My favorite activity in Starfield is taking disturbing photos
Starfield is slowly growing on me - and I mean really slowly. It has helped that I've completely thrown out the role-playing aspect and instead, I'm t...
Starfield is slowly growing on me - and I mean really slowly. It has helped that I've completely thrown out the role-playing aspect and instead, I'm trying out everything the game has to offer just to see what happens. My playthrough as the good guy is over: I'm now a corporate spy, a police officer in two different colonies, and soon probably an undercover pirate. Additionally, I've largely avoided missions that force me to explore planets, which I mainly did for credits anyway. Strangely enough, I almost miss those missions, even though they frustrated me because they provided great opportunities for photography.
I have never been a big fan of the photo mode, mainly because until this year, I played games on inferior hardware. It was only this year that I switched to the current console generation out of necessity for work - before that, I played on my old PlayStation 4, which was on the verge of exploding every time I tried to run something with decent graphics. Naturally, current games didn't look impressive on my PS4, so I never felt a strong desire to capture my time with screenshots or anything of the sort.
That all changed when I switched to the Xbox Series X and was impressed by the graphical quality of its games. I started taking non-stop photos in Star Wars Jedi: Survivor and was thrilled by the countless opportunities to capture Cal Kestis during his Jedi activities. Every time I saw Lilith in a Diablo 4 cutscene, I quickly took a series of screenshots to admire later - once again, because she is attractive. There's a pattern here, I know it.
I love taking photos in Starfield, but for a completely different reason. While some of the planets in Starfield have breathtaking views, such scenes have been rare and far between so far. I ended up in the polar region of one of the planets in Tau Ceti and took some beautiful pictures of a gravitational anomaly in the foreground of a massive planet with impressive rings, evoking the sense of awe I was hoping for when I started playing Starfield. However, that is not my preferred use of the photo mode. What I truly love is taking strange, almost creepy photos of my companions, simply while they exist.
I love the genre of photography where things look strange and unappealing. I enjoy peculiar lighting that is not flattering and can be eerie. I like darkness and vast empty spaces like fields and deserts. Starfield, with its vast barren planets and occasional quirky ambient lighting, provides me ample opportunity to capture photos that wouldn't be considered particularly beautiful but are more interesting and even amusing to me.
What I would normally refer to as "Bethesda Jank," when things seem a bit too unnatural, are now moments I crave. I can capture the uncanny valley, lifeless eyes, strange lighting, people in unnatural poses, things where they shouldn't be. When I kill a spaceman on a ship and he slides halfway through the ceiling, his legs dangling lifelessly in the air like a bad Halloween decoration, I feel childish joy. Starfield can look quite strange, and that's perfect for me.