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‘Starfield’ Mantis quest: how to get one of the best free ships in the game

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If you’ve just jumped into Starfield, start saving your credits. It’s a big universe out there, but it’s also an expensive one: there are a number of flashy houses, weapons and ships to purchase, but most of them are incredibly costly. That’s why The Mantis is one of the best ships in Starfield – it’s completely free and fairly easy to unlock, if you don’t mind shooting some Spacers. To help you swap The Frontier for a much better vessel, here’s how to complete the Mantis quest and get one of the best free ships in Starfield.

We recommend avoiding splashing out on any ships until you’ve unlocked The Mantis. This vessel is significantly better than many of the cheaper ships you can afford in Starfield‘s opening hours, and serves as a good benchmark for future purchases – though upgrading the Mantis will make it more effective for even longer.

Starfield. Credit: Bethesda Softworks.
Starfield. Credit: Bethesda Softworks.

How to start the Mantis quest


We started the mission by traveling to the Nova Galactic Staryard in the Sol system. Starfield‘s main quest takes you here in The Old Neighbourhood, so you shouldn’t need to go out of your way to find it.

There, one of the station’s dead Spacers will have a note reading “Secret Outpost!” – pick this up and read it to begin the quest. Travel to the moon your quest log directs you to, Denebola IB, and you’ll find an outpost swarming with more Spacers. Once you gain entry, you’ll kick off the Mantis quest properly.

How to solve the Mantis puzzle

While most of this mission is a straightforward case of blasting Spacers, the Mantis puzzle can be tricky. A series of lettered floor tiles, you need to spell out a certain word to pass – make one wrong move, and some incredibly powerful turrets will kill you in an instant.

As you may have worked out from picking up audio logs scattered throughout the base, the answer to the Mantis floor tile puzzle is Tyrannis – part of the Mantis vigilante’s motto, Sic Semper Tyrannis. Walk only on the tiles that spell Tyrannis to cross the room and continue travelling through the secret lair. Eventually you’ll stumble upon a room full of hostile robots. If you spared Livvey, he’ll try and betray you here – but don’t worry, as that problem takes care of itself.

The Mantis Rewards – getting the Razorleaf and Mantis gear

‘Starfield’ Credit: Xbox Game Studios

Once you’ve killed the lair’s Spacers and robots, you’re free to loot the lair of the Mantis, a deceased vigilante who preyed upon criminals and space pirates. Step into the residential area of the base and you’ll find a powerful (if odd-looking) set of gear: the Mantis Spacesuit, Mantis Space Helmet, and Mantis Pack. When you’re ready to leave, head over to the large metal pillar at the other end of the large hall and hit the button to send the Razorleaf to the surface.


The Razorleaf – also known as The Mantis – is one of the strongest early-game ships in Starfield, and is by far the most rewarding part of this quest. An upgrade in nearly every way to The Frontier, The Mantis boasts more hull health, better weapons, a stronger reactor, and shielded cargo that helps with smuggling contraband through security scans. It does have weaker shields though, but that’s easily solved with a trip to the nearest ship technician.

Due to its strength, we highly recommend making The Mantis your top priority to unlock in Starfield – preferably as soon as you’ve found the note that triggers its quest. If you’re still working out how to use your vessels to the fullest, here’s how to store items on your ship and use the cargo hold.

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