While an upgraded "pass" to an online multiplayer game that grants paying players more benefits isn't new or revolutionary, Fallout 76's player base has used the tool to instigate class warfare on a game-wide scale in the future apocalypse of West Virginia.
Last week, Bethesda released Fallout 1st, a premium membership for Fallout 76 players that cost about $13 a month. Players can also pay for a year's subscription for the "discounted price" of $100. Those who do pay this subscription in addition to purchasing the game are granted infinite item storage, private servers, better fast travel, as well as the traditional subscription rewards - skins, in-game credits and exclusive emotes.
Those players who haven't handed over the cash for Fallout 1st have taken matters into their own hands, as Fallout 1st subscribers are easily identified by unique armor, icons and emotes. A Reddit thread - that now has almost 2,000 comments - came to life four days ago and details that "people are ganging up on Fallout 1st players in adventure mode and grieving [sp] anyone with the icon lol." Reddit users shared harrowing tales of the proletariat breaking their chains to show their displeasure:
Other users, while verifying the existence of the new class war, seemed slightly less concerned:
Perhaps this is due to Fallout 1st rolling out almost an entire year after the game was released, making the subscription feel like yet another poorly designed game patch. Perhaps this is a release of pent-up frustration from a history of glitchy gameplay that was never truly resolved. (Fallout 1st's private server feature even suffered several bugs after a deployment that Bethesda hasn't completely resolved.) Perhaps players feel this feature from Bethesda goes against the anti-capitalist messages that thread the Fallout series together. Perhaps, as one commenter pointed out, these tales are a bit overblown. Whatever the case may be, Fallout 76's player base is vocally unhappy about this new addition, with one player even going so far as to purchase the "falloutfirst" domain name to create a website that details a long list of frustrations with the Fallout 1st subscription plan. Peace may not be an option when the general theme of this new Fallout 76 debacle seems to be: