Fallout 76 director and Bethesda Game Studios creative chief Todd Howard returns to the /r/Starfield subreddit after almost two years to express gratitude and excitement for the upcoming game, which he describes as “a labor of love.”
In a comment on the Starfield subreddit, Howard praises the passionate and intelligent community, and says that he’s “excited for you to finally experience it.”
Excitement for Starfield
“It’s been a while since I’ve been able to make a post here,” Howard says. “We’ve been heads down on Starfield and I’ve been so focused on making sure it’s everything we want it to be.”
The post, which is the most-upvoted on the Starfield subreddit, generates significant excitement among fans.
“The game is almost here,” he continues. “We’ve put so much love into this game and I think you’re going to really love it. It’s been a labor of love for the whole team and I’m so proud of what we’ve made.”
The post is the latest in a string of announcements and updates from Howard and other members of the Starfield team, and follows the launch of the Starfield Worldwide Tour. The move is also seen as a strategic way for Bethesda to engage with dedicated fans ahead of the game’s launch.
In a separate internal email sent to Bethesda and Microsoft employees, Howard shares the story of pitching Starfield to Zenimax CEO Robert Altman. “We had this idea for a grand space RPG,” Howard recalls of the initial pitch. “Our first new IP in 25 years.”
Howard goes on to describe Starfield as “the game I’ve always wanted to make” and says that it’s the company’s “biggest game ever made.” Howard also highlights some of the challenges faced along the way, including other game launches, Altman’s death, the pandemic, and being acquired by Xbox.
“We’ve overcome a lot of obstacles over the years and we’ve worked incredibly hard to get to this point,” Howard says. He also praises Phil Spencer and Microsoft upper management for their support, and acknowledges the contribution of Xbox Advanced Technology Group.
Howard concludes the email by announcing that everyone on the email list will receive a free copy of the game. “We’re so proud of what we’ve made and excited for you to play it,” he says. The email leak is likely to be seen as a victory for dedicated fans, as well as a successful PR move from Bethesda.
The announcement also reveals the behind-the-scenes excitement and anticipation surrounding Starfield within Bethesda. The news also serves as a reminder that, despite the growth of the wider gaming industry and the success of titles like Fallout 76, many game developers and studio heads remain committed to a model of distributing games that makes them exclusive to specific platforms.
Many will also see the announcement as an opportunity to reflect on the value they place on the work of employees, and on their willingness to share the fruits of their and the wider development community’s labor.