Where All of the NPCs Are in Fallout 76
While many aspects of Fallout 76 have turned heads since its Beta was opened to the public, ore than a few players noticed a distinct lack of NPCs in the forests and mountains of the West Virginia wasteland. This may cause some to wonder where NPCs can be found, and so we’re here today to tell you where all of the NPCs are in Fallout 76.
Put plainly, there are no NPCs in Fallout 76. Instead, every human character within the game is another human, thanks to the game’s multiplayer-centric design.
There are holotapes scattered around the game’s world that hint at the fact that people could once be found throughout the ruins of West Virginia, but otherwise players will never meet a non-player controlled character.
This was wholly intentional on the part of Bethesda. The company spoke with Polygon on the decision not to include NPCs in the game, and the reason was made both for narrative and design reasons.
“When I was thinking of [Fallout], at first it was, ‘The bombs fell, nothing happened, and then I emerged from the vault,’” Pete Hines, Bethesda’s senior vice president of global marketing and communications, said. “It’s really: ‘The bombs fell, people were trying to live their lives here and recover and exist, and then they disappeared.’ And listening to those survivors’ holotapes really gives you a lot of that NPC character and flavor, without NPCs, in a way that I didn’t expect.”
This of course posed challenges to the development team in how the story and interactions were structured in Fallout 76, but again played into how the game’s narrative was portrayed.
“It’s definitely challenging to take away the dialogue trees for our design team; it’s how they’ve made games for a long time,” Hines said. “But when Todd wanted the directive of ‘every human you find is another real human,’ then these guys had to think really creatively to find new ways to tell the story, and new ways to get the player engaged.”
While Bethesda has said that they’ll try to stay receptive to player feedback, including whether or not NPCs might be added into Fallout 76, there is no firm confirmation at this time that the game will ever include them.
In the meantime, players will need to be satisfied by each other’s presence and the occasional friendly robot.
That’s all there is to whether or not there are any NPCs in Fallout 76. For more on the game, check out our Fallout 76 guide wiki for some of our other guides. Tips and tricks like how to fast travel and how to play with friends are all covered in there.