming community. Among her favorite games are the beloved Metal Gear Solid series, particularly Snake Eater, Rockstar’s Bully, the Horizon franchise, and the fascinating journey of What Remains of Edith Finch. If that wasn’t enough, even her dog is a video game enthusiast, especially when there’s a horse or a cat involved. With a Bachelor’s degree in English from the prestigious University of Hawai ʻi at Hilo, Kristina’s passion for gaming developed as she grew up on the beautiful islands.






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