As the divisive Fallout 76
approaches its one year anniversary, Bethesda
has provided an update on the state of the game. First up, the Wastelanders
DLC which introduces NPCs to the world, a new main questline, has been delayed to Q1 2020. The reasoning according to the studio is that it has become "one of the largest expansions we’ve ever done, and it changes the entire world" so more time is needed to get the quality right.
Something that no doubt plagued the game's initial launch, so it's good to see the team treating it like an almost reboot. Bethesda has also released a few new screens from the Wastelanders update - showcasing new characters the Duchess and Meg. And yeah, it's great to see NPCs and Fallout 76 becoming more like, well, Fallout.
Also, Private Servers are coming next week - which will be an additional cost for players who want to play and explore in their own instance of Fallout 76's Appalachia. This will pave the way for mod support which Bethesda confirms is still coming, so stay tuned on that front.
As Wastelanders will be a free update for all players, Bethesda took time to explain the reasoning behind the Atomic Shop adding items like Repair Kits, Scrap Kits, and Refrigerators. Noting that these features have become the most popular items in the previously cosmetic-only Atomic Shop.
We want to create an Atomic Shop experience where players feel good about spending their hard-earned Atoms. To make the system more fun and engaging for all players, we plan on reworking parts of the Challenge and reward system next year to be clearer, more fun, and more impactful for all types of players.
Of course, players can also buy Atoms, and we’re careful with everything we add to not upset the game’s balance. Our main objective is to avoid a situation where players can spend money to gain a competitive advantage or make the game worse for other players. Even more so, we want systems that allow players who do choose to buy Atoms to make the game better for others, not just themselves. With these principles in mind, we make careful decisions about the items we offer to keep it fair for everyone.
Microtransactions will always be a contentious part of any game - especially one that lives in the online space, but if it means content like Wastelanders is free then we're okay with this response.
To read the full update on the state of Fallout 76 - head here