You all know how excited I am about this game from an earlier article. So, of course, I had to report on the Beta.
Affectionately called the Break it Early Test Application, this is the time for anyone who pre-ordered Fallout 76 to explore the world a couple weeks before everyone else. As you might have guessed from our previous article about Fallout 76, I pre-ordered the Tricentennial Edition because I was too poor for the Power Armor set. However, my boyfriend pre-ordered it so I’ll get to wear the T-51 helmet at some point.
All the fun pre-order items are nice, but nothing beats being able to play the B.E.T.A. As you might have seen in videos of playthrough, you start in the vault where you make your character and put on your Pip-Boy 2000. Before you leave the vault though, you get a starter kit that covers all the basic things you’ll need to stay focused on as you play. Like survival mode from previous games, you will need to stay on top of your food and water intake. All water you gather won’t always be safe to drink and, as a wise Mr. Handy tells you, “When in doubt, boil it out!” You will also pick up your C.A.M.P. for your future settlement and your first set of PERK cards.
P.E.R.K. cards felt like the main feature everyone was curious about, for good reason! They change up the skill building system gamers have been used to. However, it’s not as complicated as you may think. Think of the P.E.R.K. system as a more simplified version of the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. skill tree in Fallout 4. As an emerging vault dweller with no real skills, or time to build up your S.P.E.C.I.A.L. traits, you really are starting from scratch with only one skill point in each spot. Each skill point opens a slot under each skill that you can fill with various cards you receive over time. Fortunately, each set of cards is diverse, so you’re not stuck with 4 cards for Strength and only 1 card for Charisma. It’s all evenly spread out. If you’re still lost, that’s my bad. Play the game though and it will all make sense. I promise, or you’re allowed to hunt me down in the Appalachia!
Speaking of the Appalachia, let’s talk about the world you get to play in. Todd Howard was not kidding when he said that this map is four times larger than Fallout 4. This place is HUGE! I have yet to go from one side of the map to the other, but I know it will take a while. Just running to each quest point can take a good bit of time, but it is not a boring journey. Every location has something to offer and, if it’s all been looted, then it’s just pretty to look at. I’ve never seen this much color in a Fallout game before.
Exploring is more fun with friends, but this is where I think Fallout 76 still needs a little work. I hopped on with some friends, but it took a while for the “Social” tab in the game to reflect the friends I was online with. This made it difficult to meet up in the same world. During one B.E.T.A. session, one of my friends did appear in the Social tab, but they were listed as “offline” even though that was clearly not the case. Once we were together though, it was great! The best part was, when the server disconnected, we were able to hop back in without needing to group up again. We could just pick up right where we started.
Boxes and chests were instanced so we never had to worry about taking from each other’s loot. However, items lying around in the world are first-come, first-serve. This is true with rare items too, such as Bobbleheads. Personally, I’m bummed that comics and Bobbleheads only provide temporary perks, but I understand how this could easily lead to some players being overpowered. This is a good way to get around that.
Being as this game is in its early stages, it’s hard to really list any issues with the game because there’s a high chance it will be fixed by the game’s actual release. However, the glitches are chuckle-worthy. Here’s a couple of my favorites:
I’m a huge Fallout fan and, so far, Fallout 76 does not disappoint. I really do believe that Bethesda is listening to all the feedback from the B.E.T.A. and fixing the game in real time. Things that were an issue in my first session aren’t there in the second one. This is going to be a great MMO to play with your friends or alone. The Wasteland awaits…
4 out of 5 Country Roads
Readers, let me know if you have any questions about the game or want to see more images from the game! I’ll be happy to explore more!