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Gaming NewsDec 16, 2018 at 5:01a PSTby Ender

Fallout 76 with paid lootboxes and premium cards?

Money. Money never changes. And it looks like Fallout 76 is going to be another multiplayer piggy bank. Lootboxes for money? Oh dear.

Fallout 76 is probably the biggest flop of the year which, due to Bethesda's awkward policy, is not only slowly dragging the company to the bottom but also slandering its long-established reputation in the eyes of loyal fans, regularly delivering further PR mishaps. The production received disastrous reviews from the critics, and a little over a month after the game’s premiere the number of players has shrunk dramatically. The situation was not even changed by the fact that the game had already been on a special sale offers many times.

It seems that instead of slowly restoring the trust of a handful of players who still believe in the future of Fallout 76, Bethesda may have decided to maximize the profits that can still be squeezed from the title, without a major patch and fixes. Reddit users have reviewed a list of changes made to the game's configuration files in its latest update, discovering some surprising entries that may give players a glance of Bethesda’s new strategy for the post-apocalyptic online world.

The first element that may cause concern are lunchboxes (well known to fans of Fallout Shelter). Disposable items, to which a tag is assigned that binds them to the game store, where we can buy add-ons for virtual currency (Atoms), which has to be bought for real money. When activated, the player's character gains one or more of the following bonuses:

  1. Experience Points bonus
  2. Damage bonus
  3. Radiation Resistance bonus
  4. Maximum Inventory Load bonus

You don't have to make anyone aware that the power-ups proposed here, even if they are active for a limited time, have a strong impact on the balance of the multiplayer game. The XP points bonus is especially interesting. Many players reported that with the last patches the leveling up speed has been limited.

Bethesda seems to take an example from the Call of Duty series, because opening a lootbox is accompanied by various animations such as falling confetti and sound effects, which are noticeable by other players in the vicinity. This well-known and popular procedure is intended to put pressure on the other participants of the game and lure them to buy their own lunchboxes.

Additionally, you will also be able to buy (for real money) random sets of cards with perks, thanks to which you can change your character's skills and specializations. Although the hero's development system based on the mentioned cards and perks was praised by the critics, its design was questionable – from the very beginning the whole system looked like an idea of introducing microtransactions. Of course, developers maintained, for a long time, that cards would never be sold in this way and we would only get them in the middle of the game. Are things going to change on this matter in the nearest future?

Let's point out that these entries in configuration files does not mean that Fallout 76 will automatically receive paid lunchboxes and pay-to-get card decks with perks. However, their presence may not be accidental either. Maybe Bethesda is considering a free-to-play business model for the game, which would theoretically make it possible to cover part of the losses generated by the title and keep it alive.

  1. Official Fallout series Webpage