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Will Starfield be as buggy as its predecessors?

Fans are worried about whether Starfield will launch with glitches galore!

To say there is a lot of buzz about the upcoming space RPG Starfield would be a bit of a downplay. From renowned Studio Bethesda, the upcoming first person Adventure has been the talk of gamers and journalists alike. However not all chatter has been so positive. A recent Reddit thread has gained traction by asking a very simple but pointed question.

Do you think Starfield will be as buggy or glitchy as other Bethesda titles?

Let’s turn back time a little bit, back to 2011 when the Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim was released to the masses. To anybody in the know, the Elder Scrolls and Fallout series have both been known for more than their story and gameplay. Glitches and exploits run abound in these early titles, to the point to where it was common to say “Elder Scrolls is a perfectly balanced game”.  Some people have made whole careers about digging into Bethesda titles and showing just how broken they are.

A History of shaky starts

The range in which people could accidentally or deliberately break the game has been well documented over the years. One of the most well-known exploits in Skyrim was grabbing a plate and running at a stone wall. Do it just right and you would clip through the wall and access a chest you were not supposed to get early in the game. Other players have used exploits like this in order to Speed Run the game. All you would need to do is search “Skyrim horse glitch” in YouTube and you would find a myriad of tutorials on how to effectively teleport across the map where the horse.

You might be thinking “Sure, a game that’s over 12 years old of course it has some problems”. And while that is fair it is not the only instance of Bethesda quality. Fast forward to 2018 with Fallout 76, the post-apocalyptic MMO attempt. I say attempt because on initial release this game was broken. On top of controversial business practices, 76 suffered from poor audio and visual quality, malfunctioning player models, boss fights that had gone either Invincible or invisible, and the list goes on. 4 years after the fact it is debatable whether they’ve actually fixed any of these issues, despite having a paid service and multiple updates.

Better late than never? Or too little too late?

Ultimately, I feel that to expect Starfield to not be buggy is expecting too much. However, to expect it to be bad might be too harsh. The information age has had a major impact on game development and game journalism as a whole. There is no way that the developers of Starfield do not know that people are still talking about their game, and not in a good way. Back then it was far less likely for people to be heard when it comes to their opinions of anything. But we all remember No Man’s Sky, a game that started similarly terrible but eventually became something great. And it didn’t need press or an early release, it needed time.

Another potential factor in the development of Starfield lies not in Bethesda, but in Microsoft. In 2021 the supergiant company bought a series of game studios, and Bethesda was one of them. I remember talking to a friend when this happened, and he honestly said it best.

“Microsoft owns Bethesda now. They’re not going to let Todd Howard Run free like he used to.”

Is this the dark timeline for the best case scenario being the mega Corporation buying the game studio? Who knows. Regardless, Starfield is on the horizon. And we will have our answers soon enough.

Starfield is set to release on September 6 2023, for Xbox Series X/S and PC.

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