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What’s the deal with multiplayer in Fallout 76?

It can be single player, but it’s always online, and you can nuke people for better loot

During Bethesda’s conference on Sunday, Todd Howard hit us with the (perhaps unwelcome) truth that Fallout 76 will be multiplayer and always online, but he also made sure to couch in plenty of discussion about how you can still play solo.

Howard did mention that the game will be in the survival genre, but softened that with the phrase “softcore survival,” meaning you won’t lose all of your progress. Regardless of how weird the phrase “softcore survival” makes me feel, it seems that Bethesda is trying to take Fallout in a different direction while still pulling the longtime fans along for the ride.

All of this means that Fallout 76’s multiplayer mechanic still feels opaque. Though Howard made sure to say that you can play on your own, will that result in a stunted gameplay experience? If you play solo, does that mean you won’t run into anyone while galavanting out in the West Virginia wilderness?

It is worth noting that the multiplayer aspect of Fallout 76 has brought some new and interesting mechanics to the series. Namely, you can now seemingly drop nukes to initiate high level raids with better loot drops, and the opportunity to build bases with your friends anywhere on the enormous map will be a neat way to see how the first survivors rebuilt after the bombs dropped.

If you’re looking for more impressions, hot takes, or just a touch of fun, check out our E3 2018 playlist on YouTube. It’s a one-stop shop for all the biggest news from the show floor and beyond.