The Game Slush Pile

Starfield: Bethesda’s Fanboy Bait!

Starfield is an xbox game. What are you doing talking about it it here? Well, I put 43 hours into it, I think I have a pretty good gist of the game. Plus, I need traffic, and this probably will bring it! And honestly, my opinion is that Starfield is not game of the year, not even close. Both IGN and Gamespot gave Starfield a 7, were they wrong? I don’t think they were, . But that didn’t stop Xbox fanboys from attacking them because they didn’t give a nine or ten. Fanboys will proclaim it game of the century, a Bethesda masterpiece of epic proportions. Starfield is the Xbox exclusive Xbox needed to beat Playstation. And that is just what Bethesda intended.

Yesterday, at literal random, I picked up a marketing book on Kindle called All Marketers are Liars. The central thesis is that marketing is not about the product, it’s about selling a story about the product. People buy products based on how they feel, not actual facts. For example, take Wonder Bread. It is bland white bread. On their website, you will see nothing about its taste and nutritional value. Instead, its all about how its been America’s favorite bread for 80 years. If its been around that long, it must be good! It is not, but that’s beside the point. The bread is sold based on a feeling, not facts.

The Starfield Direct

Bethesda sold Starfield based on feelings, not fact. And this is apparent in the 45-minute deep dive video. From the first words, Todd Howard is invoking player’s nostalgia for Elder Scrolls and Fallout. This is Bethesda first new IP in 25 years, and it has the same sense of wonderment and endless possibilities. The joy of Elder Scrolls and Fallout is picking a direction and walking around and finding cool stuff. Except Starfield is missing that. You land on a planet, pick a direction, and find copy pasted things. Like I found a civilian outpost on Earth’s Moon. I got a quest to rescue a guy in a cave that was attack by wildlife on the moon. Except there is no wildlife on the moon. It was a generic copy and paste mission and outpost. Not to mention most the traveling you will do will be via maps and menus.

They put mechs, but we can’t pilot them.

Oh it goes on. Later they’ll talk about New Atlantis, their largest and liveliest city ever. Oh its large, but its divided into several zones connected by tram-ride or elevator. However, despite all the people walking around, they have the life of an NPC in an ancient MMO called City of Heroes. none. Solitude, the Capital of Skyrim, was two streets. But there was more life in those two streets than all of New Atlantis. Everyone felt like a character, plus, you could rob stores if you wanted. You can’t in Starfield. Plus, there are exactly 4 big cities in Starfield: New Atlantis, Akila City, Neon and The Key. There are about 5 minor settlements: Cydonia, Red Mile, New Homestead, Paradiso and Hopetown. Skyrim has the seven holds, plus all those minor settlements scattered everywhere. Granted, the cities are bigger than in Skyrim, but in some ways, I feel there’s far less to do, but that’s just me.

Where’s the toilet seat?

The wrath of fanboys

Now I’m not going to call anyone in particular out, as to not start a flame war, you know who you are. I’m talking about the console warriors who proclaim Starfield the second coming, and those who don’t like it are Sony fanboys with axes to grind. I own an Xbox, Xbox 360, and a Series X. I have nearly 500 Xbox games spanning all 4 Xbox generations. I own physical copies of Morrowind, Oblivion and Skyrim, as well as Fallout 3/NV/4. I am the farthest thing from a Sony fanboy with an axe to grind, but I think Starfield is a 7.5, at most. It is not a perfect game. It has serious flaws. Does it have good points? it sure does. For example, certain quests are amazing(High Price to Pay), and the 4 big cities are each distinct with their own flavor. But don’t sit here and lie to me and tell me its perfect and if I don’t like it I have a problem. To quote Judge Judy, “Don’t piss on my leg and tell me its raining.”

Little details are nice!

Bethesda sold an idea, that Starfield was something revolutionary. It’s not. Current No Man’s Sky does many of the same things with a fraction of the team and budget.Plus, you can fly from space to surface in NMS, but you can’t in Starfield. Console warriors are going to console war, but Starfield is not a nine or a ten at present, and that is my opinion to have. Bethesda sold an Idea, and the fanboys bought it, hook, line and sinker. The kicker, there was very little lying outside of some hyperbole in the direct. They showed most of what there was in the game, and very little outside, because there was none.

In the end, what I am saying is that certain people need to wake up and realize that they were sold an idea, not an actual game. They’re enjoying Starfield to the point of calling it a masterpiece because they want to enjoy it to that point. They needed a win, so they got a win. And that is fine. But people shouldn’t hate on those who have differing opinions, because they might just be on to something.

  • Goupie
    September 12, 2023

    Wow. A nice, same, non-overly biased review of the game!

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