In Bethesda’s continuing efforts to step in every pile of feces it sees, we have another negative story centered around Fallout 76. Customers are reporting that the canvas bag advertised in the $200 USD (£156) Power Armor Edition was replaced with a cheap nylon bag with no prior notice.
i made this comparason day 1 of launch that picture on the left was still on the website at the time pic.twitter.com/tRnnOSIFNY
— MrFive2Five (@MrFive2Five) November 21, 2018
Pictures of the bag have popped up on Twitter with comparisons to the originally advertised bag. The picture of the original canvas bag is still being used in advertisements on the Bethesda store page for the game. There is now a message at the top of the description that states, “*Bag is not correct representation of product*“, and it is described as nylon. However, the caption under the bag in the image still describes it as canvas. Considering how much gamers paid, they have been understandably angry, even going so far as to claim that Bethesda updated the store only after they began to raise the issue.
Reaching out to Bethesda has only stoked online negativity. In one interaction with Twitter user krcm0209, Bethesda customer service said,
“We are sorry that you aren’t happy with the bag. The bag shown in the media was a prototype and was too expensive to make. We aren’t planning on doing anything about it.”
For anyone hoping that @Bethesda was going to do something about the “canvas” bag that came with the @Fallout 76 Power Armor edition. Bad news. @BethesdaSupport @BethesdaStudios #notcanvas #falseadvertising pic.twitter.com/YylasB9Ojp
— krcm0209 (@krcm0209) November 21, 2018
Bethesda said that although the email is real, this person was a “temporary contract employee and not directly employed by Bethesda or Bethesda Game Studios”. They apologized for the “incorrect response”, and they were ready to set the record straight about what really happened. They said there was an unavailability of materials that forced them to switch to the nylon bag. They still think it’s one of their best collector’s edition, so they hope it doesn’t prevent you from enjoying it.
Unfortunately, due to unavailability of materials, we had to switch to a nylon carrying case in the Fallout 76: Power Armor Edition. We hope this doesn’t prevent anyone from enjoying what we feel is one of our best collector’s editions.
— Fallout (@Fallout) November 28, 2018
When some customers expressed that not receiving what was clearly advertised did keep them from enjoying it, Bethesda responded by saying that they would give impacted customers 500 atoms. Atoms are in-game currency in Fallout 76, and 500 atoms is $4.99 USD (£3.99). In the response on Twitter, they did say they were sorry, so…yeah.
We understand and respect that there is disappointment with the bag in the Power Armor Edition. We are sorry. Please contact Bethesda Support to provide proof of your CE purchase. They will assist in granting your account 500 Atoms.
Please visit: https://t.co/TJBMjYaph0
— Fallout (@Fallout) November 29, 2018
Users are still incensed. Twitter user @ScreenCusine mentioned that you have to pay 700 atoms to buy the postman outfit with the canvas bag in the game, so they are still not giving you a canvas bag. LanternCupcake on Twitter mentioned that this change should have been something the company would have known months in advance. The company can keep the atoms, just deliver what was promised. Redditor SenorBeef makes the point that virtual currency is worthless to Bethesda, so they should be willing to provide a far more substantial amount of atoms at no real cost. They could also just give customers refunds.
Ironically 500 Atoms won’t even buy you the Fallout 76 postman skin that actually has a canvas bag (it costs 700) pic.twitter.com/UCN3kXYDmn
— Chris Livingston (@screencuisine) November 29, 2018
No matter how Bethesda chooses to spin this, Fallout 76 has been a colossal failure in how it has tarnished the company’s image. Instead of being able to talk about their game and the future, they are having to deal with (or ignore) every new problem. That’s a bad place for any company to be. It’s especially damaging for a company that relies on the goodwill of the community to sell its games.
Jason became terminally addicted to videogames after receiving the NES at an early age. This addiction grew to include PC gaming and was cemented with the launch of the PS2. From then on, he was afflicted with epic RPGs, tense shooters, and deep strategy games, never becoming skillful, but never able to quit. He continues to play games (poorly) and share his passion for them to anyone willing to listen.