Video game maker Bethesda has launched Fallout 1st, an add-on subscription for the game Fallout 76. The subscription will allow players access to private worlds within the game, which has been an open-world multiplayer game since its initial release last year.
The service, which launched on Wednesday, also includes a number of other perks and extras. These include a “scrapbox” container for unlimited item storage, a “survival tent” that acts as a fast-travel point, monthly deposits of in-game currency, and various outfits and skins.
What is Fallout 76?
Fallout 76 was the first MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game) in the long-running franchise of Fallout video games. Previous entries in the series were strictly single-player games that heavily featured strategic, turn-based combat against NPCs (non-player characters). More recent installments have moved toward more action-oriented gameplay, culminating in the online multiplayer combat of Fallout 76.
Fans have been critical of the game’s new direction. Many complaints have revolved around the loss of colorful NPCs in favor of player-to-player interactions. Some players have felt this to be a poor substitute for the storytelling of previous games. “Crossing paths with another player has all the intensity of tipping your hat to a neighbor before you head off to work,” GameRevolution said in a statement after the game’s release. The site noted players who didn’t know each other were disinclined to interact. This resulted in a more solitary experience than earlier games featuring NPCs.
Reacting to Feedback
Fallout 1st aims to fix this problem by allowing players to create private worlds for themselves and up to seven friends. While many Fallout fans have been calling for such a feature since 76 premiered, some gamers are upset it comes with an extra charge. Fallout 1st will cost players either $12.99 a month or $99 a year — in addition to the initial cost of Fallout 76 itself, which sold for $59.99 at launch.
The Fallout 76 forum on Reddit, r/fo76, lit up with negative feedback after Fallout 1st launched, with one top post wondering if the announcement was a joke, and comments within describing the new service as “an insult.” This negative reaction comes in the wake of the news that Wastelanders, an expansion that will add NPCs to Fallout 76, has been delayed until 2020.
In their official announcement, Bethesda said they “will continue to listen to feedback and improve the service over the months and years to come, so please keep sending it in!”