One of the biggest draws of Fallout 76 is the introduction of nuke launches, the player-triggered events that create both powerful enemies and great rewards. While the detonation of a nuke seemed inevitable, one day after the official game release, a group of Fallout 76 players has already fought in the most difficult armageddon possible.
Nukes, which can be thought of as Fallout 76’s version of raids, are not easy to facilitate. In order to detonate one, players must find a nuclear silo location and then gather the appropriate launch codes for the silo. These codes are randomly spawned by tough enemies, which means that it can take a significant amount of time to get everything you need just to start the event. It helps to group up, both to crowdsource the completion of a nuclear code and to take on the eventual fight.
The process is supposed to take multiple days given the rate at which the game doles out new letters for the nuclear codes, in addition to having to break a cipher just to put it all into use. But players have been exploring the wasteland since the beta and got to keep that progress, so a nuke launch was able to happen right away.
Nukes can be detonated in a variety of sites, which will all produce their own high-level enemies. A town, for example, may suddenly be populated by tough level 50 and above automatons once a nuke goes off. Fallout 76 has areas of the map that are known as Fissure Sites, and they are infamous for being deadly. It’s where Scorchbeasts, the toughest enemies in the game, reside. Scorchbeasts are huge bat-like creatures that can destroy settlements, and they are Fallout 76’s way of one-upping the already fearsome Deathclaws. You can think of them as post-apocalyptic dragons.
A group of players decided to launch a nuke on a Fissure Site yesterday, and the results are bonkers. As documented by YouTuber Nickaroo93, a Fissure Site detonation spawns multiple Scorchedbeasts, including the current toughest behemoth in the game: a Scorchedbeast Queen. The queen is level 95, and she’s not alone. Surrounding her are a legion of level 50 and above normal Scorchedbeasts as well as Scorched Deathclaws, Scorched Mega Sloths, and Scorched Ghouls.
It’s completely absurd to watch it unfold, especially with the entire player arena engulfed in flames and radiation. This is not necessarily the first nuke in the game — that happened during the beta — but it appears to be the most challenging type of nuke possible right now.
When a nuke is launched, the entire map knows, which means that the group was joined by a number of random players who wanted to partake in the fight. The support was welcome, however, because nuke detonations are meant to be a large-scale affair. Most people in the battle seem to be around level 45 and above and are decked in Power Armor.
Even so, it takes over 20 minutes to finish the event, and multiple player deaths are experienced along the way. (At one point, the group notes that some opportunistic players are looting dead bodies rather than helping with the raid.) It doesn’t help that the Queen can heal herself, and is generally a difficult target to hit while she’s flying around.
While the group tries to think of creative measures to take the queen down, like the crafting of turrets, most of the damage happens on the ground when the queen lands. Eventually, the group manages to kill the queen, and for their efforts, they are awarded a variety of goodies, including Ultracite items, which are currently the best material in the game. Of course, they have the privilege of being able to say they’re the first players to launch a nuke on a Fissure Site.
At the end, the group is so happy to have completed the event that they start fiddling around in photo mode — only to realize the carnage isn’t really over. The queen might be dead, but all the other enemies that were spawned for the event are still out for blood. That, and, it sounds like they’re already planning some more Scorchedbeast Queen showdowns: there’s more loot to be won.
“Our next goal is to launch a nuke from all silos at the same time, and given that there is still plenty of things left to do I am going to be having lots of fun,” Waffle_cop, one of the members of the group, told The Verge.
If you’re interested in launching your very own nuke, Nickaroo93 has uploaded a guide that walks you through the process. Just make sure you have a group of buddies because this isn’t the sort of thing you can do solo.
Update November 15th 5:04 PM: Added comment from one of the group members.