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In it for the long haul: Bethesda outlines its post-launch plans for Fallout 4

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Eschewing the now industry-standard years of teasing and hype-building, Fallout 4 exploded into our collective gaming consciousness this past June, set for a rapidly-approaching November release. In a recent post, developer Bethesda has now outlined its post-launch plans for supporting the post-apocalyptic open world game with new content, giving fans a chance to start salivating over even more adventures in the wasteland of the Greater Boston Area.

In the early, experimental days of downloadable content, Bethesda caught a lot of flack for its ill-fated and infamous Horse Armor DLC in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, the phrase becoming a metonymy for incremental, paid content that many gamers feel is exploitative.

The developer learned its lesson well, and has subsequently focused on more robust paid expansions that add substantial, narrative content, relegating incidental additions to the main game to free updates. For Skyrim this meant the addition of features like mounted combat, legendary mode, and kill cams. Fallout 4 will be no different, with new features based on player feedback coming out in regular, free updates alongside the standard bug fixes and technical enhancements.

As for that paid DLC, Bethesda will start rolling it out in early 2016. Since the developer is still hard at work on the base game, it does not yet have any details about what the DLC will entail. We do know, however, that fans will be able to purchase a season pass for $30 that guarantees access to all of the DLC that Bethesda will ever produce for Fallout 4. The post points out that Oblivion, Skyrim, and Fallout 3 all offered about $40 worth of additional content after release, so we can expect at least that much for Fallout 4.

Finally, fan-made mods have been a major driving force for keeping games like Skyrim played and relevant for years after release. Bethesda plans to capitalize on that passion and creativity by supporting the modding community from the beginning. In early 2016 the developer will be releasing the Creation Kit for PC, which includes the same tools that the developers use in-house to create content for the game. One of the most exciting revelations from Bethesda’s E3 presentation was that while mod creation will live in PC, those mods will subsequently become available for consoles as well, something that was a pipe dream until recently.

Fallout 4 launches on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on November 10, 2015.

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