When Fallout 4 released, many wished they could up the realism and difficulty factor as they explored the Commonwealth looking for
adhesive their character’s son. Bethesda clearly listened, and they’ve rolled out the Survival Mode beta for Steam users. They’ve also posted a detailed description of how the new mode is different. Read on to discover more.
One of the first things the post explains is that all the features are subject to change over time. Survival Mode is still in beta, so users can expect some instability in the early stages.
Anyone who’s played Fallout: New Vegas on Hardcore Mode will be familiar with some of the mechanics. Ammunition, stimpaks and other such items now have a carry weight, and bullet weight varies by calibre. This should make packing your overnight bag more of a tactical consideration. There’s the need to eat and drink, as well as dramatically slowed health regeneration. Hunger and thirst will affect your combat effectiveness, as well as your “fatigue” and “immunity”, two new features that weren’t in New Vegas.
Fatigue is an accumulative debuff that reduces your character’s AP (Action Points), restricting how far you can sprint and how many targets you can hit in VATS. Fatigue is mostly determined by your amount of sleep, but hunger and thirst play a role too. Removing fatigue requires regular sleep, and the type of bed determines how much energy you regenerate. A sleeping bag, for example, will remove less fatigue than a proper bed will. Sleeping for more than an hour is also the only way to save your game, and fast travel is out the window too.
Immunity is by far the most interesting addition in my opinion. You can now contract illnesses and diseases, and the lower your health, the more likely you are to get sick. And by using RadAway to rid yourself of deadly radiation damage, your character also weakens their immune system. Antibiotics can now be crafted or bought, and will likely be a necessary addition to your kit.
Combat has been modified as well, resulting in what looks like a much tenser affair. You and your enemies deal more damage, meaning that fights will be about careful shot placement and resource management. Another new feature is the Adrenaline perk, which increases your damage dealt with each kill. Bethesda hopes this will lead to moments of bravado, where you’ll take bigger risks to push your advantage. Enemies no longer show up on the radar unless they are first seen through a recon scope. Another interesting change is that locations will repopulate with enemies and loot much more slowly, so common item farming sites won’t be as exploitable.
The Fallout 4 Survival Mode beta can be accessed through your Steam library. If you have the game installed, just right-click on it and enable the Survival beta in the settings menu.
Check out the community page if you want to submit feedback to Bethesda or pick up hints from other players.