Fallout 76 - Early Impressions

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#1 Edited by Ares42 (4362 posts) -

I guess it shouldn't come as any surprise, but unless you were really really into Fallout 4 and just wanted even more content, don't buy this game. After 10+ hours it's very clear that this is basically an old-school expansion (you know, when they actually built on the mechanics of the game), but it's a half-baked one. I've had the game both freeze and crash, there's an early quest that's just broken, there's severe performance issues (seemingly network related) and there's multiple issues with the settings (lack of, and not properly saving).

Most damningly though, as far as I can tell the added multiplayer does nothing to add to the experience. Sure, you're playing the game with friends, which always makes things better, but the way it's implemented is about as generic as possible. There's nothing new or interesting going on here. It just comes off as if they made it multiplayer for the sake of being multiplayer, and just filled in the blanks for what being multiplayer means.

Having that said though, if you wanted more Fallout 4 it delivers, at least to an acceptable degree (even more so if you were into hardcore mode). And so far that's been enough for me. Already it's having the good old Bethesda feel of sucking to begin with and then getting more and more enjoyable as you go along. There's a ton of stuff people are gonna nit-pick to hell about this game, but it still delivers the same roam around in the wilderness experience their games tend to focus on.

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#2 Posted by jaecee (67 posts) -

I've gone into 76 basically knowing it's not going to be the Fallout experience I want. Fallout has been a slow, methodical, loot-all game where I spend a bunch of time just wandering around and saying "hey, that looks like a thing", sneaking up and vats-killing bitches, exploring and looting the hell out of the area, and then building up my armour and weapons.

That shit doesn't play well with others. Especially if you're in a group of 4 people all needing to micromanage gear, weight, hunger, thirst, etc.

So with 76, I'm playing with friends. It's going to be a run of the mill thing where we just run around, chop bees with machetes, and blow through areas without looting too much- because now that it's multiplayer I can't just use a console command to get rid of encumbrance, and making the most of Yet Another Nightmarishly Buggy AF Bethesda World™.

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#3 Posted by SirPsychoSexy (1645 posts) -

I skipped out on fallout 4, but something is compelling me to play this game. I have watched a few streams and it just looks like a really great game to put on a podcast to and just explore. I don't plan on doing much if any group play, but I like the idea of just running into other players in the world. Maybe I should just get Fallout 4? Idk

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#4 Posted by AlKusanagi (1650 posts) -

Several hours of the beta were enough to give me my fill of it.

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#5 Posted by cmblasko (2941 posts) -

It looks really fun and I am interested in playing it, but it really depends on whether my friends want to buy it and play with me or not.

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#6 Posted by SoD (45 posts) -

I've definitely been hoping to find a group/community playing together.

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#7 Posted by Luchalma (546 posts) -

I've been way out of the loop on this thing. Is it just Metal Gear Survive but for Fallout?

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#8 Posted by BoOzak (2615 posts) -

@luchalma: I havent played Fallout 76 but from what i've watched. No, it isnt that. Survive had it's multiplayer and singleplayer seperate. (although items were shared) And it reused areas from MGS V and added zombies. The world in Fallout 76 seems to be all new and bigger but a lot of the same items/weapons are recycled from Fallout 4.

I feel like the most damning thing about this game is that this seems more like an expansion (as the OP said) if it were priced like one it would be a much easier sell. (although as Metal Gear Survive showed, it wouldnt stop people from hating it out of principle)

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#9 Posted by Luchalma (546 posts) -

@boozak: Thanks for the response. I'm still not sure if this game is for me or not. Luckily the Quick Look is now up. It's what I've been waiting for since E3.

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#10 Posted by FacelessVixen (2633 posts) -

Aimless exploration was a big part of how I played Fallout 4 for over 800 hours along with crafting. But given how sociable I want to be in games versus how sociable I actually am in games, in that I'm not in most cases, I'm gonna need some private servers.

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#11 Posted by nutter (2185 posts) -

If/when they introduce private games, I’ll give it a go. Until then, plenty of games to be played...

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#12 Posted by mems1224 (2508 posts) -

Im interested in playing it but not at launch. Seems like it'd drop in price pretty fast.

