Article: Is Starfield Really Just Elder Scrolls in Space?

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Some, even Todd Howard himself, have stated that Starfield is Elder Scrolls in space. That’s a statement that has divided people as to whether the game is even worth picking up. So, is this accurate? And if it is, what does that really mean? Well, here is a quick summary to consider.

A New IP with an RPG Core

Being Bethesda’s first original intellectual property in over 25 years, there are big things riding on Starfield. This is made even more important as it is anticipated to be a console seller for the Xbox Series X, as it doesn’t have a first-party games lineup that can match the PlayStation 5 as of yet. Heavily influenced by an old game of the same name, Starfield retains a solid RPG based on TTRPG games like the ones enjoyed by millions of people all over the world.

Familiar and New Ways to Play

Starfield does indeed give you a delightful RPG experience that can be as shallow or as deep as you want it to be. Some early reports suggest there are people who are heavily RPGing the game and haven’t even touched the story. Common ways to play include space police patrol, pirating, and setting up interstellar business. Yet the richness of the game’s RPG elements shouldn’t put you off as this is a Bethesda game at heart, with a space sim face on it.

Elder Scrolls in Space is Fairly Accurate

Being a Bethesda game that vaguely touches on being a space simulator, Starfield is pretty much Elder Scrolls in space, or indeed, Fallout 3, given the science fiction elements of the game. But if you have ever played any recent games from either series, then you know this isn’t exactly a bad thing, as Skyrim is still selling well and is considered one of the best games ever made. And if you look really hard, you will spot Elder Scrolls easter eggs all over the place.

Overpromising and Under Delivery?

Some companies can only blame so much on the pandemic. Indeed, Starfield was delayed a few times because of Covid. But work began a long time ago, and the team has had a lot of time to iron out bugs. This is evident in that the game is very stable, at least on Xbox. But of the 1000-plus planets, there are a handful of “cities,” most leaving a lot to be desired. And then there are game design choices that make no sense, such as the shared ship cargo inventory.

Is There a Future for Starfield

Given the cost of over $540 million, including marketing, the hype train for Starfield had to be in overdrive to recover the budget. And reports indicate the game has succeeded, with sales placing it as the fifth largest launch this year. However, we must take into account that there are many non-recorded sales for Xbox Game Pass subscribers, who account for a large portion of the user base. But the future is bright, given Bethesda’s early estimates of over 6 million.


Elder Scrolls in Space sounds like a great thing, and it is. Starfield released to the biggest hype around any game in history, and while it’s a new IP, it feels familiar, bold, and exciting all in one.