While far from perfect, Fallout 76 can still be a lot of fun!
Continuing the positivity from the previous Fallout 76 article, let’s examine even more good things about the game!
Good Things About Fallout 76: Let’s Be Jam Buds!
As a long-time hobbyist musician, it can sometimes be frustrating to know that one of your friends has an obvious talent for music but no desire to develop that talent.
Wouldn’t it be great if there were some way that someone could express themselves musically without needing to put in hours and hours of practice?
Good new – Fallout 76 is a Jam Simulator with a game attached to it!
Musically speaking, being able to jam in Fallout 76 really is implemented quite well. Playable (GET IT?) musical instruments can be either found in the game world or built by players (if they have the required plans).
The instruments are divided into 3 groups: Acoustic (guitar-likes and drums), Wind (just a tuba), and Pianos (a grand piano and a baby upright).
Each instrument has its own set of short musical patterns which randomly repeat themselves, and this is where the genius of the instruments comes into play (GET IT? Okay I’ll stop doing that now).
If you play an instrument alongside another character (including other players) it’ll synchronise (play in time) with them, no matter what instrument they use.
In this way, players can freely experiment with instrumentation.
You want to hear a classic three-piece band setup of drums, bass, and guitar? Recruit two other players and play away!
You want to hear 2 pianos plinking away side by side? Just find (or build) two next to each other and wait until someone comes along!
You want to just try all the instruments out on your own, like some kind of lone musical wolf? Go off!
And the best part is that you get a very helpful buff (in-game benefit) if you play a musical instrument!
Considering the number of variables involved (such as the many notes in the various musical patterns), it blows my tiny little mind that literally every single instrument combo I’ve ever heard just works! IT JUST WORKS!
Sorry, I got a little excited there.
Anyway, if you’re musically minded: It’s just a I-IV pattern. Nothing amazing, but the noodles and fills all line up as though you’re using a step sequencer! *chef kiss*
Good Things About Fallout 76: The Photomode Is Amazing
With the possible exception of Batman: Arkham Knight, Fallout 76 has the best photomode of any game I’ve ever played. The amount of control that a player has over the photos is, frankly, astounding.
There are a multitude of photographic options available: Frames, filters, poses, facial expressions, brightness, and viewing angle – just to name a few!
One of my favourite things about Fallout 76‘s photomode is that your photos are your loading screens. Once you’ve taken a photo, it saves a copy in one of the Fallout 76 folders on your computer. A random picture from that folder is then used every time you load during the game.
I’ve got photos of C.A.M.P.s long since gone, photos of other players who I teamed up with and then never saw again, and photos of good buddies I’ve played the game with multiple times. It’s not just a collection of screenshots, it’s a photo album documenting my time in the game, and I couldn’t be happier about it.
The only real drawback – and this is the only reason that I find Batman: Arkham Knight‘s photomode to be superior – is that you can’t pause the game due to its online nature. You can spend whole minutes trying to get the perfect picture only to get attacked by enemies, or photobombed by other players.
However, you can also find a camera in-game and use that to take (basic) pictures on the fly (you equip it as though it’s a weapon), and those pictures will appear on your loading screens too! It’s good to have the option to just take a quick picture without needing to go through any menus.
Good Things About Fallout 76: Seasons
I’m quite happy about this one, because I wasn’t expecting it to go very well. Let me explain why.
One of the issues with Seasons is that it severely impacted players’ ability to earn Atoms.
This matters because Atoms are swapped for real-world currency (i.e. they cost actual money to buy) and are then used in the in-game Atom Shop to buy extra items to be used in-game. Most of the items are cosmetic, but some have an impact on gameplay (such as repair kits or refrigerators).
Before Fallout 76 Seasons arrived, it was possible to earn huge amounts of Atoms just by playing the game. I, for instance, own well over half the regular items (some items aren’t always in the shop because they’re on rotation) even though I’ve spent less than $20 in the Atom Shop.
Atoms were formerly earnt by completing Challenges, such as ‘plant 5 crops at your base’ or ‘kill 10 animals’.
When the Seasons came, many of the Atom Challenges were turned into Season Challenges, which is why it’s harder to earn Atoms now.
However, the Seasons were implemented pretty well – apart from the occasional glitch which ignored Season Challenge completion.
Let’s take a look at the first Season, which is called ‘The Legendary Run’.
Progress in The Legendary Run is shown via space-themed board game which is accessed in the Fallout 76 menu. Your position is shown by a rocketship, and the aim of it is to chase – and hopefully catch – another rocketship on the board, which is ‘flown’ by your ‘enemy’.
It uses the in-game franchise of Captain Cosmos, which is reminiscent of a Flash Gordon (or Buzz Lightyear if you roll that way) space explorer vibe. When you open The Legendary Run, it plays music that’s so close to the Star Trek: Original Series theme that it’s quickly recognisable as such, but not so close as to create legal issues for Bethesda.
Naturally, you can’t manually move your rocketship. You move it by – wait for this, you won’t see it coming – completing in-game Challenges.
The best part? Each square awards you a different Atom shop item, so you’re still getting Atom shop items every time you progress! While I’m sad that I can’t just use the Challenges to buy whatever I want anymore, I have gotten a bunch of stuff that I wouldn’t normally have bothered with. Call me crazy (You’re crazy – The Editor) but I’m choosing to have a glass-half-full view on this.
Good Things About Fallout 76: In Conclusion
Overall, I’ve had a good experience with Fallout 76. There have, of course, been ups and downs but I’m feeling a lot more positive about the game than ever before.
While I don’t think I’ll play it again for a month or two, I find myself cautiously looking forward to playing it at that time.
Ultimately – and against all odds – Fallout 76 is (however slowly) becoming a game that Bethesda might just actually finish writing all on their own. That wasn’t supposed to sound like a roast – I’m genuinely curious to see how the game pans out over time.
Hit me up on Twitter @LiamPadmore4 or not, whatever. And give me a wave if you see me in-game as Strontium Dingo! And, as always, feel free to comment below!