I got the game a couple weeks ago from a deal and I've recently hit level 50 so I thought it was a good time to give my experience for those who are looking to buy the game but were very cautious due to things they've heard or all the threads on the front page of this subreddit.
To give an idea on where I come from, I'm generally a "normie" when it comes to Bethesda games. I'm old enough to have played around with Fallout 3, New Vegas and Oblivion, but I never really got into them. Fallout 4 and Skyrim on the other hand ended up giving me some the best single player experience I've ever had. I've spent countless hours on both and I've modded my way through many playthroughs. To keep it obvious, I'm a huge fan of Fallout 4. Beyond that, I have played quite a few live service games and I've got over 6k hours clocked into Warframe over the past 8 years.
With that all said, after playing Fallout 76, I will say that Fallout 76 is just Fallout 4 but with multiplayer. Pieces of the game have been slimmed down or expanded upon to fit the multiplayer experience, but the base is easily Fallout 4. If you like Fallout 4, it's very possible that you'll like this game.
For those who only like single player experiences and quake in fear at the sight of a live service game, I do think Fallout 76 offers enough of a solo experience even when playing on multiplayer services. While I do believe there's a lot of depth in that department alone, I wouldn't put it on the $60 dollar level. I would argue that if you want to get into Fallout 76 just for the single player storyline, combat and quests, you should get the game for half the price or less and you can very easily get the game for that price right now.
When you start to include all of the other multiplayer or live service aspects, I think the game is more worth its price point, but I did purchase the game for a sixth of its price-tag. Most of my experience has been by myself, but I have played with friends as well. Regardless, my experience playing with random players or friends has been incredible. You never knew you needed a co-op Fallout 76 game until you get into that moment during an event. It even holds more true when you're just exploring random structures in the world with a pal.
Although lacking many options, the CAMP-system gives your old settlements purpose because other players can now see them and experience them. Daily Ops and the Scoreboard system (Season Passes) are fun daily experiences to keep you engaged and playing. You'll see many players complain about Daily Ops (and their drops) on the subreddit, which are right in a lot of ways, but they fail to mention that these Daily Ops only take about 7 minutes of your time and offer incredible amounts of ammo and stimpacks. As for the Season Pass, I was thrown in the middle of this one, but I have completed quite a bit (40/100?) and I'm very happy with the Atoms and cosmetics rewarded so far. The challenges to finish the pass don't seem complicated to complete and I usually end up completing them by playing the game normally.
Since I appreciated the game so much, I decided I wanted to get Fallout 1st. Mostly for the Atoms, but also to see what the subscription was all about. As a preface, I am not a fan of subscription models, but the bonus in Atoms and free cosmetics made it worth the value to me. Overall, the extra items they give you for the month (the scrapbox and survival tents) are pretty nice. I feel like I can easily live without the survival tent only because it's really only great to be able to fast travel for free around places and once you understand how to navigate teams, you'll understand all the ways of taking advantage of fast travel for free anyway. The scrapbox on the other hand is incredible due to how big it is (infinite), but if I don't buy Fallout 1st next month, all my items remain inside until I take them out. As for the private world, I felt like it was pretty useless unless I wanted to play with a bunch of friends at once. Your experience typically ends up being far better with randoms because they're helpful. For some reason, Fallout 76 gives this image that since it's multiplayer, other players are going to go out of their way to nuke your base and ruin your experience. While I believed the same thing before I bought the game, it held true and I never once experienced a player ruin my time in the game.
All in all, Fallout 1st feels more like a way to get discount Atoms and free cosmetics as opposed to a subscription model because I can easily live without all the extras. I plan on buying it and canceling it whenever I want Atoms and I think that'll do enough for me.
For those who are interested in the game but feel cautious about it due to this subreddit, it's a great game. Most of the people upset right now are likely upset because they're passionate about the game and want to keep playing. The other set of people are upset they didn't get Fallout 5 so they're trolling around on the subreddit two years later. The game is definitely worth its current price tag and offers tons of content for those who enjoy multiplayer live service games and those who like the traditional Fallout 4 experience.
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