Starfield is the next RPG from the studio behind The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – a game that has sold north of 30 million copies since its 2011 release.
However, unlike Bethesda’s previous hits in the Elder Scrolls and Fallout series, the upcoming sci-fi game won’t be released for PlayStation consoles, which have traditionally sold more than Microsoft’s competing Xbox systems and provided a large audience for the studio’s games.
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Following Microsoft’s $7.5 billion acquisition of Bethesda parent company ZeniMax Media, Starfield will be an Xbox Series X/S console exclusive when it’s released on November 11, 2022. But the game will also be available for PC and, crucially, via Xbox Game Pass on day one.
Microsoft recently announced that Xbox Game Pass has 25 million subscribers and is helping its first-party titles achieve record levels of engagement.
According to the platform holder, Halo Infinite has enjoyed the best launch in the franchise’s history, attracting over 20 million players since its Xbox, PC and Game Pass release in December.
Forza Horizon 5 has also set Xbox records and registered 18 million players since its release for the same platforms in November.
“So, when I look at the teams, when Todd and I talk about Starfield, it’s: ‘How do we make sure this is the most-played Todd Howard game ever?'”
He added of the recent Halo and Forza releases: “Those are the most played games in those franchises because we made them available on more screens than we ever have, through more business models than we’ve ever made them available.”
Microsoft has also said it plans to put as many Activision Blizzard titles as possible on Xbox Game Pass once it has acquired the Call of Duty publisher in a $68.7 billion deal which is expected to close in the summer of 2023.
“Yeah, I want more people to be playing WoW in five years that are playing today,” Spencer told Axios. “I want more people to be playing Call of Duty in five years, more people to be playing Candy Crush in five years, because we’ve made it more accessible to more people.”