That all changed today as the Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase 2022 unveiled 15 minutes of glorious gameplay footage for the game. Introduced by Phil Spencer and presented by Todd Howard as its main feature, the game closed out the show in dramatic fashion.
As a purveyor and enthusiast of Fallout 3, Fallout New Vegas, and Skyrim, Bethesda’s latest looked very promising.
Watch – Starfield Official Gameplay Reveal
From a visual standpoint, Starfield is a complete departure from its classic visual palette. Every game after Oblivion looked almost exactly like Oblivion with better textures and resolution. Despite some choppy frame rates during the presentation, the gameplay promised to be massive.
Visually, one of the big improvements is its third-person interface, as it adopts a more standardized UI comparable to the industry standard we’ve come to know and love. The combat is a lot more fluid compared to Bethesda’s usual fare, giving it that realism and immersion we expect.
The open-world space exploration is seen in full view and stands out from other space-faring adventures like Mass Effect and No Man’s Sky, as we take a deep dive from the early exploration in Ceres to the Constellation headquarters in New Atlantis in Planet Jemison. From here we get to experience the interactions unique to Bethesda games where we chase a red herring (The Artifact) across the galaxy that will “change humanity forever”.
We are introduced to the many factions and a robust crafting system that will allow us to build weapons, tools, outposts (which sound suspiciously like settlements), and spaceships. This leads us to the character creation that lets us customize elements of how the character looks, optional traits, and background that allows for starting skills.
Saving the best for last, Starfield introduces ship battles and ship customization. If you want to create your own Normandy, you can do so by building its crew, customizing its output, and taking part in interstellar battles.
You’ll definitely need that ship as you’re able to explore over 100 solar systems comprised of over 1,000 planets that are all open and ready to explore. And while Bethesda has a history of overselling its projects, I would approach this with some caution, but also definitely excited to really dive deep into this exploration when it launches next year.
Starfield launches in 2023 for the Xbox Series X|S and PC.