I played several hundred hours worth of Fallout 4. Several play-throughs making a variety of decisions along the way. One of my favorite play-throughs being an absolute jerk to every NPC along the way. One day as I was hanging walking passed Vault 95 on my way to the Glowing Sea, I was stalked and attacked by a Chameleon Deathclaw. Eventually, I killed it and looted a 2 Shot Gauss Rifle. My first thought was man, I wish this were a multiplayer game so I could show off this find. That thought later grew to, I wish the next game in the series was multiplayer. Later, of course, we get the announcement of Fallout 76 at the E3 conference. I couldn’t be more hyped. The very second I could pre-order Fallout 76 -I did.
I played through the entirety of the BETA. Yeah, it had it’s share of issues to this point. I thought the same about Elder Scrolls Online when it first came out so I thought nothing of it. For a BETA, Fallout 76 was running fine. We all knew the real test would be at launch. MMORPG’s always get a ton of players upfront and active players die off after awhile. That was of course the case.
So why did many people leave?
The biggest problem for me early on was the stash size limit. In the beginning, you could only store 400 weight in the stash. As I progressed, I wanted to keep more and more things. I needed several hundred pounds of junk just to repair my weapons, armor, and power armor regularly. 400 pounds was simply not enough.
2. Unstable enemies, especially Scorched and Scorchedbeast
All scorched enemies were wildly buggy for quite some time. Often they were invisible (not by design) which made the vault dweller unable to attack them at all. Wolves would have stretched necks like a giraffe. I never new where to attack them because only in certain places could I actually do damage to them. I decided to nuke the Scorchbeast Queen once I got strong enough to launch my own nukes. The entire fissure site was unplayable. It was full of these bugged and broken scorched. Other players filled the area hoping to get their hands on a 2 shot explosive weapon by looting the dead queen. Often the queen would get stuck outside the playable area, leaving our hard work unrewarded as we couldn’t get to her to loot her body.
3. Loading Screens of death
We early players feared loading screens in this game. Many times if you entered a loading screen, you would be stuck there indefinitely. I had to close and restart the application several times because I was stuck in a loading screen. This made me resent the game, and I often looked for other games to play until fixes came. Something about this game kept me coming back.
4. No Human NPC’s
One of the biggest complaints I seen throughout social media and forums was the lack of human NPC’s to hear stories from, receive quests, and otherwise interact with. Bethesda and their many publishing partners over the years have become known for their great dialogue with NPC’s. Fallout 76’s initial release featured, and placed on center stage, the fact that there would be zero human NPC’s in the game. There are currently only robots and various mutated creatures to interact with, very minimally. The primary, non-robot, NPC that most people recognize being Grahm. Grahm is a super mutant vendor who travels the West Virginian Wasteland. You can buy a variety of items from him, if he isn’t fighting other creatures.
I am a big fan of the Fallout Universe as a whole. This is a world that didn’t evolve technologically the same way that we did in real life. This feature alone created a vast world of lore for us to pick through. Endless stories for us all to be entertained by. I came into the series at Fallout 4. I quickly went back to the earlier titles just for the stories. Reading terminals, following letters, listening to NPC’s, creates a story like you would find in a great movie or series.
So is it worth coming back?
Yes. Many of those issues I have mentioned have been fixed to date. There are the occasional bugs, sure, but the game runs very smooth now. Every MMORPG has these same issues, and Fallout 76 is no exception. The stash size limit has increased to 800, and with Fallout 1st, the vault dweller may purchase a subscription, one of the benefits being a new unlimited Scrap Box. The new scrap box can cost you $100 per year, (Other subscription benefits as well) but this allows you to free up your stash box space by storing all of your collected junk for crafting and repairs in a separate storage. My personal stash box became 600 pounds lighter with this upgrade. Yes, I paid the $100 dollars for the upgrade.
What is Fallout 1st? Quick look.
Fallout 1st is an in-game subscription that will cost you $12 per month or $100 dollars per year. Right now, it features the scrap box mentioned above, as well as:
- Private World – A private server for you and up to 7 friends.
- Survival tent – this works independently from your C.A.M.P. and acts as a second free fast travel spot. It also features a cooking pot, stash and junk box, and sleeping bag.
- Atoms – A big thing in Fallout 76 is the in-game purchases. I am an absolute fiend for furniture in all the games that I play. This gives you 1650 Atoms per month to save or spend at your will.
- Ranger Armor Outfit – This didn’t excite me as much as it did other people. There are plenty of you who will love this though as plenty of people become as fiendish about outfits as I do furniture.
- Icons & Emotes – several items free here
I simply had to buy this premium membership as a huge fan of the titles. The extra furniture alone is worth it to me.
What’s to come? Wastelanders expansion is the big upcoming update that many are looking forward to. Originally anticipated to release late 2019, this “massive” update was put off until an undisclosed date in Q1 2020. We do not know if/when we will get this update. At first glance, it looks worth the wait. The crowd which has followed Bethesda through the beginning hardships of the West Virginian wasteland deserve an update with little bugs. (Always going to be some). So I am glad they are taking their time. Here is a quick glance at the expansion. All of which is speculation as Bethesda has stayed pretty close lipped as to the exact nature of what is in it.
- Human NPC’s – one of the key features to previous titles in the Fallout series. Just a couple days ago, Settlers and Raiders were introduced on Bethesda’s website as coming with the Wastelanders Expansion.
- Companions – another key feature in previous titles, namely Fallout 4.
- Workshops – currently there are several workshops through the (almost called it the Commonwealth) West Virginian Wasteland which the vault dweller may claim and upgrade. These are supposedly getting a huge roll in the new Wastelander expansion . The exact details are unknown.
- Dungeon Style content – Bethesda seems to have an interest in added group style dungeons to the game. These will likely be Vaults, but we do not know the depth of this until release.
- Tons of change – Like the workshops, much content will be enhanced.
So it seems our complaints are getting addressed. Is it worth coming back? Well why did we leave? No human NPC’s? well that appears to be getting changed. Bugs? The game runs much, much smoother now. Loading screen of death? Doesn’t seem to be an issue anymore. Stash size limit? This has been doubled, and the Fallout 1st premuim membership makes it much better. So I will answer again, YES, this game is worth coming back to, and I look forward to logging several hundred more hours into play.
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