It’s been a couple of weeks since Starfield officially launched for everyone on PC and Xbox consoles. The reviews are high, but opinions are still all over the place. It is not surprising given that Bethesda RPGs often come with a lot of stigma.



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Longtime fans also have expectations after being lost in the worlds of Fallout and The Elder Scrolls franchises for decades. The reviews and personal thoughts on Starfield aren’t important right now though. It’s all about guidance because it should come as no surprise to learn that the game is complicated. These tips may help those still stuck in the early moments of the game or those who are about to take their first big leap into space.

7 Backgrounds And Traits

The traits menu in Starfield

Besides character customization for the face and body, Starfield offers more options for gameplay mechanics than any other Bethesda game. First, players can pick a Background that will grant the character three skills. For example, Beast Hunters will unlock Fitness, Ballistics, and Gastronomy. There are no downsides to Backgrounds, unlike Traits in Starfield.

Alien DNA, for example, is a Trait that will give characters more health and oxygen but healing items will do less. Players can pick three Traits or forgo them altogether, which is probably the wisest option. For choosing a Background, players shouldn’t think about it too much and they should go with their gut.

6 Overwhelmed? Try Very Easy

The difficulty menu in Starfield

Bethesda games like Fallout 3 or The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim have difficulty levels. Starfield does too with the lowest setting being Very Easy. Of these three games in particular, the Very Easy setting in Starfield is the most lenient meaning that even the most casual player can get into the game.

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This should be good to know because all of the press leading up to the game has been a bit overwhelming. There is so much to Starfield that it can be daunting. If figuring everything out is too much for players, then they shouldn’t be afraid to utilize the Very Easy option. Also, as far as tips for the settings go, be sure to follow the ABS guideline as in Always Be Saving. Glitches are rare, but they will happen and a well-placed manual save can help alleviate potential headaches.

5 Follow The Storyline Through Into The Unknown

The Powers menu in Starfield

This game is huge with hundreds of planets and moons to explore. The story content is relatively short though with most players reporting in around the twenty to twenty-five hour mark. Because it’s so short relative to the overall experience, it’s good to recommend playing through the entire story first.

After all is said and done, players should then go back for side missions and exploration exercises. One of these reasons is because the story unlocks Powers in Starfield. Yes, this game does have magic-like abilities which will unlock through an early story quest called “Into The Unknown.” This is where players will meet Vladimir who will give players power-based missions as well as Andreja who can follow players around as a party member.

4 Things To Buy And Sell

A shop menu in Starfield

Selling items is just as troublesome as other Bethesda games because vendors only have a set amount of currency until it replenishes itself. If stores run out of money, players can store things at The Lodge, or in the ship’s cargo. Also, in the field, don’t forget to use companions as pack mules. Their space isn’t infinite but they “love” carrying your unwanted items.

As far as buying stuff goes, players should always grab any medical supplies that a vendor has. Med Packs are the big item that heal HP but there are a lot of medicines that cure specific diseases too. Statue effects are represented with a symbol and color and the corresponding medicine has that identification as well. For example, Antibiotics is purple in color and this drug can cure basic afflictions. Digipicks for lock-picking should also be bought in Starfield whenever they appear in a shop.

3 Great Early Skills

Boost jumping in Starfield

Leveling up will earn players a skill point to spend on one of the fields in the character menu. There is a nauseating amount and it’s hard to know what to invest in early. That’s why skill points in Starfield should be sat on until an absolute crisis pops up.

There are two exceptions as these skills should be purchased ASAP if the Background bonuses didn’t already gift them. One, a point in Security will allow players to access a higher level of lock-picking for doors and computers. More importantly, it will build points to auto-solve puzzles. Two, put a point into Boost Pack Training which will allow players to fly or jump higher depending on what pack they have equipped.

2 Make Use Of Your Favorites

The quick weapons menu in Starfield

There are a lot of mechanics to learn in the game and some of them are not explained well or at all. For example, it seems like a lot of work to go into the menu every time players want to change a weapon in Starfield. There is no weapon wheel set up or a quick exchange between recent weapons.

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Players can, however, click a button on both weapons and items to add them to their favorites. Favorite pieces can be added to a quick menu accessible on the D-Pad of the controller. This should save a lot of time in the menus.

1 Your Scanner Shows The Way

Scanning in Starfield

Another mechanic that is not well-detailed in Starfield is the scanner. The left bumper on the Xbox controller has two functions. Holding it down will create a light while holding it down again will shut the light off. One click will bring up the scanner, which can quite literally scan items, people, monsters, locations, and so on.

It will also show players the exact route to their destination if they have a mission highlighted in the menu. It’s like the guidance system in Dead Space which perfected the mechanic back in 2008. Another cool thing about the scanner is that it can create a shortcut to Photo Mode to create some truly amazing screenshots.

Starfield was released on September 6, 2023 and is available on PC and Xbox Series X.

MORE: Starfield: Complete Star Map

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