Nobody ever expected a battle royale mode to find its way into Fallout 76 but here we are, on the other side of E3, and surprisingly, it actually fits in the game. But that doesn’t mean it is not without its issues, but let’s get into it.
The battle royale genre is over-saturated right now. Everyone and their grandmother is making a battle royale game and each new game that comes out is deemed a Fortnite killer before quickly fading away to the back of the bus. I’m pretty sure a lot of people rolled their eyes when it was announced that Fallout was jumping onto the battle royale bus (myself included.) But when that Ring of Fire trailer played, it piqued my interest.
It has NUKES!
This is still Fallout before it is a battle royale game. The lobby has players goofing around in a Vault which has areas blocked off to players below a certain level. The more you play, the more you level up, which means the more you get to explore Vault 51 and discover all of its interesting secrets in the form of holotapes and terminal entries.
It’s interesting, as this Vault is just one of the many twisted Vault-Tech social experiments, or at least it seems that way.
Once the round actually starts, and players spawn in, the mode really shines. Grabbing the iconic and familiar guns from the series really brings a smile to one’s face. Any veteran Fallout player would know what these weapons are capable of.
What really makes this mode stand out from other battle royale games is that there are creatures that roam the map. Killing them yields rewards but players risk revealing their location if they make a noise.
Another thing that really blows it out of the park is the fact that there are Nuclear Launch keys all around the map and a Nuclear Briefcase. Find all of these and you can drop a nuke on a few squads of rival players (or on yourself by accident.) Seeing the notification that someone else has picked up the Nuclear briefcase really sends chills down one’s spine and it’ll make players want to grab those hazmat suits when they find them.
The perk cards from the main game have found their way into Nuclear Winter, but not as we know them. You have to earn these cards by levelling up and they are specific to Nuclear Winter. Choosing a perk card deck while in the lobby is crucial.
Ring of Fire
I feel the storm was a missed opportunity though. For some reason, it really is just a ring of fire, much like Battlefield V’s firestorm. Although it looks amazing I can’t help but wonder why it isn’t the infamous Rad Storm from Fallout 4?
The Radiation Storms looked amazing and they added radiation damage if players were caught in them. I feel like that would have been more appropriate for this mode. Seeing green lightning amongst darken clouds just feels more like Fallout compared to a wall of impending hellfire and doom.
Then again, it really does spice things up when the nuclear fusion cars are touched by the fire and start exploding, causing more confusion for the surviving players who are trying to find out where their rivals are. It does feel a little unbalanced though as it feels like people go down fairly quickly, even when they are wearing the much sought after Power Armour.
Nuclear Winter Final Thoughts
All in all, this mode is fun. It needs some adjustments here and there. There are a few bugs that has caused me to either get stuck or caused the game to crash completely mid-battle. But these will hopefully be addressed in this week’s update.
There’s no doubt that other areas of the main game’s expansive map will be added to this mode. The rewards that are earned are mostly skins that can be used in Nuclear Winter or Adventure mode and there are some building items for players to lay down in their camps in adventure mode. There is a lot of potential in it. I just hope Bethesda doesn’t neglect the Adventure mode for this battle royale mode. But only time will tell.