Why Fallout 76 is Shaping to be the Best Survival Game of 2018
Almost heaven, West Virginia. Yes, that song by the legendary John Denver… Rocketed back into popularity by this game’s association. I can’t think of a better song to describe the feeling I get playing this game. That’s not coming from a Fallout fanboy or a Bethesda following cultist. I’m a gamer with a love for the simple things. This game gives me those things. I could drone on and on about what I like about the game. Instead, I want to do you one better. I’m going to tell you why you’ll love the game. Why this game beats out every other survival game on the market. Sit a spell, and let’s talk about why Fallout 76 could be the best survival game of 2018, and even 2019.
Let’s begin with what could be the worst part about other survival games. Other players. Yes, those of us who have played games like Ark or Rust have had those nasty, griefing encounters. Often a scourge on the game-play, other players can and will wreck your day. Fallout 76 crushes this norm. Until level 5, player versus player combat is impossible. Higher level players cannot damage low-level players. Low-level players cannot damage other players. Even so, in order for P.V.P to engage, the attacked player needs to shoot back. This doesn’t full-on prevent murder, but it’s much slower to deal damage. As well as this, only junk gets dropped, so no important items get lost on death. Once a player commits murder, they get marked as such, and gain a bounty. They’re visible across the map and anyone who kills them can get the reward. You can also set yourself to be invisible on the map in your game settings, further reducing P.V.P. issues.
More than that, the teamwork present is something admirable. You can share your perks around the team to help buff the squad. This grants many options for team building and strategy. Sharing resources is a bit of a pain. Workshops don’t share junk or other materials. But, it’s still easy to craft and share among the group when it comes to weapons and food. I haven’t felt like cooperation in a survival game has mattered this much in a long time. Oh, but what if I want to go alone? Well with the Lone Wanderer perk card that becomes a very real possibility. Damage received getting reduced by 10% on the first level of the card… That makes those single player dreams a reality. You can go it alone if you choose.
Material Gathering on Point
Gathering materials has never been better. The game offers you so much to grab when it comes to junk and material. Your carry weight load also doesn’t prevent you from running. It only makes running drain Action Points (AP). My only complaint is that the workshop and C.A.M.P budgets are never high enough to use all those components. We can hope in the future there will be a way to expand them further.
Quests are the best kind of distraction because they are expansive and interesting. You’ll always have things to do. Everywhere you turn there’s a new quest to do, a new place to explore. You’ll find yourself loaded down with objectives at some point. Be sure to organize your quest list so that you can track the most important missions. Leveling up is a cinch with these quests doling out some of the best experience rewards. You’ll even receive items upon completion. Events are also common, reoccurring. Defending against waves of enemies to receive a supply drop from the government is a great event. You can take part in it around the Morgantown Airport, and there are oodles more. Speaking of quests, let’s talk NPCs, or “Non Player Characters.” These are not present in Fallout 76, minus a few vendors. And yet, these vendors are also robots. Why did Bethesda choose to go without them? I’ll give you one simple reason. If there aren’t any NPCs other players can’t break quests or kill important characters. Everyone’s experiences get better when the game functions better. Could we see some NPCs down the line? It’s definitely possible. For now, I’m happy with what we’ve got because it hasn’t dropped my play experience.
I’ll leave it at that. Fallout 76 circumvents some of the biggest troubles… The most boring parts of these types of games. Quests, perks, teamwork, the grind. It’s all done in a beautiful way. You shouldn’t leave Fallout 76 off your list this year. I implore you, pick this game up when you can. If you don’t enjoy it, I’d be very, very surprised. You’ve heard my testimony about the mechanics so please be sure to let me know what you thought of the game down below. I’ll see more of you out in Appalachia come later this month. Good luck!