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#13 Posted by CurseTheseMetalHands (181 posts) -

Assuming they have a team that continues to support/update it regularly, it'll probably be a decent experience in a couple years, but only to those people who enjoy the bones of what's there now and see the potential for what it could become. It's just not what I want from a Fallout game and, because it's built to be multiplayer, it never will be. Hell, I never even took companions, except for Dogmeat, in Fallout games because I wanted that post-apocalyptic atmosphere of just a man and his dog roaming the irradiated wastes, that feeling of emptiness, isolation, desolation and loss, punctuated by moments of spectacular violence as dudes melt, vaporize, or explode like meat 'n' blood pinatas. The kind of atmosphere that's ruined by seeing some jackass named DarthVaper420 hopping around like it's fucking Fortnite.

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#14 Posted by geirr (3770 posts) -

If you enjoy the shooting and nothing else from Fallout 4,
and would like to see all its assets re-purposed in silly ways,
like how you can buy normal FO4 outfits for real money to wear in post nuclear West Virginia,
this game is for you.

I'm so displeased I've asked for a refund.

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#15 Edited by soulcake (2809 posts) -

Yesterday i found a questline about firefighters dealing with the scorched thought it was pretty neat. Dialogue was done with holotapes, but all by all a enjoyable experience. (playing solo). It's a fun fallout toybox don't expect a full drawn out singleplayer story. It's weird that i enjoy this thing i wasn't even gonna buy it until someone on the forums gave me a beta key, was happily surprised. Also like the way they done PVP as long as you don't attack anyone pvp will stay off.

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#16 Posted by EXCellR8 (134 posts) -

I still want to try it but not at full price. I have a real problem with games that feel empty and I don't want another launcher app...

They should have just done a Dying Light style online model where other players can drop in and out of a more typical Fallout world; even if it took longer to develop. I don't need 24 players either, half of that or less is fine, or just a few good buds. I guess I appreciate what they were trying to do but it basically resembles a beta of a mod that a B rank team stapled onto Fallout 4. The graphics are also a bit muddy looking but Fallout was never really known for fantastic visuals, so I can look past that.

Still very on the fence, leaning toward the other way.

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#17 Posted by Marcsman (3823 posts) -

I need more space in my Stash Box. Already full and I'm only level 12

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#18 Edited by SoD (45 posts) -

make sure you break down every bit of junk before stashing it and also try not to stash armor and weapons because they take up so much damn weight. I have perk cards that reduce the weight of my armor by half and there are others for various weapon weight reductions. I also got a mutation last night for the first time, Marsupial. -4 Int +20 carry weight, and I can jump like 3x normal height and it's -amazing-. Also been addicted to buffout since beta since I have yet to find addictol so always at an endurance and strength penalty.

It also seems like the resource gathering areas you can claim will keep what someone builds there even after they log out (which forfeits ownership), I found a junkyard with tons of turrets and claimed it and they all stayed. Setting up a junk extractor there got me some useful salvage. It seems most people don't know much about them, I usually find the ones I have discovered unclaimed and can just go nab them. When claimed they are free fast travel points which is super useful. You will have to build and power the extractors (10 power/2 medium generators) and they can come under attack but defending can get you like 300XP and various rewards. I got a .44 magnum last night with 50% armor bypass for defending the dirt track arena I had claimed.

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#19 Posted by Ares42 (4362 posts) -

@sod said:

It also seems like the resource gathering areas you can claim will keep what someone builds there even after they log out (which forfeits ownership)

Man, realizing this was a huge bummer. I had taken over a spot, built a bunch of purifiers, generators and a ton of turrets to protect them, then the server kicked me out and when I got back in it was all gone. Sure, I could just take it over again and set it all up again, but doing that every time you start a session is just not worth it. Combined with the very limited build space (and budget) for your camp and I feel like this game must be hugely disappointing for anyone that spent much time building stuff in Fallout 4.

Also, didn't they speak about how you would be able to set up shops etc around E3 ? With the lack of permanence that seems pretty much pointless. Not that there's any support for a player economy at all anyways. There's just so little thought put into how the multiplayer aspects of this game were supposed to be engaging and rewarding.

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#20 Posted by SoD (45 posts) -

Eh, barring getting disconnected I think it's a good investment and I'm very co-op minded so I just think about it being something someone else can inheiret and hope I can run into more pre-built locales.

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#21 Posted by Drachmalius (669 posts) -

Maybe I'll get it next year when its $20 or lower but nothing about it looks appealing right now.

