Starfield’s music could be its killer feature — hear it in action

art of a Starfield spaceship
(Image credit: Bethesda)

Update: Starfield is what happens when hard sci-fi meets classic Bethesda games.

Bethesda Game Studios titles have almost always had powerful and evocative soundtracks, and it looks like Starfield will be no different. It could even hit the high notes of Skyrim’s epic Dragonborn theme. 

In the latest ‘Into the Starfield's developer video, titled "The Sound of Adventure,'' Starfield composer Inon Zur and audio director Mark Lampert discuss the soundtrack of Bethesda’s upcoming sci-fi epic. It’s another reason to get excited. 

"I always say that music is the fourth dimension. It is the emotional dimension," said Zur. "And so in order to create this, you have to ask these questions: Where are you going? What is your motivation? What is your story? What is really pushing us?" He went on to explain how the composition for Starfield aims to be “circular,” in that it aims to capture the idea of going out on an adventure, discovering the secrets of the galaxy and then returning home. 

"There is always this drive to go back home; we want to complete our mission; we want to complete our journey,” added Zur. 

Starfield artwork

(Image credit: Bethesda)

The video also showed off some new artwork, which drives home that Starfield will be all about exploration. 

With hints of '70s-style pulpy sci-fi, elements of Star Wars’ ‘lived-in’ galaxy and nods towards more realistic intergalactic travel, as seen in The Expanse, Starfield is shaping up to be an interesting new IP from Bethesda, despite the fact that we’ve yet to see any actual game footage.

artwork of a Starfield spaceship

(Image credit: Bethesda)

The discussion around music has me feeling particularly excited, as one of my favorite bits of Skyrim was its soundtrack. From the powerful opening bars of the Dragonborn theme, to the ambient tracks of Far Horizons and The Streets of Whiterun, Skyrim's soundtrack created a sense of place that evoked emotions, rather than gave you the feeling that you were actively listening to the music. 

If Starfield can reach towards this level of mastery, then I’ll be thrilled.

Starfield artwork

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Of course, Starfield will be up against some stiff competition when it comes sci-fi game music. The Mass Effect Legendary Edition, for example, has a fabulous soundtrack, from the '80s-inspired dark synth music of the first game, to Mass Effect 2’s huge Suicide Mission track.

Either way, the signature tone of Starfield looks set to encompass the idea of going out into the wilds of space. As we've learned from other videos, such as the introduction of robot companion Vasco, it looks like there’ll be more to the game than just wandering around intriguing worlds, though.

Personally, I have five things I really want from Starfield. And if Starfield can nail a few of them, we could be looking at a 2022 game to challenge the mighty Elden Ring.

Roland Moore-Colyer

Roland Moore-Colyer a Managing Editor at Tom’s Guide with a focus on news, features and opinion articles. He often writes about gaming, phones, laptops and other bits of hardware; he’s also got an interest in cars. When not at his desk Roland can be found wandering around London, often with a look of curiosity on his face.