Bethesda Softworks has lost its way. The news about Fallout First is very sad to hear and it is the final nail in the coffin for me.
I loved Bethesda games despite their flaws but I am sad to say at this point I will not be buying anymore of their games. At least not when they come out. I will still consider it 6 months to a year after release if they prove themselves. But with recent history, I cant be confident any of their games will not be aggressively monetized.
A Quick History of Bethesda Monetization Methods
If you look all the way back to The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion you can see the start of this behavior. Oblivion was the first game were they started dipping their toe into microtransactions. This was the horse armor DLC.
DLCs were a new thing back then and I am not sure if anyone had even used the word micro-transaction before. But the community already knew this was stupid and there was backlash.
After Oblivion game Fallout 3. Bethesda seems to play it cool with this game. Maybe because it was a new IP for them. So Nothing too crazy happens there from what I can remember. But feel free to comment below and let me know if I am forgetting something.
After that came Skyrim. Everything seemed good at first. But then Bethesda kept re-releasing the same game over and over. Not only that but every re-release has the same bugs. But if people keep buying it for some reason then maybe that is ok?
Bethesda’s first mobile game and with this they crossed the line over into true microtransactions.
Next comes Fallout 4 and the next step in Bethesda’s monetization plans. With Fallout 4 came the introduction of the Creation Club. At some point, they also added the Creation Club to Skyrim. Rumor has it that it will be added to their other games as well.
But That was not enough for them. They also had to put Creation Club ads on the title screen of Fallout 4. Did you pay the full price for a AAA game? Too bad you still got the ads…
And now we get to the present day with Fallout 76. I never intended on getting the game but a friend got it for me as a gift. So I decided I would give it a try and oh lord the bugs. It was a disaster. I think I made it to level 14 before just calling it quits and writing a review on my experience.
At that point, I stopped keeping up with the game and Fallout 76 dropped off my radar. But it does not look like things got any better. This hilarious video sums up what all happen when I was doing other things. It is a must-watch!
Giving the game another try
Fallout 76 was off my radar until the internet blew up in rage over the Fallout First news.
I decided I would reinstall the game and give it a second look to see what everyone was talking about. There are still a lot of bugs. Like how all the enemies in an area will just fall over dead sometimes as you enter the area haha.
But I have to say the game plays a lot better now and has a lot of potential to be a good game. But Bethesda is bound and determined to ruin it.
What is Fallout 1st
To sum it up Fallout First is a pay to win subscription model. It also costs more than things like Xbox game pass where you have access to a lot more games.
They took a bunch of community feedback on how to make the game better. Things like private servers. But instead of using that feedback to make the game better they put it all behind a paywall.
Bethesda promised that microtransactions would be cosmetic only but they have gone back on their promise.
So not only did some people pay $60 to buy the game but now they will need to spend $100 a year to get the full experience? That is not very cool of Bethesda. If they would have just released the game as Free to Play from the start I would have been more understanding. But they are double-dipping and that is not right.
One fan even got the domain https://falloutfirst.com/ (NSFW) before Bethesda did and used it to protest.
Fallout First Future Plans Leak
It also sounds like it is going to get worse. A leaker at MMOG Fails is reporting on what Bethesda’s future plans may be.
If MMOG Fails is right then not only is Bethesda double dipping but they will be triple-dipping. Making exclusive items only Fallout First subscribers can buy in the store. Some players will have paid $60 for the game. Then after that, they can buy a subscription in order to have the honor of buying an exclusive item in the store?
I do not know if any of this is true but I am told this guy has a track record of being right a lot. So we will see. You can find his post here.
Bethesda Lost All My Trust
I am not going to say I will never buy another one of their games. But Bethesda has lost the trust I had in them that would allow me to go buy one of their games on day one. From now on I will be looking at their new games with lots of scrutiny.
With the current history, I think it is very likely that Elder Scrolls VI and Starfield will have some form of aggressive monetization.
The best way to send a message is to vote with your wallet. I have talked about this with EA and sadly we are now talking about it with Bethesda. A lot of fans are already doing this by supporting and promoting The Outer Worlds as a fallout replacement.
If Bethesda’s new games look honest then I may check them out 6 months to a year after release. But never before that until they earn my trust back.