Initial Level: Starting Lockpick skill is equal to 20% + (1% x the average of your Perception and Agility). Average characters will have a 25% skill. The first time a lock is picked there is a chance it will jam.
In Fallout 3, your Lockpick skill determines which locks the game will allow you to attempt to pick. Your skill must be at least the lock rating to try, and locks are rated at 25% increments: 25%, 50%, 75% and 100%. Thus, there is little reason to invest more points in this skill beyond the level of lock you want to have access to. If you have the prerequisite skill, picking a lock takes the form of a mini game. See Lock for details.
In the PS3 and 360 versions, there is a slight bug where all Very Easy locks are always opened when the bobby pin points up, unlike in the PC where it can be up, left, or right.
It is unknown whether there are any additional dialogue options granted by the lockpick skill.
Lockpicks were released with the addition of hard mode. In hard mode all chests are Locked Chests and require lockpicks instead of keys. Lockpicks have a base 10% chance of surviving the opening of a Locked Chest. This percentage increases based on the character's ranks in the Lucky and Treasure Hunter titles.
Using a lockpick to open a high-end chest adds 1 point toward the Treasure Hunter title. If you successfully retain a lockpick after use, you gain 250 points towards the Lucky title. If it breaks, you gain 2.5 points towards the Unlucky title for each percent chance to retain. For example: if your chance to retain is 73%, you gain 182 unlucky points since 73×2.5=182.
Lockpicks also work on all normal mode chests. If you try to open a normal mode chest with both the proper key and a lockpick in your inventory, the game will ask you which item is to be used. Each normal mode chest provides an inherent bonus to the probability of retaining the lockpick. The bonus is related to the value of the corresponding key so that chests with cheaper keys have a higher bonus. While opening cheapest chests with lockpicks doesn't provide valuable drops or points to Treasure Hunting, it is a relatively efficient method of advancing one's rank in the Lucky title.
When a normal mode chest is opened with a lockpick, the total chance of retaining the lockpick is a combination of the base chance, as given in the table for Locked Chests, and an inherent bonus specific to the type of chest. This bonus is directly related to the value of the corresponding key, and given in the third column of the table below. The economic efficiency of using lockpicks in normal mode depends on the value of the respective key relative to the value of the lockpick, and the number of uses one gets from the lockpick. The second column of the table shows what the total retention chance must be in order for the use of lockpicks to be economically viable as a replacement for the use of keys. The fourth column indicates the base chance required to reach this break even point. Having a higher chance of retaining the lockpick than indicated in the table means you should use a lockpick. Having a lower chance means you should use a regular key.
|Key price||Retention chance needed
to break even
chance bonus 1
|Bonus needed from titles
and base chance 2
1 This is the bonus given to your chance of retaining the lockpick when using on a particular tier of normal mode chests.
2 There is an approximately 10% decrease in this retention break even point if one is going for Lucky/Unlucky titles. See lockpick lucky contribution note below.
This table shows the theoretical number of lockpicks needed to gain levels in the Treasure Hunter and Lucky/Unlucky title tracks, assuming you are starting from 0 in all titles and all lockpicks are used on high-end chests in normal mode, i.e. having a base retention rate of 40% (30% for the chest + 10% for being level 20). Each row shows the cumulative totals at the point that a level is gained in either the Treasure Hunter or Lucky title, the bold number indicating which title increased. (Unlucky is not noted similarly, as it does not affect the retention rate.)
Since this is a theoretical analysis of title progression, the table does not take into account such things as income from selling the items you get out of chests or buying lockpicks at a discounted price.
The Unlucky title will be maxed first, then Treasure Hunter, and finally Lucky. If all Lockpicks are purchased from merchants for 1.5 each, the cost to max Treasure Hunter is approximately 5638 , and the cost to max Lucky is approximately 7942 .
If one would like to gain unlucky points while breaking a minimal amount of lockpicks, then opening chests with a high retention rate is the way to go about it.
But what if one doesn't care about the amount of lockpicks broken and instead only cares about gaining unlucky points as fast as possible, that is, opening a minimal amount of chests.
As the retention rate increases, the (average) amount of unlucky points per chest increases, but the chance of breaking the lockpick decreases. It turns out that opening chests with a 50% retention rate will maximize the (average) amount of unlucky points per chest.
The calculation can be performed as follows: denote the retention rate by n. The average amount of unlucky points per chest is the chance to break the lockpick 1-n/100 times the unlucky points gained (2.5n). This is 2.5n - n^2/40 which is maximized at n=50, yielding 62.5 unlucky points per chest.
|Release date||Unknown edit|
|High Alchemy||12 coins|
|Low Alchemy||8 coins|
|Store price||20 coins
|Exchange price||220 coins update|
|GE Database||Look up price|
|Examine||For picking tough locks.|
Click to enlarge
Players can obtain a lockpick by picking rogues' pockets (with level 32 Thieving), by picking bandits' pockets (with level 53 Thieving), or by buying it from another player. They can also buy one from Martin Thwait in the Rogue's Den, but they must have at least 50 Thieving and 50 Agility to do so. They can also be obtained by looting a Young impling jar.. There is a spawn near the end of Yanille Agility Dungeon in the small room containing the pile of rubble that has to be climbed before fighting Salarin the Twisted. To access this room, a player will require either 57 Agility to cross the monkey bars or 82 Thieving and already be in possession of a lockpick to open the door in the basement of the house beside Yanille bank.
The Lockpick may also break when used (only in some cases), so it is advised to bring a number of lockpicks when picking on locks in which can break the lockpick.