Fallout 76 launched last November to a pretty dismal reception, with critics lamenting the lack of story incentive for quests and general lack of polish — even for a Bethesda game. Since then, the company has been making strides to improve the experience with several content updates, but that goodwill may have been eliminated with the new “Fallout 1st” subscription plan.
Announced on October 23, Fallout 1st is a $100-a-year subscription-based service that gives its members access to several benefits not available to others. These include the ability to play on a private world with only your friends, unlimited storage space in the Scrapbox, a Survival Tent for fast traveling, monthly Atoms, an exclusive outfit, and extra icons and emotes. Special sales not available to other players will also appear periodically.
Private worlds will allow for up to eight players to enjoy their own version of West Virginia, and a player can also choose to play the game entirely alone. The gameplay remains unchanged, and you have to have already made a character for them to be allowed in a private world. At least one person in your group needs to be a Fallout 1st member in order for the rest to access the world, and if that player leaves, the private world will be inaccessible to the others.
Paying for private servers isn’t a new concept, with the Battlefield series having done so for years, but the membership fees Bethesda is charging for Fallout 1st have raised some eyebrows. One month of the service will cost $13, while it will be $100 for a yearly membership. Kotaku news editor Jason Schreier expressed his concerns over the prices by pointing out that Xbox Game Pass actually costs less money and includes access to better-received first-person role-playing games.
Fallout 76's new premium subscription ($12.99/month) costs more than Xbox Game Pass ($9.99/month), on which you can get Fallout New Vegas and The Outer Worlds????
— Jason Schreier (@jasonschreier) October 23, 2019
At the very least, Bethesda has been able to release its content updates in a timely manner to steadily improve Fallout 76. Another usually single-player studio, BioWare, hasn’t fared so well with its online game, Anthem, which has delayed new content updates as its developers attempt to fix the base game.
Fallout 76 is available now for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC. Though other Bethesda games like Doom Eternal will come to Google Stadia, it doesn’t appear plans are in the works for a Fallout 76 release.
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