Yesterday was a bit of a rollercoaster for those of us looking forward to Starfield, wasn't it?
Finally, a release date! But later in the year than we'd hoped for!
Whilst Starfield director Todd Howard talked in front of the camera for the announcement video, what we all really wanted a peek at was the screen lead producer Tim Lamb was using to play the game in the background. Throughout the video, we got brief glimpses at other developers playing and testing Starfield, so you can bet we got our magnifying glasses out to see what details we could spot.
First off, in the bottom left of the screen we can see the compass. It's impossible to make out any of the text when Lamb is playing, but in closer shots we can see Nesoi, Cassiopeia I, Tau Ceti VIII-B, and Charybdis III. Cassiopeia and Tau Ceti are real systems out there in space, while the others could either be completely made up or based on real systems too but given different names. As for the area Tim Lamb was exploring, the name of the area has to be short, and the ground looks quite red... Lamb later enters an area called Mars Mech Factory, so I think I'm safe to assume we can visit our little neighbour Mars.
At one point, Lamb turns around in-game and we can see a person running up to his character, which is presumably a companion NPC. The companion's shadow is visible when Lamb stops to loot some containers. Lamb also sneakily changes from first to third person so we can see how that looks. Again, it's difficult to tell as we can't make out much from the screen, but it looks like you might have no model or shadow in first person, a minor point which some fans have expressed disappointment about. Container looting seems to work in the same way it did in Fallout 4, where the items show up in a list in a smaller pop-up menu on the HUD.
There's various bits and pieces we can see during over-the-shoulder shots of devs playing the game. Revolvers look confirmed as weapons in-game, as one dev has it equipped. Another dev comes across some strange creatures which look like dinosaurs. Who doesn't want to see some space dinosaurs? Later we see a dev fighting a level 75 monstrosity called a hunting maggotmaw. Thanks, but no thanks.
In the inventory screen, when choosing a helmet there's a toggle to hide the helmet in breathable areas. We can also see the various stats for armour: DR (which I would guess stands for damage resistance, like in the Fallout games), physical, energy, EM (likely electromagnetic based on the wave symbol and the importance of electromagnetism in space), thermal, corrosive, airborne, and radiation. An indicator of environmental hazards and types of damage from weapons?
In the inventory, there's also a bunch of different helmets, ranging from a generic "Explorer Space Helmet" to "Trackers Alliance Space Helmet". Other job titles we see included in helmet descriptions are ground crew, mercenary, navigator, pirate assult, shocktroop, space trucker, and SY-920 pilot. Assuming these are helmets you can loot from enemies or pick up around the areas, we can come up with some sort of idea of what kinds of NPCs populate Starfield.
We'll have to wait until 11th June for more footage to pore over, when Bethesda streams a special Starfield Direct. Is there anything in the launch date announcement video which you spotted that we missed?