From Undercover Ops to Cosmic Quests, New Starfield Details Revealed

Fans eagerly awaiting the release of Starfield, the expansive space RPG from Bethesda, have been treated to a treasure trove of new details straight from the developers. In a candid Q&A conversation, Will and Emil dished out the intricacies and inspirations that are shaping the game.

Starfield boasts multifaceted storylines where players are tangled in a web of political and moral decisions. Will highlighted a compelling detail: during the Crimson Fleet arc, players have the thrilling option to act undercover for the United Colonies, mirroring plot twists reminiscent of Donnie Brasco. This choice will determine your loyalties – will it be the Fleet or the UC SysDef?

Can you venture through the vastness of space without resorting to violence? Perhaps. The game introduces a Speech Challenge feature, a nod to fans who enjoy diplomatic gameplay. However, Emil hints that while it can be an asset, avoiding combat entirely might be challenging.

In Starfield, spirituality isn’t bound by gravity. Three unique religions – the cosmic-seeking Sanctum Universum, the enigmatic Enlightened, and the lore-rich House Va’ruun – offer players a deeper dive into the societal constructs of the game’s universe.

In short, this is what you can do in Starfield (if you wish to find all the questions and answers, visit the Starfieldwiki):

Can we buy houses or property in main cities?

  • Will: Yep! There’s housing in different cities that the player can get. Some you have to purchase and some are rewards for specific quests.
  • Emil: Sure can! You can purchase a dwelling in all the major cities in the game. And there’s at least one that you get specifically for completing… something. 😊

Will there be a jail system if we committed crimes?

  • Will: Yes, you can elect to go to jail or pay a fine when you’re arrested (or even resist arrest and try to escape).
  • Emil: Yup. The Settled Systems is more like Skyrim than Fallout 4’s Commonwealth in that regard. Ya bancha criminals! There’s civilization, there’s government, and there are laws. And in a couple cases, we actually explore the themes of crime and punishment in our futuristic universe.

How will the smuggling cargo system work? Can we hide it somewhere on the ship and sell it for more currency later?

  • Will: Certain items are considered “Contraband” and you’ll need to smuggle them past security ships that are in orbit of major settlements.
  • Emil: There are specific items that are considered Contraband, meaning they’re pretty much illegal everywhere. And yes, you can hide them using special ship modules you can purchase. So, you know, don’t get caught with those harvested organs. The economy is fixed, but prices of bought and sold good can change based on the Skills you choose.

Can you be a double agent in the game? For example, if you join the United Colonies, can you also join the Crimson Fleet and give the United Colonies information? And what factions have that feature if they do?

  • Will: All of the playable factions can be completed independently. The Crimson Fleet storyline does feature you being an undercover agent inside the Fleet on behalf of UC SysDef (a specific military branch of the United Colonies), but whether you betray the Fleet or UC SysDef is a choice you will get to make.
  • Emil: Ha! That is exactly what you can do – infiltrate the Crimson Fleet for UC SysDef! It’s specific to that questline. In the studio, I have been (half-jokingly) accused of referencing movies that some folks have never seen, because I’m old. So with this particular plotline, the inspiration was very much the movie Donnie Brasco, which is the true story of an FBI agent who infiltrates the mafia. HOW FAR WILL YOU GO?! I don’t really want to spoil anything, so all I’ll say is, you have specific roles/jobs/missions in the faction questlines. The Freestar Collective and United Colonies are giant organizations, and the work you do for them is important. But it’s not like you gain complete control of those factions at the end of those questlines. As for whether or not the UC will be violently angry with you if you ultimately take the Crimson Fleet’s side, yeah, they ain’t happy. lol

How many companions total will we be able to recruit?

  • Will: There are over 20 named characters who can join your crew. Four of them are from Constellation and have the most story and interaction with the player, but all of the named characters have their own backgrounds and can follow you around (and carry your stuff).
  • Emil: Over 20 total, and we really focused on the members of Constellation. What Will said. lol. When we first began Starfield pre-production, we looked back at our previous games, and realized how popular and effective the companions were. So they were a big priority for us, and we really wanted to tie them directly to the main quest. There are some really big moments with them specifically. I should also mention that our companion voice cast is amazing. We haven’t released the list yet, but you can be sure there are a lot of talented actors bringing those characters to life. (Same for Constellation in general). Oh, in addition to the companions, you can also hire generic crewmembers to work at your outpost or on your ship

When we assign crew members to work at outposts, do we have to pay them salaries?

  • Will: Yep. One time payment (that you can use the speech challenge game to negotiate over. Some traits also affect the cost)
  • Emil: You just pay them once. We actually experimented with paying them regular salaries, but ultimately decided to just have the one cost up front. There’s a lot to do in Starfield, and we wanted to minimize what the player had to constantly keep track of.

What are some favorite small details in Starfield to add to the immersion?

  • Will: I look really closely at all our outfits. You can see seems, materials, especially on the spacesuits (Constellation members have patches on their spacesuits and they’re tied to what skills they have). We also love buttons. There’s a lot of buttons.
  • Emil: I think what I really love is that, although humans are living in space, and our aesthetic is very much “NASApunk,” this is a very lived-in universe. And you can see it everywhere. You know, everyone loves the sandwiches. But it’s the books that are lying around, the notes on bulletin boards, the environmental storytelling that our level designers and world artists are so good at. So all, I’m a slow typer, and somewhat typo obsessed… Totally love the workj from our voice actors, too. And the music. And sound effects. And clothes. lol. Buttons! We do love our buttons. Oh, I do want to mention this, if you haven’t heard about it. Adam Savage and team are building a filming model of the Frontier: And that ship, man. And all the ships – the level of detail is insane.

Whether you’re a lone wolf or a leader, the game doesn’t leave you entirely isolated in space. Over 20 potential companions can join your journey, each bringing their distinct flair, history, and skills. Their significance isn’t just cosmetic; they’re vital to the game’s primary questline, and players can utilize their skills in various tasks.

The cosmos of Starfield isn’t borne from the ether. Will’s penchant for history, drawn from podcasts like Hardcore History, and Emil’s love for classic sci-fi tales, has molded the game’s universe. From Star Wars to Arthur C. Clarke, the game is a love letter to many sci-fi and historical sources.

Bethesda’s renowned for its attention to detail, and Starfield seems to be no exception. Emil gave us a taste, hinting at meticulously designed spacesuits, in-game buttons galore, and environmental storytelling that fans of the genre will surely appreciate.

The presence of gargantuan mechs, remnants from the Colony War, offers players a visual treat and a dive into the game’s historical backdrop. Though they aren’t pilotable, their sheer presence promises profound lore implications.

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Amie Gammons

A huge fan of puzzlers. Would love to experience the world and takedown on every single and upcoming game title. In the free time love to sing, follow recent game rumors and try to decrypt them in the best possible way.

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