Bethesda has been in the news a lot lately and for all the wrong reasons so let’s take a look at how it all started and why.
The Fallout Begins
The Fallout 76 debacle started with the announcement of the game itself which left a lot of people unsatisfied. Imagine keeping tabs on a live stream for 24 hours in hopes of getting a new Fallout game with an emphasis on the story and the world. Instead what players got was an announcement for a multiplayer Fallout title which isn’t bad since a lot of people actually wanted a multiplayer Fallout game. What really irked people was that they were still using the Creation Engine(Skyrim, Fallout 4) which is a modified version of the Gamebyro engine(Oblivion, Fallout 3). The same bugs that are in Skyrim can be found in Fallout 4, the ones in Fallout 4 can be found in Fallout 76.
Then came the Open beta which was a mess. This came with a neat bug where launching the game would delete the game from your system. Imagine downloading 50GB or so on a slow internet connection with a data cap and then the game just deletes itself which means you have to redownload it. And then came the bug where you couldn’t uninstall the beta unless you owned the game. This is all pre-launch though, and things somehow got worse after launch.
Fallout 76 released to mixed reviews with really bad performance on both PCs and consoles. Powerful PCs could still power through it but the base consoles were not even able to hit a stable 30fps, so Bethesda released a patch to fix all the performance issues along with other major bugs. This patch was 51GB in size, larger than the game itself and people were yet again, pretty upset with this. Improvements were promised in this patch which did arrive but only barely as a lot of the issues were still not fixed even with that gigantic patch.
The Radiation Gets Worse
We’re not done with the grievances yet. The PC version has no text chat, something that almost every multiplayer game has had since the time we’ve had multiplayer games. Bethesda did say they were considering adding it but its exclusion is unexpected, especially since it means that mute and deaf players will have to use emotes to communicate or alt-tab out to Discord. The game doesn’t even have Push-To-Talk, another basic feature which they’re finally adding to the game in an upcoming update along with a FOV slider.
Bethesda is not new to PC gaming so the fact that after all these years, after all the complaints they still go out and skimp out on some of the most basic features of a game baffles me. And after all these years, the framerate was still tied to the game physics which was thankfully finally patched. The anti-cheat is a joke as it only checks to see if cheat-engine is running and has no client-side file validation which means a lot of hacking and mods so your experience could be a very frustrating one.
Then comes the lawsuit. Bethesda refused to give out refunds after their customer support initially said it was being processed. The reason for this as stated in their refund policy is:
“If you want to download digital content within the 30-day cancellation period, you must agree to waive your cancellation rights.”
Well, because of this they got hit by a potential class-action lawsuit for releasing a heavily glitched game that is unplayable. That was not all though. Fallout 76 has a 200$ special edition. While the game is a mess, the Power Armor edition has some cool items that come with it. One of which was advertised to be a Canvas Duffel bag. When customers actually received the Special Edition, the Canvas bag was replaced by a Nylon one instead. The reason for this is as follows:
We are sorry that you aren’t happy with the bag. The bag shown in the media was a prototype and was too expensive to make.
We aren’t planning on doing anything about it.
Bethesda Gear Store Support – North America”
After this, they quickly changed the description of the item on their webpage and to compensate for it are offering players 500 Atoms which are an in-game microtransaction currency worth $5.
Not to mention, they have literally copy and pasted the same code from Skyrim and Fallout 4 into this game and use the exact same content check system as Fallout 4. If everything before this didn’t help you realize something, I’ll type it out. Fallout 76 is a very pathetic and lazy attempt at a cash grab that is absolutely unworthy of being a Fallout title.
In this day and age where AAA titles and even those that aren’t AAA are crafting wondrous open worlds with gorgeous landscapes and fantastic stories to tell with the help of the current hardware, this game feels utterly outdated. If you’re playing Fallout 76 and enjoying it, that’s alright so don’t take this to heart. However, I really do feel something needs to change.
Too Buggy, Didn’t Read
So let’s recap everything about Fallout 76. A very messy Beta, a bad launch, the absence of basic features, it is riddled with bugs and glitches, no proper anti-cheat, false advertisement and no refunds. And those are just some of the main issues. A quick google search will not only lead you to various sources for these issues but also even more problems that currently plague the game. They really have hit out of the park with this one and people can finally see what a mess Bethesda Game Studios really is.
Their games have been riddled with bugs for years and have relied on community mods to fix them, they’ve tried to make mods a paid service, something that has been free since forever, they’ve barely listened to their player-base who want story based next-gen RPGs. The last good Fallout game was not even made by Bethesda and if this continues, they’re probably going to ruin the franchise even more alongside their reputation.
I’m not too confident about The Elder Scrolls VI or Starfield with their recent work and I doubt anybody really is. They’ve burnt a lot of their longtime fans, and their recent showings haven’t helped them get any new ones either. Bethesda Game Studios really needs to pull it together because it just doesn’t work anymore.
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