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Starfield Colony War

20 years before Starfield’s campaign, the Settled Systems were at war. Here’s everything we know about the Starfield Colony War.

Starfield Colony War

In 2310 AD, the Starfield Colony War between the United Colonies and the Freestar Collective concluded. The uneasy peace between these two Starfield factions has lasted for 20 years as of Starfield’s starting date, 2330 AD.

But what started the war? What was it about? How did it end? Is the war over, or is this peace merely a prelude to an all-out faction war? Be sure to read our full guides on the United Colonies and Freestar Collective to decide whose side you want to stand on.

The Starfield Colony War’s history

As one of the major historical turning points in the Starfield universe, the Colony War had a huge impact on the Settled Systems. It is unknown precisely when the Colony War began, only that the largest military power in the Settled Systems, the United Colonies, and the independence-loving Freestar Collective came to blows. Ultimately, the Freestar Collective won and were allowed to retain their independence from the United Colonies.

As of 2330 AD, 20 years of peace have passed. Both the United Colonies (UC) and the Freestar Collective (FC) share a common enemy in the Crimson Fleet, but hunting down pirates is unlikely to unite the UC and FC in perfect harmony.

The United Colonies (UC) is an idealized space republic and considered the most powerful military faction in the Settled Systems. It is formed by a collection of colonies ruled from New Atlantis on the planet Jemison. As a major military power, any threat to the UC’s sovereignty is likely top of its priority list, and exactly why the truce between the UC and FC is so fraught.

The UC’s rivals, the Freestar Collective, is a confederation of three star systems. The FC is less interested in expansion than it is in personal freedoms and justice. Any who threaten its independence can expect a firm and deadly response.

The future of the Starfield Colony War

It has already been confirmed that you can join any and all of the Starfield factions, including the Crimson Fleet. As a result, the Spacefarer might find themselves choosing a side should the peace between the United Colonies and Freestar Collective collapse.

This wouldn’t be the first time in a Bethesda title that the player finds themselves in a faction war, with Fallout 4 heralding numerous endings wherein one faction triumphed over the others.

If this is the case for Starfield, you might want to read up on the major players in the Colony War like the United Colonies and the Freestar Collective, or you might prefer to skip the conflict entirely and set up a quiet outpost somewhere far away from a Starfield revolution.

Starfield Colony War Inspiration

When creating factions, previous Bethesda titles have often drawn on real-world ideologies and historical events. Looking at the overall result of the Colony War, we see that the United Colonies faced off against a colony that refused to bow down to governance from a distant power.

With the Freestar Collective having a heavy Wild-West theme, the Colony War bears a passing resemblance to the American Revolution. Between 1775 and 1783, the British Empire was at war with the Thirteen Colonies. The colonies fought for independence from the empire, and won, much like the Freestar Collective did during the Colony War.

This is only speculation, but the parallels between the Colony War and the American Revolution do have some crossover.

Starfield Colony War mentions

Until Bethesda released the Starfield animated short “Where Hope Is Built”, mentions of the Colony War were few and far between. However, we now know that mechs were used during the conflict, leading to the deaths of many, including the parents of the main character in “Where Hope Is Built.”