Fallout 76 is free this week and it's actually good now

A character in Fallout 76 crouching in a lake
(Image credit: Bethesda Softworks)

Multiplayer post-apocalyptic RPG Fallout 76 is free to play this week, and might actually be worth taking for a spin.

To mark the 25th anniversary of the Fallout franchise, Bethesda has made Fallout 76 free from now until October 11. You can try it out on all platforms, including PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and PC.

It’ll be joined by a few other freebies across the month. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers can claim a month of Fallout 1st – a premium membership scheme for Fallout 76 – while mobile spin-off Fallout Shelter will receive its first update in over four years, adding a new questline, enemies, and weapons.

Worth a trip to the wastes

Fallout 76 SGF 2022

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Fallout 76 had a dicey launch when it hit shelves back in 2018. Players and critics were unimpressed with its shallow open world and repetitive gameplay loop, as well as a slew of performance issues. In our review, we said: “Fallout 76 is an empty shell of a Fallout game, lacking the personality and story which drives the series”.

It’s improved drastically in the years since. Substantial updates and patches have added more questlines and characters. Bethesda has also expanded the game's worldbuilding, as well as ironed out its bugs. Fallout 76 is one of the easier massively multiplayer FPS games to dip into given its gradual learning curve, and is supported by a remarkably friendly community.

Don’t be expecting the classic Fallout RPG experience, though. Fallout 76 is more like a survival MMO that's heavy on exploration and base building. Think of it as an excellent open-world post-apocalyptic multiplayer RPG, but not a standout entry in the Fallout series. It's worth trying if you're a fan of the survival genre, or are a big Fallout lore buff that wants to soak up even more Nuka-Cola-flavored worldbuilding. 

Amazon Prime members can get even more from the anniversary celebrations. If you’re a subscriber to the service, you can pick up Fallout 76 for free this month to keep forever. 

Callum Bains
Gaming News Writer

Callum is TechRadar Gaming’s News Writer. You’ll find him whipping up stories about all the latest happenings in the gaming world, as well as penning the odd feature and review. Before coming to TechRadar, he wrote freelance for various sites, including Clash, The Telegraph, and Gamesindustry.biz, and worked as a Staff Writer at Wargamer. Strategy games and RPGs are his bread and butter, but he’ll eat anything that spins a captivating narrative. He also loves tabletop games, and will happily chew your ear off about TTRPGs and board games.