After a strong showing at E3 and Gamescom, the news coming out of Bethesda Game Studios regarding the highly-anticipated Fallout 4 was miniscule. That changed today with an announcement from the company on plans for continued game support after Fallout 4 launches in November.
The first phase will come through game updates. The large and detailed world of Fallout 4 will be prone to various bugs and glitches from day one, prompting swift action with game patches. In addition to repairs, some of these patches will also bring about new features to the game. It's not clear as to what these features will be, but that should change when Bethesda details the various upgrades for each fix.
For PC gamers, the biggest feature any developer can put in its game is the ability to mod almost every aspect of the game from a graphics overhaul to minute changes in the UI. Just search for mods for Fallout 3, Fallout: New Vegas and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim to see the long list of popular mod creations for each game. Fallout 4 will give modders the same opportunity to change the game in their own way through the developers' Creation Kit. The software will be free, but there is a catch. It won't be available until early 2016.
However, that should give fans enough time to play through the game to figure out which aspects need modding and how to go about creating it. Console players won't be left out of the modding experience, as the created content can be shared not just on PC, but Xbox One and PlayStation 4.
Finally, there's the usual staple of downloadable content. In the past, those who played Fallout 3 and Skyrim had to purchase each DLC individually. With the advent of the Season Pass purchase, players can pay $30 to ensure that they receive guaranteed expansion of the game as it comes out.
The first major expansion won't arrive until early next year, hopefully around the same time as the Creation Kit release. As for the number of content planned, the exact number is still uncertain, as Bethesda itself is still adding the finishing touches to the base game before it can even discuss DLC. However, its past titles had three to five major DLCs released, so it would be no surprise if it sticks to that range.
There are only two months, almost exactly to the day, left until the next Fallout game. This announcement was the biggest batch of information for fans since Gamescom in early August. As the clock winds down to release day, it's possible for Bethesda to remain silent until November 10, but with fans clamoring for just a taste of what's to come, it's more probable for the company to release a few trailers and more details about post-apocalyptic Boston.