Bethesda is Doing What It Is Known For


While both Cyberpunk 2077 and Starfield are first-person action role-playing games, they try to accomplish very different things. Despite this, the game developed by CD Projekt Red is being used to highlight how the one developed by Bethesda can feel and look dated at times.

Commenting on an X/Twitter thread saying that the Creation Engine is to blame for how dated Starfield feels, Cyberpunk 2077 senior quest designer Patrick K. Mills provided some interesting insights, highlighting how the way Starfield handles cinematics is not due to the engine but tools and design. While Starfield does feature some scenes that are staged in a more refined way, the vast majority of them feature a lot of different variables due to the vast amount of freedom the game provides and to create similar scenes with the same cinematic feel as Cyberpunk 2077 taking all the variables into account would have taken Bethesda forever, as CDPR required literal years to create every single major scene for the game. Instead of going for a more cinematic feel, the Starfield developer continued to do what they are known for and are very good at, as not every feature in every game can be executed at the same level as the best in that field. Developers ultimately have to make choices and decide how their resources have to be used to achieve their goals for their titles.

As the Cyberpunk 2077 senior quest designer mentioned, Bethesda has never been known to develop cinematic RPGs, so no one should have been surprised to see them continue to focus on player freedom in Starfield. CDPR, on the other hand, improved its cinematic approach to the highest level with the Phantom Liberty expansion, which offers one of the most compelling narratives seen in recent times, as highlighted by Alessio in his review.

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