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Starfield DLC roadmap

Is there Starfield DLC on the way, and what story packs, content packs, and cosmetics can we expect to see on a DLC roadmap?

Starfield DLC roadmap

Now that Starfield has been out for quite some time, many players are wondering what Starfield DLC is on the way, when it will be released, and what it might contain.

Bethesda have confirmed that the first expansion for Starfield will be the Starfield Shattered Space story expansion, and even implied that it could arrive in early 2024. So, we’ve pulled together all the available information on what the first expansion is likely to include, and when it will release.

We’ve also looked back on 18 years of Bethesda games and DLC releases to model what Starfield’s DLC roadmap is going to look like, using examples from Fallout 3, Fallout 4, Skyrim, and more.

First Starfield DLC - Starfield Shattered Space story expansion

The first Starfield expansion is the Starfield Shattered Space DLC, and is set to expand upon the game’s story, as well as introduce “new locations, new gear, and much more.”

Judging from the DLC’s name, the first story expansion will focus on the metaphorical or literal shattering of the universe, as has already been hinted at by several pre-existing storylines in Starfield. Two immediate themes come to mind: the shattering of space itself caused by the player’s actions in travelling to parallel worlds, or the shattering of the peace via the re-emergence of the House Va’ruun.

There are already hints that the Grav Drive (the main form of travel used by players and NPCs to explore the Settled Systems) once “shattered space” when they inadvertently destroyed Earth. This destruction can be attributed to Victor Aiza, who met their Starborn counterpart from an alternate dimension and created the Grav Drive despite knowing it would destroy the Earth.

As it is already possible for you to meet your alternate self at the Unity, it’s possible that a similar event will happen in Shattered Space whereupon another version of you calls for help in repairing the shattered multiverse.

Alternatively, the first DLC could take a Fallout 3 Operation Anchorage approach and allow us to see the Earth’s destruction for ourselves, and in so doing flesh out the world’s lore.

As the first story expansion for Starfield, it is highly likely that the first of Starfield’s DLC will expand upon end-game content, or flesh out some of the underdeveloped story elements currently present in Starfield. If the DLC is end-game content, then, much like Fallout 3’s Broken Steel expansion, you will likely need to reach the Starfield ending in order to access the DLC.

Of course, there are many other areas of the world that could be further explored by the first DLC. House Va’ruun, one of the major Starfield factions, barely appears in the base game, and so could well see an appearance in the first DLC. For all the latest theories, check out our Starfield Shattered Space page.

The Starfield Shattered Space release date has not yet been officially announced. However, the first Starfield DLC could arrive on PC and console as early as April 2024, depending on how you read Bethesda’s end of year update which hinted at major new content arriving “early next year.”

While April 2024 might sound incredibly optimistic given how close we are to the end of April 2024, Bethesda have, over 18 year’s worth of DLC, set a familiar pattern with their DLC releases.

Fallout 4 was released in November of 2015, and received its first DLC pack – Automatron – five months later in March 2016.

Fallout 3 released October 2008, and received Operation Anchorage – a short story DLC – four months later in January 2009.

From this pattern alone, we would have expected to see the first Starfield DLC by March 2024. However, perhaps because of a slew of Starfield bugs and the game’s declining player count, it is possible that the DLC has been delayed to afford Bethesda more time to release additional Starfield updates.

As such, Shattered Space could arrive as early as April 2024.

Luckily, those who secured a premium Starfield pre order don’t have to worry about purchasing the first DLC expansion, as they are automatically entitled to it when it does launch.

Second Starfield DLC

Once the first DLC is out of the way, Bethesda will likely return to a familiar release schedule similar to the ones they have employed over the last 18 years. It is highly likely that Starfield will receive at least four to five major updates and expansions over the next two years.

Should Starfield observe a similar DLC release schedule as previous Bethesda properties, the second Starfield DLC could arrive just two months after the first DLC. 

The second DLC pack is likely to be a smaller content update than Shattered Space, mirroring a trend seen with Fallout 4 which received a small expansion to settlement building (very similar to Starfield’s outpost building) after the first story expansion. Given that Starfield outpost building on the whole feels underutilized, it’s quite likely that the second Starfield DLC pack, or a subsequent DLC release, will expand upon this mechanic.

