Starfield players fear for game’s future as player count drops below Skyrim

Souhardya Choudhury
Starfield constellation ship and character

It is no secret that Starfield had a phenomenal launch after Bethesda announced that it even surpassed Fallout 4. However, just after 2 months following its release, Starfield already has fewer players than Skyrim.

Starfield can be considered one of the biggest releases of 2023 due to the immense success it achieved at launch. After its release in September, many players were mesmerized by its enormous world and immense exploration opportunities considering it has thousands of explorable planets.

Even with such features, the game currently has fewer players on Steam than Skyrim, which was released more than 12 years ago. Although Starfield has not been released for PlayStation unlike Skyrim, its Steam statistics alone still fall short of Skyrim.

Redditor ‘MontySucker’ highlighted the dip in players with detailed stats of both the games, while explaining various reasons behind the downfall. Although both were released “by the same company” Skyrim surpassed Starfield on Steam.

The OP mentions that the main reason behind the loss of players is the Xbox Game Pass accessibility. A huge chunk of players played Starfield on Game Pass, which is why there has been a dip in players. This is because people who don’t enjoy it “will simply try other games on Game Pass.”

Although the OP quickly mentions that they do not want to ridicule Starfield, rather discuss this “decline” and what it means for “the game’s future.” They also wonder if Bethesda would be able to support the game “for years to come” as promised.

As of writing, Starfield has 15,950 active players on Steam whereas Skyrim has 18,150. Many feel that a game released only two months ago should not have fewer players than a title from 12 years ago.

Some players feel that Bethesda’s over-investment in “procedurally generated content” instead of “handcrafting” several aspects of the game is the reason for this. Others feel that the devs focused too much on “quality over quantity” in the game.

People resort to complaining about the quests too, as many claim that they have “less soul” and are “rushed.” Many even go as far as calling the exploration and quests “boring and repetitive” in Starfield.

With a DLC already announced for the game, Bethesda might eye that as an opportunity to revive the player base. Although there has been no confirmation about the release date for the expansion, you can expect some reaction from the devs about their current player loss crisis.

For more on Starfield, check out how others think a missing ship feature was a “huge oversight, and how players call its quests “boring.”