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Starfield save Patel or Rafael - all outcomes

Find out the best choice in the Entangled mission to know whether to save Director Patel or Rafael in Starfield, and even how to save both universes.

Starfield save Patel or Rafael: Both Patel (left) and Rafael (right) looking towards the camera, set against a blurred background of space.

Should you save Director Patel or Rafael in Starfield? The Starfield Entangled mission is one of the most interesting quests in the main story, especially as it gives you a difficult decision to make. Akin to the ‘trolley problem’, you’ll have to decide to save one person or a group, with different rewards in return. To help you out, here are all the outcomes for the Starfield save Patel or Rafael choice in the Entangled mission.

Entangled is a highlight of the main Starfield missions, with an intriguing dilemma at its heart. Sure, there’s not as much personal investment as the Starfield defend the Lodge or go to the Eye choice, where the fate of some Starfield companions rests in your hands, but it’s a hard choice nonetheless. And that’s before even considering the various rewards that are on the line. Picking between Director Patel and Rafael during Entangled was one of the hardest decisions we made during our Starfield review playthrough.

Starfield save Patel or Rafael

In Starfield’s Entangled mission, saving either Director Patel or Rafael will change which universe survives at the end of the quest, ending the other universe and killing the characters within. However, there is a secret solution to save both Patel and Rafael. This choice will also affect the rewards you receive.

While the impacts of this quest aren’t far-reaching, with no knock on effect for later missions, it’s a hard choice nonetheless. The Entangled quest focuses on two diverging realities – one in which the Nishina base and its inhabitants (barring Rafael) are safe, and the other in which only Rafael is alive. However, you have to choose only one reality to survive – unless you complete the secret method to save both Patel and Rafael, which we’ll go over.

To make this decision and choose the universe you’d like to save, simply interact with the Emergency Shutdown Control computer next to the probe inside the reality you’d like to save. This will end the opposite universe. You can use the distortions to switch between the two universes.

For example, to save Patel and the normal universe, interact with the Emergency Shutdown Computer here.

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Starfield Entangled choices

The Starfield Entangled choices are:

  • Save Director Patel and the Nishina outpost
  • Save Rafael
  • Save both Patel and Rafael (secret)

There are actually three outcomes to the Entangled choice, though the final one is a secret ending requiring some extra leg-work to complete. Given the decision to save Patel or Rafael is contained to this quest, you can make your decision based purely on the rewards if you’re not bothered about roleplaying.

So, let’s go over whether you should save Patel or Rafael in Starfield, with the rewards for all outcomes to the Entangled quest. Remember to save your game before making a choice so that you can reload the save to change your mind if needs be. Otherwise, you can always make a different choice during Starfield New Game Plus.

Starfield save Patel or Rafael: Patel talking to the player.

What happens if you save Director Patel?

If you save Patel during the Entangled mission in Starfield, her reality will continue, with herself and the Nishina outpost’s inhabitants alive and well. However, Rafael’s reality is seemingly brought to an end, effectively killing him or leaving him trapped in a ruined and overrun facility.

Saving Patel will reward you with:

  • Experimental Nishina Helmet
  • Experimental Nishina Spacesuit
  • Credits

In terms of rewards, saving Patel’s reality is arguably the better option thanks to the legendary Experimental Nishina Starfield armor you’ll get for choosing this option. You’ll also get a nice chunk of credits for completing this quest, which can be good for upgrading the best Starfield ships or the best Starfield weapons.

Starfield save Patel or Rafael: Rafael talking to the player.

What happens if you save Rafael?

If you save Rafael during the Entangled mission in Starfield, his reality will continue, dooming Patel and the remaining Nishina outpost inhabitants. That’s right, everyone that had survived in Patel’s reality will die, sacrificing them to save Rafael.

Saving Rafael will reward you with:

  • Indicite Wafer
  • Comm Relay x2
  • Vytinium x4
  • Tasine x5
  • Credits
  • Rafael can be hired as a crew member

While saving Patel might reward you with some great gear, saving Rafael will give you a handful of valuable resources. However, perhaps the most exciting part is that Rafael can later be hired as a Starfield crew member once he’s returned to New Atlantis. You’ll be able to find him hanging out with other potential crew members in The Viewport.

Rafael’s skills are:

  • Outpost Engineering 1
  • Starship Engineering 2
  • Outpost Management 1

This makes Rafael quite a strong crew member overall, whether you assign him to be on your ship or at one of your Starfield outposts. He can make even the best Starfield outpost locations better thanks to his skills, making choosing Rafael’s reality a tempting one if you’re deep into base building.

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How to save everyone in Starfield Entangled

To save both Patel and Rafael in Starfield’s Entangled mission, you must first take the Probe Calibration Protocol from Rafael’s body in the universe where he died. This will list the steps you need to take to save everyone in both realities:

  • On the Lab Control Computer, initiate Degaussing
  • Toggle the indicated Power Interlocks off, then back on, to degauss
  • Initiate Frequency Calibration
  • Select the 40 GHz and 24 GHz output frequency in the normal and destroyed realities respectively
  • Activate the Primary Calibration Control on the front control console

So, once you’ve obtained the Probe Calibration Protocol from Rafael’s body, head up the stairs behind his corpse. Here, interact with the computer near the glass, select the lab controls, degaussing, and then initiate degaussing. Take note of the Power Interlocks that need degaussing.

Then head back into the main room and interact with the relevant Power Interlocks. These are marked with objective markers, though you’ll only want to interact with the ones specifically listed on the computer. The numbers of each switch can be found when looking at the switch and reading the interact prompt. Repeat this degaussing process in both realities, remembering to turn each one off and on, and then return to the Lab Control Computer.

Now, select Frequency Calibration and initiate the calibration. In the normal reality, set the output frequency to 40 GHz. In the destroyed reality, tune it to 24 GHz.

Then, head towards the massive laser at the center of the main room to find the Primary Calibration Control. Activate this in both realities to wait for the experiment to resolve itself, with both Patel and Rafael being alive and well in the normal reality.

Saving everyone will reward you with:

  • Experimental Nishina Helmet
  • Experimental Nishina Spacesuit
  • Credits
  • Rafael can later be hired as a crew member

Should you save Patel or Rafael in Starfield Entangled?

When it comes to the best choice, you should choose to save both Patel and Rafael in the Starfield Entangled mission, as this will save everyone and give you the best rewards.

While you won’t receive the handful of resources you would get if you only saved Rafael, you will instead get the Experimental Nishina armor as well as being able to hire Rafael as a crew member once he’s had time to rest in New Atlantis. This is the best of both worlds, as well as being the best option for the character’s involved, with no one having to die.

However, if you were just to save one of the characters, this would largely come down to how invested you are in the ships and outpost system. If you’re not looking to hire strong crew members, then getting the armor from saving Director Patel is a good bet. However, saving Rafael and hiring him as crew will serve you better in the long run if you’re invested in these gameplay systems.

So, that’s the answer to whether you should save Rafael or Patel in Starfield’s Entangled mission. If you’re looking for more quests with interesting decisions to make, why not check out the Starfield factions? And if you’re looking to improve your character, you’ll need the best Starfield builds at the ready.

Still looking for more? While a good Starfield wiki can be a handy source of information, our new Starfield Database goes further, offering you daily news, searchable databanks, and even interactive tools.