Starfield runs at a "rock solid" 30 FPS on both Xbox Series X and S - with one exception

Starfield screenshots
(Image credit: Bethesda)

Starfield is nearly upon us, and reactions are already circulating the internet, including our own Starfield review. You can get plenty of opinions about the game's overall quality, but given Bethesda's history on consoles, you might be wondering about the game's performance. Luckily, there's good news on that front.

Digital Foundry's performance breakdown indicates that the game runs at a "rock solid" 30 FPS on both Xbox Series X and S through the vast majority of the action. Everything from exploration to intense combat plays pretty much perfectly across both consoles, which is stark contrast to how most Bethesda games have performed at launch.

There is one notable exception, however: cities. According to Digital Foundry's testing, two of the biggest Starfield cities - New Atlantis and Akila - are subject to occasional performance drops and bouts of stutter. We're not talking 'Skyrim on PS3' level issues here, but this does appear to be the one big blemish on the game's performance.

Both Xbox Series X and S perform basically identically, though there are naturally some graphical downgrades on the latter to make that happen. Series S runs at an upscaled 900p, while X runs at an upscaled 1440p. Beyond that, the graphical differences are pretty minor. Environmental details like foliage and rocks have a smaller draw distance on Series S, and the weaker console does downgrade in-game reflections.

Starfield's 30 FPS cap has been the subject of some controversy, though many fans began to accept it thanks, funnily enough, to a big pile of sandwiches. There won't be any such restriction on the PC version of the game, though it's going to take a lot more testing across a wide array of hardware for us to get a good idea of how the game performs on computers.

Check out our live blog of the Starfield launch for more news as we count down the hours to Early Access. 

Dustin Bailey
Staff Writer

Dustin Bailey joined the GamesRadar team as a Staff Writer in May 2022, and is currently based in Missouri. He's been covering games (with occasional dalliances in the worlds of anime and pro wrestling) since 2015, first as a freelancer, then as a news writer at PCGamesN for nearly five years. His love for games was sparked somewhere between Metal Gear Solid 2 and Knights of the Old Republic, and these days you can usually find him splitting his entertainment time between retro gaming, the latest big action-adventure title, or a long haul in American Truck Simulator.