How to carry more in Starfield and increase encumbrance

How to carry more in Starfield and increase encumbrance

Starfield carry and increase encumbrance

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Starfield encumbrance limits how many resources and items you can lug around, so you need to up your carrying capacity to hold more. With so many weapons, spacesuits, raw materials, and other gear to fit in your inventory, you’ll find you’ll quickly fill up your limited backpack inventory space. That means the Weight Lifting skill is one of the most useful skills to have.

Fortunately, the maximum amount you can carry in Starfield can be increased in a number of ways. The more you enhance this ability, the more weight you can hold before you have to worry about becoming overencumbered and losing O2 drain as you run along. To help you avoid that, let me explain how to carry more in Starfield and outline methods to deal with being overencumbered.

How increase Starfield overencumbrance and carry weight

increase Starfield inventory and stop being overencumbered

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Starfield encumbrance and inventory carry weight can be increased in the following ways:

  1. Leveling up the Weight Lifting Skill
  2. Finding stat buffing Magazines
  3. Giving companion excess items to hold
  4. Applying the Pocketed or Carry Capacity Mods to a spacesuit or packs
  5. Consuming certain chems and food
  6. Acquiring the High School Backpack via the “Kid Stuff” Trait
  7. Storing excess inventory in your ship’s cargo

I’ll cover all of these option in more detail below but anything and everything you can do to max out your inventory capacity is a good idea. With a good range of options here to pick between you can either find something that suits your playstyle easily without compromising too much. Or layer on more than one approach to get increased benefits with as little effort as possible.  

How to increase carry capacity with the Weight Lifting skill

Starfield Weight Lifting skill

(Image credit: Bethesda)

The simplest method to stop encumbrance in Starfield involves Weight Lifting from Starfield skills. It’s in the first tier of the Physical Skill tree and levelling it up increases the maximum weight you can carry, as well as other benefits further in. To rank up the challenge just involves sprinting a certain distance with your encumbrance at 75% or higher – which is a pretty easy challenge to farm just generally playing.

Find stat-increasing Magazines

Starfield Find stat-increasing Magazines

(Image credit: Bethesda)

There are a range of magazines you can find that increase your maximum carry capacity by 5kg, a permanent buff that makes them well worth finding. These are what we’ve found so far:

  • Freestar Captain’s Log 02: Inside a locker in the crew quarters of the Deserted Mineral Plant on the moon Zamk, orbiting planet Oliva, in Alpha Centauri.
  • Peak Performance 02: Found inside the Deserted UC Listening Post on the moon Piazzi VI-B, orbiting Piazzi VI, unsurprisingly found in the Piazzi system.
  • Peak Performance 05: found inside the gym area of the Crimson Fleet’s Key base.

Obviously there are more to find, and while you’ll see a few as you play story missions, there are also ones to be found in random enemy bases and facilities you can discover.

Give inventory to companions

Starfield romances

(Image credit: Bethesda)

If you’ve got any Starfield companions with you, talking to them will bring up the dialogue option to transfer items from your inventory to theirs. So, if you have too much to carry, use them act as a pack mule to hold your excess gear.

Put Pocketed or Extra Capacity Mods on a spacesuit or pack

Starfield Pocketed or Extra Capacity Mod

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Like in Fallout 4 and 76, the player can mod spacesuits and packs at workbenches. If you have either the “Pack Mods 2” or “Spacesuit Mods 2” research projects completed (read our Starfield crafting and research guide for more on that) players can modify their spacesuit and pack to offer a +10 Carry Capacity when equipped.

Use Chems and Food to increase carry capacity in Starfield

Starfield carry capacity boosting chems and food

(Image credit: Bethesda)

A quick fix for over encumbrance in Starfield is using food and treatments to give yourself a temporary carry capacity boost from consumables like this: 

  • Bourbon (food) +8 Carry Capacity for 5m/-25% O2 recovery for 5m
  • Alien Liquour (food) +10 Carry Capacity for 5m/-25% O2 recovery for 5m
  • UC Battlemeal (food) Restores 15 health/+6 Carry Capacity for 5m
  • UC Battlemeal Multipack (food) Restores 20 health/+8 Carry Capacity for 5m

However, the weight boost you really want is a drug you can get from completing a mission called Delivering Devils:

  • Pick-Me-Up (treatment) +50 Carry capacity for 15m

To get this you’ll need to Join the UC Vanguard on Jemison and start the mission Grunt Work to deliver a communications relay. That will develop into a longer mission called Delivering Devils which will see you looking for someone called Percival Walker on Mars, and give you three options to clear his debt. As you follow your objectives, look out for someone called Cambridge Cooper in the Sixth Circle bar who’ll offer up some research as a way to pay Walker’s debt. Take that option and you’ll eventually walk away with the Pick-Me-Up formula.

Use the High School Backpack

Starfield High School Backpack

(Image credit: Bethesda)

If you took Kid Stuff from the list of Starfield traits during character creation, you’ll be able to visit your Starfield parents in the Pioneer Tower in New Atlantis – this is  marked as an activity once you’ve visited the Lodge for the first time. In your bedroom you’ll be able to find the High School Backpack, a special pack that increases your carry capacity by +10. It is a proper pack however, and not one with a boost ability – so no jetpacking about if you want to use it

Store inventory in your ship cargo

Starfield encumbrance ship inventory

(Image credit: Bethesda)

It probably goes without saying, but when you’re weighed down the best thing you can do is store whatever you don’t need in your Starfield ship inventory, usually accessible through the terminal in the cockpit. There is a limit to what this can hold, but if can be increased by adding more cargo containers to your ship during Starfield ship customization.

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Joel Franey is a writer, journalist, podcaster and raconteur with a Masters from Sussex University, none of which has actually equipped him for anything in real life. As a result he chooses to spend most of his time playing video games, reading old books and ingesting chemically-risky levels of caffeine. He is a firm believer that the vast majority of games would be improved by adding a grappling hook, and if they already have one, they should probably add another just to be safe. You can find old work of his at USgamer, Gfinity, Eurogamer and more besides.

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