Fallout 76 Subscription Model Spawns Social Divide Amid Other Problems
Fallout 76's new Fallout 1st subscription model has created a divide between fans, leaving Appalachia in ruins.
Fallout 76 has offered its own premium subscription model for just over a week now. Announced on October 23, Fallout 76’s premium service (called Fallout 1st) comes with private server access, unlimited scrap storage, and other perks for Bethesda Softworks’ always-on Fallout-as-a-service title. The subscription model has also evidently generated something of a class war between subscribers and non-subscribers.
Fallout 1st subscribers get the advantage of hauling more scrap and loot overall, which they can then carry into public servers at their leisure. They also get some cool swag, including an icon that indicates their subscriber status. It appears there’s trouble in paradise for Fallout 1st members, however: Reddit user jimmyjamesjr86 claims that subscribers are now being targeted and raided by groups of non-subscribers in the game’s open-world Adventure mode.
Since it’s impossible to significantly damage another player without first completing a ‘handshake’ (where two consenting players initiate PVP combat with one another), griefers will typically exploit the C.A.M.P. system to wreak havoc instead. Player-built C.A.M.Ps can be damaged and even torn apart with enough combined firepower, which is supposedly how Fallout 1st subscribers are now receiving their comeuppance from the inflamed masses.
“We almost made Appalachia a better place when we were working together and seemingly rebuilding our virtual society,” wrote Redditor KillerCameo in response to jimmyjamesjr86. “Now things have plunged into chaos due to different ideologies about how 76 should be handled.” Meanwhile, Hbomberguy tweeted “Im screaming. Fallout 76 is so bed (sic) they basically just patched in gentrification”.
Fallout 76 Patch 14 has only been out for less than a week, and with it came an inevitable mess of bugs. Fallout 1st subscribers have already reported permanently losing items to their unlimited scrap stash, “private” servers filled with pre-killed and pre-looted corpses, and other issues that challenge the strength of Bethesda’s argument for a $12.99 monthly (or $100 yearly) subscription fee for the service. Bethesda has since told Polygon that the team is already working out the kinks and that the fixes are set to release in an upcoming update.
Meanwhile, on November 1, Bethesda’s parent company ZeniMax was legally compelled to refund some Australian Fallout 76 players whose games wouldn’t behave properly or connect to game servers at all.
In the wake of an ongoing pattern of Bethesda failing to deliver on its promises for Fallout 76, introducing an abundance of microtransactions in lieu of the very fixes that fans seem to be asking for, one fan, David Chapman, has preemptively stepped up to take over www.falloutfirst.com.
Instead of being greeted with information about the new update, users instead find the Fallout 1st brand crudely respun in a direct critique of the service. It’s currently unclear if Bethesda aims to shut the site down and reclaim the domain for themselves; may David’s C.A.M.P. remain forever intact.