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Starfield 2021 release date just leaked — and it could be a killer Xbox Series X exclusive

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Update: A new teaser trailer for Starfield suggest it'll be a cross of Skyrim meets The Expanse.

The Xbox Series X could be looking at one huge exclusive this year, as Bethesda’s Starfield is tipped to be released in 2021. 

While we know precious little about the upcoming space-based sci-fi game, journalist and reliable game leaker Jeff Grubb has claimed on the Dealer - Gaming YouTube channel that Bethesda will showcase Starfield at E3 2021 and then aim to have the game released at the end of the year.

Given Microsoft has said that its acquisition of Bethesda will drive Xbox Game Pass exclusives, Starfield could end up being an Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S console exclusive.  

The rumors and leaks around Starfield are slim at best, with Bethesda only showing a brief and rather vague trailer about the game last year. But much like The Elder Scrolls 6, Starfield is a game that’s garnering a lot of attention. 

It could take the open-world nature of the Elder Scrolls and Fallout games and develop it on a galactic level, so to speak, with players able to explore multiple worlds filled with expansive and diverse environments. 

With the power of the Xbox Series X and its rapid SSD, large and detailed game worlds could be supported without slowing the game to a crawl or bogging the action down with loading times. 

Give the new Xbox consoles don’t have quite as many as many big name exclusive games line you for them, with the exception of Halo Infinite and Fable 4; the PS5 has Gran Turismo 7, Horizon Forbidden West and God of War 2, for example. So having Starfield as an exclusive arriving this year could give the Xbox Series X a killer game to tempt people over to it and Xbox Game Pass

Even if Starfield isn't an Xbox and PC exclusive, in keeping with what appears to be Microsoft’s gaming plans, it could still be a timed exclusive. The PS5 is doing the same with games such as Forspoken, which recently got a game footage debut

Such an exclusive could actually attract people towards Xbox gaming, though we really need to see footage of Starfield before we make any definitive statement. However, the fact that the game is being tipped to arrive this year is certainly grounds for a little excitement. 

Roland Moore-Colyer

Roland Moore-Colyer is U.K. 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.