Todd Howard wants you to upgrade your PC for Starfield

A spaceship in Starfield travelling through space
(Image credit: Bethesda Softworks)

If you’ve been having trouble running Starfield on your PC, game director Todd Howard thinks “you may need to upgrade”, as the title has already been optimized. 

As GamesRadar+ reports, in an interview with Bloomberg Technology, Howard and Xbox boss Phil Spencer were asked a number of audience questions, one of which was simply: “Why did you not optimize this game for PC?”

“We did, it’s running great,” Howard responded, as Spencer laughed in the background. “It is a next-gen PC game. We really do push the technology, so you may need to upgrade your PC for this game, but it’s got a lot of great stuff going on in it, and the fans are responding awesomely.”

Howard’s response may come as a surprise to some, since over the last week, while gamers have been getting stuck into the space-exploration RPG, a number of posts have surfaced online of players flagging PC performance issues. In a thread on Starfield’s Steam Community, one player alleged: “If I set the graphics settings to low, for every setting at 1080p resolution, I still get constant stuttering, screen tearing, and my frame rate is all over the place, between 40 and 55 FPS. My computer is above [the] recommended specs for this game. There is something very wrong with the performance of this game.”

At the time of writing, however, Starfield has a ‘very positive’ rating on Steam, as 83% of its reviews have been positive. Yesterday (September 6), the game managed to accumulate over one million concurrent players across PC, Xbox Series X|S and cloud streaming - while the exact number per platform hasn’t been revealed, data shows that Steam saw a peak of 269,177. 

If you’re an avid PC gamer, don’t miss out on our recommendations for the best PC games. You can also read our roundup of the best open world games on PC for more worlds to get lost in.

Catherine Lewis
News Writer, TechRadar Gaming

Catherine is a News Writer for TechRadar Gaming. Armed with a journalism degree from The University of Sheffield, she was sucked into the games media industry after spending far too much time on her university newspaper writing about Pokémon and cool indie games, and realising that was a very cool job, actually. She previously spent 19 months working at GAMINGbible as a full-time journalist. She loves all things Nintendo, and will never stop talking about Xenoblade Chronicles.