The good news is that we finally have a proper launch date for Starfield: It'll be here on September 6. The bad news, for RPG fans (and possibly Larian Studios), is that date puts it exactly, and only, one week after the release of the long-awaited, and highly anticipated, Baldur's Gate 3, which is set to arrive on August 31.
That presents gamers with a dilemma: Can you power through a full-scale Larian RPG in a week? We all play at our own pace and I wouldn't presume to speak for anyone else, but let's be honest with ourselves here: That is not enough time. Not even close.
That leads smoothly and easily into the next question: Do you really want to start up a game the size of Baldur's Gate and then put it on hold for the weeks or months that Starfield is going to eat up? Because—and again, let's consider the situation frankly and dispassionately—are you really going to remember what the hell you were doing halfway through chapter 2 of BG3 after you've spent a few months banging around inside Starfield?
For myself, that's also a no: A long break in the midst of a beefy story like I assume Baldur's Gate 3 is going to serve up only means I'm going to end up restarting rather than returning, so I'd rather wait until I can commit myself to it properly.
Of course, Baldur's Gate 3 isn't your only problem. The Pinocchio soulslike Lies of P is also coming in August—a specific date hasn't been set at this point, but the month has—and so is the gorgeous retro-RPG Sea of Stars. They may not represent the same degree of tough choices for most gamers, given their more niche genre appeal, but the timing could be bad news for the games themselves: It's a foregone conclusion that Starfield is going to be a juggernaut, and that smaller-scale games coming out around the same time could end up being steamrollered.
It's possible that some studios will try to dodge that bullet by way of a strategic delay. It wouldn't be unprecedented: In 2020, multiple planned releases including Everspace 2, The Medium, MechWarrior 5, and a big Path of Exile update were all delayed in order to avoid Cyberpunk 2077. But that's a risk for developers, too. September is still six months away, and that's plenty of time for things to go awry. Call me a pessimist if you will, but I'm not the only one:
We'll get a closer look at Starfield on June 11, courtesy of a Starfield Direct livestream that Todd Howard said will provide a "deep dive in the game." Until then, here's a rundown of some lesser-known Starfield details that may have escaped your attention.