How long is Starfield? Hours needed to beat main story revealed
The Bethesda space action RPG is set to be one of the biggest games in the studio's history, but how long exactly should it take to roll credits and earn 100 per cent completion?
Starfield is the first new IP from Bethesda in almost 30 years, so expectations are naturally sky-high for the space action RPG.
As the game has been in development since 2015 – not to mention Bethesda executive producer Todd Howard originally having the idea back in the '90s – it's fair to say there's going to be a lot on offer. After all, it's a great big universe out there.
- Read more: Our Starfield review is out now!
How long is Starfield, though? That's one of the biggest questions being banded around the web right now, with many people clearing their diaries, cancelling any upcoming plans and preparing to avoid all sunlight for the next few weeks (or possible months) to get as many hours as they can in.
So, what about Starfield? With the game set to launch globally on 6th September 2023 exclusively across Xbox Series X/S and PC (sorry, PlayStation players), we've rounded up the details as well as the latest developer comments to best estimate how long Starfield will take to complete, including the main story.
Read more on Starfield:
- Starfield missions list - how far are you?
- Starfield tips and tricks - how to get started
- Starfield romance - all potential relationships
- Starfield character creation - all your options explained
- Starfield digipick - how to lockpick
- Will Starfield ever come to PS5? Developer comments
- Starfield cast - all voice actors
- Starfield companions - who to recruit
- Starfield soundtrack - how to listen
- Starfield storage guide - don't be overburdened
- Starfield FOV - change your point of view
- Starfield FPS - developers explain 30fps
- Starfield PC requirements - specs needed
- Starfield performance - potential fixes
- Starfield factions - all possible groups
How many hours is the main story in Starfield?
Beating Starfield's main quest will take approximately 30 to 40 hours, according to the game's director Todd Howard.
"This one’s ending up a little bit longer [than our previous games] and we may tune that some still," Howard told IGN. "It’s more quests, so it might be 20 per cent more than our previous ones."
Of course, mainlining the story is not the optimal way to experience the game. Instead, players are encouraged to explore various side quests, interact with other factions and generally traverse the stars. Your own play style will also factor into all of this.
More like this
Additionally, Bethesda's head of global publishing Pete Hines discussed his play through and how "this game doesn't really even get going until you finish the main quest", so take that for what is.
How much extra content will be in Starfield?
As Bethesda games are known for their dozens upon dozens of hours of gameplay, working out how much extra content there is in Starfield will be up for debate for quite some time.
Looking at the studio's past releases, Fallout 4 offers upwards of 150 hours while The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim easily amounts to more than 200 hours if you want to earn that sweet 100 per cent completion rate.
Speaking with IGN at Gamescom 2023, Hines shared some further details: "I'm at 150 [to] 160 hours on my current play through and I haven't even come close. There is so much stuff that I have intentionally not done."
With this, it's easy to assume that Starfield will offer more than 200 hours' worth of content. Most notably, Starfield will feature over 1,000 planets across more than 100 star systems.
Looking to pick up Starfield? The game is available on Xbox Series X/S at Amazon at an RRP of £69.99 for the standard version and £99.99 for the Premium Edition – which gives you early access starting on 1st September 2023.
Try Radio Times magazine today and get 10 issues for only £10, PLUS a £10 John Lewis and Partners voucher delivered to your home – subscribe now. For more from the biggest stars in TV, listen to The Radio Times Podcast.