Should You Kill or Spare Shaw During The Empty Nest?

Anastasios Antoniadis

Find out whether attacking, persuading, or bribing Shaw is the best option.

Shaw The Empty Nest Starfield

During The Empty Nest mission in Starfield, you must enter the Empty Nest, a cave containing another artifact. However, as you discover while in Akila City, the cave is in Shaw Gang’s territory.

Sarah Morgan tasks you with this mission after you’ve wrapped up The Old Neighborhood. She wants you to link up with Sam Coe for an expedition to recover an Artifact. Following Solomon’s maps, you go to a cave in Shaw’s territory on Akila, close to Akila City. Upon exiting the cave, Artifact in tow, you meet Shaw not-so-friendly face with qualms about your latest looting adventure. It’s unclear whether this Shaw is the leader of a local camp or the leader of the whole Shaw Gang.

Regardless, you will have three options here to clear the “Deal with Shaw” objective:

  • Attack Shaw
  • Bribe Shaw with 4,000 Credits
  • Persuade Shaw

Attacking Shaw

If your finger’s itching on the trigger, pull it. Attacking Shaw has its advantages. Let’s not forget that the Shaw Outlaws are already a menace to the city, so your moral compass shouldn’t waver too much here.

Pros of Attacking:

  • More loot to collect without repercussion.
  • Neutralizing a notorious gang that’s terrorizing the city kept civilians as hostages during the Job Gone Wrong mission.

Cons of Attacking:

  • You won’t have Shaw’s help against the upcoming battle with two Ashta (this may be a problem in higher difficulties).
  • It’s unclear whether these are the last remaining Shaw Gang here, so I’m not sure we are truly neutralizing the gang here. But then again, should they go unpunished?

Yes, an ensuing battle can get dicey, especially with Ashta beasts joining the fray soon after. But the fight isn’t a dealbreaker if you’re confident in your combat skills.

Bribing Shaw

Let’s talk about why greasing Shaw’s palms might not be the best use of your hard-earned credits. Sure, it’s the path of least resistanceyou don’t need to excel in dialogue checks or combat. However, it’s a costly affair that doesn’t change Shaw’s demeanor. You’re lighter by 4,000 credits, and for what? A momentary ceasefire that leaves you feeling swindled. Bribing Shaw is not recommended.

Persuade Shaw

So, you fancy yourself a silver-tongued spacefarer? Persuading Shaw is your final option. If you max out the six persuasion bars, its not the worst choice. The outlaws will even gift you a Modified Razorback shotgun after the battle with the Ashta. While I chose this option in my playthrough, I think attacking is the one that makes more sense.

AttackMore loot, neutralize a menaceChallenging fight on higher difficulties
BribeIt is the easiest path; no dialogue or combat is requiredLose 4,000 credits
PersuadeReceive a Razorback weapon, maintain neutral tiesNeed high persuasion skill

Verdict: Attacking Shaw is highly recommended as you gain more loot and you don’t have anything to lose.

After the smoke clears and you’ve dealt with Shaw and her outlaws, you should sell off the accumulated loot and upgrade your arsenal. Whether you let your weapons do the talking or leverage your charisma, navigating the tension with Shaw adds another layer of complexity to Starfield’s intricate world. Now, forge aheadyou have galaxies to explore and make decisions.

Anastasios Antoniadis
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