With the early access period starting in just a few days, here’s everything you need to know about playing Starfield early.
That said, while its official launch date isn’t until September 6, you can start playing it this week. So, expect the internet to be flooded with gameplay footage and screenshots by the weekend.
If you’re particularly eager to be among the first people to play Starfield, here’s a quick rundown of how to join the early access period and precisely when you can start playing.
Starfield – when does early access start?
At first, all Bethesda said was that the early access period will start this Friday on September 1, five days before the full launch.
Recently, though, it’s shared exact times, which do vary depending on your location. For fellow UK residents, all you need to know is that you can start playing from 1am BST. The same time applies for the full launch on September 6.
Starfield – how to get early access
This part’s easy, since all you need to do is pre-order either Starfield’s digital-only premium edition or the Constellation edition. The former costs £99.99 on Xbox and £85.99 on PC, while the latter costs £249.99 on both Xbox and PC.
You can learn how to pre-order them in our previous guide but if you’ve already pre-ordered the base version of Starfield or have access to it through Xbox Game Pass, you can always upgrade to the premium edition for an extra £34.99.
Starfield – how to pre-load in time for launch
Starfield is set to be a chunky game; one with a file size of approximately 125GB. Even if you have the space for it, it’ll take a while for it to install before you can start playing.
Fortunately, that’s where pre-loading comes in handy. If you’ve pre-ordered the game or are a Game Pass subscriber, visit Starfield’s page on the Xbox store, the Xbox app on PC, or its Steam page.
There should be an option that says pre-install, which will download all the important data so you can start playing immediately at launch.
If you’ve pre-ordered or plan to buy Starfield physically, there is a way to pre-load beforehand, but you’ll need to download the Xbox app on Android or iOS first.
Once you do, sign in with your Microsoft account, search for Starfield, and you’ll find an option to pre-load it to your console even without a purchase. You obviously can’t start playing it but it means you won’t have to sit through a lengthy installation screen once you do buy the game.
Starfield – can you play it with the £1 Game Pass trial?
Not anymore you can’t. Microsoft did have a special offer that lets you use Game Pass for two weeks for just £1.
However, it was discovered this week that the offer has been removed. If you’d rather not pay £70 for Starfield, your cheapest recourse is to subscribe to Game Pass for either £8.99 a month on console or £7.99 a month on PC.
Starfield – what are its requirements on PC?
While Xbox owners can buy the game with no concern, PC owners will need to make sure their computers are actually capable of running Starfield beforehand.
Bethesda has already shared the PC requirements and, at minimum, you’ll need to be using Windows 10 version 21H1 (10.0.19043) and have either an AMD Ryzen 5 2600X or Intel Core i7-6800K processor.
That’s the bare minimum, though; otherwise, Bethesda recommends you have the most up-to-date version of Windows 10 or Windows 11 installed, with an AMD Ryzen 5 3600X or Intel i5-10600K processor.
You can find a full breakdown over on Bethesda’s blog post.
Starfield – will it ever launch on PlayStation 5?
No, Microsoft bought out Bethesda’s parent company ZeniMax Media and, at this point, clearly doesn’t want to launch any new Bethesda properties for anything but Xbox and PC.
Apparently, there were plans to make Starfield a PlaySation 5 exclusive, which is what prompted Microsoft to acquire ZeniMax and its studios, but those plans have clearly been cancelled.
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First appear at Starfield early access – when does it start and how to join