Speculation arises that Starfield, the impending sci-fi role-playing adventure, may harbour microtransactions or in-game DLC, as suggested by its official ESRB rating. With the game’s anticipated launch on 6th September, a mere four months away, numerous aspects await unveiling, including the possibility of microtransactions or an in-game marketplace. Few would raise eyebrows if Bethesda opted for microtransactions, and the latest update might just confirm it.
Bethesda Game Studios embraces microtransactions in a manner distinct from other DLC-laden titles. Many attribute the contemporary microtransaction landscape to The Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion’s notorious horse armour DLC. Unwavering in its approach, Bethesda has aggressively championed paid mod storefronts, now recognised as the Bethesda Creation Club. Despite initial assurances that Fallout 4 would remain microtransaction-free, Bethesda ultimately introduced them via the Creation Club.
Starfield’s Official ESRB Rating Hints at In-Game Purchases or DLC
Although uncertainty looms over Bethesda’s microtransaction strategy for Starfield, early signs indicate the role-playing game may debut with in-game DLC offerings. This conjecture stems from the ESRB’s rating publication for Starfield, which assigns a Mature 17+ rating based on “Blood, Strong Language, Suggestive Themes, Use of Drugs, and Violence.” Furthermore, Starfield carries a flag denoting “In-Game Purchases (PC, Xbox Series).”
The ambiguity of the ESRB’s warning fuels the absence of clarity. “In-Game Purchases” could encompass various systems, from a simple storefront for future DLC releases, akin to Skyrim’s expansions like Dawnguard, Hearthfire, or Dragonborn, to the more probable introduction of the Creation Club in Starfield, Bethesda’s sanctioned premium mod storefront. Whether this translates to microtransactions resembling horse armour or gameplay-altering DLC remains hazy, necessitating a cautious approach from Bethesda.
Naturally, this scenario presents a tinderbox for Bethesda. Although contemporary gamers are more at ease with in-game purchases and storefronts, controversies continue to erupt. Nonetheless, Bethesda is no stranger to such disputes, which have scarcely affected the popularity of Fallout or Elder Scrolls titles.
The timeline for Bethesda’s disclosure of Starfield’s in-game purchase plans remains uncertain. Starfield is slated for a prominent appearance at Xbox’s June Games Showcase on 11th June, but the event will likely emphasise gameplay features and the Starfield universe’s introduction. Details regarding in-game purchases may not emerge until closer to the launch.
Starfield is set for release on 6th September for PC and Xbox Series X/S.
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