Look, I love the Fallout games...like, a LOT, even though they play like raw sewage and have more bugs than Lindsay Lohan's crotch. I will call myself an apologist of Bethesda's take on the series because I love their atmosphere, exploration, and environmental storytelling that much that I will overlook, but still admit to, their countless technical shortcomings. I felt the same way about Fallout 76 based on what I'd seen pre-release. Surely everyone was just being overly harsh on the game because it wasn't what they thought it would be. And to be fair, yeah, a ton of these people haven't actually played it and hate it for the wrong reasons. It's not as if this is a replacement of the traditional entries, it's just something different. But after spending a good 15 or so hours with 76, I don't think I've ever turned faster on a game.
I gave Fallout 76 a pretty fair shake. This might be kind of long but bare with me. Or don't. I just want to vent. The first 10 hours or so were actually really fun for the most part. A buddy and I played together the whole time. It wasn't too challenging and the game was giving me the materials I needed to get by, so I started to think "hey, this ain't so bad. I could probably spend awhile with the game if it continues like this." While the world itself is merely a shell of the other mainline Fallouts, with some rather bland and uninvolved quests, I do still really like what I've seen of the map and the exploration aspect is still there. And you know what? There is still some really cool stuff to find in there. Unfortunately, the structure of the game is not actually conducive to co-op unless you feel like holding up your crew while you read the game's endless amount of notes and computer logs. Whatever, I can deal with that.
But after those initial hours, the game takes a sharp turn around the time the "story" takes you to the second area on the map. Suddenly specific crucial crafting materials, namely aluminum and adhesive, become super scarce. You really need those for everything and being forced to use the few you do find to constantly repair your weapons is tiresome. Also, supplies necessary to survival like water and stimpaks, stop dropping on a regular basis. My current character has none of either and there's no truly reliable way to stock back up. Considering how few caps you get in the game, the cost of these items from vendors is fucking staggeringly stupid. So my dude is basically fucked.
The nature of the game becomes increasingly aggravating as it wears on. The game is obviously designed to be a very slow trickle of progress compared to regular Fallout games. If it was fair in any way, I could deal with that, but there is nothing fun or fair about the endless tedium of trying to maintain all of these statuses while also trying to explore this massive map. And if all that wasn't bad enough, this is far and away THE buggiest game Bethesda have ever released. Broken AI and animations, bugged quests that don't finish and require a restart, incorrect quest markers...it's all the usual suspects, just a lot more frequent. But all the stuff I built for my CAMP decided to just disappear rather than get stored when I relocated. Do I have enough materials to rebuild everything from scratch? Absolutely not! So my dude is double fucked.
After failing the Runner's High quest, which is part of the main story, for the FOURTH time because the in-world directions are too hard to see in time, I'm done. Everything wrong with the game just converged in one spectacular fuckfest that completely broke me. I simply cannot contend with this game's level of bullshit any longer. I feel bad because my buddy gave up even earlier and sold back his physical copy, but he bought it for me digitally knowing I couldn't afford it at the moment because he wanted to play with me. So I guess I'm stuck with it and he's out like $95 on this dogshit.
At the very least, because of the game's overwhelmingly negative response, I'm interested to see how Bethesda support the game, and if they try to make any drastic changes to the structure. If they can somehow make it palatable to someone like me, let alone the general gaming public, I'll be impressed, but right now I do not have any faith in their ability to do so.
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