Bethesda Softworks has revealed that "Fallout 76" will finally become available on the Steam marketplace on April 7. The upcoming launch will coincide with that of the highly anticipated "Wastelanders expansion" that will be free to players.

A long time coming

"Fallout 76" marked the first entry in the highly popular post-apocalyptic RPG series to feature multiplayer. The PC version was initially released as an exclusive title on the Bethesda launcher back in November 2018 alongside the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions. Now, after nearly two years of anticipation, Steam users will finally be able to hook up and scour the nuclear wastelands together.

Additionally, on that date, both PC versions of "Fallout 76" will receive the highly anticipated "Wastelanders" expansion that will provide an overhauled storyline and quest system complete with NPCs that were absent since launch. The update was originally scheduled for release within the first quarter of 2020 but was pushed back for further development.

A first for everything

The Fallout games are usually reserved for single-player experiences but "Fallout 76" was an ambitious undertaking meant to take the series in a new direction with MMO mechanics. Similar to all of its predecessors, "Fallout 76" is set in a fictional 21st century America where a nuclear war had devasted most of the world and those surviving inhabitants were forced to retreat into bunkers called "vaults" to survive.

Unlike its predecessors, however, the video game was an MMO, allowing multiple players, cast as exiting vault dwellers, to work together or fight each other in a bid to reclaim the new world from savages and mutant creatures. "Fallout 76" is also set twenty-five years after the war, making it the earliest entry in the "Fallout" timeline.

Different game, same bugs

Unfortunately, another thing "Fallout 76" shares, with its predecessors, is the Creation Engine, an ongoing build that's notorious for its instability. Since its launch, the game has been savaged by critics and players for a multitude of game-breaking bugs and user account exploits that have ruined the experience for many.

Currently, the MMO holds a Metacritic score of 52.

"Fallout 76" has also come under fire for being anemic in terms of content whereas the video game also marks the first entry that excludes NPCs other than enemies populating its nuclear shell shocked world. Besides this, the MMO's story and quest structures were also lacking in depth. Hence, the MMO had proven to be too experimental for Bethesda Softworks' expectations.

Since launch, Bethesda Game Studios has been constantly updating "Fallout 76" with bug fixes and micro-transactions to no avail due to recurring bugs and over monetization concerns. Hopefully, the "Wastelanders expansion" will finally sate players' yearning for better content.