What happened to Earth in Starfield? This probably one of the most burning questions you might ask as you hurtle yourself into the vast expanse of Bethesda’s new universe. Well, as it turns out, there is an interesting backstory behind humanity’s abandonment of their native planet and settling amongst faraway exoplanets and space settlements.
In this article, we will take a deep dive into the Earth’s backstory in Starfield. Be warned that this history will contain several main story spoilers. So, if you want to experience the origins of humanity’s interstellar travels for yourself, you might not want to read on.
What exactly happened to Earth in Starfield?
Centuries before the events of Starfield took place, humanity successfully launched a manned mission to Mars and discovered the first of the artifacts. This artifact allowed humans to unlock the secret of the Grav jump drive and enabled them to mount interstellar expeditions. Developing the first-ever Grav drive allowed astronauts to quickly jump from one star system to another, enabling space travel over massive distances.
However, the very instrument that enabled humanity to access deep space became the doom of their own home. Earth in Starfield began to slowly die, with each Grav jump triggering alarmingly fast deterioration of the planet’s atmosphere. In the final chapters of Starfield’s main story, we begin to understand how exactly life on Earth in Starfield came to an unfortunate end.
It is divulged in the final mission of Starfield that a handful of scientists were indeed aware of the harmful impact of Grav jumps on Earth’s atmosphere. However, driven by an immense desire to explore the final frontier, they kept mum and continued with their experiments. They mounted more and more space missions, eventually allowing their home to slowly die.
How did humanity survive after the destruction of Earth in Starfield?
In the final leg of the game’s main story, players come across an audio log that paints a pretty good picture of humanity’s mass exodus from their first home. After many missions to distant space that required Grav jumps, scientists finally realized that they had only 50 years left before Earth’s atmosphere was completely destroyed, rendering the planet inhabitable.
Once this realization dawned, the very instrument of Earth’s death was utilized to evacuate the entire human race to distant planets that featured habitable atmospheres. United Colonies Government, one of the major Starfield factions, was formed during this 50-year period in order to manage the migration of the entire human race.
Can you visit Earth in Starfield?
Yes! While the Earth in Starfield is nothing but a rocky and desolate ghost of humanity’s former home, it is completely possible to travel there. Visiting Earth in Starfield is relatively easy. The only thing that matters is having enough fuel at hand. The amount of fuel required to travel to Earth will depend upon how far away from the planet’s solar system, named the ‘Sol’ system in the game.
The best opportunity to visit Earth in Starfield might come during the second main story mission, The Old Neighborhood. This mission places you pretty close to the Sol system. So, if you have enough fuel for your ship, you might be able to make the trip to Earth. If you wish to explore Earth in Starfield, you can follow this step-by-step guide:
- Open your star map and zoom out to open the star systems view.
- Navigating various star systems, locate and select the Sol system.
- Hold the ‘Jump’ button once you locate the Sol system and look for Earth.
- Once you find the planet, press ‘Show Me’ and then select the option ‘Set Landing Target’.
- As Earth in Starfield has no settlements or residents, you can land on any part of the planet.
- Land on Earth and begin exploring.
Note: You can also display and scan Earth in Starfield without actually landing on it. However, if you decide to land on Earth, be prepared. Landing on now desolate Earth’s surface will give you the ‘Extreme Solar Radiation’ status effect, which will result in significant damage if not dealt with properly. In order to safely explore Earth in Starfield, you will need to equip the proper spacesuit that will protect you against radiation and keep health-replenishing Aid items at hand.
What can you expect to find on Earth in Starfield?
Earth in Starfield is a barren and lifeless planet with a very small number of resources. There are no quests for you to undertake or significant items to find. However, there are certain pools of resources, like Chlorine, Iron, Water, Dysprosium, and Lead, that can be found and mined on Earth’s surface. Apart from that, there are certain landmarks on Earth that can be explored, however, owing to a lack of maps and no set entry points, it’s a daunting task to explore the entirety of this massive planet.
If you want to go looking for ‘remnants of the old world’, as hinted by Sarah Morgan, one of the key Starfield companions, we suggest you start with locations of larger cities, such as London, New York, etc.
How accurate is Earth’s lore in Starfield?
While Bethesda has created an awe-inspiring universe that spans countless star systems, one can’t help but note that the lore they have crafted couldn’t be called completely fictitious. Even today, our planet is in steady decline, with the stargazing 0.01% of humanity trying mount expedition after expedition, meekly accepting the inevitable demise of the blue marble we currently call home and accelerating the process.
An argument can be made that it is an obligation of any intelligent lifeform to preserve their knowledge and species – no matter what the cost. Is Starfield a cautionary tale? The journey towards the unknown is a core element of our collective psyche, a driving force that has enabled us to reach newer heights. However, one can’t help but wonder if sacrificing our home to score a place amongst the stars is totally worth it. Starfield’s version of Earth is clearly (and unfortunately) believable.