Game Director Todd Howard responds to some of the community’s questions, including questions about games that inspired him while creating Starfield, customization, Starfield’s persuasion system and more.
One of the early questions which Howard addresses is how much of a ‘hard sci-fi’ game Starfield will be? He states that while the developers wanted to lean strongly into the idea of ‘hard sci-fi’ in the end there were areas where they had to take some liberties in order to not limit player capability too strongly. He uses the example of space travel – researching about how fuel and the gravity drive would really work. In a more realistic setting, the ship would run out of a fuel, leaving the player stuck in space. Not a fun game mechanic. So, the developers changed it so that the fuel in your ship and the grav drive actually limit how far you can go at once – but it doesn’t fun out of fuel.
Another question Howard speaks about is character creation and the trait system. Of special interest is about traits, which all have both positive and negative sides when you first make your character. He revealed that there will be ways through questing or some other activity to remove the negative traits, rather than players being frustrated with their initial choices and feeling like they would need to start over with a new character. This could be a really interesting gameplay feature and could offer an intriguing method for adding an additional layer of character development.
What was really interesting, was the quick glimpse we got of Starfield’s dialogue system!
Howard says that they have passed over 250,000 lines of dialogue, which is more than twice as much as Fallout 4 and more than four times as much as Skyrim! He goes on to talk about his favorite speech persuasion system:
“It feels like it’s part of the dialogue, but you’re spending points to persuade them.”
He says it will feel more natural while you’re playing and talking to NPCs, and not like you’ve entered some separate game mode where you’re simply trying to get past a check point. From the couple of quick screenshots we found in the video, it appears that there will be a more robust mix of options for persuasion than the usual one or two that we’ve seen in other games. Depending on how much these different options change the outcome of a quest or perhaps the possibility of an NPC joining your crew, this could open up a lot of different avenues and encourage replayability!
No word on an official release date for Starfield yet, other than some time in 2023. For lots more information and regular updates on all things Starfield, head on over the starfieldguides.com and be sure to subscribe to the Starfield Guides channel over on YouTube!