I’ve now put more hours into Starfield than I care to admit. It’s one of the first games in a long time that captivated me so much. But not all players share my opinion. Instead, it seems like Starfield is very much dividing the gaming community. Why is that? Who enjoys Starfield and why?
Story: A huge, empty world?
A common criticism of Starfield is that the game’s vast world supposedly feels empty. In fact, this criticism is not new to Bethesda games. Players repeatedly complain that Bethesda’s worlds are too big for their own good. But is that really the case with Starfield?
The main story of the game sends you on a journey throughout the universe. From solar system to solar system, you hunt for powerful artifacts or seek out mysterious temples. In fact, these quests are far from the most exciting in the game. Overall, I don’t think the main quest is the highlight of Starfield. If you are looking for a deep, multidimensional story and attach great importance to it, you should stay away from Starfield. But despite this weakness, Starfield grabbed me and that is largely due to my own playing style.
What does Starfield have to offer?
Even after days that I have now spent in the game, I have not yet completely completed the main quest. In fact, I have very little interest in them. I’d much rather get lost in side quests, explore planets, build spaceships and set up outposts. Starfield allows me to immerse myself in these things for hours. The more side quests I take on, the more there is to discover on my journey through the universe.
There is a lot to discover in the world of Starfield. I am always positively surprised by planets and find things on my travels that make the world come alive for me. I don’t mind finding an empty planet that I don’t want to spend much time on. I often set myself goals that I work towards. This also makes hunting for resources more fun.
Gameplay: Action and exploration
As a long-time Fallout fan, I’m already familiar with Starfield’s gameplay. The two games are more similar in many ways than one might think. However, Starfield brings innovations that convinced me. For example, the new skill system. Each skill now requires a task to be completed before the next level becomes available. I was also pleasantly surprised by the character creation. Traits that I had to add with mods in Fallout 4 are now included in the game from the start.
Overall, in my opinion, Starfield offers a lot of role-playing opportunities that make the game interesting. Some skills unlock new dialogue options, companions actively participate in dialogues and conversation partners naturally react to what is said. However, Bethesda could have developed the companion system better. There are only four complete companions, which is simply not enough. Especially considering how many potential companions the game offers. However, if you’re lucky and find a companion you like, four options might be enough.
Successful shooter elements
In some places Starfield feels like a space shooter. This is especially the case when there are pirates in your way that need to be eliminated. Luckily, the game’s weapon gameplay is very well done. The different weapons feel good, have different strengths and weaknesses and are convincing in terms of their design.
The shooting itself feels natural and is a far cry from the failed shooter attempts of previous Bethesda games. Weapons can be further modified and ammo is easy enough to obtain that you don’t have to constantly switch between weapons.
Starfield is a space opera. An important part of the game is the gameplay in space. Many players criticize that traveling between different solar systems feels more like a loading screen than an actual journey. As someone who spends as little time as possible in my spaceship, I agree. For me, however, it’s not really a big point of criticism.
However, I am more critical of the control of the spaceship, which often becomes a problem, especially in battles. Todd Howard announced that the difficulty of the space battles has already been lowered, but I still avoid them at all costs. They’re just not fun. If you accidentally hit the wrong spaceship once, your companion will never forgive you again and the only way to escape the situation is to reload a previous save point.
What is a lot more fun, however, is building your own spaceships. Once you have looked through the spaceship builder, it offers numerous options for customizing your own spaceship. From simply changing the color to replacing entire reactors; you can customize your spaceship to suit your needs.
Graphic desEsports Extrasby Starfield
Starfield is a typical Bethesda game when it comes to graphic design. The game is years behind other games in its price range, which is noticeable in some places. The game doesn’t look bad, but it definitely has some catching up to do compared to other current AAA titles. Modders from the community are already reworking textures and fixing errors. For me, the graphic desEsports Extrasof Starfield is not an exclusion criterion. For the most part, while I’m playing, I don’t pay any attention to how textures and objects look in the distance.
However, things are different when it comes to performance. I have now played Starfield on two very different systems. My old PC, equipped with an i9-10900K, a Radeon RX 6800 XT and 32 GB of RAM, had problems playing Starfield at ultra settings at a smooth 60 FPS. Older games, some of which look better, ran without problems on the system.
I’m now playing with an RTX 4090, an i9-13900K and 64 GB of RAM, but the performance is still not as good as I would expect. The game runs and it runs very smoothly for the most part, but there are still minor stutters every now and then. They’re not necessarily bad, but they show that the game could be much better optimized.
Bugs and errors
On the positive side, however, I haven’t found a single fatal bug so far. If anything, they were small, insignificant bugs that I only noticed because I was looking for them. Sometimes a companion will run into a wall and other times creatures will fly a little too high into the air. However, I can easily ignore these errors myself and they don’t disrupt my gaming experience. If anything, they sometimes provide funny moments.
My Starfield highlights
Starfield is not a perfect game. Nevertheless, for me the game is a successful overall package that I enjoy a lot. Sometimes I start the game with the intention of exploring new planets, other times I complete quests and work my way through the story. For me, this ability to adapt my style of play to what suits me at the moment is one of the game’s greatest strengths.
A Bethesda-style single player game
Bethesda allows the player full control over their own gaming experience. The console makes it easy to add items, adjust difficulty, and more. As a player you have the feeling that you can desEsports Extrasthe game according to your own wishes. For me this is a very important part of a successful single player game. For example, if you don’t want to constantly switch between weapons because you run out of ammunition, you can easily add new ammunition via the console. For some this may be cheating, for others it makes the gaming experience better. However, it doesn’t matter which camp you belong to, because you can decide for yourself how you play and which shortcuts you want to take.
Like all Bethesda games, Starfield already has a very active modding scene. Every player can download content created by the community without much effort. Don’t like the menu? Download a mod that adapts it to your needs. I hope that through an active community, Starfield will become a game that constantly offers innovations through mods. This means that the game will still have new things to offer years from now and the creativity of the community will be encouraged.
Numerous players criticized the settlement system in Fallout 4, but Bethesda is still bringing a similar mechanic back to Starfield. If you particularly like a planet, you can build an outpost there. You can be pragmatic, but also very creative.
It looks similar when building your spaceship. You can buy a pre-made copy or build your very own ship. Of course, you can also personalize and customize purchased ships. Personally, I can spend hours setting up outposts and building spaceships without getting bored.
Conclusion on Starfield
Starfield is the first video game in a long time that really excited me. At first it might have been because I just wanted to like the game. But now I’ve spent enough time in the world of Starfield to say that I like the game even without rose-colored glasses. I see the criticism from other players and still believe that Starfield manages to compensate for its shortcomings. If you like Bethesda games, Starfield is definitely recommended. In the meantime, you have to find things for yourself to work towards. If that’s not a problem for you, then you should at least try the game. In this case, however, I recommend that you wait for a sale. With its price tag of 70 euros, Starfield is anything but cheap.
- Huge game world
- Exciting quests
- Lots of potential for your own exploration
- Creative possibilities
- Spaceship gameplay could be better
- Outdated graphics
- High price