Bethesda has shared an explanation for why the Brotherhood of Steel is in Fallout 76 despite all evidence that suggests they shouldn’t be.
In an Instagram post, Bethesda stated that army and Brotherhood of Steel found Captain Roger Maxson used a functioning satellite to spread the word of his organization and their cause to other parts of the country. They happened to reach West Virginia with their message and seemingly helped some of the survivors in that area form a chapter of the Brotherhood of Steel.
For the most part, people seem to be reacting well to this retcon. It’s not too outlandish to suggest that the Brotherhood would have access to such technology and that they might use it to strengthen their cause. What’s a little harder to swallow is the idea that the Brotherhood that appeared so shortly after this transmission would resemble the Brotherhood that seemingly took quite a few years to be properly formed. Things like that have led some to suggest this response was assembled not long after the initial controversy arose.
For those who don’t know, the Brotherhood of Steel is a semi-religious faction that has been a part of the Fallout franchise since the very first game. Their advanced technology and somewhat ambiguous motivations (they’re not outwardly hostile towards humans, but they’re also not that interested in directly helping them) make them a fan favorite coalition that usually offers the best items in the franchise. For years, it’s been suggested that the first recorded history of the Brotherhood occurred in California sometime around the year 2134.
Naturally, fans were confused regarding how the Brotherhood could then be in Fallout 76; a game that takes place in West Virginia in the year 2102. There were many outlandish theories regarding how such a thing might be possible (including one that argued Brotherhood members traveled to West Virginia) but it seems that Bethesda’s explanation is much more simple.
Why does any of this matter? Well, it certainly matters to hardcore Fallout fans, but even more casual fans of the franchise see this as an indication that Fallout 76 is very much not a Fallout game. The recent footage of the game that emerged from some press demos was met with a decidedly mixed reaction. That is to say that it looked incredibly rough and left many with serious doubts as to what Bethesda hopes to achieve with this game.
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Matthew Byrd is a staff writer for Den of Geek. He spends most of his days trying to pitch deep-dive analytical pieces about Killer Klowns From Outer Space to an increasingly perturbed series of editors. You can read more of his work here or find him on Twitter at @SilverTuna014.