Fallout, Featured, Games

Fallout 76 Rumor Roundup: What do we know with one day left?

a man wearing a fallout jacket that says 76

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The Fallout 76 announcement trailer was an unexpected surprise for fans of this massive franchise. With Bethesda’s E3 Presentation less than 48 hours away, we’ve gathered everything you need to know about Fallout 76 rumors and announcements all in one place.

Bethesda presents at E3 on June 10th and we all know that Fallout 76, whatever it is, will be all over it. Get ready, because all hints point to a full-on installment in the franchise at least on the level of New Vegas.

Exact time of Bethesda’s E3 Presentation:

6:30 PM Pacific Standard Time
8:30 PM Central Standard Time
9:30 PM Eastern Standard Time

You can watch Bethesda’s 2018 E3 presentation live on Twitch, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook or at Bethesda.net.

Countdown to the Bethesda E3 Presentation

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We are one day from the Bethesda presentation, so what do we know so far?

The Multiplayer Survival Simulator Rumor

Bethesda has kept this mostly under lock and key, but for one exception – a random 4chan comment in December, long before anyone ever breathed the words “Fallout 76” in public:

a prediction on 4chan that the new fallout will be called fallout 76 and be a rust clone

“fallout 76, a fallout themed Rust clone coming soon”

After the trailer was aired, Kotaku published this article backing up the 4Chan Rust claim, information allegedly gleaned from three anonymous people who are “familiar with the project”:

But Fallout 76 is in fact an online survival RPG that’s heavily inspired by games like DayZ and Rust, according to three people familiar with the project.

Originally prototyped as a multiplayer version of Fallout 4 with the goal of envisioning what an online Fallout game might look like, Fallout 76 has evolved quite a bit over the past few years, those sources said. It will have quests and a story, like any other game from Bethesda Game Studios, a developer known for meaty RPGs like Skyrim. It will also feature base-building—just like 2015’s Fallout 4—and other survival-based and multiplayer mechanics, according to those sources. One source cautioned that the gameplay is rapidly changing, like it does in many online “service” games, but that’s the core outline.

Now I can hear the enthusiasm for Sunday’s announcement waning already. That does not sound quite like the other three. Is this some sort of side project that Bethesda made into a full game?

Before you get all bent out of shape, you’re going to want to evaluate the evidence from the trailer itself and from comments from Bethesda.

The Trailer

Bethesda signaled the announcement with an impromptu Twitch livestream with hours of nothing but a Vault Boy figurine and the words “Please Stand By”. Some other random things happen as well. You can watch it here:

Watch Please Stand By from Bethesda on www.twitch.tv
Vault 76 is mentioned in both Fallout 3 and Fallout 4. You can do a deep dive into the Vault and what we know about the time period with this IGN video:

The most important detail you might have missed is the date shown on the pip boy and the significance of that date. In Fallout lore, Vault 76 was scheduled to open 20 years after the bombs fell. We can make out the date on the pip boy in the trailer and we know when the bombs fell. So is it 20 years? No. The date on the pip boy is exactly 25 years after the bombs fell- to the day.

So what happened in the five years since the doors opened? Is that why no one else is there?

For an in depth breakdown of every scene from the trailer, I suggest this 22 minute youtube video:

The Price Tag

This game is currently in pre-sales for $60. (*Or $48 if you get a $12 discount using the method described below.)

That’s a serious price for a serious game. They are selling T-shirts already and all they did was drop a trailer.

sales email from bethesda for fallout 76 shirts

They are pre selling the game on multiple consoles. This is a big deal. If this game flops, it will be a disaster for Bethesda’s bottom line and for their reputation. They make money hand over fist when it comes to the Fallout franchise. This is their bread and butter. They’re not going to charge this price unless it offers a gaming experience on the level of their prior Blockbuster titles Fallout 3 and 4.

According to these all-time-sales statistics*, Fallout 3 has sold 9.93 million units while Fallout 4 has sold 13.89 million. At an estimated average price of $50 per game, that’s more than a billion dollars from Fallout 4 alone. There are very few billion dollar franchises. And Bethesda would not charge full price for a sub par game.

*These stats are likely far under actual sales, as Fallout 4 sold 12 million copies by the end of day one

So get ready and have an open mind. Bethesda is going to innovate with this title, no doubt, but this is no Rust clone. This is going to be something utterly unique and on the level with other Bethesda releases. You can count on it.

Mothman and the NoClip Fallout 76 Documentary

There will be a documentary on the making of Fallout 76 releasing June 12th. You can watch the promotional trailer for the documentary here:

In a supposed leak from this documentary, you can see a Bethesda a developer wearing a Mothman shirt. The significance of this and an analysis of the computer screen from the this same scene can be viewed here:

The #SavePlayer1 Campaign and what it means for Fallout 76

In December, Bethesda released a video about their commitment to single player games.

This will be their first big game release since making that video. It seems unlikely that they will release a multiplayer focused game as their very next game.

The Release Date

This leaked image appeared on Reddit, suggesting a Fallout 76 early July 2018 release. Just one month after the announcement. That would be bananas.

a picture showing what appears to be a limited access youtube video and a fallout 76 trailer that says 7 6 18

Other rumors support release at the end of July. Both dates seem awfully optimistic. Check out this timeline of recent Fallout releases. If it does come out this year it will be far outpacing the gap between the last two Fallout games by Bethesda, which was seven years. This will be three years after the 2015 release of Fallout 4.

Fallout Game Release Timeline

2008 Falllout 3
2010 Fallout New Vegas (*not Bethesda but worth mentioning)
2015 Fallout 4

You can save $12 if you pre order like a crazy person.

Seriously. Who pre orders a game before any footage has been released? Apparently, this guy does.

amazon checkout screen showing fallout 76 and $12 discount
That’s right, in the process of pre-ordering (for science of course), I discovered that Amazon Prime members who pre-order get $12 off retail price as well as release day delivery. Bully.

Use this link if you plan to pre order and Amazon will know that we sent ya. It will really help us out.

“Bigger than anything we’ve ever done.”

In February 2017, Todd Howard said this in an interview with Rolling Stone:

We have two larger projects that are more classically the scale of what we do, but even bigger. We overlap the projects so we’re working on them at the same time, but they’re staggered,” he teased. “I can’t talk a lot about them, but I can say that they’re bigger than anything we’ve ever done. They’re a bit different, but definitely in the wheelhouse that people are used to from us.”

Could it be that Fallout 76 is this title that is “bigger than anything” they’ve ever done?

One final note

This is not a drill. We are getting a brand new Fallout, and it might be sooner than anyone imagined.

If you’re feeling like it’s Christmas eve and the clock is slowing down, just turn up the speakers and start this Fallout 3 & New Vegas soundtrack playlist.  It’s the perfect way to set the mood.

    Derek is a licensed (non-practicing) attorney with a keen interest in avoiding catastrophe. Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

    Contact: [email protected]

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