Bethesda is compensating hacked Fallout 76 players who found themselves victims of a major bug in December. While Fallout 76 has traditionally been filled with bugs that have caused players to lose items, the company generally shies away from replacing those items or providing any kind of repayment for the inconvenience unless it directly involves the paid subscription service. However, this issue was so pervasive that it seems the Fallout and Elder Scrolls developer has no choice but to act.
In December at Christmastime, Fallout 76 players on the PC encountered a threat greater than any Deathclaw or Scorchbeast: devious individuals who took advantage of a glitch in the game to steal their entire inventories. Hundreds of players effectively functioned as loot chests for a hacker in one single video and found that their entire inventories disappeared before their very eyes. It’s unclear how many were impacted in total. The hack only affected inventories, so stash boxes were safe from hackers. But many players called for the game to be taken down until a fix was implemented. Ultimately, Bethesda patched the issue and encouraged PC players who had their items stolen to file support tickets. Bethesda traditionally refuses to replace items and has even claimed it is impossible in the past. However, when paid Fallout 1st subscribers lost all their junk thanks to a bug in October, the company let the cat out of the bag: fixing bugged characters and replacing their items is indeed possible.
Over a month after the item theft bug, Bethesda kept its word and began not only restoring players’ items lost during the December hack but compensating them. Reddit flooded with reports of players receiving the good news that all their hard work was not in vain. Bethesda is in the process of replacing players’ items and is even throwing in free atoms and Fallout 1st memberships. You can see a YouTube video of a hacker robbing wastelanders blind below:
It’s unclear what, if any, formula the company uses to determine the number of atoms to give away to affected players. Some are reporting very different amounts and compensation. One player posted a screenshot of an email that said they would receive 8,250 atoms. Another player posted a screenshot showing that they would receive 3 months of Fallout 1st and 4,950 atoms to spend in the in-game store. To fix the issue, Bethesda is cloning affected pre-hack characters and adding them to players’ accounts. Then, as outlined in one of the screenshots, the company is offering to help with transferring the items to the proper characters.
To date, Bethesda has been rather miserly when compensating players for items lost because of a parade of at times game-breaking Fallout 76 bugs. However, once paid subscribers found that their unlimited junk boxes were eating their supply, the game changed. Bethesda became more willing to help out when issues with the game hurt players. This time, even non-paid players are receiving compensation for their lost items – a step in the right direction, but something that could easily have happened when player weapons and power armor vanished into thin air last year. Perhaps this marks a step in the right direction for Fallout 76 and Bethesda – one that involves properly handling player issues for the first time since launch.
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Fallout 76 is available now on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.
Source: JedediahJedi/Reddit, vonwiclehoffer/YouTube