Starfield: Should I Rush The Main Story Or Explore?

Wondering if you should speed through the main quests of Starfield or go about exploring planets, systems and more?

Should I rush and play the main story quests or explore planets and more in Starfield? This is the question on the minds of players dipping their toes in a Bethesda title like this one, or simply getting into an open-world game of this scale for the first time. Here are my two cents.

Should I Play the Main Story or Explore in Starfield?

If you are thinking of speeding through the main quests instead of exploring or completing the side quests, I would suggest that you balance both out. It is recommended that you don’t rush the main missions because the way Bethesda games are created, it’s better to make the most of everything this sandbox RPG has to offer, especially on your first playthrough.

Many players have commented online that after blasting through the main quests, they were not able to enjoy NG+ as much as they would after going through the story more naturally. There will be story-based twists and reveals that will have a higher impact if you have gone through deeper experiences and interactions while playing the game.

rush main missions or exploration starfield

Plus, your choices matter and if you go through the side quests, you will see the various outcomes of your faction, traits, backgrounds, crew members, and responses from NPCs in a better way. This, compared to just completing the main quests back to back, is going to be a very different playthrough.

Starfield is an immersive experience and the best way to play it would be by putting yourself in the shoes of your character. You can take a break from the main missions and complete some other activities, talk to random civilians, romance a companion, visit different systems, explore planets, and discover interesting secrets. I feel like that’s the intended way this game was meant to be played.

complete main story or exploration

There are loads of things to do in Starfield and you might just find yourself spending hours on ship customization or outpost building. But at the end of the day, it’s your decision. If you are planning on multiple playthroughs of the game and wish to have one based on exploring and one that helps you beat the game as soon as possible, that works too! Both decisions are totally valid.

In case you are planning to get to Starfield’s NG+ as fast as possible, note that you will keep your level, powers, achievements, and skills and its challenge progression. But you will lose your weapons/armor, resources, credits, outposts, ships, exploration %, faction missions, activities progression, side missions, and homes. Before you start your New Game Plus playthrough, you will be asked if you wish to reset your main campaign progress or wish to mark it as done.

So, in conclusion, there’s no right way to play a Bethesda game like Starfield that’s set in stone – you can rush the main story if you prefer or do a bunch of exploring, building, and customizing. As long as you’re having fun, nothing else matters.

For everything related to Starfield’s quests, decisions, and mechanics, check out our Starfield guides on Gamer Tweak.