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Starfield will let you explore over 1,000 planets — is it too big for its own good?

Bethesda finally gave us a first look at its highly anticipated space-based action RPG Starfield at the Xbox and Bethesda Game Showcase, offering a taste of how much exploring there is to do — over 100 solar systems.

Set to arrive in 2023, Starfield is Bethesda’s next big venture that isn’t Fallout or Skyrim. There’s expansive character creation, the ability to create your own outposts and build spaceships, select your own crew members, along with plenty of hostile aliens and space pirates to deal with.

There’s a lot to enjoy in the official gameplay reveal, and director Todd Howard gave us a hint of just how big the game is: ginormous. There are over 100 solar systems with over 1,000 planets to explore. Not just one random city, the whole planet. As Howard shows as an example, you can in the city of Atlantis on planet Jemison, but also explore “anywhere on the planet.” That’s a lot to take in. 

“From barren but resource-heavy ice balls, to Goldilocks planets with life. And not just this system, but over 100 systems. Over 1,000 planets, all open for you to explore,” Howard says. Sounds an awful lot like No Man’s Sky, but it also sounds like an overwhelming amount of time-consuming exploration.  

Don’t get me wrong, I’m very excited for everything to come in Starfield. For a game this big, it looks amazing, And the freedom to become your own kind of space explorer while you go about interacting with a slew of characters from different factions — like the UCC or Crimson Fleet — is exactly the amount of Fallout and Skyrim I’m looking for. But on over 1,000 planets? It’s intimidating. 

Exploration with purpose 

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