The biggest Starfield showcase landed in June 2023, and Starfield Direct kept its 'deep dive' promise for Bethesda's biggest game ever.
2023’s Starfield showcase gave us a behind-the-scenes peak at Bethesda’s upcoming sci-fi RPG. This showcase – Starfield Direct – offers us more gameplay footage, story details, and give us a greater understanding of this intergalactic caper. So, check out our roundup below.
What we learned from Starfield direct
The Starfield direct did not disappoint, with Todd Howard and his crew of developers sharing almost an hour of updates and new information. So, below we’ve got a roundup of all the important bits, from a Constellation Collector’s Edition to what to expect from the story.
Before talking about quests, Howard did a general introduction to explain the concepts behind Starfield. He reminded us that Starfield is ”still a Bethesda RPG through and through”, further exciting us Fallout and Elder Scrolls fans.
So, the basics. We saw that first-person and third-person perspective is still a choice when you explore the Settled System, with the many Starfield planets looking great in both viewpoints. We also got a quick look at the looting system, as well as the data menu, your hub for skills, inventory, and ships. Vasco got an on-screen moment, too, with Howard revealing the robot can learn your name.
Starfield Direct design choices
Looking at the designs behind the game, one developer described the Starfield ships and tech as ‘NASA-punk’, which was Bethesda’s way of making futuristic technology look realisitc and grounded. Howard also gave us a glimpse at the Starfield systems maps, detailing how to find planets with quests and populations versus those with resources and little life.
Not wanting to waste any screen time, the Spacefarer arrived in Starfield’s biggest city, New Atlantis. Bethesda quickly stated that New Atlantis is the largest settlement they have ever created. This is the home of Constellation, one of the many Starfield factions you encounter on your trip.
According to Bethesda, the people of New Atlantis consider themselves to value law, discipline, and the legacy of humanity above all else. Things seem quite different in Freestar Collective space, far away from the United Colonies, where things have much more of a Wild West vibe. We then went on to Neon, another very different location, where “if you have morality issues, [there] isn’t [a] job for you”.
Starfield Direct character creation
After touching on the quests you have coming in space, the team at Bethesda turned to concentrate on the Starfield character creation system. In the trailer, you can see Bethesda cycling through a wide range of character customization options, and further exploring how backgrounds, skills, and traits will influence your character.
Speaking of skills, that’s what the Starfield Direct showcase turned to next, with in-depth information on how Bethesda have reworked their classic skills system for Starfield. We saw the details for multiple new skills and how to earn them, so be sure to read up on our Starfield skills page before the Starfield release date or Early Access.
Starfield Direct ship customization
We didn’t learn too much we didn’t know from our Starfield ships guide, but the Starfield showcase did put an emphasis on just how much customization is possible. You’ll need to head to a spaceport and interact with a vendor to purchase parts, but you can be as wildly creative as you like; one particularly wacky ship to take off from the spaceport in the showcase was a Transformer-inspired ship. We also saw a ton of new color options for your ship’s paint job, and a really useful feature which allows you to swap out and upgrade parts rather than removing them from your ship first.
The space flight section is where the Starfield showcase really started to offer some interesting fresh information, with the team confirming you can commit some space piracy and board an enemy vessel to claim it for your fleet. Yes, fleet. It’s not just one ship you need to look after here, but apparently many.
Starfield Direct companions and NPCs
Sarah Morgan, a key member of the Constellation crew, is confirmed as one of the Starfield companions, with the developers demonstrating you can have numerous companions aboard your ship and serving as crew. You can also pick up less famous crew members from random encounters, quests, and a whole host of activities.
Starfield Direct merchandise
In a break from the gameplay, Howard showed us the Starfield collector’s edition which came with a Starfield Constellation Edition watch, Starfield controller, and the Starfield headset. If you’re a Bethesda collector, you’re going to want to check them out. The offerings appeared to be really high quality, with the Constellation-themed case for the Starfield watch having an intricate locking mechanism inspired by real-life NASA containers.
Starfield Direct outposts and exploration
Before ending with outposts and combat, some of Bethesda’s designers shared the inspirations behind the exploration system, with one saying “even if you and your friends visit the same planet, you will have a different story to tell”. Words don’t really do the scale of what we saw in terms of locations and monsters, so if you’re excited to explore, be sure to rewatch the showcase and head to the 34-minute mark.
There was a little more detail relating to your future Starfied outpost, showcasing the top-down ‘fly mode’ when designing your own space habitats.
To round out the Starfield showcase, the Bethesda team turned to an old favorite: combat. First, we saw some of the Starfield weapons and what adjustments you can make to them with everything from silencers to expanded magazines. We also saw the variety of weapons on offer: pistols, submachine guns, laser weapons, heavy weapons, grenades, and melee weapons.
How to re-watch Starfield Direct
You can watch Starfield Direct on a variety of Xbox social media channels, including YouTube.
Here’s a list of where you can watch Starfield Direct live: