“Fallout 76” had a pretty rough launch, with fans of the series expressing disappointment over the developers' decisions with regards to the game. However, Bethesda has been hard at work trying to correct mistakes to make their fanbase happy and its path to redemption will seemingly start with the latest Wastelander update.

Fans of the franchise criticized the game when it came out due to the lack of NPCs in the game, among other things. The lack of NPCs made fans feel like they weren’t really playing “Fallout” as NPCs had long been a staple of the franchise.

Another problem fans had was the game's servers. “Fallout 76” took the premise of “Fallout” and combined it with the MMORPG world, meaning that players had to be online in order to play the game. Since the move was somewhat experimental, it led to a series of problems like glitchy servers, and a game that felt rushed. The game received a 2.7 user score on Metacritic, quite possibly the worst score for an AAA game in this generation.

During Bethesda’s E3 press conference, they announced the Wastelanders update. The update would fix a number of things, including bugs, server issues and the like and would finally add NPCs to the game in addition to a branching story.

Most importantly though, the update will add a battle royale game mode to “Fallout 76” called Nuclear Winter. Here’s everything you need to know about the new battle royale game mode.

52 Players

“PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds” and “Fortnite” have 100 players, while “Apex Legends” has 60 players in their respective battle royale game modes. “Fallout 76’s” battle royale game mode, Nuclear Winter, will have 52 players.

Players will team up in squads of four and compete against each other for the position of Overseer of Vault 51. Players will be able to form pre-made teams or join in with randoms as they enter the battle. It is also possible to work together in groups smaller than four, although this may prove to be disadvantageous.

Where To Drop

Players are given the ability to choose their starting point from Vault 51. After a set waiting period, all of the players’ spawn location will appear on the map, then everyone will be sent to their chosen starting place. Upon spawning, players will be invisible and invulnerable, unless you interact with an object or attack other players. This status lasts long enough for players to figure out where they are and where they should head to next

Closing Zone

A battle royale game mode is usually characterized as having a play area that gets significantly smaller as the game progresses, and such is the case with “Fallout 76’s” Nuclear Winter. As the nuclear firestorm closes in, the map will get smaller and smaller over time, forcing players to constantly be on the move.

Standalone Progression

Seeing as Nuclear Winter is a whole new game mode, players will not be able to bring in their weapons, perks or levels from Survival and Adventure Mode. Instead, the game mode is designed so that every player has an equal chance of winning.

Weapons, chems, and armor have been reworked in order to provide a balance PvP experience. There have also been improvements made to animation, aiming, and other combat-related features

Sweet Loot

Players will be able to loot in Nuclear Winter. Gear and other items can be obtained from containers, and other goodies can also be obtained by hacking terminals, claiming new crates, and downing hostile creatures.


Players will be able to build camps around the map in Nuclear Winter. Camps can provide shelter, repair tables, as well as hiding places for players should they have need of it. Players can also loot quick camp kits, which place traps, defensive structures, and pre-built bunkers.


The counter to the camp mechanism in Nuclear Winter will be mini-nukes. Mini-nukes are capable of destroying everything within a small area, so players should make a note to build somewhere hidden as an enemy with a nuke who knows your location can eradicate everything you’ve built so far

But when will it be available?

The beta for “Fallout 76’s” Nuclear Winter will be available until June 17. The Wastelander update, which includes the battle royale game mode, is set to arrive sometime in September to December.

Fallout 76
"Fallout 76" had a very rough launch with fans of the series criticizing how lackluster the game felt. However, Bethesda is on its path to redemption in the form of the new Wastelanders update, which includes the battle royale game mode, Nuclear Winter. AFP/Getty Images/Frederic J. Brown