Director Todd Howard has recently revealed that Starfield planet exploration was brutal before it got ‘nerfed.’
Howard was recently interviewed on the Game Maker’s Notebook Podcast together with Insomniac Games Founder Ted Price discussed the development of Starfield. When they discussed about the cut content for Starfield, Howard then revealed how punishing planet exploration was before the team finally fine-tuned it to make it more streamlined.
“So the way the environmental damage works in the game, on planets, and your suit, you have resistances to certain types of atmosphere effects, whether that’s radiation or thermal, etc., and that was a pretty complex system – actually, it was very punitive,” Howard revealed. “… And what we did at the end of the day, and it was a complicated system for players to understand, is we just nerfed the hell out of it. It matters only a little bit. It matters more in flavor. The affliction you get is more annoying knowing you have it.”
Howard then revealed that afflictions would be status effects a player would get in the game and will happen when a player gets injured when performing certain actions like spraining an ankle after falling from a great height, getting lung damage from breathing toxic gas, or getting frostbite when being on a cold planet for an extended period.
The game director then revealed that the dev team then gave a solution that they explored. They wanted to offer players the option to have multiple spacesuits. Each of these suits would have different effects that would help protect players from the extreme conditions the planet had.
“We originally wanted where, okay, I have multiple spacesuits. I have one for high-radiation planets, I have one for really cold planets, I have ones for these environments,” Howard said. “And I’m saying it now: people play the game, you don’t think about it that much. Might be something we address going forward, but that was one type of solution there.”
Howard then revealed that Bethesda might address this feature in the future and could add a Hardcore or Survival mode that players could enjoy.