Starfield Start Screen Controversy Explained

Aditi Joshi
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Bethesda Studio has been targeted by an ex-Blizzard Entertainment developer for creating a plain-looking start screen.
The developer took to Twitter and conveyed his feelings about the Starfield Start-Screen, making comments about the team’s efforts.
The head of publishing of Bethesda Studio replied to the tweets, taking a stand for his team.

Just weeks before its release, Bethesda Studios’ highly anticipated game, Starfield, has found itself embroiled in controversy. Leaked Starfield footage showed the start screen, gameplay and more. However, one of them caught the public’s eye and the backlash has made Bethesda Studios’ head of publishing, Pete Hines, step forward to defend the start screen. 

The start screen of the sci-fi RPG featured a simple layout with a sun emerging from the horizon, the Starfield logo and other buttons like New Game, Load, Settings, Crew and Quit. However, this ‘controversy’ was sparked on 19th August, when a tweet targeted the start screen, offering speculations about the team. 

Read on to find out more about the controversy. 

Mark Kern vs Bethesda Studios

The tweet that targeted the Starfield team was made by Mark Kern, an ex-Blizzard Entertainment developer. He had a lot to say about the start screen, making speculations about the team’s determination to the project, or its callousness. Fans came to the studio's rescue, arguing that other megahit Bethesda Studio games also feature the same style of start screen. 

The tweet made comments on the team’s efforts and determination. Many fans called out Mark Kern for his rude behavior, while others believe that this might be a strategic marketing move. However, this could be highly unlikely given Mark Kern’s past behavioral patterns. 

Mark Kern is an ex-Blizzard game developer who later started his own gaming studio, Red 5 Studios. Reportedly, he has been fired from there as well. 

In defense of Bethesda Studios, Pete Hines, stepped forward and tweeted in response. He asserted that this minimalist style was settled upon by the team for quite a while. 

Many fans also came to support Pete Hines, telling off Mark Kern and sending good wishes for the Starfield developer team. A lot of fans were also disappointed with Kern’s behavior due to his inability to sympathize with fellow game developers, and were appalled by it.

Starfield is set to release on gaming platforms on 6th September 2023, with early access starting on 1st September 2023. The game is a science fiction, roleplaying game that features exploration of new planets in space, endowed with breathtaking visuals. 

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Aditi Joshi is an English Literature student who indulges in the world of gaming when she's not working. She finds enjoyment in the immersive world of gaming.

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