Best Starfield background - Which should you choose?

A ship landing on a sandy planet in Starfield.

A ship landing on a sandy planet in Starfield.
October 31, 2023: We've updated our guide so you know the best background to choose.

There are more than 20 backgrounds to choose from in Starfield when you make your character, and it can be difficult to pick just one. Our guide will help you identify the best Starfield background for your play style, so you'll be able to get a great head-start in the game.

While getting the right background can help a lot at the start of the game, Bethesda has not implemented a level cap in the game, which means that you can eventually get access to every build in the game on the same character. As long as you get enough Skill Points by levelling up, you will be able to try out everything that the game has to offer.

Before we discuss what the best Starfield background options are, consider checking out our guide on how to get XP fast in Starfield. We also have a list of quests that will help you level up quickly and gain access to more builds in the game.

What is the best Starfield Background?

We have included recommendations for your starting Starfield background depending on whether you are going for a thief build, a pilot build, or a combat build. The game doesn't lock you to a specific build, and you'll be able to transition away to a different option anytime you want.

Starfield backgrounds and traits
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Best Starfield background for thief and stealth builds

If you are looking for Backgrounds that give you utility for stealth and thieving builds, here are our recommendations.

Cyber Runner

Description: 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.

Starting skills: Stealth, Security, Theft


Description: 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.

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Starting skills: Medicine, Security, Lasers

Best Starfield background for pilot builds

If you want to build your character for aerial combat, you want to grab the Long Hauler background. You get access to Piloting, Ballistic Weapon Systems, and Weight Lifting, all of which help you a lot when taking on enemies in space.

Long Hauler

Description: Let those other hotheaded pilots obsess over laser weapons and manoeuverability. You're a space trucker, pure and simple. Pack the cargo, get there fast, pay, and repeat. Life is simple and good.

Starting skills: Weight Lifting, Piloting, Ballistic Weapon Systems

Best Starfield background for combat builds

If you want a comfortable experience, a mix of damage skills, and a bit of sustain, the Combat Medic is an exceptional choice. It is also a great pick if you are a beginner at FPS games.

Combat Medic

Description: Leave it to humans 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.

Starting skills: Pistol Certification, Medicine, Wellness

That is all you need to know about the best Starfield background choices! For more content check out our guide on how to fast travel in Starfield and our list of confirmed cities in case you want to explore all of the game world.

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