Pre-Release Starfield articles and discussion

I plan to make two threads relating to Starfield. This one, about any pre-release articles and/or discussions, and another one down the road about our gameplay experiences once it's actually released months from now. Hopefully it will be a way to consolidate pre-release information/discussion, from actual gameplay. There will undoubtedly be many pre-release articles, opinions, and speculations in the months to come, especially after the Starfield Showcase on 06/11/2023.

9 overly specific details we found in Starfield's release date trailer | PC Gamer

We're really hungry and/or hurting for actual information right now as far as actual gameplay goes, but one part gleaned from this article is a bit of a concern for me:

Everyone is using an X-Box Controler
U2xjY1i.jpg


Huh! No one at Bethesda is using the mouse and keyboard to play Starfield? How curious. It's almost as if Bethesda received a directive from its new Microsoft overlords that everyone appearing in public footage playing Starfield must use an Xbox controller.

I'm a dedicated KB & M gamer, so I prefer a game that is designed around that, and not any type of controller. I know a lot of you use some type of controller, at least at times, but I'm still hoping that Starfield will be designed around the KB & M with controller support and not the other way around.
 
I plan to make two threads relating to Starfield. This one, about any pre-release articles and/or discussions, and another one down the road about our gameplay experiences once it's actually released months from now. Hopefully it will be a way to consolidate pre-release information/discussion, from actual gameplay. There will undoubtedly be many pre-release articles, opinions, and speculations in the months to come, especially after the Starfield Showcase on 06/11/2023.

9 overly specific details we found in Starfield's release date trailer | PC Gamer

We're really hungry and/or hurting for actual information right now as far as actual gameplay goes, but one part gleaned from this article is a bit of a concern for me:

Everyone is using an X-Box Controler
U2xjY1i.jpg


Huh! No one at Bethesda is using the mouse and keyboard to play Starfield? How curious. It's almost as if Bethesda received a directive from its new Microsoft overlords that everyone appearing in public footage playing Starfield must use an Xbox controller.

I'm a dedicated KB & M gamer, so I prefer a game that is designed around that, and not any type of controller. I know a lot of you use some type of controller, at least at times, but I'm still hoping that Starfield will be designed around the KB & M with controller support and not the other way around.
I'm sure mouse and keyboard will be fine. They know that PC sales will far exceed Xbox sales, so they need to get it right.
 

Zloth

Community Contributor
I know a lot of you use some type of controller, at least at times, but I'm still hoping that Starfield will be designed around the KB & M with controller support and not the other way around.
It will bow to the limits of both of them, otherwise Bethesda will catch hell from whichever side isn't properly supported.

For the K+M, that means no more than about 8-10 "quick access" buttons, not counting WASD for movement. By that I mean timing-critical commands, like shooting off specific powers, dodging, and so-on. If K+M users need to map 1 through 0 for their powers, the higher number keys (and 0) will be too hard for players to find fast. Basically, almost the entire right side of the keyboard needs to be commands that can take a second or two to find with no bad consequences.

For the controller folks, there's a limit of commands in total. The shape makes access to all the buttons (and even many combos) very fast, there's only so many, and they don't lend themselves to mnemonics like "M" for map. They'll need to use menus to get to the complex stuff. K+M users can get shortcuts into those menus, but the game needs to be designed so that those shortcuts are just "nice to have," not critical.
 
New Starfield article from yesterday:
So Starfield's still going to be really buggy, right? | PC Gamer

The article mainly details previously released Bethesda RPGs, and the bugs and/or technical issues that plagued them. It's a decent comparison considering Bethesda's reputation for buggy releases, and I've played all of them, with the exception of Fallout 76 which I consider to be a multiplayer game as opposed to single player, and thus had no interest.

The difference this time, with Starfield, could be because Microsoft is now the "over-seer" on the quality of game releases. Maybe. Everything about Starfield is really just speculation at this point. There will no doubt be quest bugs & graphical glitches, as there is no way to adequately play test a game with this many variables. And I expect those things. But my hope is that Starfield will be technically stable, without CTDs, massive FPS drops, and saved game bloat and/or corruption. Hopefully the delay is a good sign, at least in terms of stability.
 

Zloth

Community Contributor
The difference this time, with Starfield, could be because Microsoft is now the "over-seer" on the quality of game releases.
A new version of Office 365 loaded on my work PC today. I opened Outlook, scrolled down through my inbox using the mouse wheel, and the focus kept jumping back up to the start again! It fixed when I selected Inbox on the left then put focus back on the list of emails on the right. It broke again when I closed Outlook and opened it up again.

