When Fallout pops into your head, right after, the line “war never changes” probably does too. The two are inseparable and the line that was first uttered by Ron Pearlman in the original 1997 game has become the core of every Fallout game’s introduction. As such, I began to wonder what Starfield‘s iconic, tone-setting slogan could be.
To figure it out, I enlisted the help of two of our Bethesda-savvy writers, Rory Norris and Kyle Wilson, to put forward their own ideas. But, I also have my own theory ahead of the Starfield release time next week and the Starfield Game Pass launch. If Starfield does decide to bookend its story with an impactful quote or strapline – and in our view, it definitely should – here are some contenders.
“The dream is alive” – Kyle
The line “the dream is alive” might not sound as space-y as other options at first, but its use by astronaut John Young after the first successful mission by NASA’s Space Shuttle Program perfectly captures the sentiment of Starfield. Under Young’s command, the safe launch into orbit and subsequent re-entry and landing of the STS-1 in 1981 marked the beginning of a new era of space exploration and flight. It proved invaluable in the development of the International Space Station and presented humankind with more opportunities to take to the stars than ever before.
Starfield isn’t quite as endless as the vastness of space, but it’s shaping up to be a game that aims to deliver on your dreams. Whoever you want to be, however you want to play, Starfield is going to try its best to let you do that. Without the real achievements of NASA’s Space Shuttle Program, the spaceflight you see in Starfield wouldn’t even be conceivable. So, to pay homage to this truly vital development in humankind history, we think it’s only fair to honor it with Young’s simple, yet effective, remark: “the dream is alive”.
In many ways, Starfield is also something of a ‘dream’ game for many at Bethesda, Todd Howard included, and with that dream now realized, maybe there’s some poignancy for the developers too.
Overall, this is a lovely sentiment and I would love for this to be a line that makes it into the game, either as an opening and closing sentiment, or during a memorable moment. Particularly when you look at how much NASA inspired Starfield and the fact Bethesda worked with NASA data, as mentioned in the Starfield Direct.
I could see it being something said by a member of Constellation, especially as you chase after the artifacts, which are core to the story of the game.
“That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind” – Rory
Perhaps it’s a little cliche, but we wouldn’t put it past Bethesda to weave an old-timey recording of one of the most important and well-known (and most misquoted) lines in history. After all, Neil Armstrong’s iconic quote has since inspired generations to look up at the stars in wonder, much like how Starfield’s Constellation faction is a group of intrepid explorers searching for answers in space.
Similar to Kyle’s quote, this could very well be in the game because of NASA’s influence on Starfield. This seems a little less likely though to me because of how on the nose it is and I reckon Bethesda Games Studios will want to go with a quote that is less well-known, or their own unique one to give Starfield some identity. But, I could definitely see a nod to it somewhere in the game’s quests, or even a history-obsessed character saying it.
“The wonder is, not that the field of stars is so vast, but that man has measured it” – Echo
While the quote itself is an elegant one, my choice is probably the most boring one here, and that is because Bethesda has already been using this line for Starfield in its marketing. In the first teaser trailer and a number of other trailers after that, Anatole France’s quote is featured. The French poet was born back in 1844 and scooped a Nobel Prize in Literature in 1921.
It is pretty clear that this quote was a big inspiration for Bethesda with how prominent it has been in trailers, and I think it definitely has a shot of becoming a memorable slogan for the game, just as “war never changes” has become for Fallout.
We’ll have to wait until the game is in our hands to see if any of these are correct, or if Starfield even has a game-defining tagline at all. It’s shaping up to be one of the best RPGs of all time – one that likely deserves to be personified by a captivating, iconic quote.
Still looking for more? While a good Starfield wiki can be a handy source of information, our new Starfield Database goes further, offering you daily news, searchable databanks, and even interactive tools.