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Starfield ‘Mantis’ puzzle solution, ‘Secret Outpost’ lair quest walkthrough

Solve the floor puzzle for a free ship and spacesuit

A Starfield player in the Mantis spacesuit stands in front of the Razorleaf ship Image: Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda Softworks via Polygon
Jeffrey Parkin (he/him) has been writing video game guides for Polygon for almost seven years. He has learned to love just about every genre of game that exists.

Starfield’s “Mantis” quest is something you might stumble upon as part of the Back to Vecteramission, with a note referring to Spacers finding a secret outpost somewhere.

That secret outpost happens to be the lair of a mysterious space-vigilante, and if you fight your way through her secret base, you’ll be able to claim some great gear and the impressive Mantis ship, the Razorleaf.

The system the note points you to is a pretty high level — Denebola is level 30 — but the enemies you’ll face are relatively low. If you’re careful (and remember to quicksave often), you should be able to take it on pretty soon after you pick up the mission — around level 10 or so.

Our Starfield Mantis’ Secret Outpost guide will walk you through every step of the ‘Mantis’ mission, from finding the first clue to solving the Mantis floor puzzle and then claiming the Mantis’ gear.

Where to find the ‘Secret Outpost!’ note

The first step in the “Mantis” mission is to find a clue about the secret outpost’s location — a note conveniently titled “Secret Outpost!” We found it during the “Back to Vectera” mission while on the planet where Heller and Barrett crashed (the specific planet varies between playthroughs).

A Starfield player collects the Secret Outpost! note slate from a Spacer corpse Image: Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda Softworks via Polygon

One of the first pirates you encounter will be carrying the “Secret Outpost!” slate. When you loot it, you’ll get the “Mantis” mission and an objective to read the Secret Outpost slate.

Read the ‘Secret Outpost!’ slate

Open your inventory and scroll down to Notes. Find the “Secret Outpost! slate you just picked up and click on it.

That will add the next objective to the “Mantis” mission — Go to Denebola I-b. (We’re pretty sure this is a set location and won’t vary, but just follow the mission markers on your Starmap.)

Go to Denebola I-b

When you arrive at Denebola I-b, you’ll find the Secret Outpost landing target near the south pole of the planet. Head there.

When you arrive, there will be a handful of Spacers outside. Ours ranged from level 6 up to one at level 30.

Once you’re past them, head inside.

Explore the Lair of the Mantis, Learn more about the Lair of the Mantis (Optional), and Talk to Livvey (Optional)

Inside the secret outpost, you’ll have to deal with a bunch of Spacers. Scattered throughout, you’ll also find a handful of locked safes with some nice loot inside.

Your goal here is just to shoot (and loot) all of the Spacers. While you do, keep an eye out for any intercoms on the wall — usually near doors. These are automated messages from Doriane Voclain, the vigilante known as the Mantis who is trying to pass the mantle onto her son. Listening to them is part of the learn more about the Lair of the Mantis optional objective.

Starfield player looting the Leon Voclain - Sic Semper Tyrannis note slate from a (different) Spacer corpse Image: Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda Softworks via Polygon

A couple of the Spacers will be carrying note slates — specifically “Leon Voclain - Mantis Revealed” and “Leon Voclain - Sic Semper Tyrannis.” These are audio notes from the Mantis’ son and are also part of the learn more about the Lair of the Mantis optional objective.

A Starfield player speaks with the Spacer named Livvey who is giving hints about an upcoming puzzle. Image: Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda Softworks via Polygon

A bit deeper into the outpost, you’ll run into a Spacer named Livvey. He’ll give you some clues about the next step of the outpost. You can cut him in on the take if you want or kill him. (Attempting to send him on his way will make him attack you.)

Starfield Mantis floor puzzle code

When you reach the corridor Livvey told you about, you’ll see a hall with lettered panels on the floor. There are eight rows with seven letters in each row. Stepping on a wrong letter in any row will trigger a set of four level 46 automated turrets to fire on you.

The solution is in one of the notes from Leon you picked up, “Leon Voclain - Sic Semper Tyrannis.” If you listen to it, you’ll hear Leon complaining about his mom — specifically her repetition of the Latin phrase. And that’s your clue - meaning the Mantis floor puzzle code is TYRANNIS.

From here, very carefully pick your way across the floor tiles to spell out TYRANNIS, as shown in the image below. Just be careful because the tiles are very sensitive — we had to stare at our feet to make sure we didn’t miss.

Starfield Mantis’ Secret Outpost floor puzzle with the solution and route through marked.
How to solve the Mantis floor puzzle code.
Image: Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda Softworks via Polygon

Explore the Lair of the Mantis, Claim the Mantis’ spacesuit, and Claim the Mantis’ starship

After the trapped corridor, you’ll run into a bunch of level 20 robots and turrets. Keep listening to any automated messages you spot to complete the optional learn more about the Lair of the Mantis objective.

When you reach the Mantis’ lair, head through the door on the left side to enter the Batcave section beyond. There, you’ll get two new objectives — claim the Mantis’ spacesuit and claim the Mantis’ starship.

A Starfield player collects the Mantis’ spacesuit from a mannequin in the Secret Outpost Image: Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda Softworks via Polygon

The Mantis’ spacesuit is in a storage room in the near left corner of the cave. You’ll have to open the display case and interact with the mannequin to claim it. (Make sure to poke around for a lot of other loot in the rooms nearby.)

On the far side of the cave, you’ll find a panel for the starship lift controls. Interact with it to raise the Mantis’ ship up to the surface — you’ll have to go get it from there. Head all the way back topside, and follow the mission marker to the Razorleaf. Sit down in the pilot’s seat and set a course for a new grav jump. This will make the Razorleaf your home ship. As much of your cargo and crew as possible will transfer over.

You can change your home ship in any spaceport from the Ship menu (bottom left of the pause menu) or by talking to a spaceport technician and asking to view and modify my ships.

Starfield Mantis rewards, including the Mantis ship

The rewards for the mission are the Mantis’ spacesuit and the Mantis’ starship that you just claimed. They are extremely good rewards for a relatively simple mission, though.

Starfield’s Razorleaf Mantis’ spaceship appears with its stats displayed on the left. Image: Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda Softworks via Polygon

The Razorleaf starship is well-equipped and well-armed. It’s better than the Frontier (your default ship from way back in the One Small Stepmission) in every stat except ballistic weaponry.

A Starfield player appears equipped with the Mantis’ spacesuit, helmet, and pack. Image: Bethesda Game Studios/Bethesda Softworks via Polygon

The Mantis’ spacesuit is also much better than most other gear you’ll find in the early (or even mid-) game. It’s also pretty heavy, but the trade off is worth it. Each piece of the spacesuit has beefy damage protection, and has some extra situational damage reductions, too. But the real draw is the other traits:

  • The Incendiary Mantis spacesuit comes with both the resource hauler (resources weigh 25% less to aid carry capacity) and the incendiary (10% chance to ignite nearby attackers) traits.
  • The Assisted Carry Mantis pack includes a boostpack and has the assisted carry (drain 75% less O2 when running while encumbered) trait.
  • The Incendiary Mantis space helmet adds +2 max auto-attempts to your bank when lock-picking and also has the same incendiary trait as the spacesuit.