Starfield Groundpounder Walkthrough and Bug Fixes

Groundpounder has it all in Starfield - find and rescue missions, space combat, gun battles, deals/pacts, and more.

The Groundpounder is a random mission in Starfield that you can get early on. There are two ways in which this quest can start. In the first one, if you visit the Aranea IV-A, you will get a call from a random Freighter who informs you about the distress signal they heard in the Altair System.

This message will be from a Freestar MULE, mentioning the status of Altair crawling with Spacers. You can take up the offer of helping them out, which will automatically update your Mission log, adding Groundpounder under the MISC Tab.

The second way to start this mission is by visiting the Altair System. Once you get there, you will hear a distress call. Doing so will update the mission log with Groundpunder. You cannot respond to the distress call through radio as Private Mahoney cannot take incoming calls. For that, you need to head to the Research Station immediately.

To complete the Groundpounder mission in Starfield, you will need vigilance, patience, and tactics to rescue Private Mahoney and save Altair from the hands of savages.

Land at Research Outpost U3-09 on Altair-II

The first step to this lengthy mission is to locate where the distress call is coming from. You must set your course to Altair-II in the Altair Star System and land on Research Outpost U3-09.

When you exit your ship, the Spacer Punks and Troublemakers will attack you, so get ready to engage in combat. Defeat all the enemies in the area and make your way to the Research Station U3-09. For the next objective, you need to locate Private Mahoney.

How to Find Private Mahoney

Upon arriving, you will find out that the Research Station has been ransacked and is filled with personnel’s bloody bodies lying around.

Enter the Research-01 room on the right of the Research Station, clear out the Spacer Punk enemies, and head to the Security room. Head downstairs from the Server Room leading to the Storage. There will be a Black Door on the right that you need to open to find Private Mahoney inside.

She will explain that as she was communicating Lt. Torres’s orders, the Spacers attacked the Outpost. She then sends you over to find Lezama and help him clear the enemies around the Infirmary.

Find Corporal Lezama

Head straight from the Storage to the Servers and clear out the Spacers surrounding the area. As part of this objective, you must kill all the Spacer Enemies with a quest marker on top.

The door in the back will take you to the stairs leading to the Ground Floor. Fight to the Coms Center, where Corporal Lezama keeps the remaining scientists safe.

Meet Dr. Adamou Moussa, the head of this Research Center, who will explain how Spacers have been harassing them for months.

Lezama will cut your conversation short and hand you a Starfield Groundpounder Key to break Lt Torres out of the complex. He was last seen near Dr. Moussa’s office on the third floor, protecting his troops.

Rescue Lieutenant Torres

Now you have to rescue Toress in Starfield. Take the stairs behind the closed door and head to the Research office.

Take the Spacers out on your way there to make the journey easier. You will find Lieutenant Torres inside, along with Sergeant Dasari, defending their post.

Dasari shares that she has the security override key that can be used to open the doors. This will allow the Marines to reach the other side.

Rescue Captain Myeong

According to Sergeant Dasari’s Intel, you will find the Captain one floor down. After leaving the room, take the stairs to head down. Fight with your team and defeat the Spacers in the office to save Captain Myeong and the Marines.

You will be tasked to take your spaceship to clear out as many Spacers as possible while the team works to get the defenses back online.

Take your ship to the Research Camp

Return to your ship and clear the premises surrounding the Research Camp. Head inside after you’re done to find the survivors, which are Freestar militia and scientists.

The militia will take the civilians to a nearby cave to keep them away from the battle. You must report the good news to Lt. Torres and Captain Myeong. They will be on the landing pad of the Research Outpost, so take the ship for the fastest way back.

Defeat the Spacer Invasion

The next objective of the Starfield Groundpounder quest is defeating the spacer invasion. You can complete this by cutting out their air support and stranding the ground units on Altair II to have a fighting chance.

Captain Myeong will share that the enemy has been reinforcing the ridge, so you must take out their ships in Altair I and V’s Orbit as soon as possible. After you’re done with aerial combat, return to Altair II to take care of ground troops.

Recoup with your team to mourn the losses but also celebrate becoming heroes of Altair II. Despite the friends you made along the way, completing Groundpounder successfully will reward you with 5000 Credits, 300 XP, the Peacekeeper weapon, and ammo.

How to Fix Groundpounder Bugs in Starfield

In the first bug, even after clearing out the enemies, it will not register the mission as completed. The cause of this bug can be killing UC Soldiers or exiting the mission area without completing the quest. To avoid this, ensure you do not hurt the NPCs helping you. Sometimes, using weapons or explosives that do damage in a range can hurt them, so avoid using these.

The most reported Groundpounder Bug is with NPC Lezama, where he does not open the door, or the key card does not function even after defeating surrounding enemies. The possible reason for this bug is you skipped talking to Private Mahoney. Ensure you converse with Private Mahoney before heading to Lezama to avoid facing this bug.

Another bug is that when flying in Altair V’s orbit, the enemy doesn’t appear, or the mission does not progress after the landing. To fix this bug, you can try reloading a previous save. If you don’t have one, there is an alternate solution.

Travel to New Atlantis and get out of the Ship. Here, you will notice the Spacers ship markers. Now, you must enter the ship and board it instead of selecting the cockpit. Enter the cockpit manually and fly the ship back, and you will find the Spacers Ships. If still some ship is missing, you can repeat the same process.

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Ali is a passionate RPG gamer. He believes that western RPGs still have a lot to learn from JRPGs. He is editor-in-chief at but that doesn't stop him from writing about his favorite video ...