Fallout 76 B.E.T.A. – Initial Thoughts

Platform: PC
How was the game received?: Pre-order purchase
Genre:  Multiplayer/Survival
Release Date: November 14th 2018
Cost:  $65.36 USD
Where to buy it: Here or any Gamestop/BestBuy/Amazon etc.

KnotSerius PC Specs 
Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 1600 Six-Core Processor 3.20 GHz
Graphics:  MSi Radeon RX 470 Gaming X 4G-R
Monitor: 23inch Acer something or other

BlackDeath PC Specs
Processor: Intel i7-6700k
RAM: 16GB DDR4 3200
Graphics: Corsair Hydro Series H115i Extreme EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti SC2 HYBRID GAMING
Monitor: Dell 27inch 144Hz G-Sync Gaming Monitor

Description of the game

Fallout 76 like previous Fallout titles is yet another addition to Bethesda’s post-apocalyptic story-based action survival portfolio. However, unlike any of its predecessors, this game introduces online multiplayer to the mix! Fallout 76 is a prequal to Fallout 4 where every surviving human is…well…a REAL person.

Reclamation Day, 2102. Twenty-five years after the bombs fall, you and your fellow Vault Dwellers—chosen from the nation’s best and brightest – emerge into post-nuclear America. Play solo or join together as you explore, quest, build, and triumph against the wasteland’s greatest threats.

Fallout 76 is the first fallout franchise to bring multiplayer to the vast open wasteland of fallout.  Set in West Virginia, Fallout 76 features the largest map in the fallout series for you to explore, fight, survive with and against other players.

Brief Summary

Fallout 76 will be Bethesda’s first online multiplayer Fallout title. Taking you to the hills of West Virginia on “Reclamation Day” in the year 2102 – twenty-five years after the bombs have fallen. You can try to survive solo or work together in a group of up to four players. The game will feature an open world 4x the size that of Fallout 4. The map features many real locations from the region including the State Capitol and Camden Park just to name a couple.

Game servers will be dedicated and players will be automatically placed on one. Don’t worry though you can easily join on your friends to group up. There were mentions from game director Todd Howard that private servers may eventually be introduced later after the initial launch.

If you’re familiar at all with a Fallout title you’ll quickly recognize S.P.E.C.I.A.L and V.A.T.S. systems are in place inside Fallout 76. The game retains some of the original features but does make revisions to the traditional systems for example: As the player levels up, they will be able to spend skill points to boost their attributes on a scale of 1-15. Something new – players will be able to choose perks, or passive abilities that offer gameplay bonuses. These perks fall into each of the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. categories and are in the form of trading cards. Each card has a value and the player can adopt perks equal to their respective value; for example, if the player has a strength rating of five, then they may equip strength perks worth five points. You can also merge lower ranked cards together in order to form a more powerful card. Cards can also be traded between players!

The V.A.T.S. system however won’t slow time but it essentially gives you a percentage to hit without aiming. It was referenced to give you the ability to also target specific portions of your enemy however I never figured that portion out.
The game will expand on Fallout 4’s settlements by allowing players the ability to build bases virtually anywhere on the map. When you log off the base goes with you. They’ve also made it very easy for you to pack everything up and move on a whim using a C.A.M.P. (Construction and Assembly Mobile Platform).


Initial Thoughts from KnotSerius

Since Fallout 76 is the first, multiplayer installation in the fallout series it was only fitting that aXBlackDeathXa and KnotSerius team up to bring you the Over30Clan initial Fallout 76 Review.

Bethesda finally released the version I’ve been waiting for forever to play!
Having spent many moons on the PS4 playing Fallout 4 until my eyes would FALLOUT (pun intended) I can’t say how excited I was to hear that 76 would be multiplayer!

The PC BETA test times have been very limited windows of time, so it’s difficult to give a super knowledgeable review at this time.

So my portion of the review will be basic general impressions and feelings towards the game thus far.

And so far… I’m LOVING IT!!

The world is gorgeous and HUUUUUUUUUUUGE!!!! Having gotten about 9 hours in the game I barely scratched the surface for exploration and that makes me so happy. The idea of endless hours of exploration and quests with friends!

The C.A.M.P. system  is your personal base creator, it looks like a mini saw table/sewing machine piece of equipment which is easy enough to plop it down and store supplies in while moving about doing the mini quests and live events that take place.

There’s a regular drop of Government Supply Boxes with random gear and meds that one needs to survive.

Supply drops have nice big red flares you can see for miles!
The Live Events also grant you a hefty stash of supplies upon completion of said event.
Live events are time limited and require more than 2-3 people to complete. It’s obviously targeted towards encouraging all players in the server to work together for the common good of GETTING LOOT.

Timed Live Event with 4 minutes to spare!

Lookit that map! So pretty!! Also zooms in pretty far so that’s a big plus in my book!

Initial Thoughts from BlackDeath

For starters the level of detail and variety that went into the player customization alone was impressive. If you’ve ever spent 20 minutes before in a game creating the new “you” – you’ll likely spend twice that in Fallout 76. With multitudes of hair styles, faces, complexions, down to how large you want your ear lobes (literally). This is the most diverse character creation setup I’ve seen in ANY Bethesda game.

Keeping in mind this was a BETA the gameplay overall was solid. It did have a few hiccups in my full day of play. We experienced one crash and sporadic stuttering / lag. When the game wasn’t experiencing those intermittent issues, it did run buttery smooth even on 1440p Epic quality levels.

This feels like a Fallout game – if you’ve played Fallout 4 that’s pretty much how this game feels and operates with extras! They did introduce more physics with the character movement so walking to running is linear not instant on/off like previous titles. You also can’t simply be in a full sprint and turn 90 degrees instantly – the game takes all these things into consideration to make the movement more realistic.
The missions were designed quite well and very easy to follow their flow and next steps. Most everything has marker designations of sorts to find where you need to go and what you need to do next.

