At E3 last June, Bethesda dropped multiple bombshells, many of which still have to actually land in players’ hands. One of the most anticipated but also most doubted of the pack is Fallout 76, an online survival version of the widely popular franchise. The skepticism and concern mostly come from the Herculean task of bringing elements that made Fallout a hit to an online setting without also bringing the most hated elements of online games. And at QuakeCon, Bethesda revealed exactly how it plans to do that.
One of the biggest worries Fallout fans have in this online version is how PK, short for player kill, is enabled everywhere. MMORPG history is filled with anecdotes of griefers who enjoy the game by making it unenjoyable for others, often through unwanted and unprovoked PvP. Bethesda’s creative solution? “Turn the assholes into interesting content.”
IGN reports that players who randomly attack a player without provocation will see their damage significantly nerfed. If, however, the other player retaliates, then it’s game on and the attacker’s damage goes back to normal. If the other player doesn’t fight back but manages to still die, the attacker will then be marked as a “wanted murder” and will see some rather nasty consequences.
They won’t get any rewards, caps, experience, or even loot for that kill. What’s more, they will have a bounty on their head for everyone to see while the fugitive will no longer see players on the minimap. And if they get killed by bounty hunting players, the player is rewarded with a cap that comes right from the murderer’s pocket.
While Bethesda seems to already have a system in place to fight griefing, it’s still undecided on how to best proceed with one of the things Fallout games are well-loved for: mods. All that they can say for now, according to IGN, is that Fallout 76 will support modding in private servers. That’s pretty much it for now.
Fallout 76 will also be bringing the game’s famous SPECIAL stat system but with a twist. There will be a perk system in the form of cards that can grant additional skills that you can switch on the fly and even share with others.
The cards will come in a bundle not unlike trading card games and, like the physical version, have an element of randomness to them. But don’t worry, they aren’t Fallout 76’s version of the controversial loot boxes, as they are given to players only on certain levels and can’t be bought, whether in-game or with real-world money.