Starfield appears to share many traits with the 2016 sci-fi survival game No Man’s Sky (for better or for worse), with both offering massive procedurally generated universes to explore through interstellar travel. But Bethesda’s upcoming space-based RPG will lack a key feature of Hello Games’ slow-burning hit: seamless piloting of starships.
After revealing the first footage of Starfield on Xbox and Bethesda Showcase, studio director Todd Howard spoke to IGN (opens in new tab) about the game. During the discussion, Howard said that the team tried to implement many of the ideas requested for the game, but the ability to seamlessly fly a starship from the surface of a planet into space was left on the cutting room floor.
“People ask, ‘Can you fly the ship straight to the planet?'” Howard said. reality.”
He went on to explain that the development time required to create such a feature was not justified. Dropping it allowed the team to focus their resources on other aspects of the game.
“If you try to really spend a lot of time designing the middle ground, like that one follows, you’re just wasting a lot of time [on something] it’s really not that important to the player,” Howard said.
“So let’s make sure it’s amazing when you’re on the surface and amazing when you’re in space, and those realities look and work as well as they can be.”
disruptions on the planet
The fact that Starfield won’t let you get into a spaceship and manually take off into the final frontier will be disappointing to some fans. There was hope that the game would match the scope of other space adventure games released in recent years.
No Man’s Sky, in particular, received high praise for immersing the player in its wide universe while minimizing game interruptions. When you come across a planet in the belly of space, you can pilot your ship through its atmosphere, before gliding above its surface and initiating a landing procedure to drift down. No cutscenes or loading screens; the player retains full control.
How the spacecraft will land at Starfield remains to be seen. Howard didn’t specify if it would be an on-rails system, if there were any landing maneuvers you would need to control, or if it was totally taken out of your hands, as the game simply switches to the planet-side view via a loading screen. .
Starship piloting won’t be entirely absent from the game, however. O game clip (opens in new tab) released during Summer Game Fest showcased Starfield’s spaceship air combat, which lets you blow up enemy ships as you run across the vast expanse.
Elsewhere in the interview, Howard gave an update on Fallout 5.