Bethesda caused quite a bit of stir after the Microsoft showcase on Sunday when it confirmed that Starfield runs at a locked 30 fps on Xbox consoles. A lot of hoopla followed the news, punctuated by the never-ending console war. A number of developers from across the industry have since jumped into the debate to defend Bethesda, including a God of War Ragnarok developer.
Why Starfield supports 30 fps on consoles, and what it means for games
Santa Monica Studio’s senior environment artist Dannie Carlone responded to a now-deleted tweet from YouTuber DreamcastGuy, pointing out that a game being locked to 30 fps is not a sign that it’s “unfinished,” like some players have been assuming. It’s a deliberate choice, especially in games like Starfield because of their sheer scale. According to Carlone, 60 fps in a game like Starfield can severely impact visual fidelity and spoil the experience.
In a follow-up tweet, Carlone explained that Bethesda wants to keep Starfield locked at 4K with 30 fps to “push the visuals to a high level on this scale.”
Bethesda’s Todd Howard told IGN that Starfield is locked at 30 fps because the team prefers “the consistency where you’re not even thinking about it.”