Starfield vs. Fallout: What makes the games different?

By Kenneth Williams

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Jul 14, 2023

Reading time: 2 min

Starfield and Fallout are more than just two sides of the same coin.

In a market filled with gigantic open-world adventures, Bethesda games have practically become their own genre. The dueling franchises of Fallout and The Elder Scrolls are blockbuster releases, but Starfield will hopefully turn the duel into a melee a trois. Early release trailers have led many fans to draw links between it and Fallout, and there’s no denying that it has a lot of the same DNA. But there are also key differences separating the titles, and some of them are visible right in the first trailer.

All the differences between Fallout and Starfield

While both games share a lot of DNA thanks to developer Bethesda, there are a few differences separating the two titles.

The most obvious difference is the setting. Fallout takes place in a post-apocalyptic alternate America. Everywhere is 50s-themed and covered in dirt, slowly being reclaimed by the wilderness. Starfield takes place in the 24th century when humans have taken over much of the Milky Way. Planetary conditions will vary, but more than 1,000 planets have been confirmed for the game. 

Aside from the obvious genre switch, Starfield’s gameplay also puts much more emphasis on open exploration than managing factional politics. In Fallout, it was common to work with different groups to achieve conflicting goals. Starfield has only revealed two major factions, which means the main story could work more similarly to Skyrim. Of course, Starfield will retain the first-person shooting elements of the more recent Fallout titles.

Starfield ship customization

Lastly, Starfield is adding several brand-new mechanics to help flesh out its space setting. The biggest is ship design, allowing players to customize their spaceship to their liking. This also extends to other forms of customization, with companions appearing to be much more flexible than in previous games. Starfield will keep weapon and skill customization from Fallout 4 but with several tweaks to keep it feeling fresh.

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