In a previous post, I spoke at length about Starfield before I had a chance to watch the gameplay reveal trailer. Since I had a lot of IRL things that kept me busy, I missed out on the initial reveal of Starfield, and so, by the time I heard about the trailer, I heard more folks complaining about the “1000 planets” pitch by Bethesda’s Todd Howard.
I have to admit it was a silly ramble, since I have not watched the trailer at the time. Trying to discuss and defend a pitch seems like I’m just stating opinions without anything to back it up.
But now that I’ve had a chance to sit down and watch the trailer, I’m ready to discuss my thoughts with a little more context and understanding.
To tell you the truth, I had tried to avoid reading about anything related to Starfield for a long time. The logo and the official “boxart” of the game was all I had, and for a while, I actually kind of forgot that this was an upcoming new IP by Bethesda.
From what I gather, Starfield is a game 25 years in the making. This takes us back to 1997, back when Bethesda Game Studios was still called Bethesda Softworks, and at the time, The Elder Scrolls was the only IP they had created. Around that time, I would have been a little boy who just saw Star Wars for the first time in theatres.
2 and a half decades is a lot of time to plan out and design a new game to explore and discover. Considering the scope, I can see why such a game simply could not exist back then.
Right from the getgo, the trailer gets us into the gameplay without too much introduction; After all, this is not E3, and we are here for the gameplay. Todd Howard is there throughout the video, and as always, provides us with great informative commentary on the various things we can do in the game. We are dropped right onto a rocky moon called Kreet, where we leave our spaceship in search of an abandoned research facility.
From the moment we set out from our spaceship into the vastness of this mysterious planet, our ears are treated to an emotional orchestral piece that wouldn’t feel out of place in a space opera. I haven’t felt goosebumps like this since I first stepped out of Vault 101.
I have to say this: The music. Is. Phenominal. Inon Zur has been brought on board to compose the music of Starfield, and considering his track record of working on Bethesda’s recent games, it’s not surprising to see him come back. The music is very fitting, overall.
Musical rambles aside, this amazing music continues as our protagonist, decked out in a large spacesuit, continues to wander and explore the landscape, encountering local flora and fauna, before making our way into an abandoned science facility.
I like the way that we can experience a different form of gravity.
It is soon after that we discover some space pirates aboard, and a shootout starts.
The combat, from what I can see looks very much like Fallout 4, which is excellent considering how much more improved they’ve gotten since Fallout 3. The main character on screen shoots, throws grenades, and even unloads a round from what looks like a futuristic double barreled shotgun.
The fight continues outside, where we get to see a ship land and more space pirates disembark and carry on fighing our spacesuit-clad explorer. And then we see the jetpack. I like the idea of aerial combat being a viable tactic.
After seeing the combat system show off, we get to a part in the video that actually had me interested in the scope and scale of this game. In the video, Howard tells us how we are invited to join Constellation, a group of space explorers. We visit the city of New Atlantis.
Seeing the size of this city was one of the few times I said “Wow!” out loud. It seriously looks hundreds of times larger than Whiterun. And if we have 1000 planets to explore, it makes me wonder how many more cities there are out there.
The Story and Characters
To tell you the truth, I’m not sure if I understood the next few minutes of characters making a number of monologues and speeches. I think I heard the voice of Stephen Russel as one of the characters.
I like the facial animations. They seem a lot more emotional.
We’re also seeing the idea of different factions in the game. I’m really curious to know if these factions are going to play out like Skyrim, where you could join them all, or more in line with Fallout 4, where you may only be able to join a few, or be locked out entirely.
All in all, the game story feels epic.
If we’re going off of what was shown in the trailer, it looks like we have the chance to create a character with our own unique appearance and background. I do like how we aren’t forced to play a character with a heroic build, which will make for some interesting characters.
As much as I love The Elder Scrolls, rolling multiple characters who were nameless prisoners can get a little dull, and it is a very big welcome sight to see the option of truly deciding how our characters first start. It reminds me of the background story that gets generated when you play Daggerfall.
It looks like when you choose a background, you get access to certain skills. Now, I haven’t delved too much into this, but I’m getting the impression that when you level up, you get to choose a skill, and you increase your skill level by completing challenges based around the skill in question.
Traits is a nice little touch, and it looks like they took a page from Fallout when making this feature. From a role-playing perspective, making a flawed character is great for storytelling.
Crafting and Settlement Building
Not surprising to see this mechanic return. After all we’ve seen since Skyrim, this is all to be expected, and honestly, if it weren’t, I feel like there would be some unhappy people.
This feature is what got me truly excited for this game, even moreso than the 1000 planet pitch. One of the big things I like about Bethesda’s games is exploring the worlds they create. And in a game like Starfield, it feels almost symbolic to build the very thing that will help you explore this vast galaxy.I haven’t been this excited since Todd’s “Weapon/Power Armor Mod” pitch from Fallout 4’s gameplay reveal.
All of those fond memories of building spaceships out of LEGO all came back to me when I saw what you could build in Starfield. From various parts, you assemble the ship, and you can even customize the colors.
In Defense of 1000 Planets
Whether or not this feature is due to procedural generation, I still feel conviced that this will be a fun option. I still think of the modding potential … For all we know, maybe the folks at Bethesda just added more planets on purpose for the modding community to use. Just thinking about it makes me almost want to take up modding myself.
Even without modding being involved, the dev team still gives us the ability to craft and build outposts. We could find ourselves a quiet little planet out there for us to call our home.
Overall, I think it’s going to be an exciting game. This is a very ambitious product 25 years in the making, but I really hope Bethesda takes their time working on it and making it a fun and great game to play.
I liked what I saw in the reveal video.
Anyways, I hope you enjoyed the ramble.
If you have any thoughts to share on Starfield, feel free to leave a comment down below.
As always, have fun, and happy gaming!