No, officially. To be fair to Microsoft and Bethesda Game Studios, they already informed us that we would not hear anything about Todd Howard’s upcoming epic role-playing game during Wednesday’s Developer Direct showcase. There will eventually be a standalone exhibition for Starfield. Considering that two of the four games shown, Redfall and The Elder Scrolls Online’s Necrom expansion, are major Bethesda projects launching in May and June, respectively, this is still a significant omission. It seems unlikely that Bethesda would want to detract from excitement in those projects (or Starfield) by releasing this game around May or June.
Recall that, during the June 2018 Xbox and Bethesda Showcase, Microsoft promised fans that Starfield would be among a big library of highly anticipated games releasing in the first half of 2023. (and, as first-party games, available the same day to Xbox Game Pass subscribers).
The revisions we received on Wednesday from Xbox and Bethesda indicate that the first half of Microsoft’s 2023 game schedule now consists of the following:
- April 18 — Minecraft Legends
- May 2 — Redfall
- June 20 — The Elder Scrolls Online: Necrom
- TBA 2023 — Forza Motorsport
Unless the Xbox team has a surprise shadow drop, a la Tango Gameworks’ Hi-Fi Rush, planned for Starfield, which would be ill-advised, the release of the science-fiction role-playing game is becoming shaky. Microsoft and Turn 10 appear unlikely to committed to a release window for their racing game in the first half of 2023.
Last May, Bethesda informed fans that the release timeframe for Starfield has been pushed back to the first half of 2023. (along with Redfall.) Microsoft announced during last year’s E3-adjacent summer showcase that all the games people wanted to play would be available in the first half of 2023. It was implied that Starfield was one of these entities.
In November, Howard, the creative director of Bethesda Game Studios, spoke with podcaster Lex Fridman about Starfield and the difficult decision to delay the game for the first time, from a November 2022 release date to the game’s current, somewhat fuzzier, less certain release window.
“I wish it were soon,” replied Howard. “We also want it out. I wish they did not take as much time as they do. However, they do”
We’ve asked Xbox and Bethesda representatives if Starfield should be considered delayed. It’s doubtful they’ll want to comment on it, but if they do, we’ll be sure to update it here.