Starfield is a game with many systems that look to immerse players into this vast world, or rather, universe. One of the features you’ll encounter first is the planet surveying system in Starfield. This mechanic allows players to scan planets to identify which resources are on the surface. However, there’s more to that system, as many things must be done once you land on a planet. If you want to know how the planet surveying system works in Starfield, this guide should help.
How Does Planet Surveying Work in Starfield?
Starfield gives players the option to scan a planet before landing on it. However, this game has many menus and information that can overwhelm some. For that, we’ll explain how planet surveying works in Starfield.
In the above image, you can see the planet’s survey menu from space. This menu shows many things we’ll explain here.
- Type: The type of planet. Rock is an example of a planet you can land on. Gas Giants can’t be landed on. Always watch for planet type before approaching one.
- Gravity: The planet’s gravity. This one determines your character’s movement while on the surface.
- Temperature: The planet’s temperature. Understanding this is important as the game throws environmental hazards at you. Before landing, equip a space suit to help with the planet’s temperature and weather conditions.
- Atmosphere: Determines the planet’s atmosphere.
- Magnetosphere: The planet’s magnetic field.
- Fauna: Determines how rich the planet’s fauna is.
- Flora: Determines the abundance of plant life on the planet.
- Water: Specifies if the planet has water or not-
- Resources: The most important part of the menu. As you can see above, the icons inside the circle show the resources you can find on the planet’s surface. This is good if you’re looking for a specific resource for crafting recipes.
Before landing, you should always press LB to scan the planet. This will show the planet’s areas that hold a certain resource. If you want iron, move the planet around until you spot a place with iron and land on it. However, there’s another system the game doesn’t tell you about.
In the above image, we have the Akila planet. Here, you can find Akila City, but most importantly, you’ll find many biomes. How do you find biomes, though? Once you scan the planet, look to your right, and wherever your cursor is, it will show you the biome. In this case, we have a Coniferous Forest and a Frozen Plains biome. Both show different percentages, which are tied to the planet surveying system in Starfield.
How to Fully Survey a Planet
As you might have guessed, to survey a planet in Starfield, you need to land on it. Once you’ve picked your landing site, you must explore.
To survey, you must take out your scanner (Press LB or F by default) and approach any Flora, Fauna, and Resource you see. The survey menu will show you how many categories you’ve scanned completely. You must scan a creature or plant at a 100% rate for it to count for the overall survey. To make planet surveying easier in Starfield, we recommend you do the following:
- For animals, shoot and aggro them so they approach you. Scan them when they are close. You can only scan creatures when they are alive.
- For plants, approach them and scan them. This is easy as they don’t attack you.
- For resources, head inside caves to scan some of the planet’s rarest resources.
What if the Scanner Says ‘Biome Complete’?
There might be a situation where the scanner shows ‘Biome Complete‘ in green letters. If so, take off and land on a new biome, as explained above. Your surveying progress carries over, so if you scanned a creature in another biome completely, you don’t need to scan it again in a new biome. You must only scan the resources you’re missing.
And this is our planet surveying guide in Starfield. As you can see, there are many things to do on a planet’s surface, and surveying is fun once you get the hang of it. Plus, it provides a few useful experience points to level up. So, don’t neglect surveying and head to your closest planet to get this activity going.
Starfield is available now on Xbox Series X|S and PC.