Fallout 76 has received its share of criticism (and for good reason) just as anything does. The core of this criticism revolves around the lack of NPCs that traditionally accompany the desolate environment of the Fallout series. After all, a vast wasteland without people in it just ends up feeling lonely.
Even with the inclusion of other players, Fallout 76 tends to feel like a desert island simulator, and the only things you brought with you are a cheap jumpsuit and a retro, interactive bracelet.
However, Bethesda finally decided to give the people what they want. This Fall, Fallout 76 will receive the “Wastelanders” update (which will be free, by the way), adding NPCs, branching dialogue, unique companions, and two new factions: settlers and raiders.
This will be a literal game-changer for many fans of the Fallout series, and I fully expect the game to be booming once the update drops. But what about right now?
Don’t get me wrong, Bethesda has been doing a great job of keeping the game moving. The developers have created plenty of unique opportunities to keep their fan-base interested.
I still can’t seem to get my friends on board though. All the criticism the game has received over the last 8 months turns them off. No matter how much I enjoy it, I can’t get them to try it. So, I have been forced to enjoy it alone. And, yes. It’s possible.
The hard truth is, Bethesda wants you to feel alone when you play this game. For one thing, feeling lonely only reinforces the bleak atmosphere of the game, giving it the realism I’m sure the developers were aiming for. On the other hand, feeling alone encourages grouping up with other players, which Bethesda counts on you doing.
But what if you don’t want to group up with people? What if your friends hate Fallout 76 and you want to play it? Or what if you just straight up want to play alone?
Here’s the deal: if Bethesda wants you to feel lonely, embrace it. Turn off the music, turn up the sound effects, put on some noise-cancelling headphones, and let Fallout 76 give you the sweet love you deserve. I can’t seem to get enough of it.
The world of Fallout 76, when embraced, really is something beautiful. The songs of the birds, the sounds of the wind blowing through the leaves, and even the creaks of an old, abandoned building are all what make Bethesda’s original vision work.
You see, music makes Fallout 76 nothing more than a game. “But, Josh, isn’t that what Fallout 76 is?” Yes. But Bethesda clearly meant for this to be more than a game. They wanted it to be an experience. So, why not experience the crap out of it?
Do a little bit of role play. After all, it is a role play game. Convince yourself that the world of Fallout 76 is the world you live in. Heck, strip down to your underwear and turn up the heat in your house if you want to (because everyone knows you be running around in your tighty-whities in-game anyway).
Once I turned off the in-game music, everything changed for me. I now find myself craving another hour in 76. Maybe it’s the fact that I grew up on a farm in the middle of nowhere and I find comfort in the sounds and sights of nature. Whatever the case, I highly recommend trying this. Or maybe you already have.
Maybe you already know this and I’m late to the party. No matter. Late to the party or not, it’s still a party. I’ll see you in 76.
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