Every day, this subreddit sees multiple posts asking basically "Is it worth it?" This thread will be my attempt at providing an objective response to a subjective question about a moving target.
Let's divide this into two categories: Is it worth buying, and is it worth returning to.
IS THIS GAME WORTH BUYING
No one can answer this for you. Only you know your tastes and what your budget allows. But here are some general guidelines which you may find helpful.
You might like this game if:
1) You enjoyed the look and feel of previous Fallout games.
2) You enjoy games where you explore an environment at your own pace, letting the world and its story unfold as you stumble upon it at your leisure.
3) You enjoy environmental storytelling, where you absorb the story through discovering holotapes, notes, terminal entries, etc. You like figuring out the story on your own rather than having it fed to you.
4) You like grinding/farming events or locations for better gear, more XP, etc.
5) You want to play with minimal interaction with other players, but you're OK if they're friendly (Adventure mode).
6) You want a tense deathmatch to a quick end with other players (Survival mode).
7) You like building bases/camps/settlements.
8) You enjoy side quests more than the main story, but you're also capable of using your imagination to make your own fun in interacting with the world.
9) You are capable of figuring out things on your own, rather than having your hand held. If you found this description without having to post a new thread asking for opinions, congratulations! You might have what it takes to enjoy Fallout 76.
You might not like this game if:
1) You get lonely easily, preferring to have the company of other human players or at least NPCs that look, act, and speak like people.
2) You want a visceral challenge from the gameplay.
3) You have a low tolerance for bugs/glitches of any kind, and want the graphics to match the best AAA games on the market.
4) You're a hardcore mystery/puzzle solver. You don't want to just figure something out, you want it to hurt.
5) You want a linear experience that gets you from Point A to Point B as quickly as possible so you level up and get all achievements and the best gear without missing a beat or taking a breath.
6) You dislike building bases/camps/settlements.
7) You need deep, rich quests with lots of twists and turns and different potential endings based on your play style.
8) You don't want any interaction with other players whatsoever, OR you want lots of interaction with other players (besides just shooting at each other).
9) You are unable to solve problems or hunt for information or notice details on your own. If your first inclination when seeing a problem is to ask for help rather than using a search engine to figure it out, for example, you may not be able to enjoy a game that doesn't point out the story in giant letters every step of the way.
IS THIS GAME WORTH RETURNING TO SINCE
That depends entirely upon why you left. Take a look at Bethesda's Fallout 76 Road Map to see what's been added since you left, and what's on tap to be added. Also make sure that you read the weekly Inside the Vault newsletters from Bethesda to be as up-to-date as possible with the information. It's much faster for you to read these yourself and get all the information rather than ask the community and hope that some random people come by and tell you the bits that you would deem important.
Having said all of that, here are some points to hit:
You might want to come back to this game if:
1) You left because of bugs/glitches. Bethesda has been hard at work since launch, fixing many of the bugs and glitches in the game. HOWEVER, it is not and never will be a perfectly flawless game. If you can't live with any bugs at all, steer clear.
2) You left because of server disconnects. Bethesda has been hard at work since launch, fixing server issues. Most players report that their experience is smoother now. HOWEVER, a small percentage of people still report constant disconnects. Whether this is a problem on the users' ends or on Bethesda's is up for debate.
3) You left because you had done everything. Depending upon when you left, there may have been new content added. Check the Road Map and Inside the Vaults. More content has been added over the course of this year and more is scheduled to arrive.
You might not want to come back to this game if:
1) You left because of the lack of NPCs. They are, as of this writing, still not in the game. They may never be. If you need NPCs, this is probably not the game for you.
2) You left because you didn't like the general Kill -> Loot -> Return structure of the game. Sorry, the game still is what it is. It is not a game with multiple choice questlines like traditional Fallout games. If you don't like the design and concept of the game in general, then it is not for you.
3) You left because it was too challenging or not challenging enough. That really hasn't changed. Survival Mode can be more of a challenge, requiring a certain kind of build and gear. So it's become more challenging if you look at it like that. Adventure Mode has become less of a challenge, due to more PvP restrictions being added in that mode. Some new quests/events have been added of varying difficulties but overall the game difficulty is about what it was at launch.
Only you can say for sure what you're willing to invest into this game, both in terms of purchase price and time spent playing. Hopefully the points I've outlined here can help you make a decision but ultimately it is up to you to try it and see if you like it. IMO this game is best if you go into it taking it slowly and smelling the flowers. Take in the story from the terminals and the tapes and the notes. Build a nice camp. Max out your caps. Defeat the end game menace and take some nice photos along the way. Stay for more content and grind for better gear, or sell it to Gamestop and go onto the next thing.
If Fallout 76 is not your speed, that's fine. There are many other games out there. Go find something you enjoy. Life is short.
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