Starfield remains one of the most played games from Xbox’s first-party studios even three months after its launch. So it is no surprise that Microsoft considers it one of its most important releases and has plans for its long-term support.
Speaking at the CCXP event in Brazil (19:52 mark), Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer announced that Starfield had reached over 12 million players since its launch in September. “It still sits in our top 10 most-played games from our studios,” he added.
On September 20, Bethesda revealed that Starfield had been played by 10 million players globally. So the game’s audience has increased by another 2 million since then.
Spencer said that “it is our goal” to make Starfield a game like TES V: Skyrim that people are still playing even 12 years after launch. “Skyrim is such an amazing hit from Bethesda Game Studios, and talking to Todd Howard and the team, really what they wanted to do is [to give] people who love space and space exploration the same opportunity,” the Microsoft Gaming head said.
He noted that the company has a “ton of confidence” that Starfield will be enjoyed by the community for a long time. On their part, Bethesda and Microsoft plans to support the game with expansions and modding tools so that players can also create their own content.
Starfield came out on PC and Xbox Series X|S as a day-one Game Pass title. So while the 12 million players milestone seems massive, it is still unclear how many copies the game has sold vs. people who have tried it via subscription. We only have statements like the “biggest Bethesda game launch of all time” and the second-biggest Xbox launch of this generation (behind Forza Horizon 5, which reached 10 million players in its first week).
As for player reception, Starfield currently has a “Mixed” rating on Steam, with only 68% of more than 80k reviews being positive (the recent rating is even lower — 56%). Since the game peaked at over 330k concurrent players on the platform in September , the stats have been steadily declining — it now has daily peaks of 20k-30k concurrent users.
Starfield’s lifetime player count (via SteamDB)
Even with official sales data unavailable, Starfield appears to have performed well commercially. It topped the UK boxed charts, with its physical launch being “almost identical” to Diablo IV, but behind titles like Hogwarts Legacy and The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. It was also the best-selling premium game of September in the US, with PC as its lead sales platform.
According to the latest report from Circana, Starfield is the 9th best-selling game of 2023 in the US year-to-date. It is above Resident Evil 4 and Final Fantasy XVI, but behind other notable hits like Mortal Kombat 1, Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2, and Hogwarts Legacy.