One of the most popular mods on Nexus Mods for Skyrim is SkyUI, a complete overhaul of the game’s fumbled inventory system that, among a lot of other things, actually tells you the type, weight, and value of an item at a glance. It sits at over 860,000 endorsements and 6.5 million unique downloads (25 million total).
It’s an absolute godsend which is basically required to play the game, unless you’re really a fan of slowly scrolling through a list of shiny 3D models to get the whole picture. Fallout 4 got a similar treatment, and UI—UI never changes. It was inevitable that Starfield would follow.
StarUI Inventory is a mod by m8r98a4f2, which at the time of writing has close to 50,000 unique downloads already. StarUI aims to fix most of Bethesda’s classic UI issues by, similarly to other mods of its ilk, presenting things in a more accessible list format. It lets you sort your inventory by ascending and descending order for things like weight, value, and DPS. You can also add custom columns by editing the mod’s .ini file, such as ammo type, rounds, stack value—all that good granular stuff.
It’s a shame this is necessary. Bethesda don’t seem to have learned from their prior fumbles—even Chris, who liked the game overall in his Starfield review, found himself annoyed by Todd Howard’s menu mind prison: “The inventory system is truly rotten, frustrating in a game where you’re collecting anything and everything and trying to shuffle items between your companion, your ship’s inventory, your storage crates at your base, and your own pockets.”
Community sentiment hasn’t been ideal, either. Threads on the official Reddit are already griping about it—and one redesign concept by user turbokacperel, which hit over 9,000 upvotes, is flooded by players annoyed that this has somehow happened in yet another Bethesda title.
This all shouldn’t be a huge surprise to most gamers familiar with Bethesda’s past inventories, though I do feel deep exhaustion at the seeming lack of improvement over eight years—even Skyrim’s UI never had a proper update, despite receiving a Legendary and Special edition. We’re fortunate, as PC gamers, to have mods with which to band-aid design decisions like this—pour one out for our console cousins, who aren’t so lucky.