Fallout 76 is a very different kind of Fallout game, with a new focus on multiplayer across a massive open world. Bethesda is putting it through its paces with a beta test releasing very soon, and you can join in to help explore the wastes and gather technical feedback before its official launch. However, while pre-ordering is your ticket to the beta, it won’t necessarily get you in quickly. Here’s everything to know about the beta.
When does the beta start?
The beta for Fallout 76 began on October 23 on Xbox One, and then expand to PC and PlayStation 4 the following week on October 30. Pre-loading for the Xbox One version is now available. Upcoming sessions are planned for October 27 and 28, as detailed in our Fallout 76 beta schedule guide.
Even if you’ve received a code, though, you may not necessarily be invited to the first wave. Bethesda plans to start small to stress test the game and expand slowly, so your actual start date may vary.
A separate pre-beta stress test also took place starting on October 13. That one was exclusive to Xbox One Insiders who have pre-ordered the game, and even then fulfilling those criteria only entered them into the pool of possible participants. Players of this stress test were under NDA and unlike the beta, game progress was not saved.
How long will the beta last?
Bethesda has not given a specific end-date for the beta, but it has explained that the servers won’t be available 24/7 during the beta period. The studio says it will be running «targeted time frames» to force interested players together at the same time, which in turn will mark a better technical test. The game may be available for 4-8 hours on any given day, with Bethesda making adjustments and fixes during the off periods. This process will repeat until a few days before launch on November 14.
How do I get in?
The beta will be available exclusively for those who pre-order the game across PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4. Digital pre-orders will be entered into the pool automatically, while physical pre-orders will receive a code to enter into the accounts page once the beta has gone live on your platform of choice.
It’s important to note that this code is not the beta code you enter to access the actual game download. Instead, the pre-order code is the one you enter into Bethesda’s system to be put into the pool for code distribution. A separate code, which gives you access to the install, will follow at a later time as Bethesda rolls out its invites.
In the meantime, you can be sure you’re prepared by creating a free Bethesda.net login. Also, make sure you have an active Xbox Live Gold or PlayStation Plus membership if you’re playing on either console, since those will be required to access the online-only game.
Is the beta the full game?
The Fallout 76 beta is the full experience, and Bethesda says it is currently planning to allow players to carry progress over into the full game. However, console players will need to redownload the launch version, whereas PC players will not need to download a new version upon launch. The beta will be 45 GB.
How do I submit feedback?
Bethesda is inviting feedback across its variety of social media channels.
What else will I get for pre-ordering?
Aside from beta access, pre-ordering will get you 500 Atoms—Fallout 76’s in-game currency. Atoms allow you to purchase cosmetic items from the shop. Bethesda has indicated that Atoms will be plentiful, but as we haven’t seen the shop or prices yet, it’s hard to say just how far 500 Atoms will go.