Fallout 76 Interview

Bethesda's Jeff Gardiner and Chris Mayer had a chat with PC Gamer recently, talking about the studio's multiplayer survival-RPG Fallout 76, the importance of community feedback for the game, its approach to player-created mods, the balancing act behind the game's not quite cosmetic microtransactions, and more. Here's an excerpt to get you started and you take things from there:

Feedback loop

We actually begin by talking about those pesky stash boxes, because I'm curious about changes based on community requests, and what happens when those requests are in conflict with Bethesda's vision for the game. Stash size increases are a great example of something players desperately wanted but that Bethesda was a bit reluctant to give them.

"We wanted people to have to make decisions about what they're carrying in this game," Jeff Gardiner says, as a reason the stash boxes initially held so little. "But over time we realized that we were too draconian so we increased it, and we increased it again. We probably could even increase it again. I honestly don't know if you could ever give people too much of that, but again, we do want there to be some light survival elements where you have to make decisions on what you're carrying in your inventory."

"It is a balancing act," says Chris Mayer. "Sometimes you have to be willing to let go of things that you thought were sacred cows, and sometimes you know that the short term thing being asked for is not going to work out the way the community expects. And I think a lot of that is an art, some of it you get wrong, some of it you get right."

Additionally, you may also be interested in this recent Q&A where the game's developers discuss Fallout 76's Wild Appalachia content update, and this developer diary that showcases the game's upcoming combat improvements. More on that:


Some of the adjustments below will feel more impactful in-game than they seem when reading about them, so we’ve included a few “before and after” clips to better illustrate a few of the differences. Once Patch 10 arrives, we hope you will find these changes offer more flexibility and responsiveness during combat when you’re fending off the many dangers of the Wasteland.


We’re adding a “Show Damage Numbers” setting to the display options menu that you can use to see exactly how much hurt you’re dishing out when your attacks hit an enemy. This setting can be toggled separately for Adventure and Survival modes and is turned off by default.


Has a straggling Ghoul ever caught you by surprise while you were holstering or switching a weapon? Now, you can blast it back into the shadows without hesitation! In Patch 10, you will be able to cancel many weapons’ holstering and drawing animations by firing them.


Sometimes, your reaction speed can mean the difference between looting an enemy and re-claiming your junk from a paper bag. We’re greatly reducing the time it takes to look down pistol iron sights and peer into weapon scopes for a better view of your targets.

We’re also going to add targeting reticles to a number of weapons that didn’t previously have them when aiming down the sights in first-person perspective. This should help you make more shots count and spend less time adjusting your aim. Targeting reticles are being added for the following weapons:
  • Gatling Weapons (except Gatling Laser Guns),
  • Minigun
  • Broadsider
  • 50 Cal Machine Gun
  • Auto Grenade Launcher
  • Fat Man
  • Harpoon Gun
  • Paddle Ball (yes, even the Paddle Ball)

Whether you need to make a tactical retreat, chase down a fleeing enemy, or take a more strategic position, being ready to run is critical to maneuvering on the battlefield. Going forward, you will be able to sprint immediately after firing ranged weapons, and can sprint to cancel reload animations.

In addition, we’re removing the temporary reduction in look sensitivity that occurred after sprinting for players who use controllers. This should help combat on controllers feel more fluid and allow you to more easily line up a new target.

Finally, for those times when you need to make a hasty exit, but want to pick off one more pesky creature before you go, V.A.T.S. will now close immediately if one of your attacks scores a killing blow.


Thanks to feedback we’ve received from many of you in the Fallout 76 community, we’re adding a couple of new settings to the Game Options Menu that will help you better customize how you view the world. First, we’re implementing support that will allow you to invert X-axis input. Next, whether you play with a controller or a mouse, you will now be able to adjust your horizontal and vertical look sensitivity settings independently from one another.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this sneak peek at our next update for Fallout 76. Keep an eye on Fallout.com to catch more details about Patch 10 as soon as they are announced.