Why Starfield Being Xbox-Exclusive Is A Good Thing, According To Bethesda Exec
Starfield not launching on PS5 means less work for Bethesda Game Studios, according to Pete Hines.
Starfield wouldn't be releasing in September if it also had to launch on PlayStation 5, according to Pete Hines, Bethesda's head of global publishing.
Hines, who was speaking under oath as part of a hearing in which the Federal Trade Commission is seeking an injunction against Microsoft's planned Activision Blizzard acquisition, called Starfield's Xbox console exclusivity a good thing.
He quoted Starfield game director Todd Howard in calling the upcoming sci-fi RPG an "irresponsibly large" game, one that was made a Xbox console-exclusive in order to reduce the workload for developer Bethesda Game Studios. Shipping on Xbox Series X|S and PC and not PS5 meant the studio needed less quality assurance testing and created less work for the developer. As a result, Starfield is releasing on September 6 (or on September 1 for certain editions), having been delayed from its original November 2022 release date.
Xbox Game Studio's boss Matt Booty previously said that Starfield will have the fewest bugs in Bethesda game history.
"I see bug counts and just by the numbers if it shipped today, Starfield would already have the fewest bugs of any Bethesda game ever shipped," Booty said in an interview with Giant Bomb.
Phil Spencer, Microsoft's head of gaming, said in that same interview that Starfield was originally slated to release far sooner prior to Microsoft's acquisition of Bethesda parent company ZeniMax in 2021. After talking with Howard, Spencer said Microsoft wanted to give Bethesda Game Studios more time.
Hines' comments are just one of many revelations to come out of the FTC's injunction hearing, which has also revealed that MachineGames' upcoming Indiana Jones game will be an Xbox console-exclusive and that Starfield was originally planned to release on PS5 prior to Microsoft acquiring Bethesda.