Those who haven’t started New Game+ in Starfield yet may want to be careful, as there appears to be a bug causing long-running save files to crash.
Who would have thought, Starfield has some annoying bugs that might hamper your gameplay. This time, PCGamer reports that some players are finding that games they don’t choose to start with New Game+ are increasingly causing the game to crash. A popular Skyrim modder, wSkeever, actually noticed the bug last month and shared what they found on Reddit’s Starfield mods subreddit. At the time they pointed out that this was related to the game’s dynamic form ID generation logic.
These are obviously some complicated-sounding words, so thankfully, a user on the main Starfield subreddit pointed out the exact cause of the problem. As they explain, “Dynamic forms are the majority of in-game objects you encounter during gameplay,” pointing to examples such as pl anets, points of interest, ship parts, crafting items, and more. Basically, most of the content in the game. In previous Bethesda games, starting around 2007, the way it usually worked was that once those objects were no longer used, “they were recycled/disappeared, and the IDs assigned to them were recycled/reused for you new object”. Spawned when crafting/building or exploring. ”
However, in Starfield’s case, the system is currently bugged. They do not recycle old IDs assigned to different objects, but remain in the save file’s ID list, which is a problem considering how much that list is added each time a new area is explored. As a result, your save file will become bloated with all those IDs, which means that the ID generation logic will run out of numbers it can use, which will make crashing more and more likely, and may eventually make your save file can not play.
The bug is apparently quite inconsistent, but usually occurs between 200 and 800 hours into the game. The only way to reset this issue currently is in New Game+, but apparently not every player will have to do this, so Bethesda should probably address this issue. Thankfully, a Bethesda community manager said in the comments on a post explaining the issue that a fix appears to be on its way sometime this week.
In the meantime, maybe consider starting a New Game+, starting a fresh save, or maybe just putting the game away for a few days. Or giving up altogether is also an option.