So…we all know that fallout 76's economy is…weird. Really weird. It makes absolutely no sense and while it kinda works, it relies heavily on various artificial limits in place in order to somewhat function. While I understand why they exist and why we can't have a true "free market" in fallout 76, I honestly have come to the conclusion that the limits are way too strict even for not super hardcore players. So much they could theoretically stop even a more casual player from playing more.
So for background, I'm not super new to fallout 76 any more, but I only got it last christmas. I've been playing for a little over 3 months now and lately I've kinda….slacked off of it. Been focusing on other games, and I'm kinda getting burned out. That said I stopped playing for a couple weeks mostly in order to get focused and hyped for wastelanders and don't go into it burned out.
However, I decided to use the recent triple XP weekend to prepare for wastelanders. I decided to level my character, test out some weapons I got from vendors, and ultimately went from 99 to 117 in 4 days.
However, I arguably could've played more, and didn't…in part because of 76's limits.
First of all, the 1400 cap limit with vendors. This is by far one of the biggest limitations. It's too strict and punishing. I have a grand total of..i think? 20 water purifers in my base. 7 large, 13 small. I can collect around 74 waters at max capacity, and selling for 4 caps each gives me 300 caps. Not huge, not a lot to really break the cap limit in itself and this is a relatively "easy" way to get water. However, then I go on a xp spree. People spent much of the weekend nuking whitesprings and I spent tons of time running around killing tons of glowing ones. When i got done, I'd go to the train station, selling tons of flux, glowing blood, glowing meat, high radiation fluids, hardened masses, etc. This would cause me to burn through 1400 cap limit pretty quickly. IN addition, I established routes to max exp farming, which included hitting up several savage divide, mire, and cranberry bog fissures to kill scorchbeasts, also hitting other enemies along the way, such as hopewell cave south of the pumpkin place. I woudl get lots of legendaries, lots of scorchbeast bones, etc. I'd scrip as many as I could, but then I'd run into the 150 a day scrip limit. Not to mention I decided to establish siome routes hitting west tek for steel, and the cave by fort defiance for lead for ammo making purposes, and that caused me to store up tons of scrap. And then I'd run into limitations in the amount of acid I have, so I'd have to establish routes for that too.
Because I literally cant sell off my stuff fast enough, due to the scrip limits and the cap limits, it starts clogging my inventory. I normally operate around 650-750 lbs in my stash, and have 250 lbs of gear on me at a time, with a max carrying capacity of 350. I do NOT have fallout first, so no scrap box for me. This means that MOST of my stash weight is actually in hundreds of pounds of scrap. So now im getting all of this lead, all of this steel, combined with the crap I cant sell to vendors due to the 1400 cap limit, and legendaries i can't scrip because of the 150 scrip limit, and where does all that stuff go? Well I either carry it around with me, pushing me way past my carrying capacity and slowing me down where i cant run or fast travel, or I stash it, where I run into the obvious stash limitations because i really only have an extra 100 lbs of carrying capacity on a good day.
It gets to the point if i don't wanna just…waste stuff, I gotta literally log off and wait another whole day before I play again. I cant farm any more, because i literally have no place to store stuff, and i literally cant sell it or get rid of it fast enough.
And honestly…I havent played for the past several days since triple xp has ended. Part of me doesnt want to so the game is fresher for me come wastelanders, but part of it is literally because there's no point. I'm not rewarded for doing anything, if anything im punished because im just wasting ammo and wrecking my weapons' condition killing things with no reward to them.
I literally logged on the past two days, ONLY to sell stuff. I'd literally log in just to sell all of this excess stuff I've been holding onto since the day before, and log off again. Sometimes it's tons of glowing meat and high radiation fluids, sometimes its water im accumulated, but another thing is scrap.
The scrap situation really sucks if you don't own fallout first, and it feels pay to win. FO1st people have all of this extra space for legendaries, but normal players literally have hundreds of pounds of scrap in their inventory. I literally had to sell off hundreds of gears, and fiberglass, and other supplied i had been stashing in my inventory, and now I'm finally down to under 600 lbs of stash space. But even then it literally took me several days to move all of that stuff, because again, the 1400 cap limit is too low.
I'm not a hardcore player as far as this game goes. Been playing 3.5 months, I'm level 117. Around 170 hours in the game, which amounts to around 1.5 hours a day on average. I dont have dozens of legendaries, i dont have tons of mule accounts, heck i almost never broke 10k caps until this past weekend, which has pushed me up to 14-15k. I'm not one of those level 500 players with 5 accounts and alts dedicated to just storing stuff. I'm not exploiting or breaking the game due to having so much stuff where i can flood the marketplace with tons of stuff and make tens if not hundreds of thousands of caps. I'm literally just an average player who has reached end game. And at this point, all that's left to do in the game is silo runs, vault 94, and just running around and killing stuff. But I can't even do much of that, because this game's artificial limits limit the rewards I get for doing it. Like it or not, fallout 76, by end game, becomes a loot shooter. You're killing stuff for loot. You're trying to get better legendaries, you're trying to get supplies for more ammo, more caps so you can buy stuff from other players, plans so you can craft better gear, etc. But you can't even properly do that, because the limitations are so strict that it interferes with game play. Even doubling the current limits to 3k caps a day and 300 scrip would make a huge difference, and honestly, storage capacity should be higher than 800 given that I probably have like 300-400 lbs just in scrap and that's after spring cleaning.
And no, before anyone asks, no im not buying fallout first, ill quit before i pay a subscription for this game. I paid for my game, you got your money, im not interested in giving you MORE money just to keep playing. That's literally pay to win and while I love this game fallout first is a huge turnoff I think, especially for this reason.
On the plus side, I actually think this economic model is a huge reason this game is so generous to new players. Established players are literally eager to give stuff away they dont need in order to just keep their inventory clear for stuff they do need. THis leads to showering new players with tons of gifts. And I have to admit that does make the game more welcoming for a newbie. And I understand there may be good reasons why those controls are in place. I heard that without any of them we might see severe cap inflation with everything in player vendors, and that hackers might be able to flood the market with illicitly obtained (duped) goods. So I'm definitely not in favor of just eliminating all limitations. I just think the current ones are way too strict and it's punishing for most players north of say, level 100. And some in the 50-100 range might suffer too.
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