After launching the world’s first end-game nuke last week, a group of Fallout 76 players wanted to perform an experiment. What would happen if they launched multiple nukes at once? Turns out, detonating too many bombs will overload the game.
Nukes, Fallout’s take on raids, are a mechanic that allows players to transform a location so that it spawns higher-level enemies with better loot. Nuking a locale isn’t supposed to be easy: you have to collect multiple codes that spawn randomly, and then you have to figure out a cipher to put these codes into use. Some players, however, have automated the cipher process in addition to amassing a lot of codes through plenty of playtime. So now Fallout 76 players have to make decisions about whether to offload their payload on the map.
It’s a decision that affects many players, and it doesn’t come lightly. Already, many are reporting nukes going off in Morgantown, one of the first locations that players visit after starting the game. Needless to say, unprepared players can’t handle the tough monsters that Fallout 76 generates in a nuclear landing zone. Fortunately, the game warns residents before a nuke goes off in any given location.
YouTuber Nickaroo93 and his crew launched three nukes at once over the weekend, and seconds after doing so, they were kicked from the server. The game had stopped responding:
The server crash wasn’t a surprise to the crew. In the clip, they hypothesize that it might happen. Even so, the gang wanted to see it first-hand, Nickaroo93 told The Verge.
“There are three sites in the game you can launch nukes from, so we originally wanted to see if it was possible to launch the nukes from each of the sites,” Nickaroo93 said. “When we found out it was possible, we decided to launch them in the same area at once.”
Since the announcement, there’s been a lot of anxiety over nukes and whether players can take advantage of their sheer power to overwhelm others on a server. And while it’s true that Nickaroo93’s group now has enough influence to impact everyone’s game on their server, they don’t necessarily think the mechanic is unbalanced.
“I personally don’t see it as something to abuse,” Nickaroo93 said. “If a player is in a server when the nuke launches, and they don’t want to deal with it, they can simply leave their world and join a different one. Whenever I saw someone launch another nuke while I was playing I got excited at the prospect to explore something new!”
He does, however, believe that Bethesda can improve the nuking mechanic. As it stands, players can simply collect a nuclear keycard and then generate a code online via a website, which is something that can apparently be done in about an hour once you’re at a high enough level, Nickaroo93 says. Bethesda does seem open to finessing the nuke mechanic: this morning, a patch went out that fixed an issue with how the game drops nuclear codes. For now, though, Nickaroo93’s squad will continue their nuke experiments.
“The next thing we want to try is launching the nukes at three different regions of the map to see if the servers can handle the load,” Nickaroo93 said. “The idea of exploring three different irradiated areas sounds amazing, and we hope it’s possible.”