Phil Spencer is the head of Xbox and Microsoft Gaming. As part of gamescom 2023, he spoke about Starfield and the playing time he has already put into the upcoming sci-fi role-playing game.
What does the Xbox boss say? In an interview with online magazine IGN, Spencer revealed that he thinks he’s currently on his 15th iteration of Starfield and probably has around 200 hours on the role-playing game.
However, these game hours are not in a single playthrough, as save formats and the like are changed during ongoing development. Spencer will therefore have started from the beginning a few times. In his current run, however, he plays a “total space pirate”
Finally, Spencer added that he thinks Starfield is more like The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion than its sequel, The Eder Scrolls V: Skyrim:
I think I’m on my 15th run. I’m probably 200 hours into the game but not in one go because ‘I’m starting, we’re changing the save format blah blah blah’ and so on. So I started in November, but I think I’m playing my last run with a character right now – a total space pirate. I’m a total space pirate.
I think it’s more Oblivion than Skyrim – maybe people who’ve played it will understand that. It’s an epic, epic game.
Phil Spencer via Twitter
What are the differences between Skyrim and Oblivion? Skyrim is the direct successor to Oblivion and while both games are loved by many fans, there are some aspects that are different for players. There was a thread on Reddit about this 10 years ago.
We summarize some of the differences mentioned:
- the story and atmosphere feel more “complete” from Oblivion
- Skyrim’s faction quests were linear and fell a bit short
- In general, quests in Oblivion are “much more imaginative and entertaining”
- Skyrim clearly wins the comparison in terms of graphics and gameplay, the fifth part of the series was particularly convincing in the combat system
Whether Xbox boss Phil Spencer had any of those points in mind when making the comparison, we can’t say. It could mean, however, that Starfield will primarily stand out for its quests and for the story of the game.
As early as July 2023, a good two months before Starfield was released, some genre fans were already discussing whether Starfield could be better than The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. This shows the high expectations the space RPG arouses, considering that Skyrim is still considered one of the best role-playing games of all time almost 12 years after its release:
Fans debate whether Starfield can top one of the best RPGs of all time: ‘I’m going to be blown away’