Tobold's Blog
Friday, July 10, 2020
Downloading Fallout 76

Fallout 76 on the PC has a 52% critics review average score, and 2.7 out of 10 user score. The game is currently on Steam for 40 Euros. Which means that I would be very, very reluctant to spend that kind of money on a game that controversial. However, Fallout 76 just got added to the Xbox Game Pass. So I can play it for free, with the only obstacle being the 75 GB download. The recent reviews on Steam are "mostly positive", and the Fallout 76: Wastelanders expansion has better review scores than the original. So, I am currently downloading the game to check it out for myself.

Review scores are an indication, but not an objective measure of how likely a game is to please me. Games get "review bombed" by both critics and players for reasons that have very little to do with the quality of gameplay, sometimes for something as simple as trying something new. There are games that crash on half of the PCs out there, but run perfectly fine on the other half, so there can be an element of chance involved in whether you'll like a game. And of course every player has his own pet peeves and niche preferences, so you might well like a game that everybody hates, or the other way around.

Don't hold your breath, though, waiting for me to post a review. It is July, I live in Europe, and we Europeans have this strange custom Americans can't understand to take 3+ weeks of summer holidays. I'm leaving tomorrow. And while I did buy a new gaming laptop last year, I'm not taking it. My iPad and my Switch make for far more comfortable mobile gaming, especially when the internet is flaky. So my summer holidays are also a break from PC games, especially online ones, whether that is World of Tanks or Fallout 76. While I can blog from iPad, I usually don't do much of it during the holidays, so don't be surprised if updates are rare for the rest of the month.

F76 really doesn't deserver that score. I bought it at release and even though it's not as good as it's previous games it's still a pretty fun game. It still has that Fallout vibe. And with Wastelanders it has become much better since the game doesn't feel as deserted as before.
One thing I always wondered about Fallout 76 was whether the hate came primarily from fans of the Fallout series who didn’t like the “MMO” features of the game. Because, while MMO players have gotten used to a lot of crap that seems inherent to the genre, people who didn’t play MMOs before might well be disappointed by those features.
You have no idea how jealous I am of the European concept of "real" multiweek vacation. I am NOT a "live to work" sort of person, and I look at people who are workaholics with a jaundiced eye. I've known too many people growing up who worked in a job in a factory or at an office --rarely taking a day off-- retired at age 65, and then were dead by age 70. I look at that and think it such a waste that a person would spend their entire life working, and then never getting a chance to enjoy retirement.

So yeah, the Europeans have this right.
Redbeard is right on the money with that one on all counts. At 50 I was able to retire but my wife still works and companies are loathe to provide any kind of vacation time to employees and to get 3 weeks off you have to be practically a plank owner of the company. That's a Navy term for being there when it was built.

There is no way I'm going to take 3 weeks to go off somewhere without my wife and spend money that she isn't getting any enjoyment from. I love America but we have it backwards. If we're not going to lead the world in innovation and manufacturing anymore can we at least increase the vacation time instead of making CEOs richer and richer. We live in a modern day Coal and Steel plant mentality. We might not get crushed by falling rocks but we're inundated with six sigma business decisions which constantly churn the workplace in an effort to squeeze out another dollar for our masters. I'm not a socialist but death by capitalism doesn't promote a healthy mental lifestyle.
I've heard good things about all the Wastelanders additions.

Let us know how it goes.
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