ESO Lockpicking Guide + Simulator

vexx March 14, 2014 40 Comments » Share

eso_chestAdventuring through Tamriel, you’ll find a bunch of locked treasure chests that yield awesome loot. However, to unlock these chests you’ll need at least one lockpick – lockpicks can be bought from certain vendors or it can be found on chests, drawers, wardrobes or boxes. All of these can be found scattered all over the word and again, don’t forget to leave any un-looted.

Lockpicking a locked treasure chest is a fairly simple process and once you get used to it, it will be way more easier to unlock advanced/expert level treasure chests.

How to pick a lock

To unlock a treasure chest you must first unlock each of its 5 pins in a given time period. As the lock level (lock difficutly) gets higher, the available timer decreases and the pins break easier.

  • Position your lockpick over a pin. You don’t have the do it in a given order, you can start and continue with any random pin.
  • Press and hold your left mouse button to push the pin until it starts trembling.
  • Release the mouse immediately and the pin will get locked down.
  • Do this with every pin and the chest will open.
  • If you release too early, the pins will reset. If you release too late, the lockpick will break.

TIP: When lockpicking a chest, turn the sound a little bit higher and you’ll hear when the pin’s about tho jiggle.

As I mentioned at the beginning of the how to, you are given a limited time to complete the unlocking process. Simple lock level chests give you a 25 seconds time frame while the more difficult ones decrease the timer. Also, it’s worth to mention that even if you fail a chest, you can retry it again if you have another lockpick.

And because people are awesome (thanks @twincannon on Reddit), we found a lockpick simulator so you can test and improve your skills. Enjoy!


  1. Elcono April 13, 2014 at 10:25 am

    Thanks for this! I suck at chests. Hopefully I will improve : )

  2. Dan69 April 13, 2014 at 8:30 am

    very nice and HELPFULL post .

  3. Choji April 2, 2014 at 6:01 am

    Heck yea. This definitely helped.

  4. PeriousXanax March 30, 2014 at 6:29 am

    Heh, i like this simulator. though i never had any issue with this in game. Lockpicking is like oblivions where the skill lv doesnt matter as much as the player being good at it, never raised lockpicking much in oblivion but could do pretty much any lock

  5. theBLOODbrother March 29, 2014 at 1:51 pm

    This was fun.

  6. Deniz March 27, 2014 at 5:20 pm

    It's not easy like that. Lockpicking in ESO is very difficult. :D

  7. applc March 24, 2014 at 3:01 pm

    Nothing more gratifying than stealing random items and looting from locked chests. Elder Scrolls is a kleptomaniac's wet dream! Thanks for posting that practice app. Well done.

  8. IonFrost March 23, 2014 at 4:47 pm

    am i the only one who found this easy as hell

  9. clerlise March 23, 2014 at 3:45 pm

    ty for this post

  10. Renan Muratori March 23, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    During beta, lockpicking was my worst ability… i couldnt get 1 out of 10 locks, i think i´ll need some practice in this simulator =D

  11. Kippy March 20, 2014 at 9:08 pm

    Thanks for the simulator, pretty cool!

  12. Bowstripe March 18, 2014 at 9:41 pm

    If you see impossible you need to level up and come back, level effects the difficulty of the chest. That said I was open master chests on the first weekend on my first attempt often enough.

    Oh I didn't know it was based on actual level. That makes sense though, seeing how much xp you get from lockpicking…a fact I love by the by.

  13. phlacid March 18, 2014 at 9:34 pm

    I am seriously going to play this lockpicking sim untill the game release lol. gotta have my ESO fix

  14. DrGerm March 18, 2014 at 9:27 pm

    I can easily imagine mods that will allow you to cheat this

  15. picasso trigger March 18, 2014 at 7:42 pm

    Is the Simulator real? It took me about 15 seconds to do the hardest (Nerevarine) difficulty with only 2 errors on the first try >_>

    the major difficulty in the game is this timer, 15 seconds is not going to get you into a Master lock chest… the actual lock-picking is all the same in the game, it's the amount of time that makes them more or less difficult.

  16. vexx March 18, 2014 at 2:44 pm

    I did it! where is my loot?

    here's a virtual "grats" for you sir :D

  17. holdemnutz March 18, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    I did it! where is my loot?

  18. Malariawest March 17, 2014 at 7:36 am

    Totally awesome to be able to practice this!!! Thanks a bundle! I'll be here for hours now, glued to the screen between reads!

  19. vasdrakken March 17, 2014 at 6:10 am

    If you see impossible you need to level up and come back, level effects the difficulty of the chest. That said I was open master chests on the first weekend on my first attempt often enough.

  20. Bowstripe March 17, 2014 at 4:49 am

    When you find an Impossible chest, how can you open it?

Leave A Response

You must be logged in to post a comment. If you're not registered yet, it takes less than 1 minute - Register Now