Playing Fallout 76’s impossible board game

“No thanks, I think I’ll hold it until I find a cleaner bathroom. Yeah, I’m sure.”

I feel like I’m always waiting on a Fallout 76 update to bring the game up to my standards for enjoyment. First I was waiting for the Wastelanders release to start over in the game, and now I’m kind of waiting for the One Wasteland update to be able to tackle my huge backlog of quests. But what I was really waiting on this particular summer was the start of the game’s first season, which landed last week alongside of public teams.

The seasons seem like a decent way to pass the time for now while still leveling up and accumulating more stuff for my character and house. The idea is to have a reward track — 100 ranks’ worth — that’s advanced by doing daily and weekly challenges. There are some pretty nice rewards on there, too, from currency to cosmetics. It’s enough to make me want to play and to give me some sense of direction, which is pretty much all I need — other than narrative, which this sort of activity lacks almost entirely.

So far, it’s been slow and steady. I can already see that I’m not going to be hitting any of the weekly goals, not with my levels and time to play, but I am able to tick off two to four daily challenges and help get me up there. I have no idea how far this will take me — I think if I hit rank 30 or 40, it’ll be a miracle — but so far it’s not been too frustrating.

One thing this has done is getting me to do more public events, which puts me at least in proximity with other players — even if we can’t chat. I am trying to use my weakest guns and cheapest ammo so as to conserve my good stuff for when it’s really needed. My two-shot bow gets a lot of use in the Forest region — arrows are cheap and I can retrieve them more often than not. It’s a little tricky to use, especially in a high-pressure situation, but I tend to take down low-level mobs with a single shot.

I have been running up against a completely full STASH at my camp, which is subsequently causing a problem with my carrying-around inventory. There’s so much random stuff in this game that I’m not sure whether or not to get rid of — keys, cards, brochures, and other seemingly quest- or area-related items. So instead of a neat bag, I’m carrying everything I’m too terrified to drop. I am trying to build one or two things in my house every day to help use up some of those STASH materials, as well.

So yeah, it’s fun to be back and to have clear goals to chase for the summer. If you happen to see a combat medic sprinting through the wasteland with a bow and arrow, give me a thumbs-up emote and then run for you life, because something’s probably chasing me.

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