Spoilers ahead for Starfield’s main story.
Starfield‘s Shattered Space DLC is set to release sometime this year, and details about it are sparse. While it’s not clear what premise the expansion will adopt, or if it will be the only post-launch expansion, the base game manages to introduce several unique and interesting ideas that are full of potential, and the future of Starfield could be greatly improved by expanding on these ideas.
The narrative of Starfield‘s main quest takes a rather ambitious turn at around the midway point. What starts as a fairly standard plot about a series of space MacGuffins morphs into a complex and creative tale about alternate realities and transcending the limits imposed by traditional understandings of time and space. These concepts are presented through the Starborn, a group of ascended beings who have the power to traverse different dimensions through something called the Unity, granting them great insight that can potentially be corrupting. The Unity causes the player to come into contact with alternate versions of characters from their base reality, including themselves, and is altogether one of the more fantastical elements of Starfield, which works in the narrative’s favor overall.
Starfield’s Creation Engine Will Have to Face the Reaper Sooner or Later
Bethesda has been using the Creation Engine for over a decade now, and with the release of Starfield, its cracks feel extremely prevalent.
Starfield DLC Can Take a Unique Approach to the “Evil Twin” Trope
The Emissary, featured in Starfield‘s base game, is a member of Constellation from an alternate reality, though with a fundamentally different personality and an ethical code that is considerably more gray. Similarly, The Hunter is an alternate version of Keeper Aquilus from the protagonist’s home reality, and is power hungry and defies conventional understandings of morality. Another Starborn duplicate comes at the end of the game, when the player meets a duplicate of themselves. It’s this area that Starfield‘s DLC should play in.
Players Meeting Themselves in Starfield
Starfield‘s NG+ has garnered a good deal of discussion, as it’s a fairly unique system. This is due to its in-universe explanation: the player-character passes through the Unity and emerges in an “alternate reality” that is slightly altered. It’s rare, but some Starfield players have even encountered themselves in subsequent playthroughs, though this is more of an Easter egg than anything, with the alternate character being a friendly NPC that can join the player in their adventures without altering the game to a significant degree.
An expansion for Starfield could take this concept to the next level. Instead of a minor Easter egg, the player could encounter an alternate version of themselves that is tied to a major quest or series of quests. If this character is antagonistic, it would allow for a number of unique and intriguing storytelling opportunities, as players would have to communicate with and investigate this strange character, perhaps even facing them in battle. It’s likely that the Shattered Space DLC will lean into the multiverse aspects of Starfield, so this approach is certainly plausible.
A battle against this hypothetical duplicate character could be particularly interesting, as it could be altered based on the player’s build. For example, if a player typically favors melee combat, then the duplicate would mimic this approach, forcing a different strategy and elevating replay value.
Whether this concept forms the bulk of a Starfield DLC or just a side quest, it’s ripe with unique and creative potential. It’s safe to say that the multiverse elements of Starfield are among the more appealing aspects of its lore, stimulating the imagination and having a direct impact on gameplay, so it would be a shame for future expansions to ignore them. Many would argue that Starfield‘s DLC has a lot to deliver, if it wants to swing the pendulum of public opinion firmly in the game’s favor once more, and an “evil twin” plot, if done right, could provide some fun, over-the-top value.
Developed by Bethesda Game Studios, Starfield is a sci-fi action role-playing game where players interact with multiple factions, engage in combat, customize their main character and ship, as well as explore a universe that features over 100 systems and 1,000 planets.
- September 6, 2023
- M For Mature 17+ Due To Blood, Suggestive Themes, Use of Drugs, Strong Language, Violence
- How Long To Beat
- 20 Hours
- X|S Enhanced
- File Size Xbox Series
- 101 GB (November 2023)