There’s rarely a week where there’s not some news about Fallout 76, Bethesda’s online multiplayer take on the Fallout universe, for better or worse. It seems the holidays aren’t providing any respite to Bethesda, as a story about an alleged customer service interaction is one more log to throw into the fire.
According to Variety, a YouTube video purporting that Bethesda has been banning users for using mods for Fallout 76 has been making the rounds. Banning for mods in general is kind of a strange thing, as some are used just for getting better accessibility or performance out of software. When these modders tried pleading this case to Bethesda’s customer service however, the representatives apparently assigned them homework instead.
The video, created by YouTuber JuiceHead, explains that people who were banned received an email back from Bethesda support asking for an essay about why mods are bad. Allegedly, the email sent back says “If you would like to appeal this account closure, we would be willing to accept an essay on ‘Why the use of third party cheat software is detrimental to an online game community’ for our management team to review.”
While it’s always possible the email could be fake, Juicehead says that he spoke to other banned players who backed up the wording and sentiment of the email asking for essays in exchange for being unbanned. It’s certainly a unique take on discouraging online cheating.
A long time ago, I used to edit essays as a side gig. I am not sure I would ever willingly ask people to give me essays to read on a thing they don’t want to do.