Starfield Leak Hints at Earlier Version Being More Elaborate and Challenging

A player of Starfield uncovers evidence of intricate exploration and survival elements that were eliminated in the game's development, hidden within the game's files.

Starfield: The Game That Could Have Been

Uncovering the secrets of Starfield’s development


A recent datamine has shed light on the development history of Starfield, revealing that the game was once far more complex and hardcore than its current iteration. It seems that numerous space travel mechanics were cut prior to launch, leaving fans with a mixed bag of feelings about the game. In this article, we’ll dive deeper into the details of the datamine, discuss the lukewarm reception to Starfield’s exploration loop, and explore what could have been.

The Cut Mechanics

When it comes to game development, sometimes tough decisions need to be made. The datamined information suggests that Starfield’s development journey was no exception. It appears that features such as fuel consumption and interstellar trade were once integral parts of the game’s space travel system. The abandoned mechanics, discovered in Starfield’s old star map, point to a more survival-focused experience that didn’t make it into the final release. While we can’t deny that the current version of Starfield is enjoyable, it’s hard not to wonder what the game could have been with these additional elements.

Lukewarm Reception

Despite its initial commercial success, Starfield hasn’t received the overwhelmingly positive response that Bethesda’s previous titles like Skyrim or Fallout 4 did. The exploration loop, a key aspect of the game, has been met with mixed reviews. While the ship builder feature has been praised, players have criticized the repetitive gameplay and un-immersive elements present when traversing the barren planets of the Settled Systems. Loading screens and a lackluster user interface have also been sources of frustration. It’s clear that some fans expected more from Starfield, given Bethesda’s track record.

What Could Have Been

The discovery of Starfield’s old star map offers a glimpse into the game’s original vision. The map indicates that star systems in the game were meant to have distinctive traits and hazards for players to contend with. Hazardous conditions such as solar radiation and micrometeoroids could have made space travel a challenging and immersive experience. Additionally, the map revealed interesting details, like Leviathan IV being a mineral-rich system used by pirates to stash their valuables. While these discarded features may have been removed for good reason, their inclusion could have added depth and atmosphere to the Settled Systems.

The Watered-Down Version?

Bethesda has stated that it took seven years of development for Starfield to become fun to play, implying that the cut mechanics were removed for the sake of gameplay balance. However, some players argue that the final version feels watered down compared to the original vision. The economy in Starfield is static, fuel consumption is nonexistent, and space hazards are absent. While this ensures a stable gameplay loop, it also leaves some players yearning for the more challenging and immersive experience hinted at by the datamined information.

What Lies Ahead

Bethesda hasn’t given up on Starfield just yet. A major update is expected in February 2024, with bug fixes being the primary focus. However, the developers have also teased a “new way to travel” coming in the first half of 2024. Will these cut features make their long-awaited reappearance? Only time will tell. In the meantime, fans eagerly anticipate what Bethesda has in store for the future of Starfield.

Q&A: Answering Your Burning Questions About Starfield

Q: Are there any other cut features or mechanics that we don’t know about yet? A: While the datamine has provided valuable insight into some cut mechanics, there may still be more surprises waiting to be discovered. Bethesda has been tight-lipped about additional features, so we’ll have to wait and see if any more hidden gems come to light.

Q: Will the upcoming big update add the cut mechanics back into the game? A: Bethesda has not confirmed whether the cut mechanics will be reintroduced in the upcoming big update. The focus of the update seems to be bug fixes, but they have teased a “new way to travel.” We can only speculate on what this might entail.

Q: How has Bethesda responded to the lukewarm reception to Starfield? A: Bethesda is known for its commitment to post-launch support. They have acknowledged the lukewarm reception and are actively working on addressing player concerns. The upcoming update is evidence of their dedication to improving the game and listening to fan feedback.

Reference List

  1. Starfield’s recent rating on Steam
  2. Procedural generation in Starfield
  3. Starfield’s old star map
  4. Starfield’s economy discussion
  5. Latest Starfield update and upcoming features

Conclusion: Share the Journey

Starfield may not have turned out exactly as some players had hoped, but it’s important to appreciate the game for what it is while keeping an eye on its potential future improvements. As we eagerly await the big update in February 2024, let’s continue to share our feedback and thoughts on social media. Together, we can help shape the future of Starfield and make it the game we all dreamt it could be.

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