So you liked Skyrim. Will you like Starfield?

Here are my 100% spoiler-free Starfield thoughts, after a long weekend of playing it every chance I got (40 hours in my old-person-with-family case), using only Skyrim words.

This is a really fun game, which also has really low discoverability of features and content. I know this will sound like “you just gotta watch the first season and then it’s good”, but, yeah. If you are bored or confused on what to do, you probably don’t understand the game yet - and Bethesda does not do you any favors here.

Despite Bethesda not wanting people to say so, it is Space Skyrim. That’s a good thing, to me. If you liked Skyrim, you will love this game. But, it’s a leap of faith, because I think it will take a while to even understand the game. It’s just so much.

What did you like about Skyrim? Let’s review what’s here without spoiling any of it.

If you want more specific information about these, feel free to DM me at Raineer. Happy to share more details.

Dungeons: Yep, as many as you want, and randomly generated. Fun loot exists, too.

Thieves Guild: Yup, it exists in another form. Anymore would be spoilers. You’ll know it when you start it, though.

Stealth: Yup. Not as game-breaking as Skyrim, but it still helps if you want it. “Stealth archer” doesn’t really exist.

Crazy aggressive combat: This addresses one of Skyrim’s sins. It was never tuned well in Skyrim to go in guns-blazing. That build works here, and it’s fun if you want to play that way.

Pickpocketing: Yup. Good money. Wholly unrelated fact: F5 and F9 still exist.

Story: I like it so far. Story is found in a lot of places, and I don’t know them all, yet. I care about the story. The game does a good job of steeping you in it. The racism is less overt than Skyrim.

Random-NPC-sidequests: I think these are more interesting than in Skyrim. I care about the random NPCs sprinkled throughout the game.

Cities: Very much tied to the story and NPCs. The ‘personality’ of the cities varies more than Skyrim’s do. That’s a good thing.

Silly bugs: They are here. They aren’t as game-breaking as Skyrim, and there’s certainly less of them. But, they are still funny.

Homestead: Already here, don’t need to wait for DLC. And it comes in several forms, depending on what benefits you are looking for. Much more functional than in Skyrim, too. However, if you’re looking to home-build like in FFXIV or Sims, this isn’t at all what you are looking for.

Fast Travel: Largely the same, though I could nitpick some specific parts of it. Also - it’s not nearly discoverable enough. It takes a while for you to realize it’s much better than you think, and works a lot of ways you wouldn’t initially guess. I do agree that using fast travel sometimes skips over genuinely fun moments in the game.

Horse: I don’t know if we have a spoiler-free horse analogue. Conveyance is fairly reliable. I am unable to scale sheer cliffs.

Inventory: Meh. Personal inventory sucks in every game. Luckily overall storage scales well and is farmable. This might not be obvious, either.

I did find a sweet roll about 15 minutes into my playthrough. This thrilled me. I haven’t seen one since. I wish I took a screenshot.

The best part of all of this is most everything above is optional to interact with. Just do whatever you want, in whatever order. I think many will struggle because the game is so large. You can do whatever you want, anytime. That’s a tall order when you’re not really given guidance to understand the game.