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Starfield: Everything we know about Bethesda’s sci-fi RPG

Starfield: Everything we know about Bethesda's sci-fi RPG
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This year ‘s Xbox & Bethesda Showcase turned out to be particularly dense and packed with announcements and although the real bombs were missing, one of the hottest moments of the evening saw Todd Howard take the Xbox stage to present in great detail Starfield. .

The new sci-fi blockbuster from Bethesda arriving on PC and Xbox console at the beginning of 2023 is finally back to show itself with a first full-bodied gameplay video that allowed us to discover several new details about the game. As often happens, however, the most substantial news are those that arrive a few days later following meetings with the press.

The emergence of some unpublished information therefore represents the perfect opportunity for us to take stock of everything we know about Starfield , the most ambitious title ever created by the Bethesda team.

To see the stars again

The idea behind Starfield comes from the desire to provide the player with all the tools to experience a space epic in a totally free and immersive way. Todd Howard has never made a mystery of it and has always reiterated the desire to want to create an unprecedented role-playing game and that he could give the player the impression of really living those adventures and not just playing. With a whole range of possibilities and entire solar systems available to players, Starfield appears as a colossal RPG capable of clearly surpassing in features and ambitions what has been done with previous productions. But let’s start from the beginning.

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The Starfield Storyis set in 2330, in a portion of the Milky Way that extends for a distance of about fifty light years from the outer fringes of the Solar System. Unfortunately, the sidereal universe, fascinating as it is, is not free from conflicts. The great War between Colonies that hit the area 20 years earlier ended with a peace that seems to be rather precarious and the pitfalls that lurk within the Colonized System are innumerable and include both mercenaries and space pirates, as well as violent fringes. and religious extremists. Not many details have yet been revealed about the narrative context of the game, but it is very likely that these different factions will play an important role in the development of the story. What we do know is that we will find ourselves taking on the role of a member of the Constellation, an organization of space explorers determined to unravel the secrets of the galaxy.

Starfield: Everything we know about Bethesda's sci-fi RPG

The first gameplay video allowed us to take a look at the detailed character creation editor , which seems to be inspired by the real study of DNA fragments and which will allow us to choose the features of our explorer and customize him in every aspect: sex , size, complexion, face, background and more interesting character traits. It is no coincidence that Starfield has been described by Bethesda as a game with  the most powerful and varied character editor ever, among the many productions of the publisher.

The high level of customization, however, will not only concern our PC, but also the space shuttle creation that we will use to move between the various planets.

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Here too it will be possible to intervene on a myriad of elements, from aesthetics to performance, a fact that should not be underestimated given that we will be able to take off our spaceship to travel among the stars . Yes, because the game also includes the possibility to freely navigate in space, fight with other spaceships and even steal them, thus offering the player a complete interstellar exploration experience from every point of view.

According to reports from the team, Starfield will also present a unique space combat system , partly inspired by   FTL  and MechWarrior , regarding the mechanics of the redistribution of power in the different weapon systems and the rhythm of the clashes. From what we could see in the gameplay video, the space fights return an excellent feeling on the visual level, also showing a particular system of damage that makes the hits suffered very realistic with the debris of the enemy spaceships that splash away and get lost in the depths. of space.

As for exploration, however, Starfield will present more than 1000 different planets on which we can sail. An important figure that also brings with it a good dose of perplexity. Todd Howard has already confirmed that obviously all these planets will be created through procedural generation but that they will include a good part of handcrafted elements within them: it remains to be seen, however, how they will be distributed and in what way and if they will actually be able to give the impression. that each planet is adequately rich and well characterized.

It must also be said that Starfield will also have four main cities that can be freely explored, including New Atlantis : the capital of the United Colonies, which in addition to being the largest city ever seen in a Bethesda game ( Skyrim  and  Fallout 4  included) will allow players to access numerous services, accept missions and upgrade their spaceship.

Between fighting and exploration

Starfield: Everything we know about Bethesda's sci-fi RPG

The first part of the presentation of the new Bethesda project also offered us a first taste of the combat system. The gunplay does not seem to inherit any of the peculiarities of Fallout’s VATS targeting system, thus choosing to opt for a more classic system: the movie shows real-time shootings, with the life bar and the HP of the opponents in view with each shot immediately. . At the moment, however, there seems to be a little lack of physical response to hits from enemies, who appear helpless to fire while their life bar is quickly emptied by hits. An element that, together with the absence of an aiming reticle, emphasizes the feeling that the fights must undergo a refinement process.

Another very interesting aspect to mention is the presence of a weapon ammo indicator completely unhooked from the HUD. All of Starfield’s weapons, every pistol, rifle or machine gun held by the protagonist, in fact, has an ammunition indicator. A feature that Bethesda borrowed from Arkane and the work done on the Prey reboot . For example, a lasgun will simply display an  indicator showing a rough estimate of energy and remaining charge, while a pistol will display an indicator of  available bullets on the rear as well as the double-barreled shotgun. This means thatusers who prefer to adopt a minimalist interface will therefore have no need to download additional mods to increase engagement .

Finally, there will also be a crafting system , divided into different sections: drugs, food and drink, development of the outpost, equipment and weapons. Players will be able to make modifications to their weapons , but also conduct research plans to uncover new technologies to be used to their advantage. There will therefore be workbenches , as well as the possibility of creating a base in the manner of Fallout 4, hoping that the team has deepened this mechanic making it more sensible than what was done in the fourth chapter of the post-apocalyptic saga.

After finally showing up with a substantial gameplay video, Starfield already seems to promise some memorable space adventures . The scale of Bethesda’s work is nothing short of colossal – there are entire planetary systems to explore, space combat, crafting, skill trees, character and spaceship customization mechanics. There will be the possibility to build and manage a base and much more. In short, this is truly an experience that surpasses any other title developed by the team in size and ambition.

For those who have always loved Bethesda productions, focused on exploration and role-playing elements, Starfield is a daydream.

However, to counterbalance so much splendor, there are a series of elements that are not yet completely convincing. In fact, it will be necessary to understand how all these systems will be integrated with each other and if the team will be able to optimize and completely refine an adventure of this size in time for launch, avoiding running into the presence of bugs limiting the experience. Obviously, there is still a little missing from the release, but Todd Howard’s statements are those that bode well: the director has in fact stressed that the primary need of the team is to deliver the best possible version of Starfield to the players.and it is precisely for this reason that the software house has chosen to take additional time to perfect the experience. A promise that may seem complex to keep today if you think about the scope of the project, but in which we feel we want to believe. After all, to make big dreams come true, you have to try to believe them.

Starfield will be available in early 2023 on Xbox Series X / S, PC and at launch on Xbox Game Pass.

 
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