Starfield has a 'highly detailed' character creator so of course I'll be fighting for my life not to wind up ugly

Starfield character creation - a woman with buzzed hair and hoop earrings on a teal background
(Image credit: Bethesda)

As is RPG tradition, my time with Starfield is destined to start with no fewer than 60 minutes of character creation time as I carefully consider cheekbones and RPG traits. I've got no doubt that Starfield's character creator will let me toil away perfecting those details. During its Starfield Direct presentation, Bethesda explained how it overhauled character creation by 3D scanning "a wide range of faces from different age groups and ethnicities" as data for a highly customizable system. 

We got a look at how character creation actually starts, with a very classically Bethesda setup of some other character helpfully explaining who you are and offering you a conveniently in-world item (your Argos Extractors employee data) to determine your face and stats.

You'll pick from a lineup of 40 presets, Bethesda says, which are indeed a variety of skin colors, ages, and builds. There's the usual basics of hair, skin, scars, facial hair, some more detail like walk cycle, and so on. Oh, and you can have a septum piercing—nice. In just a very quick shot though you can spot greater detail in scaling features, overbite/underbite, and whatever "shape blends" are. So yes, you'll be able to really sink your teeth into the exact shape of your jaw in Starfield.

(Image credit: Bethesda)

No matter how deep and detailed a character creator is though, there's still totally a chance that I'll get jumpscared by my own face once I step out into the world. Because even Bethesda's best character creator so far is definitely going to be capable of spitting out unattractive faces. Although some of the initial hairstyles in the presets look nice and soft head-on, but the ones that get cycled through after still have that eternal Bethesda quality of weird sharpness when vewied against a background. Be careful which you choose or that may be the feature that sends you packing right back to the start screen. I do wonder why they chose a character with facial hair to spotlight character creation with, given how notoriously uncanny it always looks.

Maybe the best news about character creation from today's presentation was that Bethesda used the same generation tools to create all its NPCs. "Any character you see almost always is a character you could make yourself," Bethesda says. So I won't be subjected to the injustice of meeting someone with a much cooler hairstyle than those that were available to me, presumably. Even that one guy.

Bethesda shared a lot more about every part of Starfield during its presentation today. You can watch the full Starfield Direct on YouTube.


Starfield factions: Find a cause to quest for
Starfield cities: See the big spaces in space
Starfield companions: Collect cosmic comrades
Starfield traits: Give your hero some history
Starfield ship customization: Make your spaceship special

Lauren Morton
Associate Editor

Lauren started writing for PC Gamer as a freelancer in 2017 while chasing the Dark Souls fashion police and accepted her role as Associate Editor in 2021, now serving as the self-appointed chief cozy games enjoyer. She originally started her career in game development and is still fascinated by how games tick in the modding and speedrunning scenes. She likes long books, longer RPGs, has strong feelings about farmlife sims, and can't stop playing co-op crafting games.