Crafting again borrows a lot from past Fallout’s – you have stations you can scrap, repair, and craft new items. One thing that was a huge improvement – once you have a camp / base established you can access its inventory while via special containers all throughout the wasteland. This made it easier on us wasteland hoarders who NEED to pickup every plunger, plate, and cup we find to offload them without having to be derailed running back to base.

Combat was again very similar to Fallout 4 with the exceptions I mentioned above to V.A.T.S. I did experience some slight wonkiness with hit distance. Mobs were hitting me (melee) from what I felt unrealistic distances yet I couldn’t hit them. One thing to note in Fallout 76 many ghouls pack heat now and are no longer just dumb melee zombies. They can and will shoot you from a distance. DO NOT let the PVP aspects of this game deter you from playing or enjoying the traditional single player Fallout feeling. The system is completely turned off until you reach level 5. At which point you’re given options as to what level of PVP interaction you want. Essentially, the options range from passive to neutral to anything goes.

The user interface is unfortunately the Achilles heel to this game. I’m not sure why but it seems recently developers have been trying to reinvent game UI’s and failing miserably. I speculate it may have to do with cross platform releases. I have to ask why not just keep the same controls as Fallout 4!? There are just some really odd default key bindings. Some menus require you to hit Tab to exit, others Space, and on rare occasions Escape. If I could offer one piece of advice to the developers it would be – simply make right click back you out of any menu / screen. To be in the middle of crafting or managing inventory and to suddenly be attacked (even at your base) you are left frantically mashing keys to get out of the menu to defend yourself.

Graphics were solid and on par with Fallout 4 – but I’d have to say the level of detail to the character creation and modeling pulls it ahead slightly.

Player modes

Once you reach Level Five you unlock the ability to choose your preferred playing mode. Pacifist or PVPer!

I’m loving Pacifist mode as I don’t have to worry about damaging my friends with friendly fire! Watch out with my axe swinging!

The shooting in the game is very clunky slow, I didn’t use the VATS system for shooting so maybe that works better? It still felt like aiming down sights was slow going, even when I turned sensitivity up.

Knowing that anyone who kills me (while in pacifist mode) will be punished by a big juicy bounty is awesome. It also takes a long time to kill someone so be aware of that factor when you decide to be a poopy-head.

Every time it happened that there’d be an announcement on screen and you could look up on the map where they were to hunt them down. The person would be surrounded by EVERYONE and slaughtered in moments! Truly beautiful and works for people who like to role play as the baddie raider!


Though there aren’t NPC’s to go on adventures with there’s plenty of stories to discover on your travels and quests such as this poor Responder’s holo deck where you can listen to the holo recordings of his dying screams from getting locked in the fridge.

Much sad. Thanks for the money, bruh!

This poor feller died doing what he did best!

Or poor Miguel’s sad story of helping people survive, losing his boyfriend Gary to the ghouls and then finally dying off in the woods with only his sarcastic Protectron Mr. Fluffy for company!  Mr. Fluffy is still there complaining over being programmed to never leave his side, wishing some wolves would come and scatter his remains so he would at last be free… but no! I feel that Mr. Fluffy didn’t like Miguel, at all.

Personally I don’t mind the lack of NPC’s as most times I’d skim through their sob stories just to get the quest activated to go kill all the things for them in revenge or whatever.
One way of looking at it is that not having NPC’s for story content actually makes YOU become the story and to make it whatever story you want it to be along with your friends!

This game has mucho potential for role playing shenanigans, I tell you what! Imagine your clan has two factions and decide to war against each other in an epic nerdy battle! Or even messing with others gangs/squads as we raid the Virginian hills!

Other things I liked

Other cool features to mention is when grouped up you get updates on friends current missions/quests.

There’s also an emote wheel you can use at any time. Basics like Thumbs up, Blowing a Kiss, Follow Me, Wave Hello, Finger Guns etc. all which come in handy as you go about and when you want to take a group photo with your fellow scallywags of the wastes!

Photo-mode is a lot of fun once you get used to the controls! Lots of filters, frames and expressions are given for you to use!

You can change your characters features at any time (and boy are there are a lot of options for character design) Big plus in my book!

Final Thoughts KnotSerius

Overall Score 8.9/10

I love it! I NEEEEEEED to play the heck out of this game! It’s exactly the kind of game I love to get lost in but was only missing the multiplayer aspect! Now I can haz both multiplayer AND wasteland exploration! I feel spoiled!

Once it releases on the 14th I’ll be putting in the hours (at least 100) before I give my full review of all the things!

Until then I give the BETA 8.9/10 and a big vault boy’s thumbs up!

Final Thoughts BlackDeath

Overall Score: 9/10

The cumbersome UI really detracts from all the other splendor Fallout 76 has to offer. If your control and UI scheme is boogered it really makes it difficult to enjoy the game to its fullest. I shouldn’t have to look down or move to opposite ends of my keyboard to exit menus or manage inventory. Yes, you can remap these controls but I need to express just how clunky the defaults are.

I also knocked a few points off for the stuttering – despite having a PC that exceeded any recommended hardware I believe this was either a client or server issue. At times the game would lock up for several seconds then fast forward sling you.

This game has the formula to reach a score in the high 9’s if it can address these issues. If you’re a Fallout fan I would highly recommend you give this game a try. Don’t let the PVP / multiplayer scare you away. This game can essentially be Fallout 5 with friends.

Co-Authored by BlackDeath and KnotSerious from Over30Clan.

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