During June’s Xbox Showcase, we were treated to a 45 minute deep dive into Starfield. However, Starfield is only shooting for 30fps on Xbox consoles and Xbox boss, Phil Spencer, says that this is a “creative choice” the developers have made.
Moments after the Xbox Showcase, Bethesda confirmed that Starfield will run at 4K/ 30fps on Xbox Series X and 1440p/ 30fps on Xbox Series S. This left many fans more worried than excited to put on their astronaut suit and journey into the unknown.
Phil Spencer says that Starfield at 30fps is not a platform issue
In an interview with Giant Bomb, Spencer explains:
“At some point, not to get all geeky about it, but there’s render time per-frame and teams can either want to go horizontal or go kind of deep on a frame, and it’s a creative choice. We obviously have games that are running at 4K/60 on the platform. It’s not a platform issue, it’s a creative decision. I trust the decisions Bethesda Game Studios makes, and I trust what I’m playing.”
“I don’t ever want us to turn playing games into a math exercise… I’m not saying that 60[FPS] or resolution don’t impact what you play, but I don’t think we want that to turn into an Excel thing. I think you want to give the creatives the tools to make the best decisions, and the game will be what it is. I think Starfield’s going to be a great game and I love the reception today, and I don’t want to kind of force specs on every game before they start.”
Starfield did run above 30fps during development, but Bethesda has opted for consistency by locking the frame rate, suggesting that the game is unable to reach a locked 60fps on console.
With Xbox advertising itself as the most powerful console on the market, its understandable why players may have concerns. Fans rallying around to defend Starfield have argued that hit games such as Zelda run at 30fps, so this limit is justified in order to provide a smooth experience in the vast galaxies of Starfield.
Currently, its difficult to judge how well Starfield will run on Xbox Series X/S and if the 30fps cap will be problematic. All will become clear when Starfield launches on September 6, 2023.
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