TechTodd Howard's misjudged remarks on Starfield's PC performance: Are high-end computers an exception rather than the norm?

Todd Howard's misjudged remarks on Starfield's PC performance: Are high-end computers an exception rather than the norm?

Todd Howard talks about cooperation with AMD.
Todd Howard talks about cooperation with AMD.
Images source: © Youtube

7:44 AM EST, January 27, 2024

Tom Warren reported the extraordinary statement from Todd Howard on Twitter. Howard, known for his many controversial views, showed his personal perspective again. The following is a snippet from the interview where Howard responds to performance criticisms of Starfield on PC, with the main discussion surrounding game optimization.

While journalists are focusing on optimization, Howard insists that the game has been well optimized. This is a difficult point to agree with, given the criticism seen regarding Starfield's performance on PC, particularly on Reddit. Players have reported that even a computer equipped with an AMD Ryzen 9 5900X processor and a GeForce RTX 3090 graphics card struggles to maintain 60 FPS. Similarly, a player reported achieving an average of 70 FPS on low settings in Full HD with an RTX 3090 Ti.

By simply perusing the Reddit posts about the performance of the Starfield game on PC, it becomes clear that Todd Howard's remarks appear misguided. A mere upgrade of the computer isn't enough unless one acquires the most high-end hardware available. The game only runs smoothly at maximum settings and at 4K resolution on a top-end computer. But how many people worldwide can afford such a system?

A look at the latest Steam statistics seems applicable here. According to the August report (available on the Steam website), the most popular graphics cards amongst users are:

  1. NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650
  2. NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060
  3. NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060
  4. NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 Laptop GPU
  5. NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060

In contrast, only 0.78 percent of Steam gamers have the top-performing NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 graphic card, while the AMD RX 7900-XTX can be found in 0.23 percent of user's computers. Given these statistics, is Todd Howard living in the same reality as the rest of us?

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