Starfield's Unique Space Exploration: Testing the Limits with Alanah Pearce

Starfields divisive space exploration approach, with slow travel and peculiar encounters, was tested by streamer Alanah Pearce, who reached Plutos quirky representation in an intriguing journey.

Starfield's unique approach to space exploration, characterized by fast travel and loading screen-heavy transitions, has ignited a divisive discourse within the gaming community. Some players have expressed disappointment, drawing comparisons between the game and titles like Mass Effect rather than the expansive No Man's Sky. During the pre-release phase, Todd Howard, the creative mind behind Starfield, shed light on Bethesda's decision to maintain a clear distinction between the surface and space experiences. He emphasized that "the on-surface represents one reality, while space is another." In terms of in-game travel, players soon realized that navigating the vast cosmos wasn't as straightforward as anticipated. Unless you employ gravity-assisted ship maneuvers, traveling significant distances remains a time-consuming endeavor. The primary purpose of the ships seems to be for ship-to-ship interactions, engaging in dogfights, and receiving unexpected communications. However, undeterred by these limitations, games writer and streamer Alanah Pearce, known as charalanahzard on Twitch, decided to push the boundaries of the game during a recent live stream. Her mission: to journey to Pluto, the distant dwarf planet with a slow orbit, minimizing the risk of drifting away while she left the game to idle. With careful navigation and maximizing engine power, Pearce set her course towards Pluto and then left her ship to autopilot while she went to sleep, setting an alarm to make necessary trajectory adjustments. Seven hours later, she returned to her pilot's seat, approaching Pluto's pixelated and eerie representation, reminiscent of a low-resolution Google Maps screenshot. "I'm amazed that we got here at all," Pearce exclaimed as the pixels stretched and distorted, resembling a scene from Interstellar. A prompt to open the planet map appeared, seemingly a warning from the game itself. The pixels gave way to an endless gray void as the destination marker reached zero, and at around seven hours and 34 minutes into her journey, Pluto's darkness transformed into space as her ship phased right through the dwarf planet. This revelation reinforced what many already suspected – the planets and moons in Todd Howard's space reality are essentially beautiful but shallow skybox cut-outs. However, it is now confirmed that you can indeed reach these celestial bodies, pierce through their stretched textures, and stumble upon secret pockets of space – a discovery that raises intriguing possibilities, particularly for those seeking clandestine hideaways for their ill-gotten loot.


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