Starfield player count suggests it’s already Xbox’s savior

starfield cockpit

Bethesda Game Studios’ new sci-fi RPG Starfield officially releases soon, but its early access period already has overwhelming player counts.

Games often enjoy their all-time best player counts right at launch but in Starfield’s case, it hasn’t happened yet. The game’s early access period opened and attracted hundreds of thousands of players, making it one of the most-played games on Steam. This doesn’t even account for the players who have the game on Xbox Series X/S.

Numbers like that are impressive for any game, but with Starfield only being in early access, it’s natural to wonder how much bigger that number can get when the full release hits. Here’s how many people are playing and how big Starfield might get.

starfield ship interior with helmet

How many people are playing Starfield?

Starfield peaked at a 234,502 player count on Steam just hours after the game became available with early access.

This number, provided by SteamDB, only accounts for players who purchased the game through Steam and does not include those who purchased it on Xbox or are subscribed to Xbox Game Pass. Only players who purchased the Premium Digital Edition of the game had early access, so the number is likely to jump when the game launches for all.

Starfield’s early access period began with a thud. When early access was officially set to open for players who preloaded the game, they were instead unable to launch Starfield. Bethesda quickly corrected the issue and soon after, hundreds of thousands of players jumped in and pushed the game to that 234,502 mark. Given this initial hurdle, the soaring player count is all the more impressive.

How big will Starfield be?

Starfield’s player count could surpass a million players on full launch.

It’s impossible to know for sure until the actual Starfield release date arrives but given the numbers it’s already seeing, one million might even be a conservative estimate. The full game is set to release for Xbox Series X/S, Xbox Game Pass, and PC. Because Microsoft does not offer player count numbers for Xbox games or Game Pass, an exact number will not be known. Regardless, launch day’s combined player count across all platforms is likely to be massive.

Numbers like this put Starfield in the same league as Baldur’s Gate 3 when it comes to mass appeal and popularity. Starfield is Bethesda’s first brand-new IP in over 25 years and promises an entire galaxy to explore, so it’s no wonder it’s doing so well. This is critical for the Xbox brand as its previous attempts at a killer app struggled either commercially or critically.

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Written by Jorie McKibbin

Jorie has been playing video games and writing creatively since they were old enough to hold a controller and a pen. They’re passionate about the indie gaming scene, and some of their favorites include Salt and Sanctuary, Stardew Valley, Hollow Knight, and Vintage Story. They also adore such classics as The Elder Scrolls: Morrowind, Fallout: New Vegas, and Dark Souls.

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