Starfield Dev Explains How Game's 1,000 Planets Work

Starfield developer Bethesda has explained how it has managed to create a game with 1,000 planets and how they will work within the game. During the Xbox and Bethesda showcase, Bethesda revealed a bunch of gameplay and details for Starfield. The game will allow players to truly experience a rich sci-fi world, where they explore tons of planets and interact with various life forms. It's currently shaping up to be one of Bethesda's most ambitious games, something that will likely excite those who are still playing games like Skyrim to this day. With that said, its ambition caught some fans off-guard as it's not just another big Bethesda RPG, it's one with up to 1,000 explorable planets.

Naturally, many had flashbacks to the promises of No Man's Sky and quickly feared what Starfield could be if it doesn't deliver on this promise. In an interview with IGN, Starfield director Todd Howard addressed how they created all of the planets and how they will work. As many assumed, many planets will be created using procedural generation, something Howard reaffirmed fans that Bethesda has immense experience with. The developer has used procedural generation to create quests and landscapes in games like Skyrim, so it's not a new concept to the developer. Howard also went on to explain that they have more hand-crafted content in Starfield than any of their other games. As for how it all works within the context of the game, Todd Howard noted that they made 1,000 planets so they could give players more freedom, even if that means there isn't as much to do on some planets as there is for others.

"We're also careful to let you know that's what [that procedural content] is," said Howard. "So if you look at space, you know there are a lot of ice balls in space, so that was one of our big design considerations on this game is, 'What's fun about an ice ball?' And it's OK sometimes if ice balls aren't- it is what it is. We'd rather have them and say yes to you, 'Hey, you can land on this.' Here are the resources, you can survey it, and then you can land and spend ten minutes there and be like, 'OK, now I'm going to leave and go back to the other planet that has all this other content on it, and I'm going to follow this questline.'"

Bethesda plans to detail its expansive open-world in Starfield in the coming months, which should shine more of a light in how detailed all of these planets really are. It sounds like a lot of these planets will be more supplemental whereas there will be other planets that are far more detailed and traditional to other Bethesda worlds. Only time will tell if Bethesda can succeed at what it's aspiring to accomplish, but it certainly sounds like a cool idea on paper.

Starfield is coming to Xbox Series X|S and PC in 2023. What do you think of Bethesda's promise of 1,000 planets? Let me know in the comments below or hit me up on Twitter @Cade_Onder.