We still don't know much about Starfield, but its music is on point

by John Stapel

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Another day, another cinematic, softly-lit video of Bethesda developers pitching us on the big picture artistic drives of their upcoming space RPG, Starfield.

For the third episode of the "Into the Starfield" series, audio director Mark Lampert sits down with composer Inon Zur to discuss their creative processes and goals for the game. Previous episodes covered the game's "NASA-punk" art style and some more conceptual back-and-forth on its gameplay, like how they hope to channel "older hardcore RPGs."

It's a little hard to judge what they say about the music and its relationship to Starfield's gameplay at this point in time, but there was an interesting tidbit around the 2:30 mark where Zur describes how he tried to mirror the feeling of venturing out and returning home in the game's music.

"Everything is streaming, everything is changing, and everything is returning back," Zur says. "...There's always this drive to go back home, and that's what feels so complete to us. We want to complete the mission. We want to complete our journey."

The tracks themselves are definitely strong. What we've heard so far reminds me most of Marty O'Donnell, Michael Salvatori, and C Paul Johnson's regal, yet dreamy score for the original Destiny.

Interestingly, Zur and Lampert both agree that the main theme is the hardest part of a project to nail down, but that the rest of the score subsequently slots into place rather neatly. Any other conflicted opinions about Fallout 4 aside, Zur definitely nailed its main theme.

It's an interesting enough conversation, but the whole Into the Starfield series just seems a bit self-congratulatory with the game still an unknown quantity. It has the character of a "making-of" documentary from after a successful launch, rather than something to convince gamers of an unproven setting from a studio exiting a bit of a slump, and Starfield remains a game we still know precious little about.

Hopefully we won't have to wait long for more concrete previews of Starfield. It's due to release this year, on November 11.

Ted has been thinking about PC games and bothering anyone who would listen with his thoughts on them ever since he booted up his sister's copy of Neverwinter Nights on the family computer. He is obsessed with all things CRPG and CRPG-adjacent, but has also covered esports, modding, and rare game collecting. When he's not playing or writing about games, you can find Ted lifting weights on his back porch.