Despite Bethesda’s Todd Howard explicitly emphasising that Fallout 76 was to be an “entirely online” title, many believed that his mention of playing “solo” meant some form of single-player akin to previous entries. Unfortunately, this has been misinterpreted, as Howard has gone on to clarify that other players will indefinitely be a part of the game.
“Each of those characters is a real person, because yes, Fallout 76 is entirely online,” Howard says when describing the world of Bethesda’s new title. While this seemed cut and dry to us here at KitGuru, subsequent quotes made by Howard prompted readers to hold onto the possibility of a single-player component.
“Of course you can play this solo. Your character isn’t tied to one server, as a matter of fact you’ll never even see a server when you play,” explains Howard in the first of many quotes that have caused the confusion. “Whether you choose to explore the wasteland alone or with friends, your days will be filled with fun activities,” continues the informational Vault-Tec video.
As we suspected, “solo” in this case simply means that you can choose to traverse the always-online world with or without companions, however, Bethesda is still opting against non-playable characters (NPCs) in favour of a player-driven world.
In an interview with Geoff Keighley, via Gameslice, the host asks Howard if the game can be played offline to which Howard bluntly responds “you cannot.”
“See, even if you’re playing by yourself doing quests, you will see other players. And you can interact with them or you can ignore them, because there is a main questline. There are no NPCs. That’s one of the big differences that we really leaned on, which is every character you see is a real person, but there are still robots, and terminals and holotapes.”
For those put off by the online-only experience, Bethesda has confirmed that it will eventually introduce the ability to host private servers sometime after launch, which will prevent risk of being nuked by other players. “Our goal for launch is to have a well-running robust service, and then, some period later, you’ll be able to have your own private world,” said Howard.
Those still interested in Fallout 76 will be able to pre-order the title now ahead of its November 14th release date.
KitGuru Says: No doubt that this will be a deal breaker for many, however the chances of seeing other players on a map four times the size of Fallout 4 while hosting just dozens of other players is quite slim. Similarly, this does mean a true solo experience could be even more desolate than we’re used to with Fallout. Will you still pick up Fallout 76?