Microsoft being in charge of QA does not instill any confidence in me. I suggest waiting for Starfield Service Pack 1 or 2. 🙃
 
So we just had the Starfield deep dive. Still one on my radar. The planets and fauna look cool and the combat looks better than it did in the last trailer.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uMOPoAq5vIA


It's now up for presale on Steam. The Digital Deluxe edition is £25 extra and includes (up to) 5 days early access. But with the caveat that there might be outages that stop you playing early on.
 
This is the game I'll buy a new computer for. It's probably going to take me a few months until after it has released to save up, but I expect it'll take a couple of months for the worst bugs to be patched anyway.

The deep dive looked even better than I expected, the only real disappointment for me were the facial expressions of the NPCs during dialogue.

Another thing that caught my eye was the freedom in building and customising the look of your space ship. I expect it'll result in a huge amount of phallus shaped space ships.
 
Watched it. For an RPG, it looks like it could be a decent game. Unless they're hiding mindless grind and hour-long 3-step boss battles, the gameplay looks generally interesting and full of choice—a lot more Far Cry than Dead Souls :)

Love the world visuals and the build customization, and that each NPC will probably look different. Combat doesn't seem overly melee unless you want that, and traversal seems not a chore.

Interesting bit if I understood correctly: When you land on a planet, it will be procedurally generated as you explore—and someone else landing there will find different 'content'. That's where I could see performance issues, doesn't that put a big load on CPU, and then GPU to render the impressive maybe multi-source lighting?

One thing isn't clear—is there an ultimate goal, or is it only sandbox?

Steam specs
MINIMUM:
  • OS: Windows 10 version 22H2 (10.0.19045)
  • Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 2600X, Intel Core i7-6800K
  • Memory: 16 GB RAM
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon RX 5700, NVIDIA GeForce 1070 Ti
  • DirectX: Version 12
  • Network: Broadband Internet connection
  • Storage: 125 GB available space
  • Additional Notes: SSD Required
  • RECOMMENDED:
    • OS: Windows 10/11 with updates
    • Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 3600X, Intel i5-10600K
    • Memory: 16 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080
    • DirectX: Version 12
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 125 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: SSD Required
They don't mention VRAM, and 125GB storage is lower than I'd guessed.

Anyway, wishlisted in case I do get another shiny PC some fine day :)
 
Interesting bit if I understood correctly: When you land on a planet, it will be procedurally generated as you explore—and someone else landing there will find different 'content'. That's where I could see performance issues, doesn't that put a big load on CPU, and then GPU to render the impressive maybe multi-source lighting?

Yeah, I wonder how long the loading times will be when landing on a planet.

I suspect the lighting won't be that much more GPU intensive compared to other games with dynamic lighting. I assume that the nearest star will be the only light source while outside most of the time.

One thing isn't clear—is there an ultimate goal, or is it only sandbox?

The main quest will revolve around your part in the Constellation faction and their search for alien artifacts.
 
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One thing isn't clear—is there an ultimate goal, or is it only sandbox?

Just watching the Starfield Direct now as my work and sleep schedule are backwards compared to a regular 9 to 5 job. Anyways, This game so far looks really good! Details are pretty stunning and combat doesn't look nearly as clunky as Skyrim and Fallout. As far as having an end-goal or being a sandbox I think it does both, they advertise character creation but then to make it your own story so I'm not sure if they are going to have smuggling, military or PMC work, gathering tradesman, crafter or anything else, I mean I would assume they have "jobs" that you can play but I'm also not entirely too sure. For the End-goal part in the overall trailer a character says "These Artifacts could be everything we've been looking for, another great secret the universe is asking us to unravel" . So with that little glimpse I'm sure there is an overall story just like Morrowind, Oblivion and Skyrim had but also with a "take your time, do your own thing" type of way to it with the possibility of "Jobs"

Steam specs
MINIMUM:
  • OS: Windows 10 version 22H2 (10.0.19045)
  • Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 2600X, Intel Core i7-6800K
  • Memory: 16 GB RAM
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon RX 5700, NVIDIA GeForce 1070 Ti
  • DirectX: Version 12
  • Network: Broadband Internet connection
  • Storage: 125 GB available space
  • Additional Notes: SSD Required
  • RECOMMENDED:
    • OS: Windows 10/11 with updates
    • Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 3600X, Intel i5-10600K
    • Memory: 16 GB RAM
    • Graphics: AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080
    • DirectX: Version 12
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 125 GB available space
    • Additional Notes: SSD Required
They don't mention VRAM, and 125GB storage is lower than I'd guessed.

I'm "kind of" okay in this aspect for now, I currently am rocking some "old" hardware as far as PC standards go.

