The new live-action trailer for Bethesda’s Fallout 76 is bizarrely upbeat. With the game’s launch a little more than two weeks away, the developer has been busy drumming up hype and last-minute preorder sales. Their latest piece of promotion gave fans of the post-apocalyptic franchise a somewhat more upbeat look at the world of Fallout.
The latest installment in the Fallout series is a survival-themed MMORPG, a major shift from the single-player games the franchise had previously been known for. The switch to multiplayer hasn't been the only major change the company has made as they’ve removed all NPCs, added the possibility of being able to nuke fellow players, and created one of their most ambitious maps to date. While Bethesda has expressed their hope that the online world of Fallout could last forever, early testers have expressed concerns about the game’s graphics, “subpar shooting system,” and less than impressive AI. But the game is not without hope as the developer appears eager for player feedback to help Fallout 76 improve.
Bethesda has never had a problem being a little playful now and then with their story of nuclear Armageddon. But the developer took things to a new level with their latest trailer for Fallout 76. The trailer is set to the Beach Boys’ “Wouldn’t It Be Nice” and shows a series of characters enjoying themselves a bit too much as they mow down enemies and traverse a nuclear wasteland. The trailer ends with everyone peacefully watching one of Fallout’s new nukes go off in the distance.
The company is having a bit of fun with the irony that players expect to have fun in a fictional nuclear nightmare. Much like the characters in the trailer, gamers will wander about apocalyptic America, gleefully shooting or blowing up enemies. But if anything, Bethesda appears to be encouraging players to full on embrace the somewhat bizarre nature of the series, only now they want fans to enjoy it with other likeminded gamers.
Fallout 76’s strangely cheerful trailer hasn’t been to everyone’s taste with some players complaining that they found the new tone off-putting. Others have embraced the bright side to the apocalypse, finding the trailer surprising but not entirely out of sync with Bethesda’s previous work. But in the end, it is the game that matters, not the promotional material. And wouldn’t it be nice if fans could work together and make Fallout 76 into the enjoyable experience Bethesda wishes it could be?