The past couple of months have been particularly amusing for those of us who haven’t purchased tickets to the brothel that Bethesda has been taking its customers into. Not that they knew they were being taken into a brothel. All those eager beavers wanting to get their hands on Fallout 76 were instead being led into a dark, private room, with the faceless Bethesda corporation already stripped nude. It’s going in dry.
This series of incompetent events started not this year, however, but even before Fallout 4 released. The utterly crap engine Bethesda still relies upon to bring their (un)surprisingly empty open worlds can’t be described by many humans that it is still fit for purpose. Barely passable even before Fallout 4, but not now. Bethesda noted before their B.E.T.A. (Break it Early Test Application, heh) for Fallout 76 that there would be some “spectacular bugs”. How many could they fix before the release just a mere two weeks after this test? No prizes this time for your guesses.
If I was paid hourly to go through 76 to list as many bugs as possible, I think I’d run GameGrin out of business. A hefty list on Reddit told me enough. All the way through the comments there are angry gamers shouting at Bethesda, each other, or whoever else will listen. Despite these same people shouting when Fallout 4 released to never pre-order, once again the trust placed in the faceless corporation has them bent over, wishing for it to stop.
That part was mostly to be expected. With Skyrim it was funny, now the Reddit warriors come out in force touting that something has to be done with all these developers releasing half baked games, before pre-ordering the next instalment in their favourite franchises from yet another faceless corporation.
After this farce, all Bethesda had to do was say they were fixing the issues and it would be business as normal. Instead, they went another step further, because obviously, it’s 2018 and just one piece of bad publicity doesn’t stick in the general public’s mind anymore.
“Canvas-gate” was the name quickly adopted, when those who made the unfortunate decision to pre-order the Power Armour edition received their coveted canvas bags. Except, it wasn’t a canvas bag. It was a cheap nylon bag that I wouldn’t even trust to handle my eggs, milk and cheese from Sainsbury’s. I’d rather use their 5p bags thanks very much.
After the threat of legal proceedings of false advertising and constant echoes of “refund” reverberating through Bethesda, it re-evaluated and agreed to offer what it said it was going to give you in the first place. Not before offering a temporary truce, in the way of $5 worth of gold nuggets, not even enough to purchase an in-game canvas bag.
Now, those purchasers of the Power Armour edition will be treated to a proper canvas bag. Pop your details in, name, address and all, and this mess will all be over soon. The light at the end of the brothel is ever lighter.
But instead of just walking out, it’s like somebody has got a picture of you, posting it all over Facebook, Twitter or whatever other social platforms can be just as embarrassing. Users found that for a few hours, they could access every single ticket on their customer service portal. Obviously not only content with having Joe Schmoe public doing their QA, they want them to answer their queries too. Whether some malicious 13 year old script kiddie actually managed to extract all this information, only time will tell. Bethesda couldn’t just leave this entire situation with everyone happy, after all.
Whether the next chapter will retain the same level of entertainment I just can’t tell. It would have been hard to imagine such a fall from grace for Bethesda after Skyrim: here we stand, no arrows to the knee, just pissed off.