Fallout 76 cancellation floated by Xbox boss Phil Spencer
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A newly uncovered court document has revealed that Xbox boss Phil Spencer considered shutting Fallout 76 down after its negative reception.
A series of newly discovered emails shows that Spencer was ready to pull the plug on the 2018 action-RPG Fallout 76 due to concerns it wasn’t meeting player targets. The emails written in 2021 show the boss considering shutting down the game if it didn’t meet ten million monthly average users. Luckily, it managed to meet the target.
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This news comes after the large leak relating to the Microsoft v. FTC court case. As well as featuring leaks of a potential Xbox handheld console and new Xbox Series X model, it also revealed the news of a potential Fallout 3 and Oblivion remaster. Although the leaked documents were available for public viewing on the court website, a lot of it has since been taken down. Not before eagle-eyed fans saw the possible existence of Dishonoured 3 though.
The emails in question centered around the decision to bring Fallout 76 to PlayStation Now – the subscription service that is now best known as PlayStation Plus. Bringing titles to the service is an excellent way to boost visibility and Spencer seemed to agree in the series of emails despite originally having reservations about Fallout 76’s performance.
"I don't know why I feel different about F76 so open to conversation here," he writes. "In my view F76 is in this interesting place. Obviously started rough. Team stays focused on improving and finding larger audience. Feels like we either need to see this thing getting to 10M MAU across all platforms or decide to move on from it and if you believe PSNow can support it gaining relevance then I'm supportive."
Thanks to the arrival of Fallout 76: Wastelanders in April 2020 which introduced all-new content to the base game, the RPG had managed to meet its target by 2021 thanks to its success on the now PlayStation Plus. With both its playerbase and popularity increasing by the day, it seems as though it had a lucky escape.
This news also comes a week after the leaked teaser trailer for the Fallout TV series dropped.