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Bethesda Wants To Make Fallout 76 Easier For New Players

Screenshot: Fallout 76

Fallout 76’s world can be a brutal, especially for players just starting out. Hunger, thirst, disease, radiation—there’s no shortage of maladies in Appalachia. In the game’s next big update, Bethesda is determined to dial down the danger, at least early on, so new players can actually spend more time exploring Fallout 76 in peace.

“We’re looking to make a few adjustments to help new and low-level characters have more gradual introductions to some of the game’s mechanics and challenges,” Bethesda said in a blog post late last week announcing the major changes coming in Patch 11. The biggest of these changes include:

  • Reducing the cost to fast travel for players under level 25
  • Giving players under level 15 higher disease resistance
  • Making food take 50 percent longer to spoil
  • No longer wiping out stat bonuses from food and drink after fast traveling
  • Making encounters with higher level enemies outside of the Forest, the game’s starting area, more rare

The studio says it also plans to make rewards from Fallout 76’s checklist-driven Challenges completed earlier in the game more useful for low-level players. Right now those activities grant a certain number of Atoms, the game’s premium currency, that can mostly only be spent on cosmetics. New players might be able to buy furniture for their camp but they’ll be hurting for first-aid items, fresh water, and food.

Patch 11 will also make item effects and their descriptions clearer.
Screenshot: Bethesda (Fallout 76)
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These basic necessities can be so scarce early on for players who don’t know where to look for them that it’s become common practice in Fallout 76 for higher level players to search out those who are still in the single digits and leave them little gift bags full of Stimpaks, Rad-Aways, and grilled meats, and boiled water.

While players have done a good job of papering over Fallout 76’s holes with creative role-playing, making the game’s onboarding process a much smoother experience will go a long way toward helping it find new players as Bethesda continues to add post-release content. Patch 11 is supposed to arrive later this month.

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Correction: an earlier version of this article said Challenges previously awarded crafting resources. The Challenges referenced in the patch notes actually awarded Atoms, the game’s premium currency.

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Ethan Gach

Kotaku staff writer. You can reach him at ethan.gach@kotaku.com