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It’s one of the biggest games of the year. If you’re impatient for its release on September 6 and are prepared to fork out a bit extra for the privilege, here’s how you can play Starfield early access.

Starfield is the first new universe in over 25 years from Bethesda Game Studios, the award-winning creators of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and Fallout 4. In this next-generation role-playing game set amongst the stars, create any character you want and explore with unparalleled freedom as you embark on an epic journey to answer humanity’s greatest mystery.

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Starfield was first announced during Bethesda’s E3 Press Conference way back in 2018, so to say we’ve been waiting patiently is an understatement.

“It seems like forever ago that we first started talking about making a grand space RPG. It never seemed feasible, and we had been lucky enough to create games we (and all of you fortunately!) loved in The Elder Scrolls and Fallout series,” Bethesda said in a press release. “Yet, we couldn’t shake the idea of exploring the galaxy in ways that only video games could do. And so, we took the leap to create not just our first new IP in over 25 years, but our most ambitious.”

Without further ado, here’s how you can play Starfield early access to get a head-start on your galactic adventure.

How to play Starfield early access

The way to play Starfield early access is to purchase the Digital Premium Edition, which grants players early access for up to five days before launch day—so you can play from September 1 instead of September 6, 2023.

The Premium edition also includes the Shattered Space story expansion (upon release), constellation skin pack: equinox laser rifle, spacesuit, helmet and boost pack, and access to the Starfield digital artbook and original soundtrack.

All of this does come at a price, however. The Standard Edition retails for $69.99 while the Digital Premium Edition is priced at $99.99 + tax. And, just in case you didn’t know, because Bethesda Game Studio is owned by Microsoft, this game is a PC and Xbox exclusive.

PLEASE NOTE: This does not come with the base game, you have to purchase it separately.

Starfield Standard Edition (digital) on PC
and XBox
for $69.99.

Why isn’t Starfield early access working?

If you purchased the Premium Digital Edition and pressing Play isn’t available, there have been reported issues depending on your platform. For PC, the issue is in Steam, the Play button is greyed out. On XBox, players are getting a “you’re too early” error message. Here’s how to fix them.

If on PC:

  1. Make sure Starfield has finished downloading and wait for it to unpack the files.
  2. Completely shut down Steam (kill it in Task Manager if needed).
  3. Reload Steam and head to your library.

If on XBox:

If you purchased the game on XBox and you’re having trouble getting into early access, this seems primarily due to store servers so thankfully, this shouldn’t be an issue for much longer.

  1. Restart your console.
  2. If that doesn’t work, you may need to uninstall and reinstall the game.

What are Starfield‘s specs?

PC specifications: For those who are playing Starfield, a next-generation RPG, on PC, make sure your rig is outfitted with the right gear for the best experience.

OS: Windows 10 version 21H1 (10.0.19043)
Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 2600X, Intel Core i7-6800K
Memory: 16 GB RAM
Graphics: AMD Radeon RX 5700, NVIDIA GeForce 1070 Ti
DirectX: Version 12
Storage: 125 GB available space
Additional Notes: SSD Required

In an interview with IGN, Bethesda Game Studio head Todd Howard described Starfield as ambitious but sticking with the Bethesda DNA of game design. “I would say if you think about Elder Scrolls with a fantasy world, who would you want to be and what would you want to do? We want to provide that. And then Fallout, the same thing in a post-apocalyptic environment. How does that factor into the things you find, and how does… Crafting is very unique in Fallout when it comes to that. Or what’s the vibe of the people? What are they sacrificing to stay alive?” he said.

“And then when you get to Starfield and science fiction, same sort of thing where if you were to open it up and you could do anything, how are we providing that experience? And we love exploration, so when you get into a game like this, that’s when people say, ‘Why do you have a thousand planets?’ Because we’d rather give you the option to do that than say no.”