Starfield and Cyberpunk 2077 are two 2023 heavy hitters that may not work on an HDD, as their minimum requirements list an SSD storage.
It looks like we're finally waving goodbye to good old hard disc drives, at least when it comes to gaming. Two massive upcoming RPG releases, Bethesda's sci-fi epic Starfield and CD Projekt Red's Phantom Liberty expansion for Cyberpunk 2077 feature a mandatory requirement for an SSD.
According to the official PC specs, Cyberpunk 2077 is dropping HDD support with the upcoming expansion. The game base game can run on HDD but that won't be the case once Phantom Liberty launches, brining new locations, gameplay improvements and a whole new story.
As for Starfield, given the scope of the game, the vast open worlds we'll get to explore, the outpost building and all the other things that we've seen in the Deep Dive footage, it's really not surprising that you need fast storage to load all those assets.
As you can see from the image below, Cyberpunk 2077 Phantom Liberty requires quite the hardware even for 1080p resolution. You'll also notice it needs at least 70 GB of SSD space. However, the graph does not precisely tell us what type of SSD the game requires.
But we doubt you'll need a high-end, super-fast M.2 drive as SATA SSD should probably do the job.
Starfield on the other hand, isn't that demanding but also lists an SSD for storage. We know that Bethesda are working with Microsoft on Starfield, so it's possible that they optimised the game for Microsoft Direct Storage, which requires an NVMe SSD.
Cyberpunk 2077 Phantom Liberty PC specs
Starfield PC specs
All in all, we certainly expect this to become the norm moving forward as games get more complex and bigger than ever before.
The good thing is that even fast M.2 drives are not expensive anymore so you should probably upgrade if you're still on an HDD. You'll get much faster loading times in games and obviously, you will be actually able to play games that have an SSD as a minimum requirement.
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