In a series of tweets, Bethesda exec Pete Hines announces that the physical PC version of Fallout 4 does not contain the entire game, and requires Steam to play.
Bethesda executive Pete Hines took to his Twitter account today to answer some questions regarding the upcoming Fallout 4, with the answers surprising some fans. While Hines initially only announced that the game could be downloaded directly from Steam if a gamer’s PC lacked a DVD drive, he went on to clarify that the physical disc itself doesn’t contain the entire game.
Twitter followers didn’t take very well to the announcement, and while Hines quickly explained that the disc would contain some game data, unlike Metal Gear Solid V which only had a steam installer on the disc, the situation unraveled from there.
Hines explained that on Fallout 4‘s PC version, all gamers would be required to activate the game on Steam as a form of DRM. The conversation turned resentful from that point on, with Twitter followers arguing against the use of DRM and its general inconvenience towards paying, honest gamers, while Hines calmly replied that Bethesda has used this system for over ten years without a negative effect on their sales.
It’s worth noting that Pete Hines’ argument isn’t completely without reason. He points out that the console versions of the game will be sold on Blu-Ray, whereas the PC version will only be available on DVD. For a game of Fallout 4‘s size and scope, a multitude of DVDs would be necessary to cram the entire game into a physical copy. Sadly, both sides have a point regarding DRM – gamers who don’t have Steam (and don’t want Steam) will either have to download the Valve application, give up on Fallout 4 for PC altogether, or wait until the DRM is cracked and install the game illicitly.
Bethesda is probably keeping costs down by only placing some of the game data in the physical version and letting gamers download the rest, rather than producing countless DVDs. In any case, Bethesda has sought to sweeten the deal for Steam users, offering some Fallout 4 pre-order bonuses exclusively to those who buy the game on Steam. However, gamers with less-than-stellar internet may have to wait a long time to download the remainder of Fallout 4‘s game data, and those who choose to pre-order the digital copy will probably get a leg up in the form of pre-loading the game before its release date.
Sadly, it seems that gamers have to expect that this is just the way PC gaming will be from now on. We can at least be glad that Bethesda hasn’t embraced other modern developer conventions, as they’ve refrained from adding paid mods and microtransactions to Fallout 4.
Fallout 4 releases November 10, 2015 for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.