Starfield release date – all the latest details about the next single-player Bethesda game

starfield release date

What is the Starfield release date? Bethesda’s upcoming sci-fi game has finally been revealed – here’s all the latest news about the single-player game.

Starfield is the first new Bethesda series in 25 years. That in itself is cause enough to scream so loud with excitement that it could be heard in space.

But there’s more: Starfield sees the beloved Fallout and Elder Scrolls studio leaving the ground and heading out among, well, the stars – an area of interest I suppose you could call a Starfield. What has the studio found there? That’s what we’re looking to work out, as the first meteorites filled with information begin to fall from the sky.

We don’t know yet whether or not Starfield will be an RPG – but if it is, there’s a good chance it could sit among the very best RPGs on PC.

Bethesda is currently hard at work readying Fallout 76 for release – it’s an always-online game that is proving controversial with some of its diehard fans. In some ways, Starfield is a surer prospect: a single-player game, just like Skyrim and Fallout 4 before it.

In other ways it’s bolder and stranger – a completely new universe, whereas Fallout and The Elder Scrolls are rooted in decades of established lore, locations, and creatures.

Starfield release date

Starfield

Bethesda’s current focus is getting Fallout 76 ready to ship on November 14th, which puts Starfield on the backburner – or should that be afterburner? – for now. That said, we’ve reason to believe the space game is quite far along already.

“Starfield is a game that we have spent years thinking about and working on,” Todd Howard told the crowd at Bethesda’s E3 conference this year.

Indeed, a string of trademark applications for Starfield began in March 2013, suggesting the idea has been in development in some form for at least half a decade. That’s supported by Howard’s comments in a YouTube Gaming interview with Geoff Keighley, in which he said that Starfield was “in production.”

Like many game studios, Bethesda considers a game to be in production only once it’s been through an idea-driven phase of pre-production. When a game is in full production, “the bulk of the studio” moves over to work on it. As a result, Starfield is playable, which puts it further along the production pipelinethan The Elder Scrolls VI.

“Starfield is playable, Elder Scrolls VI not in that way yet,” Howard said.

Howard described Starfield as a “next-gen” game on-stage, but that doesn’t necessarily mean we’ll be waiting until the next generation of consoles to play it.

“I’m gonna be honest, I don’t know the answer to that yet,” he told GameSpot. “I can’t absolutely say yes to [leaving the current generation consoles behind]. We’re not going to limit the game that way yet. I’m willing to [leave current generation consoles behind] but it’s not a priority right now.”

Starfield trailer

Starfield made its debut with a teaser trailer at Bethesda’s E3 showcase. No gameplay footage yet, but Howard has said that it goes a long way to establishing tone – so maybe play it a second time, close your eyes, and soak up the space vibes.

Starfield gameplay

Starfield gameplay

Bethesda has revealed nothing specific about the way Starfield plays. Howard has said it is “something we feel uniquely positioned to pull off,” which given the studio’s pedigree, would suggest that while Starfield is headed to space, it still has its feet planted in the RPG genre. Certainly, the last time Bethesda began work on a new series – Fallout – the result resembled The Elder Scrolls so much that fans dubbed it “Oblivion with guns.”

The setting will determine many of Starfield’s mechanics, however. You can see ice forming on the screen in the teaser, as if the camera itself is drifting through the void. Perhaps, then, we’ll see Bethesda wrestle with zero-gravity, as well as the cramped interiors of ships – very different from the wide-open landscapes its games are known for.

Starfield story

Starfield story

Ironically for a game that will, presumably, be filled with dialogue, we’ve only got half a word to go on right now when it comes to Starfield’s story. You can see that word reflected in the camera at the beginning of Starfield’s trailer, and it looks like “constellation.” The significance of that word has yet to be revealed – but you can bet it’s there for a reason.

Then there’s that shot of a pronged satellite – or is it a manned station? It resembles a mechanical flower, and appears to be sucking solar energy either from a nearby star, or the light reflected from the planet it orbits.

The only action in the teaser comes at the very end – an explosive blast of light that seems to pull at the station, rather like a black hole. Whatever it is, you can bet some kind of catastrophic event plays a role in the story of Starfield.

Starfield single-player

Starfield single-player

Howard’s first words on the game made clear that Starfield will be single-player, just as the studio’s RPGs have been in the past. Of course, Bethesda is also on the cusp of launching an internal experimental in multiplayer, Fallout 76. If that goes well, perhaps Starfield will have some form of online component after all – but for now, it’s resolutely single-player.