Bethesda and Id parent company Zenimax Media Inc hosted their annual QuakeCon convention in Texas last weekend. With Fallout 76 first announced earlier this year at E3, the panel revealed Fallout 76 gameplay details in a nearly hour-long Q&A with three lead developers from Bethesda Softworks.

You can watch the full panel above, which includes Bethesda’s Chris Meyer (Development Director), Jeff Gardener (Project Leader), and Todd Howard (Game Director). I’ve pulled the highlights below.

  • Fallout 76 is about 80% Fallout, 20% new. The biggest change is obvious: online multiplayer.
  • Fallout 76 lacks written NPCs, essentially replacing them with other player characters.
  • Your character can mutate, gaining new traits and abilities.
  • Characters our fully customizable, and can be changed at any time after creation.
  • The SPECIAL system returns (Strength, Perception, etc), and you’ll increase one stat when you level up. Every stat starts at 1. The new cap is 15. You stop gaining SPECIAL points at level 50, but you can still level up beyond that and gain Perk cards.
  • Perks are now cards that are purchased using your stat points, and equipped. Perks offer lots of new abilities and benefits, like better healing, damage, and mutations.
  • The higher your SPECIAL stat, the more Perk cards you can equip for that stat. Stronger cards cost more stat points, up to five per card.
  • A humorous new Vault-Tec educational video was released about Perks:

  • You can freely swap Perk cards as long as you have the SPECIAL points available.
  • Every two levels you get a random pack of four Perk cards (after level 10, you get them every five levels).
  • On PvP: Attacking another player initially does little damage until the other player engages (“slap”). Higher level players are worth more caps.
  • If a player kills someone who didn’t want to engage with them becomes a Wanted Player. They get no caps or XP.
  • You will be able to ignore/block anyone, and you’ll no longer see each other on the map or be able to attack each other. You can also turn on a pacifist flag to avoid PvP entirely.
  • “We turn assholes into interesting content.” The unwanted murderers are shown on everyone’s map as a red star. They have an extra bounty on their head that they have to pay out with their own caps, and they can’t see other players on their map.
  • On death, the only thing you drop is your junk, which is used for crafting. Junk can be safely stored in players’ personal stashes.
  • Fast travel is available, but it costs caps the further you want to travel beyond Vault 76.
  • Nukes can destroy players’ camps, but it’s also easy to repair and save layouts and designs as blueprints.
  • Private Servers will be available, and be able to use mods. Using mods in an online game is tricky but they are “100% committed.”

Fallout 76 is launching November 14 on PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4. The beta begins in October. It has not yet been rated by the ESRB (most likely M for Mature).


This article was written by

Eric has been writing for over eight years with bylines in Dicebreaker, Pixelkin, Polygon, PC Gamer and Tabletop Gaming magazine, covering movies, TV shows, video games, tabletop games and tech. He reviews and live streams D&D adventures every week on YouTube. He also makes a mean tuna quesadilla.