What is the new Starfield persuasion system? First teased in March 2022, players were very briefly introduced to the all-new dialogue minigame in the space game. Starfield’s game director, Todd Howard, spoke of it as “it feels like you’re having a conversation where you’re actually trying to persuade somebody of something.”
Then not much else was said about this intriguing new way of conversing with the NPCs in this RPG game. Luckily, Todd has since expanded on the Starfield persuasion system, giving fans a first-look at how it will work, what it’ll cost you, and the mechanics behind persuading characters in the game to join up with your way of thinking. Let’s take a look.
What is the Starfield persuasion system?
After Todd Howard’s brief explainer in the developer roundtable, fans have been waiting for more to be said about Starfield’s persuasion system. In a Q&A video in October 2022 with the man himself, Todd discussed in more detail for the first time about the new dialogue.
Essentially, Starfield looks to head back to a more “classic Bethesda-style dialogue” in general. He added that “the scope of the game, the amount of content we’re making is a bit more than we’ve done before in terms of quests and things like that, but the depth in some of the stuff with the dialogue, we just passed 250,000 lines.”
In comparison to some of Bethesda’s biggest titles to date, Skyrim only had 60,000 lines and Fallout had 111,000. So, we’re talking about over double the lines we’ve experienced from any of Bethesda’s previous games.
The persuasion system though, according to Todd Howard, is his “favourite”. He continues, “It feels like part of the dialogue, but you’re spending points to persuade them… It feels natural, not like I’ve entered some other mode where I’m not doing regular dialogue. I’m in this mode of persuading you to get what I want.”
In a few first-look gameplay screens, we can see for the first time what the persuasion system will look like. As shown above, players will have the option to choose to [Persuade] an NPC during their dialogue. The option to persuade will then take the player to a list of choices, each with their own differing amounts of points to spend in order to engage.
Spending points will give players the chance to win the character over. As shown in the first-look gameplay, these range from spending one point to tell the character they’re wrong, three points to suggest trading ships, four points to coax them into embarrassing themselves, and five points to seemingly propose conflict. Given there’s over 250,000 lines in the game, players can expect a lot of different options for dialogue in general, let alone the new persuasion system.
That’s about everything we know so far about the persuasion system, but it’s a whole lot more as we approach the Starfield release date. There’s plenty more to explore about the upcoming titan space RPG though, so be sure to check out our latest on the Starfield Game Pass release date, our look at the Starfield factions, Crimson Fleet and Constellation, and all of the Starfield cities we know about.