Intel Core i7-7700
16GBs DDR4
GTX 1080
500GM m.2 NVMe SSD
1TB SSD
1TB 7200 RPM HDD.

I plan on Upgrading my Pc later in the year or possibly early next year, we shall see though. I personally never run my games maxed out anyways because that puts more strain on the components and I don't want High Temperature heats to damage the lifespan of my system anyways so I usually roll Medium to High (On a scale of Low, Medium, High, Ultra)



Not too sure if I want to pre-purchase or preorder it yet, going to wait a month or so before making the decision.
 
Hold off upgrading for now
If upgrade/purchase is a serious decision for you, hold off for some months at least. Give time for the worst standard BBs [Bethesda Bugs] to be fixed, which could change performance. Then the optimization patches, and perhaps community performance enhancers which you might want.

Don't buy now, whatever you do. Don't believe 2023 September 06 until it actually happens—game's been in dev for 8 years, and 'playable' for 5 years. I expect they'll hit this September, but I wouldn't bet buying PC bits in advance on it.
 
Just finished watching the Starfield deep dive, as I didn't get a chance to yesterday, and I was very impressed with the work they've accomplished since the last brief video we saw months ago. Of particular note to me:

1- Combat looks fun, fluid, and the addition of the jetpack really adds variety in how you handle hostile situations. It reminds me a bit of the aerial combat from ME Andromeda and Elex 1 & 2. It looks like the smoothest combat & associated animations that they've ever done.

2-Settlement building, ship building, and weapon modding look great to me, as those are some of my favorite RPG mechanics. Especially the settlement building & decorating. I've spent hundreds of hours in Fallout 4 and I can see myself doing the same thing in Starfield.

3-Graphic details in the environments and creature models, as well as the lighting, looked really impressive, and exploring the various planets should bring a lot of variety and discovery.

4-Space flight and space combat also looked good and adds an entirely new dimension to gameplay.

They couldn't show everything of course, but one element I didn't see, but is hopefully in the game, is intelligent alien life forms, each with their own culture. It's a big galaxy, so I would expect to see more than just human settlements as I explore.

Current system specs, that you guys already listed seemed pretty reasonable to me, and I was glad to see that they require an SSD, because with all the data that's going to be loading & unloading at various times, I don't see how an HDD would be able to handle it.

If there's going to be a weakness when Starfield releases, I think it might be in how the game engine handles swapping out all that data. I'm sure there will be optimization patches in the first few months after release once people start playing.

I currently meet, or exceed, the recommended specs, so I will definitely be pre-ordering, though probably not until August, just to make sure Starfield will actually release on 9/6/2023 (though I'm fairly confident at this point that it will.

Linked a couple more recent PCG Starfield articles:


 
They couldn't show everything of course, but one element I didn't see, but is hopefully in the game, is intelligent alien life forms, each with their own culture. It's a big galaxy, so I would expect to see more than just human settlements as I explore.

I doubt there will be a lot of intelligent alien life forms. I'd expect them to have shown something like that by now. However, there was one part where a woman seems surprised you are a human when she meets you, so I do think there might be at least one intelligent alien race in the game. Though she could've thought you were a robot too.

Personally, I wouldn't mind if there were no intelligent alien races in the game at all, except maybe for whoever created the artifacts featured in the main campaign.
 

Zloth

Community Contributor
Wow, there's a whole lot of No Man's Sky in there: setting up outposts, getting xp for exploring planets and scanning critters, the procedural stuff... That's fine by me, I loved NMS even before all the many free expansions.

I have my doubts about the photo mode, but we'll see.

Got a laugh about the huge space yard and that huge ship he built. X4 has them beat bad on that sense of scale already. (Though, if you really want a sense of scale, play the thing in VR.)

One of the traits is "Alien DNA" - so there must be some sort of aliens.

Jeez, Intimidation skill works on enemies 20 levels higher than you? Sounds like levels are going to come fast in this game. Yeah, that preying mantis thing is level 80.

Hehe, spaceman playing Starfield.
 
jetpack really adds variety in how you handle hostile situations
Yeah, that caught my eye too—I really like in Far Cry picking guys off from the wingsuit or chute, on the rare occasion I can actually make a hit! And I recall fondly one of my fav infantry units ever is the Rocketeer from Red Alert 2—was so cool sending a swarm of those guys around back of a base!

I do think there might be at least one intelligent alien race
I thought I heard that there are a lot of humanoid races, as in descended from humans but of course taking their own future evolutionary course. But not at all sure…

One of the traits is "Alien DNA" - so there must be some sort of aliens.
Ah yes, forgot about that!

looks like it won't launch as a complete broken mess
Fingers crossed!
 

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