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#22 Posted by SoD (45 posts) -

The limit on storage/stash definitely reeks of a 'use Atoms to upgrade your stash's max capacity!'. 400 doesn't get you far but if you want to clear space make sure you hunt plastic and patch things into bulk, it saves a lot of room. Also, inexplicably, you can't scrap legendary/special items so I've honestly just dropped some of them and let them decay after however long or sold them (my charisma isn't necessarily great but selling things usually doesn't get you many caps at all, I have 2 charisma and it seems like the listed value of items are sold for 1/10th the price or 1 cap minimum. It also seems like there's only so many caps on all vendors per day and it SEEMS like it's shared across them all and it seems to be 200 caps which is actually a lot of sales with how little stuff is worth. Also you CAN get perk cards to increase your barter stuff.

My favorite perk cards I have discovered are probably Luck based. Chance on hit to repair your weapon slightly (Lucky strike?) and chance on being hit to repair your armor slightly (Lucky Break). Adhesive is a premium as you might expect. I've been working toward setting up farming vegetable starch which should help a bit. Also the decay on food that is not boxed/canned can be brutal so always check your inventory/stash for spoiled food (you can turn it into fertilizer when you need to place a crop). I did a lot of stuff with someone last night and it was pretty cool the kind of fights we got into. I will say there is an enemy called a Honeybeast and it's like a giant damn bee where is third segment (thorax?) is a giant bee hive and they make me so uncomfortable. Almost as much as the giant ticks. Though the Honeybeasts DO come apart nicely when you kill them and drop adhesive.

You can also build things in a team member's camp but I am not sure how long it will stay, I built some stuff he didn't have plans for so it SEEMS like you could make shit for your buddy's camp so that's pretty cool.

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#23 Edited by katpottz (511 posts) -

My review so far

No Caption Provided

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#24 Edited by totsboy (501 posts) -

I had a few crashes last weekend when I started playing, seemed to happen only when I was in a party, but after the patch I did not happen again.

Other than that, a few physics bugs not unlike the ones we usually see on Bathesda games. But overall, way fewer issues than I expected based on the reactions I'm seeing online.

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#25 Edited by SoD (45 posts) -

So, I found a lever action rifle I could use last night and the weapon still animates reloading 5 rounds even if you only fire one which was something that was awful in 4 and still here. Maybe it says something about me but that is honestly the first thing in this game that really just made me feel like they didn't bother to tighten anything up (it's obvious in many places but I was able to kind of look past it without issue). I am still having fun but... Man, that is something that is so dumb, no point in reloading in combat unless you fire every shell from the tube.

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#26 Edited by LordRenrew (53 posts) -

I like it. It’s certainly an empty game, but for me “the loop” of a fallout game or elder scrolls game is there: Walk around, experience the environment, pick a quest, walk from A to B, and complete the quest. I have found the environmental story telling refreshing.

That’s just me though.

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#28 Posted by Zelyre (1901 posts) -

@drachmalius: you may not even have to wait a year. It’s floating around retail for $39usd for Black Friday. I think I would be kind of unhappy about that if I bought it at launch. Last week. For 59 bucks.

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#31 Posted by norm9 (55 posts) -

Excited to try this when it hits game pass.

But paying for this? No thanks.

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#32 Posted by Ares42 (4362 posts) -

So I guess I might as well cap this thread off with some final thoughts.

After finally finishing the game (and I mean finally) I'm left satisfied but disappointed. Not disappointed about the game being a mess (although this is a BAD game), but disappointed in how devoid of thought and perspective it is. I understand that it is basically BGS' expansion into the multiplayer realm, but if this is their first step we're several games away from them making an actual good multiplayer game. They're like some mom and pop shop that refuses to give up on their old ways and take inspiration from what everyone else around them is doing. There are just so many poor decisions behind this game leading to issues in every single imaginable direction.

This game could have been amazing. If it had the budget and development time it needed and developers with an understanding of multiplayer content it really could. The core systems and gameplay loop are spectacular. It's what kept me playing crash after crash, glitch after glitch. But everything else around it is rudimentary, flawed and/or broken. In a year filled with open world games that has polished all the supplementary features to a shine I still got as much (or more) enjoyment out of this game due to it's superior fundamental concept.

I wish I could boot up the game and be excited about continuing to explore the Appalachia, but I can't. And I fear that if BGS continues down this path this will not be the last time I'll end one of their games with this disappointed feeling.

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