Video Game Review: Fallout 76

Video game reviewer Chris Clark's take on the game Fallout 76. By Chris Clark

Fallout 76 Introduces a New Way to Play With Friends

“Fallout 76” is a multiplayer role-playing game developed by Bethesda and is the first multiplayer installment in the traditionally single-player “Fallout” franchise. The game takes place in a post-apocalyptic West Virginia, where players take on the role of survivors tasked with rebuilding America after a devastating nuclear war.

First and foremost, the “Fallout” franchise changed their new game from a single-player, story-based experience to a multiplayer, interaction-based experience. There are few positive aspects in it. If you would rather experience the “Fallout” franchise with your close friends, you might be pleased with this change.

However, there is a significant drawback—in order to facilitate a multiplayer experience, “Fallout 76” features no human non-player characters (NPCs). These characters are the primary vehicle of “Fallout” for delivering story-building. In this game, this multiplayer experience means that other players can freely interrupt your game uninvited. The worst experience I had playing “Fallout 76” was when a more advanced player approached me as I was crafting at a workbench and kept attacking me; I had to abandon both my crafting project and quest in order to run away.

Complaints about the multiplayer experience aside, the setting of “Fallout 76” felt lackluster. Previous “Fallout” games have been set in fascinating locations such as Boston, MA or Washington D.C. “Fallout 76” has a monotonous West Virginia countryside. Every bout of exploration ended in disappointment.

The greatest downfall of “Fallout 76” is the lack of story. It is possible to piece together background on the world to give justification to your quests, but it is clearly not the focus of the game. The multiplayer format allows for attacks from strangers at any time, makes it incredibly difficult to safely read terminals or listen to recordings to uncover the story.

Unfortunately, “Fallout 76” is a game I would not recommend. As a huge fan of the “Fallout” franchise, I was let down. If you have a dedicated group of friends who are interested in exploring a post-apocalyptic wasteland together, “Fallout 76” might be fun. But if you’re looking for an exciting and interesting roleplaying experience, I recommend playing “Fallout 4” instead.

“…players take on the role of survivors tasked with rebuilding America after a devastating nuclear war.”


Peer Rating: 1.5 out of 5 Stars

*Zeitgeist is written as reviews, not recommendations.

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