QuakeCon is underway in Dallas, Texas this weekend, but Quake was not the star of the event on Saturday. A panel with members of the Fallout 76 developer team gave some new info on the game and answered a few big questions players had since it was announced.
Game director Todd Howard, development director Chris Meyer, and project leader Jeff Garnder answered questions about Fallout 76 during a Saturday panel. Arguably the biggest concern players have with the new game is how PvP combat would work. They even made a petition demanding a solo-only campaign. The team laid how the system will work to keep players who want to avoid combat away from those who want to kill everything on site. They also revealed the new Perks system, the nukes option, and other features for the game.
1. What to Do About PvP
Since Fallout 76 is an online multiplayer game, a big change from previous games in the franchise, fans of the series wanted to know how PvP combat would work.
“We want this eliminate of danger without grief,” Howard said during the panel.
Players can start PvP at level five, and the team added various safeguards to make sure those who want to avoid combat can do so. First off, a player shooting at another player in the world will do minimal damage to start off with. Both players need to be engaged in combat in order to unleash their full damage. Taking out another player will earn the winner some Caps, the in-game currency, as well as items dropped by the downed player. Not major items, but enough that it will “sting” a bit. A player who takes down someone at a higher level will receive more rewards. Once respawned, there is an option to get revenge, which will give extra Caps to the player if they succeed.
If someone does kill another that didn’t engage, they will be labeled a “wanted murderer.” They will receive no rewards for the kill except for being that jerk that killed another player. Also, their position will be shown on the map in red for all players in the area to see and there will be a bounty on their head. If a murder dies with a bounty on their head, the Caps they lose will be from their own stash.
Other additions to the PvP system is the inclusion of a pacifist flag that will prevent a player’s weapons from harming another and the option to block a player so they will not be able to find you on the map. Howard also mentioned there are “power curves” in the game that will keep battles fair. A player with a minigun may do a ton of damage, but they can be taken down by a knife if they’re surprised.
2. Don’t Fear the Nukes
Another concern for players when seeing the debut of Fallout 76 at E3 in June was the option to nuke an area. If players can get the launch codes, they can go to a silo to unleash a nuclear weapon on any location on the map. Since this can be used to destroy a camp made by a player, some wondered if this option would be overpowered.
The team explained that once a camp is built, a player can create a blueprint in order to rebuild it fairly quickly. So if a nuke does destroy everything, the player can go find another site and build up the camp. Since these bases can be filled with turrets and other defensive structures, the nukes were added in order to destroy the encampment that can imprison players.
3. So Many Perks
Perks have been a longstanding feature in the Fallout games. For Fallout 76, players will access the Perks via cards. Cards will come in the form of card packs that have four random cards. It even has jokes on the wrapper along with a stick of gum, which can reduce hunger when used. There are hundreds of Perks and all require a certain number of points in one of the SPECIAL (Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility, and Luck) stats.
For example, the Night Person Perk will increase intelligence and perception at night and requires one point in perception while the Bear Arms Perk require a point of strength and will may heavy guns weight 20 percent less. The cards can all be combined to form stronger Perks but will require more stat points.
4. Be an X-Men
Another new aspect to the game is mutations. If a player accumulates too much radiation, or Rads, they can mutate. An example given by Gardner was the “bird bone” mutation. When this mutation goes into effect, a player can jump higher, but they can carry less weight, likely due to their bones going hollow like a bird.
5. VATS Your Problem?
The Vault-Tec Assisted Targeting System, or VATS, is another staple in the Fallout series. In previous games, the system allows for player’s to focus on certain body parts of an enemy and do extra damage. VATS In Fallout 76 is different in that players will not be able to target body parts unless they use a Perk that gives them the ability. Also, the system requires a lot of points in the perception stat in order to be effective. Once built up, VATS will help the player to be more accurate when dealing with enemies.
Fallout 76 will come out on November 14 with the beta for the game happening in October.
Along with new info about Fallout 76, QuakeCon was also the event to reveal a new trailer for id Software’s Doom Eternal.