Currently, there isn’t even a quest to help you set up your first outpost, or teach you the basics of resource gathering, outpost research, and module construction (unless you count the scant few basic tooltips). 

If the DLC doesn’t tackle outposts, there are plenty of areas in Starfield that could easily be expanded upon with a DLC release. Redditors have long been crying out for a number of features, from Starfield mechs – which a modder managed to bring to life as a fully-fledged boss monster – to expansions on the House Va’ruun faction, and more. 

Starfield cosmetic DLC

In the past, Bethesda has released mini-DLC packs typically cheaper than larger expansions. These “cosmetic” DLCs have added skins, decals, and higher resolution texture packs in a variety of flavors. At present, Starfield lacks a lot of cosmetics in-game. Though you can heavily customize your ship, you can’t repaint your Starfield armor, guns, or melee weapons. A limited number of skins exist, and were by and large exclusive to the Starfield Constellation Edition (the collector’s edition of the game) and premium pre orders. These skins included an orange wrap for the Cutter tool, and a repaint of the Constellation armor set.

Several legendary weapons do possess a unique design, but overall there is very little variety to choose from in-game. With so few customization options present in the base game, we predict that Bethesda may well flesh out this sparse selection of skins by releasing premium weapon, armor, ship, and even outpost skins. No announcements or leaks have indicated Bethesda is considering this approach, but you can see the developer taking this approach in the past with Fallout 76’s Atom Shop, and Oblivion’s infamous Horse Armor packs.

Many mods already provide a number of cosmetic choices, so hopefully Bethesda will consider making a few of them official, or design a few of their own in-house.

Starfield Creation Kit 2 DLC

Official mod support is due to arrive for Starfield in 2024 with the launch of the newly updated Creation Kit 2. Bethesda announced that the release of the Creation Kit 2 would arrive in early 2024, as part of its end of year update. This Kit is set to provide a host of revamped tools to the modding community, allowing passionate modders outside of Bethesda to design and sell a slew of mini-DLC packages. 

In the hands of the community, the Creation Kit 2 could well revitalize the game in a way and timeframe that Bethesda can’t match. This officially supported platform could add a ton of small features and items to the base game, with everything from custom ship components, to new armor and weapons, and even story expansions.

These “mini-DLCs” will be created by the modding community, and will likely be marketed on Bethesda’s Creation Club storepage. In order to access these officially licensed Starfield mods, players will likely need to purchase and then spent a Starfield premium currency. This setup is already present in both Skyrim and Fallout 4. We can also infer that a Starfield premium currency is in the works thanks to the initial ESRB rating which hinted at microtransactions. 

Starfield DLC roadmap

Bethesda announced a rough roadmap for Starfield updates on December 20, 2023. Numerous small features were slated to be added to the game alongside the first story expansion DLC at a regular pace of “roughly every six weeks.” Bethesda did not provide any specific timelines for exact features on their roadmap, nor state what order the content would arrive in.

However, looking at historically Bethesda DLC release schedules, it is highly likely that the Starfield roadmap will look something like this (assuming Shattered Space does release at the end of April 2024):

  • April 2024 – Starfield story expansion – Shattered Space
  • April/May 2024 – Creation Club support
  • June 2024 – second story expansion pack
  • August 2024 – first cosmetic DLC
  • September 2024 – third story expansion pack

Our timeline is speculative in nature, and Bethesda’s commitment to releasing high quality updates could well delay the release of several DLC packages. As such, we will be back to update our roadmap whenever an announcement is made.

Starfield season pass

At present, Starfield does not have a season pass granting players access to all future DLC. Bethesda did once imply that Starfield would get a season pass, but only if the value of all DLC exceeded $40. While a season pass for Starfield is not currently available, it is worth noting that Fallout 4 did not receive a season pass until March 2016, five months after the game’s initial release. Starfield has been out much longer than that, but it could well still get a season pass in the near future once the first DLC is released.